CIEE: Council on International Educational Exchange

CIEE

About

A nonprofit, non-governmental organization, CIEE is the world leader in international study and exchange programs. For more than 75 years, CIEE has helped thousands of students, professionals, and educators gain the knowledge and skills necessary to live and work in a globally interdependent and culturally diverse world by offering the most comprehensive, relevant, and valuable exchange programs available.

Scholarships

CIEE

CIEE Scholarships and Grants

CIEE’s need-based grants offer support to students who face financial barriers to studying abroad. CIEE awards need-based grants based on students’ EFCs and program selection. The Gilman Go Global Grant offers students $750-$2,000 toward airfare, plus $2,500 toward semester program costs, or $1,000 toward summer program costs.

Value
$500 - $2,500

Reviews

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Grace
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Prague Study Abroad

This was one of the greatest experiences in my whole life. I studied abroad to fulfill requirements for my International Business minor and took a chance to go against the usual Italy or Spain, and went to the Czech Republic. The program and staff were wonderful, I felt that they wanted us to experience all that we could and they supported us the entire program. I took classes only through CIEE because of how my requirements and schedule turned out, but the opportunity to take classes at Charles University is not something that should be passed on. I could not asked for a better time there and Prague is such a beautiful and historical city, and I never felt unsafe there. It was the best.

Pros
  • The program staff
  • The places to explore
  • Self-growth
Cons
  • Not being able to easily meet locals
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Anika
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

CIEE Prague

Prague is an amazing city and CIEE Prague provided helpful support, fantastic housing, and a wealth of fun activities to help us explore everything on offer. The main con was that it was difficult to meet Czech people, but if you're adventurous and love exploring, Prague is a wonderful place to do it! CIEE allows participants to forge their own way in the city while also providing a homebase with helpful staff and optional activities to participate in. The classes are definitely geared towards American study abroad students, but the content is all super fun and interesting.

Pros
  • Art and Architecture
  • Activities (Restaurants, Nightlife, Events)
  • Flexibility
Cons
  • Ability to meet Czech people
  • Academics not very rigorous
  • No spring break
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Cassidy
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

In Love with CIEE Madrid Summer Session I

I attended Summer Session I in Madrid with CIEE which was a 4 week program for college students. CIEE did an amazing job being available for any assistance and help you may need and were always happy to help. Day 1 I was feeling nauseous from jet lag so one of the CIEE staff took the time to walk me to a pharmacy and help me get what I needed, thanks Jon! The class was a lot of fun too, the first half was lecture, but the second half we explored the city in ways that connected to our in class learning. Two CIEE staff even used their free time to give us an unofficial thrifting tour because they knew it was something we were interested in. I plan to study again with CIEE next summer!

Pros
  • Classes & Teacher were awesome
  • CIEE staff always available for help
  • CIEE willing to accommodate your interests
Cons
  • Pre departure information was sent out late
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Camille
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

CIEE Summer Session1- Madrid

I went on the Summer Session 1 trip to Madrid through CIEE. I had an absolutely wonderful time! All of the staff were incredibly helpful and welcoming. They were always quick to respond to any concerns or issues we had. They also gave plenty of helpful suggestions for fun things to do!

I was well informed of events and prep work both before and during the trip. The CIEE team made sure we had the “Know Before You Go” Canvas module, so I could learn about what to expect in Spain.

Finally, the classes were amazing! Both of the professors were very fun and made the class enjoyable. Both classes allowed us to actively go out into the city and explore during class time. It was wonderful to be able to get close to some of the things we were learning about. The classes were never too much though, and I always had time to go out exploring on my own or with friends.

Pros
  • Friendly and supportive staff
  • Fun and engaging classes
  • Good mix of class time and free time
Cons
  • Certain branches US based staff can be difficult to reach at times
  • Housing was not super centralized
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Armando
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Deeply meaningful experience

The program was extremely well structured and the coordinators offered a substantial level of social, cultural and academic support. Additionally the city is large but very well connected via public transit. Whether you like an upbeat night life or quiet journeys in nature, Santiago offers. It really is what you make it though. Don’t be afraid to engage the community, get out there and get to know the city, explore the history and dive deep into nature. The city and the program give you the tools to have an amazing time.

Pros
  • Family and friends
  • Ability to travel
  • Night life and history/culture
Cons
  • Food
  • Food
  • Food

Programs

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Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Why did you choose this program?

Being a pre-medicine student, there are certain fields that I do not have the opportunity to explore. The CIEE offered a myriad of programs that catered to countless interests. Gender and Sexuality was an area that always fascinated me and the CIEE's course offering was extremely appealing.

