Lead a Study Abroad Program

Leading a program abroad is both a challenging and rewarding experience! Successful international faculty-led programs result from a collaborative effort between the program leader, International Programs & Services (IPS), collegiate units, and departments. We find that students choose faculty-led programs as a way to incorporate study abroad without altering academic, professional, and personal responsibilities during their college careers. 

Our staff will support you in planning a faculty-led program abroad:

  • Program development support
  • Selecting a provider/partner for on-site services
  • Budgeting & setting the program fee
  • Marketing (web, digital, & print)
  • Student application process
  • Student orientation topics, resources, & support
  • Course set-up and student registration
  • Health, safety, and risk management training and planning

Get Started:

Attend a New Study Abroad Program Leader Workshop

  • Learn how to plan for and develop a faculty-led study abroad program. 
  • Discuss your program idea with IPS and identify areas where you have questions or need support.
  • Work with IPS to choose a provider/partner to assist you with on-site logistics. Your on-site provider can also serve as a "second program leader". This fulfills the UMN Education Abroad policy which can lower the program fee (details below).
  • Conduct a site visit to become familiar with your program location, on-site partner, and to perform a "test run" of your program. Funding is available through the University of Minnesota. Additionally, study abroad program providers and universities can assist with planning a site visit. They may also have funding and resources available.

Fall 2024 Workshop Details:

Study Abroad: New Program Leader Workshop

Program Providers & Partners

Faculty-led programs must work with a program provider or partner. These providers/partners provide on-site services, expertise, logistical arrangements, and on-site risk management support. Providers/partners can also serve as a second program leader, which adheres to the UMN Education Abroad Policy.

IPS has existing affiliate study abroad program providers. Explore their custom programming options:

Provider Criteria

Providers should be chosen based on the following criteria:

  • Knowledge of and experience in the location(s) to be visited
  • Ability to provide expertise, suggestions, and/or guest lecturer(s) for the academic area of your course and on-site activities
  • The reputation of services as evidenced by recommendations from other educational institutions
  • Understanding of U.S. safety protocols and the ability to provide safety and security guidance to participants
  • Transparency in financial arrangements
  • Disclosure of relationships with campus staff to avoid conflicts and ethics violations
  • Cost—recognizing that factors such as experience, expertise, and the provision of appropriate lodging, meals, safe transportation, etc., are often more important than lower cost


Study Abroad Faculty-led Program Proposal due dates:

  • Winter & spring break programs: December 1
  • May & summer session programs: April 1

We look forward to reviewing proposals each year. IPS and the Study Abroad Faculty Advisory Council review proposals. Program approval is competitive because of limited resources. IPS strives to offer a diverse portfolio of programs each year. Prior to proposing a program, please read our handbook.

Download the proposal >

Thank you for your interest and don't hesitate to reach out with questions.


Briana Litz, M.Ed.
Associate Director
[email protected]