Foundation for International Education

Foundation for International Education

About

Broaden your horizons by studying abroad in London, Dublin or London-Amman with FIE: Foundation for International Education. Since 1998 FIE has been delivering renowned academic programs with an eye on experiential education and utilizing the city as a classroom.

At FIE you can choose to enroll in a semester study program, internship, service learning or summer program. Included in your program fee is FIE’s exceptional student housing and student support services.

We have centers in the historical borough of Kensington in London and beautiful central Dublin, Ireland. We also have a partner center in Amman, Jordan, where the Arabic portion of our Peace & Conflict Resolution program takes place.

FIE delivers customized partnership and individual student enrollment programs as well as educational and co-curricular excursions within and outside of the UK. We also offer a range of extra-curricular excursions organized by our friendly Student Life Team.

Website
www.fie.org.uk
Founded
1998
Headquarters

114 Cromwell Road
London
SW7 4ES
United Kingdom

FIE's extensive scholarship program awards over $100k to students like you every year!

Sharif Rahman Memorial Scholarships
Amount: $3,000
Deadlines:
Spring Semester & Winter Quarter: September 15
Spring Quarter: December 15
Fall Semester & Fall Quarter: March 15

Reviews

Default avatar
Amanda
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

This partnership with the Foundation for International Education was a life-changing experience. I grew both as a student and as a person. As a student, I had to relearn how to time manage longer academic days than I'm used to with completing assigned work and wanting to experience a new country. As a person, I developed more independence, since this was the first time I was out of the country and I was alone too. I would definitely recommend this program to other students because the students who attend will be changed for the better.

The outside activities that I participated in were very fun. I enjoyed the day at the farm and the tour around The Liberties. The farm opened my eyes to a new side of Ireland that I had seen in the previous weeks. The tour of The Liberties was a great way to connect and learn about the area I stayed in while abroad.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
The views. They were more beautiful than I had imagined and that was surprising. I also did not expect the Bog Jumping Day to be so fun. The Bog Jump is a must-do at Causey Farm!
Default avatar
Kara
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Don't get me wrong London itself is amazing. However, I feel like I am not able to see enough of it between my internship and all the homework assigned in my classes. I am only taking one class and an internship placement class and I still feel like there is more work assigned than back at my home university while taking 5 classes. Not only are the other students taken aback by it, but even the two professors admitted they are uncomfortable with the amount of work FIE requires them to assign. The internship placement course fails to relate to my internship at all, provides bad advice on how to handle an internship according to "British standards" (such as, don't ask your internship supervisors to clarify assignments) and packs a 6 week's syllabus into 5 weeks. I was lucky enough to get an internship I enjoy, but that seems rare amongst others I've talked to. In addition, housing 10 girls in 1 flat is too many. It gets dirty quickly; we're pressed for space and it is always too loud for you to get your homework done or sleep, especially since we were warned this building doesn't provide noise control. Yet the two boys in my program share a flat of the same size with one other boy (not to mention they live on the first floor and we all had to carry our heavy suitcases up 5 flights of stairs because there is no elevator). I understand the lack of elevator is not in FIE's control but even providing people to help you carry your bags would be better. There is no staff to greet you when you arrive which seemed pretty odd to me, and I haven't seen any FIE staff since orientation weekend. I wish there was a packing list that was more reliable because I packed all professional clothes for an internship that is casual, and I failed to pack towels, hand towels, hand soap, pillow, a fan, etc. which I had to purchase here. I am only 3 weeks into this 8 week program and for the amount of money I paid, I hope it improves. I guess I just expected more.

What would you improve about this program?
housing conditions and amount of homework assigned
Response from Foundation for International Education

Hi Kara - great to hear you are enjoying your internship and London!

Our staff are readily available in Foundation House where your class sessions are (Academics Team, second floor and Experiential Education Team, fourth floor) and happy to set up an appointment with you to address your concerns around your International Internship Course and your British Life course. They can be reached at [email protected] and [email protected], respectively or just pop up before/between/after class.

Housing allocations are based on a variety of factors but our Residence Life team does their best to be fair to everyone. Overall South Kensington is a prime London postcode and a fantastic area to live in, I'm sure you'll agree!