The program website was engaging, informative, and constant guidance I was given was fantastic. Before, during, and after the application process, I was given numerous resources to help with planning, financial aid, and budgeting. There was truly personal touch to the CIEE's program and that made me even more excited to enroll in their course!

What did your program provider (or university) assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

The CIEE was instrumental in helping me plan every step of the program.

Before I even got accepted, the CIEE helped me with deadlines and different materials. I never felt under pressure nor did I feel that I was just a number to them. They were so supportive and communicated with me, as well as my home institution.

During the program, I was given so much assistance regarding the Danish culture, housing, and food options. The only organization I had to do on my own was budgeting my money, which is something that I needed to learn!

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

Cherish every moment you have. Being in a January Term program, I knew that it was going to be a short experience. I was not prepared for how quickly it went nor was I ready to leave. I am so fortunate to have been able to explore Denmark but, it became unreal when the days were numbered.

Do not stress over the little things because, in the long run, it does not matter. Your time will go by fast and before you know it, you will feel like Denmark is your home.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

An average weekday had class start about 11:00 a.m. or later. This was awesome for me because I got to explore Copenhagen and visit some incredible neighborhoods. The class would end around 3:30 p.m. (with a lunch break in between!) and we would then have the autonomy to do whatever we wanted. After class, other students and I would either keep exploring or do some shopping. At night, we would eat dinner either in our kitchen or out in the city.

Weekends were much more flexible and we had a lot of time to ourselves. The CIEE was great in providing excursions that introduced us to Danish cultures and gave us access to many interesting places. We got to visit the Danish Parliament and the Royal Palace for free!

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

My biggest fear of going abroad was the idea of being in a new place and adjusting to a new lifestyle. Domestic traveling was something I had done fairly often but, long-term international trips were a new ball game. Additionally, money has always been a concern to me and going abroad was a bit scary in that sense.

My fear subsided almost immediately after the program began. I fell in love with the Danish culture and Copenhagen itself. The homesick feeling I thought I would get never came. I have comfortably adjusted thanks to the guidance of the CIEE. In terms of budgeting, they were so helpful in giving us numerous options for groceries, pharmacies, and different shops. I always believed I was pretty independent, but this program helped me realize it was true!

What would you do differently if you had the opportunity to do the CIEE Program again?

If I were to go back and relive my experience, I would have immersed myself in Danish culture even more. Although I was only in Copenhagen for a month, I feel that I definitely missed out on learning basic words in Danish, as well as interacting more with the public transportation system.

Also, there were times I felt a bit nervous when I definitely was reading too much into the situation. The locals are so friendly and helpful, so if you are ever lost, they will help you find your way!

Enjoy every minute and, above all, make the experience your own!

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Katherine MacColl

Job Title
Teach Abroad Senior Coordinator
Katy taught abroad for 4 years in Turkey and then in Thailand. She is dedicated to helping others experience all that teaching abroad has to offer.
Katherine MacColl

What is your favorite travel memory?

My favorite travel memory is from Myanmar. My friend and I did a guided hike through the countryside. We spent our nights above temples and the days wandering through another world. I remember being in awe of the differences, even between Thailand and Myanmar, and in the attitude of the people. They were the happiest people I had ever been around, even with the limited access they had to things that we feel that we "need".

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

CIEE has been a great place to work and has really motivated me to stay in the education industry. I love helping others and CIEE strives to give amazing customer service, always putting the teacher first. I have learned more about the process and how to best help others through it. I think, whatever you are doing in education, it is a place where there is always room to grow and continue to make an impact that has amazing ripple effects.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

The best stories are those when the students or teachers feel they have made an impact. However, maybe more than what we think we impact, the impact that others make on us is what truly inspires me. Travel and living abroad changes you, it demands growth and patience. Students that feel that impact from their students and communities reminds me why I love helping them get started.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I would choose our program in Chile. Santiago is such an incredible city and the chance to work in a college setting has always been enticing to me. You are able to be the lead teacher and have amazing experiences to grow as a teacher and of a Spanish speaker. The program feels so tight knit, and you create an amazing group of friends right when you arrive.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

CIEE goes above and beyond to encourage education on all levels. The Teach Abroad programs gives people the knowledge and confidence to go abroad, changing their lives forever and being able to change others lives through teaching. We work to break down stereotypes and we are upfront and honest about the challenges that we all have to face when we go abroad, but we make sure that participants have the tools to overcome these.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

The biggest factor in being a successful company is to truly care. We all care about our participants and the experiences that await them. I hope that all of our participants feel like and feel connected to a great support system before and after their arrival in their new home. Without heart, what we do doesn't mean anything.

Professional Associations

The Forum on Education Abroad Logo
Gap Year Association Logo
NAFSA Logo