Study Abroad Programs

Students dancing

Nothing sharpens your understanding of the world quite like studying abroad

Given the increasingly global nature of business, education, science, art, and politics, international experiences provide you with the cultural competence that will serve you well in academics and in your career.

University of Detroit Mercy provides several contexts for study, including

  • exchange programs,
  • semester-long programs and short-term,
  • faculty-led study programs.

Semester Study Programs

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    Volterra, Italy Summer Program

    Volterra, Italy Summer Program

    Map of VolterraThe Volterra/Detroit program provides students with a global perspective of architecture. Although it is a more typical summer study program, it operates with the support of the Regional Government of Tuscany. The full semester of study in the hill-town of Volterra permits extensive interaction with the residents and provides a unique insight into their social, economic and political situation. Students live and work in our own private facility in Volterra, which makes the program very affordable.

    Volterra is one of the finest hilltop towns tucked away in the heart of Tuscany, and is only a short distance from Florence 72 kilometers (43 miles), Siena 50 km (30 miles), Pisa 64 kilometers (38 miles), San Gimignano 29 kilometers (17 miles) and the Tyrrhenian coast. Volterra, 545 metres above sea level, dominates and divides the Cecina and Era valleys. The hill upon which the city stands has been continuously inhabited for more than 3,000 years. The city has significant architectural monuments dating from the fourth century BC, onward. The current image of the city is still defined by the medieval layout, with winding streets, and well preserved defensive walls. The walls offer dramatic views of the surrounding landscape, on a clear day reaching as far as Pisa, or even the island of Corsica (70 miles away).

    Students take a full academic load of 17 credits during the program: Design Studio, Alabaster Sculpture, Architectural Analysis, Intro to Italian Language, and History of Italian Art and Architecture. Alabaster sculpture class is taught by Veglio Grandoli at the local Art School. Students typically travel throughout Europe for about two weeks before or after the program, and three additional trips are organized during their stay in Volterra to Florence, Siena and Rome.

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    School of Architecture Technical University of Warsaw, Poland

    School of Architecture Technical University of Warsaw, Poland

    Academic exchange program
    Poland buildingThe academic exchange program with the Technical University of Warsaw in Poland involves the annual exchange of 10-12 students from each school for a term of study; classes are taken with professors from the visited school. The professor who is also exchanged teaches a design or visual communication studio to students from the host institution, as well as lectures about architectural issues in his or her home country. The program was designed to ensure the maximum impact in both schools, not only for the participants but for the student body at large. Since its initiation in 1980, more than 300 students from each school have participated in the exchange.

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    International Exchange Program in France with ICAM, a Jesuit Engineering School

    International Exchange Program in France with ICAM, a Jesuit Engineering School

    Detroit Mercy engineering students have the opportunity to participate in an 8-week international Exchange Program with ICAM, a Jesuit Engineering School with multiple campuses in France. Locations include Lille, Nantes/Vannes, Toulouse & Paris. Their focus is engineering studies closely partnered with industrial companies. 

    This opportunity will count as a Detroit Mercy co-op. 

    The program begins at the ICAM campus in Paris-Sénart.  It includes 4 weeks of classes, visits to local companies to illustrate the engineering issues studied in class, and French & intercultural communication classes to become better acquainted with European traditions, institutions and culture.  This is followed by 4 weeks shadowing an ICAM student in a company as an intern. To view the most recent brochure, visit 

    Requirements

    Students must have completed at least one semester of French before participating (at Detroit Mercy or in high school).

    Cost

    Tuition is covered, but students will have to fund their travel and housing.

    Classes 

    • Intensive French language & Intercultural Communication Courses  Beginner, Intermediate or Advanced (40 hours) 
    • Technical Project  Taught in English (45 hours) - This project takes place in ICAM laboratories, with ICAM teachers.  Objectives: Teamwork Design & Fabrication; Project Management 

    Cultural and professional fieldtrips 

    • Cultural visits in the area 
    • Visits to western-European companies 

    Accommodations (housing fees apply)

    • First 4 weeks in Paris Sénart 
      Students will stay in ICAM residence halls during the week, and in the families of ICAM students during a weekend.
    • Second 4 weeks during the internship Students will work with ICAM International office to identify and stay with a host family

    Contact

    Richard Hill at hillrc@manufacturedconsensus.net or Carolyn Rimle at rimlec@manufacturedconsensus.net.

Short term programs

Many short-term experiences abroad are open to enrolling students in programs outside of the disciplines, as well as alumni, and other guest students/participants. Please check with the program directors listed to ensure this is the case.

Faculty-Led Short Term Programs (credit-based)

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    International Business Experience - Greece, Spain, others - End of winter term

    International Business Experience - End of winter term

    An eight-day educational experience abroad is available in international business. Program locations change annually. In recent years, the program has traveled to China, Costa Rica, Greece, Ireland, and Spain. Enrollment in BUS 4940 or MBA 5940 is required. Please contact Professor Gregory Ulferts 313-993-1219 or ulfertgw@manufacturedconsensus.net for further information about programming this academic year.