Please get in touch with our teams so we can make the remaining portion of your summer internship the best it can be!

Sincerely,
FIE Team

Default avatar
Jenna
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I loved my experience with FIE! The housing was in a good location, was kept clean, had good bathrooms and kitchens, and felt very safe. It was great to feel like I was living in London on my own, but to still have support when I needed it. FIE provided lots of information about the events going on in London every week, and all the trips they provided were well organized and great experiences (especially the Wales weekend and Shakespeare Stratford Upon Avon). I loved the small class sizes and learning about the British culture in the classroom and on field trips throughout London. The diverse facility and subjects made for a good educational experience, and was not so challenging and stressful that I didn't have free time to explore London and Europe. Ultimately, I loved my time with FIE in London, and I wish I could go back!

What would you improve about this program?
The mattress were pretty hard and the pillows were flat, which was an adjustment, but definitely an easy sacrifice.
Default avatar
Carolyn
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I had the best time studying abroad and FIE truly helped me with that. This program allowed us to have the study abroad experience with an internship abroad which is very rare to see on a resume so I jumped at the opportunity! My internship started half way through the semester and after starting it, I wish it would have been concurrent with my entire semester there because I loved it so much! I know it sounds cheesy to say but my internship supervisor and co-workers were some of the nicest and sweetest people that even a year later I'm still in contact with. Yes it was tough to get up in the morning sometimes but once the semester was coming to an end I wish I could have stayed longer. Something I wish I would have done more is go out and explore London. I got to visit amazing countries but I barely scratched the surface with London. Although, if I were to do it again I wouldn't change a thing.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
My roommate and I got the chance to basically conquer a good part Scotland during our Easter break. We went up to Edinburgh for the day/night then the next morning we took a train up to inverness where we stayed for 2 nights and on the second day there we took a bus tour around the Scottish highlands!! I came back from my internship and my co-workers were so surprised I had done all of that traveling in 4 days without a car! Honestly it was one of the best trips we took that semester.
Ashley
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Along with studying abroad, I was also able to intern for 7 weeks. I never had much work experience so I was excited to have this "job". I was nervous since it was in another country and worried about the cultural difference.

I liked how FIE was able to set us up with an internship placement and made the interview process non competitive. There was also a seminar class that went along with this internship to help us check in weekly.

I am glad I had this opportunity to intern internationally. I believe I have learned more about the way I work and how to adapt. For my future career, I hope to work abroad as well and I think this internship prepared me.

Although the time was not long for an internship, I was still able to learn and gain skills from this.

What would you improve about this program?
I wish that FIE could have gaven us our internship placement information earlier. It would also have been nice if we had several options to choose from.

Programs

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Alumni Interviews

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

Becky Franta

Becky is a soon to be senior at the College of Saint Benedict. Last semester she had the opportunity to study abroad in Ireland where she both studied and interned in Dublin.

group of young ladies cuddling by the beach

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

CSB was really great with setting us up with FIE. They coordinated all of our housing and accommodation once we got there. Leading up to the semester, CSB gave us a handful of informational meetings, letting us know what to expect as far as people and the school goes. We were given a list of classes that we were eligible to take and we only had to choose the ones we wanted.

FIE was in charge of our internship placements which was very helpful. It would have probably been near impossible to find one on our own. We were responsible for booking our own flights and other travel. There were two weekends when we traveled in Ireland with our FIE directors, but otherwise we were in charge of our own plans. Food, laundry, and other cleaning supplies were not supplied; however, most of us were provided with leap cards (bus/train pass) to get us to and from our internships.

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

A little bit cliché, but don’t be afraid to get out of your comfort zone and explore everything! It’s so amazing the kinds of places that you’ll find yourself in and everything will make for a good story. When you fully immerse yourself somewhere else, you set yourself up to learn so many new things. New things about whatever country you’re in, new things about the world, and most importantly, you’ll learn things about yourself that you never would know without putting yourself half way across the world in somewhere unfamiliar.

