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USAC

About

USAC is a non-profit consortium of U.S. universities that collaborates to offer affordable, academic and authentic study abroad programs. There are abundant opportunities to immerse in the culture, history, and academics of other countries providing an unforgettable experience. Each program is designed to help you grow into an engaged citizen of the world—not only through academic experiences, but also through field trips, internships, volunteering, and service learning.

Students can choose from programs in over 50 cities across 28 countries, including Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, Latin America and Oceania. Students can enroll to study abroad with USAC for summer, semester, an entire academic year, or winter session.

Scholarships

USAC Scholarships

USAC Scholarships and Financial Aid

USAC awards over $2 million in scholarships and discounts each year to assist students with their study abroad expenses.

Value
$500 - $1,000

Reviews

Default avatar
Madison
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

USAC- Lyon

It was all a little daunting at first, what with the language classes being really long but it ended up helping improve your language skills faster. I also met some amazing people and hope to keep in contact with them forever. The people you surround yourself with really impact how you see this new and big city and as long as you chose a good one you will have a great time both in and out of the city. There is also a lot of transport available to surrounding cities and countries, it’s really easy to navigate.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Don’t be afraid to try new things or talk to people.
Default avatar
Caitlyn
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Opportunity of a lifetime and the start of my international life

Going to Gwangju was 2 years in the making when I left for South Korea in February of 2021. Despite the constant concerns about another semester getting cancelled and being stuck back in the US, the program teams both at CNU (the host school) and USAC came through and made the experience so worth the wait. I enjoyed every second there, even cried when I left and now miss my life there terribly. My semester in Gwangju has now encouraged me to pursue going back to South Korea to teach English and going to graduate school overseas. There were so many hurdles to get through because of the pandemic, but I always felt endlessly supported and understood by everyone with my program, and it was amazing to have the opportunity to spend time in Korea even in a pandemic. The locals in Gwangju are some of the most layed-back, caring, and thoughtful people I've ever met, and getting to know people was always so much fun even if my Korean language skill wasn't great. From day one, I felt like I was welcomed by the locals and their immense patience allowed me to dive deep and embrace Korean culture even more. Best. Choice. Ever.

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
I got the chance to eat pig's intestines a handful of times during my stay in South Korea, and also ended up eating raw crab during my final weeks there. As an adventurous eater already, I'm always down to try something new, if only I could get ahold of such delicious, interesting food back home in the USA!
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Rachel
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Valencia Fall 2021

I would highly recommend going to Valencia with USAC. It was my favorite experience I’ve had in my life so far! The program providers made me feel very welcomed in Spain, and the city of Valencia was so beautiful and fun to explore! I will definitely be going back to Valencia/ Spain in the future. It was a convenient location on the Mediterranean Sea and very easy to travel by train or plane. I met so many great people on this study abroad trip and I would do it over again if I ever got the chance!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Take everything in; the time goes so quickly! You will not regret choosing to study in Valencia.
Default avatar
Jerra
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Lüneburg, Germany Summer 2019

I spent 6 weeks in Lüneburg, Germany in the summer of 2019. I made some of the best friends and best memories while I was there. In that short time I visited Köln, Hamburg, Berlin, Paris, Aarhaus, Stavanger, and Bergen. Being able to experience the ease of transportation in the town of Lüneburg as well as Germany as a whole was something I’ll never forget. My classes were just challenging enough and my professors were some of the best educators I’ve ever had. My only regret is not staying longer.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
I would have stayed longer. There are two sessions during the summer and I only attended the first one. If I did it all again I would’ve stayed longer and maybe even done an entire semester abroad.
Default avatar
Mariah
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Reggio Emilia Italy Review

Studying abroad in Reggio Emilia, Italy, truly changed my life in so many ways. Studying in a smaller town was something I worried about in the beginning. My worries melted away quickly with the charm of this lovely city. USAC staff in charge of this program were amazing. They answered every and all questions had my me and my fellow students.Group trips were well planned and always neat and interesting. I had so much fun exploring this town with my fellow students. On the last day of my program, I didn't want to leave and wished I had signed up for a year program. I met my best friend through this program, we have each visited each other in Ky and Iowa!