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    International Experience in Community Development and the Humanities in Havana, Cuba - Spring break or end of winter term

    International Experience in Community Development and the Humanities in Havana, Cuba | Spring Break or end of winter term - Educational and Humanitarian Visit

    CubaJoin us for a program to Cuba focusing on education, people-to-people engagement, and visits to UNESCO World Heritage sites. Our stay is primarily in walkable Old Havana, where we focus on cultural and historic preservation, celebrate the arts, contextualize history, discuss contemporary issues, and recognize the contributions of Afro Cuban communities, as well as learn about some sustained traditions and practices. We also examine the intricate ecosystem of support that sustains Cubans during difficult times. Pre-departure coursework takes place at Detroit Mercy's main campus; travel to Cuba takes place during spring break or the end of winter semester. We synthesize our experience using Detroit Mercy's Master in Community Development HOPE framework, which intersects the human, organizational, physical, and economic aspects of community and invites all to participate in cultural asset mapping project as part of our holistic educational experience. This visit opportunities to dialogue with city planners, interact with organizational leaders, artists, and meet the people of Cuba - the most essential reason for our visit. Contact Lara Wasner at 313-993-1191 or wasnerle@manufacturedconsensus.net to inquire about approved courses this program year. Ask about travel grants available for students enrolling in coursework associated with this program! Students, faculty, and alumni are welcome to join this program.

    Here is a recent asset mapping project that highlights our visit:

    2023 Cultural Asset Mapping Project - Havana and Cienfuegos

    Read recent articles about this program:

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    International Experience in Israel - Four weeks during summer semester

    Michigan Universities Consortium Study In Israel Program - Four weeks during summer (May/June) -The 2024 summer program will not run.

    Volterra

    Travel to Israel through this program hosted by Eastern Michigan University (EMU) and offered to students at University of Detroit Mercy and other consortium schools. Students from each consortium school have the opportunity to participate in programming rooted in religious studies, literature, history, culture, and society. Enrollment in two specific EMU courses for academic credit is required.  For information about this summer's program and to request an application, contact Lara Wasner at wasnerle@manufacturedconsensus.net or Todd Hibbard at hibbarja@manufacturedconsensus.net.

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    International Experience in Northeast Brazil - End of winter term, 2026

    brazilThis program to Brazil will engage several issues relevant to the Afro-Brazilian diaspora, including ethnic and racial affirmation, struggles and triumphs over representation, discourses of harmony and confrontation, and voices of presence and memory. We will approach these topics from the perspectives of music, art, literature, architecture, history, folklore, cuisine, religion, dance, and language.

    Participants will learn about Brazil's social movements, about the hierarchal religion of Candomblé, and the poetry of samba. We will explore the intersection of Catholicism with Africanicity in historic and present manifestations, in part, through the icons of folklore. We will trace the history of religious festivals and practices, and learn about prominent authors, community leaders, artists, and performers who speak to, from, and about the Afro-Brazilian experience.

    Contact Lara Wasner at 313-993-1191 or wasnerle@manufacturedconsensus.net to inquire about approved courses this program year. Ask about travel grants available for students enrolling in coursework associated with this program! Students, faculty, and alumni are welcome to join this program.

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    Mercy Heritage Tour of Ireland: International Nursing Experience in Cork and Dublin, Ireland - May or June

    Mercy Heritage Tour of Ireland: International Nursing Experience in Cork, Dublin and Limerick, Ireland - May or June

    DublinThis multi-day experience in Ireland will significantly enrich participants’ understanding of the role of Catherine McAuley in shaping the student experience and educational foundation of a graduate from the McAuley School of Nursing. CHP faculty, student, and alumni participants will be exposed to an international perspective of healthcare as it relates to the college's objectives during this international experience, which takes travelers to Dublin, Ireland with a visit to the founding Mercy Hospital in Cork.

    The aim of this internationally based experience is to enrich the classroom experience through cultural and spiritual immersion. Cultural immersion will be used to reinforce the Mercy-based values of Catherine McAuley while introducing students to the Irish social service, healthcare and academic environments.

    This experience will engage students in the life, work, and history of Catherine McAuley. Additionally, this experience will place emphasis on the meaning of a Mercy-Jesuit-value based education. This international experience includes a visit to the Mercy International Centre, the location of the first House of Mercy built by Catherine McAuley in response to the needs of the poor of Dublin. All will discover the story of Catherine McAuley by exploring Dublin and visiting many landmarks of importance in the life of Catherine and the history of the Sisters of Mercy. Students will also be immersed in the profession of nursing by touring a local hospital (Mater) and speaking with registered nurses and administrators.

    Throughout this experience, students will examine and compare the cultural beliefs, values and health care practices of the Irish with those found in the United States, or more specifically, the metro Detroit area.

