Learning Abroad for Students of Romance Languages and Cultures

Students should enhance their major by spending an academic year in a country where one of the languages of their major is spoken. Students who plan to take part in a study abroad program must consult both the chair of the Romance Languages and Cultures Committee and the chair of the target language.

Study Abroad

Where to study
RL&C students select where they want to go depending on their selected languages of study. Normally, students use study abroad to perfect one of their languages and then, use their Lynk funds for an international internship, in a different location, perfecting another of their languages. Students can choose to study in France, Italy, Spain, Latin America, or a French-speaking country in Africa.

For more information about study abroad programs, how to apply, financial aid, and credit transfer, see the McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives Study Abroad page.

Academic Year/Semester Programs

The most popular programs among our RL&C majors during recent years have been Mérida (Mexico), Montpellier (France), Florence (Italy) and Seville (Spain).
For more information on the study abroad options, please, visit the Study Abroad pages in the French, Italian or Spanish, Latina/o and Latin American studies departments’ webpages:

When to study
RL&C students often go abroad during their junior year, for one semester or a full academic year, although they can decide to go earlier or during the fall semester of their senior year. Good planning with the advisor and the chair ahead of time is a must.

Credit Transfer
Normally, credits earned while studying abroad satisfy some of the requirements of the major. Before students go abroad, they must talk to their advisor, the chair of the language department for which the courses will count, and/or the RL&C chair, to be sure the classes they will take, will count towards the major. After returning, students must meet the chair to discuss the level for each class. Regularly students will count two courses towards the major if they go one semester abroad, five if the full academic year. However, if students take a class abroad for their secondary language (e.g. a Spanish class while in France), they may be able to transfer it as an extra course.

Summer Internships and Research Abroad

Funding is available through the Lynk Universal Application Form (UAF). To explore opportunities relevant to romance languages and cultures, please visit the McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives International Internships and Research page. Then contact Kirk Lange, Director of International Experiential Learning at the McCulloch Center, for specific details on applying for internships and funding.

Next Steps

Students interested in exploring possibilities for learning abroad are encouraged to contact the McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives.  Joanne Picard/her successor (jpicard@mtholyoke.edu) is the primary advisor for study abroad, and Kirk Lange (klange@mtholyoke.edu) can offer guidance on internships or research abroad.  Students should also consult with their faculty advisor about how they can best connect and integrate learning abroad with their work in the major.