Additionally, to really be immersed in a culture and truly understand the society around you, learn as much as you can about their history - especially the major events or the things that students would learn in their early education. This will help you understand the people, the perspective, and the culture in general. I guarantee your global awareness will be exponentially greater, and you will appreciate your abroad experience so much more.

And also always be willing. If you’re only doing a semester abroad experience like me, it will go by so fast and you may not ever have this opportunity again. There were a handful of times when there were activities that weren’t of my particular interest, but they ended up being some of my favorite nights because we made the most of our time.

Life is too short, and study abroad is too short so embrace every moment with positivity and enthusiasm, you won’t regret it.

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

An average day typically was sleeping in a little bit because internships didn’t start until 9 and class usually didn’t start until after lunch. Most days I would go grab a coffee from a local cafe (never Starbucks or any chain), then after work/class was done, I’d meet up with my friends and we’d make dinner together then either head to a pub for a pint, or join our neighbors for cards or a movie.

A typical week was classes Monday, Wednesday, Friday - one class per day. Then internship Tuesday and Thursday from 9-5. We typically didn’t have much homework, so on class days we would do lots of exploring around the city, usually around Phoenix Park or Grafton Street. Usually a couple evenings out of the week our group would get together or pints or games or both. When the weekend rolled around, we would be traveling. 80% we would be going outside of Ireland to a different country in Europe for the weekend.

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 was not getting along with the people I was traveling with. From CSB there was only 7 students, with FIE altogether there was about 60 of us. I was really nervous that we wouldn’t be doing things together and everyone would do their own and I wouldn’t come home with close relationships. To overcome this fear, I had to make myself a little bit vulnerable and be the person to encourage my classmates to do things together like walking to class, going for a pint or even watching First Dates Ireland on Tuesdays with everyone. By the end of the semester, we were all so close like we had been friends for forever. Looking back, I’d say that this was something a little bit naive to be nervous about.

More Interviews

Staff Interviews

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

Grahaeme Hesp

Job Title
Regional Director, Institutional Relations
Man wearing pink shirt, sunglasses and a hat in front of ancient ruins

What is your favorite travel memory?

Seeing the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco for the first time.

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

"The FIE Peace and Conflict program was a great cultural experience and an incredibly eye-opening opportunity.

From the discussions with guest speakers to the insights provided by our teachers, Jordanian host families, and everyday conversations with new people, the program provided me with a new viewpoint that has fundamentally changed the way I look at International Affairs.

You can attend lectures and study textbooks, but you can’t understand conflict and the ways in which it affects countries and their peoples until you listen to their thoughts, fears, and concerns."

Ryland Arnold, Summer 2016 Student, University of Arkansas

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

Our summertime "Conflict and the Struggle for Peace: Explorations in Ireland and the Middle East" program is absolutely life-changing, allowing participants to critically analyze and explore some of the most daunting issues of our time.

The program begins in Dublin with an introduction to peace and conflict theory, using the Irish peace process as a case study. In Amman, the focus turns to Middle Eastern issues as participants examine how various countries in the region are addressing the Arab/Israeli conflict, inter-regional conflicts such as those in Lebanon, Yemen, or Iraq, as well as inter-tribal conflicts.

Following the conclusion of the Conflict and the Struggle for Peace program, participants can stay in Amman for an additional four weeks and study intensive Arabic from beginner through to advanced!

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

FIE is committed to the development of creative learning environments wherein an understanding of, and appreciation for, the privileges and responsibilities of international citizenship is fostered. This commitment is driven by the belief that interaction between people of diverse cultures is the base upon which empathy among nations is built.

From our formal mission, FIE has devised specific values which underpin and motivate all aspects our organization: Knowledge and Inclusivity; Ethics and Human Rights; Social and Cultural Reflection and Action; and Commitment to the Environment.

Whether it's our energy-saving residence hall "Student Switch Off" competition each semester, FIGs (FIE Interest Groups), or carbon offsetting of all staff airline travel, we 'walk our talk.'

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

We listen to our partner campuses; we try to do whatever we can to ensure student learning; we challenge students in their classes, in their internship placements, and in co- and extra-curricular activities to experience differences in terms of culture, religion, food, language, etc.

More Interviews

Professional Associations

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