    Hear what nursing students say about the trip

    For information, contact Sr. Judith Mouch at mouchj1@manufacturedconsensus.net or Andrea Kwasky at kwaskyan@manufacturedconsensus.net.

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    International Experience in India - 9 days - End of winter term, 2025

    International Experience in India - 9 days - End of winter term, 2025

    Taj Mahal Agra IndiaThis journey will take us to India's famous "Golden Triangle" or the cities of New Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur. On each leg of the tour, local expert guides will travel with the group sharing their insights into the specific region, as well as their knowledge of the historically and culturally significant sites we will be visiting. A 3-credit history course taught by Dr. Diane Robinson-Dunn during winter semester of 2025 can help prepare participants for the program. The class will explore the history of the Indian Subcontinent with an emphasis on cultural encounters and exchanges. For more information about the program in India, visit our travel manager EF College Education Tours at www.efcollegestudytours.com/professors-trip/2421116MM

    Dr. Diane Robinson-Dunn
    robinsod@UDMercy.edu
    313-993-1107

Internationally-based Experiences not for credit

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    Conversation Partner program in Zhaoqing China

    Conversation Partner program in Zhaoqing China, 3-4 weeks in July-August.

    This program has been placed on hold during Covid-19. We look forward to running the homestays in China again in the near future.

    This non-credit bearing program either begins with a brief two-day tour of Shanghai, China before students depart for the city of Zhaoqing in Southern China, where students from Detroit Mercy meet Chinese English-language learners from the Cambridge Summit Language School who will become their conversation partners during the four week program. During the stay in Zhaoqing, students from Detroit will facilitate conversations and assist teachers with planned programming at the nearby school. Students from Detroit can choose to stay in pairs or stay independently with selected families of teachers at the language school. Additional visits to Hong Kong and other nearby cities can be arranged at the students’ expense, while the pre-program tour and stay in Zhaoqing are covered by the language school. Program participants pay minimal expenses: airfare, insurance, incidental costs for this program where they explore Chinese history, arts, culture, and life in China’s megacities, learning about the impact of rapid modernization on China's institutions, infrastructure, family life, communities, and institutions. Pre-departure sessions are mandatory and include cultural themes and educational insights. Students can arrange a departure flight out of Shanghai, Hong Kong, or Beijing, and choose to stay for an optional tour on their own (and at their own expense) before returning to the US.  Contact Lara Wasner at 313-993-1191 or wasnerle@manufacturedconsensus.net to inquire about this program.

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    External opportunities - Medlife Medical and Educational program, Peace Corps program

    Learn about becoming a Peace Corps volunteer 

    The Peace Corps rings together skilled, committed volunteers with welcoming communities for service opportunities in over 60 countries.  While most of these opportunities are for students who have graduated, there are various internship opportunities for students at various levels of education and in various stages of careers.  To learn more about Peace Corps. To learn more about the Peace Corps internship program.

    To learn about Peace Corp opportunities, inquire with regional director Emily Nguyen at enguyen@peacecorps.gov 

    Medlife Mission Trip to Lima, Peru l December, post-semester, weeklong program. Contact Medlife to find a nearby chapter.

    medlife logoMEDLIFE stands for Medicine, Education and Development for Low Income Families Everywhere. We partner with low-income communities in Latin America and Africa to improve their access to quality healthcare, education and a safe home. We work to understand the root causes posed by poverty and create sustainable, quality solutions.

    For the first time, MEDLIFE has been brought to University of Detroit Mercy. During the winter break, our members will attend a mobile medical clinic in Lima, Peru. This mission trip will include helping Peruvians who lack access to basic needs.

    The programs listed in this section are programs not affiliated with or necessarily endorsed by the university.

Service Based Trips

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    University Ministry International Service Experience (ISE)

    Students in all disciplines have an opportunity to engage in experiences of transformative Jesuit and Mercy education outside of the classroom. These opportunities can include service, cultural learning, relationship building, and daily prayer and reflection. Check the University Ministry website for immersion experiences, which may vary annually.

    Immersion, Immigration, Rural Poverty | Early May - Contact University Ministry to obtain more information.

    Learn more from Campus Ministry.

Partner Programs

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    AJCU Shared Programs

    Being a member of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) has universal benefits. Detroit Mercy students may now apply to study for a semester in countries such as Australia, Belgium, China, Germany, Italy, Spain, South Africa and Vietnam. It is best to contact the individual listed via email to find out specific information, like when programs run, the courses attached to each program, cost of tuition, and other considerations.

    For the complete shared program list, click here.

    For more information about these institutional partners and study opportunities, please contact the program director associated with the program of interest.

I want to study abroad.
What should I do next?

Interested students should do the following when exploring these opportunities:

  1. Identify a program of interest and consult with the departments sponsoring the programs for more information;
  2. Contact the University's financial aid office to discuss resources for study abroad in their program of interest;
  3. Note what courses are offered and discuss the program of interest with your primary advisor to figure out whether and/or how credits will serve you toward graduation (if the program is offered for credit).

Still have questions?

Check out the FAQ