What would you improve about this program?
I think it would be fun to meet more of the locals!

Programs

Displaying 1 - 9 of 51

Alumni Interviews

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

Why did you choose this program?

I chose this program because I had already done the one French study abroad that was available directly through my home university, and I only needed a few more credits to get my French minor. After doing some research online, I found that USAC had the most affordable programs. I was back and forth between their Lyon and Pau programs, but I had studied in Grenoble the summer before (which is close to Lyon), and wanted to try a new region.

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

The USAC staff organized a lot for us. They found our host families and gave us their contact information, organized the classes/placed us into appropriate groups, and organized outings like going to Bayonne/Biarritz, hiking in the Pyrenees, river rafting, cheese tasting, and so much more! They even took us downtown during the first few days and showed us where to get a bus pass.

The only thing I organized on my own was any extra travel that I did.

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

I wish I had known just how small of a town Pau was. The summer before, I had lived in Grenoble and went to the University of Grenoble Alpes, which is a giant research institution. Because of that, the city had an accessible metro and great nightlife.

Pau is completely different.

I lived in the suburbs this time around, and the only transportation system was the bus (and the last one from downtown to my house was around 5 pm, so I could never be out later than that). I enjoyed the quiet life in the suburbs, but if it was my first study abroad I would've been a bit disappointed at the lack of nightlife/convenient transportation.

Also, I wish I had known that PAU IS RAINY! I went for the summer session 1 and only had one jacket and one pair of long pants, and I had to wear those clothes every single day! Dress warm!

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

I believe that I had to leave my house by around 7:45 each morning to catch the bus and get to class, but I didn't mind getting up so early. I was normally in class until around noon, unless we had our extra class (survey of art) in the afternoon.

After class, you can do whatever you want. Sometimes I went downtown after class, but most days I would head back to the suburbs and spend time with my host family.

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

Hmm. Again, because of my previous study abroad experience, my biggest fear was that this study abroad wouldn't live up to the last one. I overcame it by trying to make the most of every experience and by doing as much as possible with my host family.

It's true that I didn't experience as much nightlife/life downtown, but I still developed friendships with the other two girls in my area and with my host family. And the area is beautiful - the Pyrenees took my breath away. I still stay in touch with both of my host families to this day and said they would gladly welcome me back!

I left Pau feeling that, although the experience was different from the summer before, it was still fulfilling in its own way.

What was your favorite memory from your study abroad?

It's so hard to pick, but one of my favorite memories was going to the Cirque de Gavarnie in the Pyrenees. We took a bus and went to the zoo, and then drove into the Pyrenees and had lunch. The Pyrenees are misty, lush, and mysterious.

When we started our hike, I couldn't believe how green and lush these mountains were compared to any that I had seen. Getting to the top was incredible, as we saw dozens of waterfalls all falling in the same area.

I will definitely never forget that day!

Staff Interviews

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

Sarah Kapel

Job Title
Program Advisor

Sarah advises students who are planning to study abroad in USAC China, Prague, Haifa, and Bristol programs, and helps them with housing, flights, culture shock, and any other pre-departure questions they may have. She graduated with a degree in Environmental Science from the University of Nevada, Reno and studied Visual Design at the Las Vegas Academy of the Arts. When she's not at work, she loves to hike, ride her bike, and explore local coffee shops.

What is your favorite travel memory?

While in Costa Rica, I loved seeing the local flora and fauna every day. Every morning, I would have a cup of the best café in the world with my host family, and then I would walk to school. I loved how normal it was to see beautiful bromeliads growing on the side of the road and hearing howler monkeys.

On my walks to school in Puntarenas, there were two iguanas that would greet me in the morning. I named them Magenta and Ramses, and they made me smile every day.

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

I have learned to laugh at my mistakes. I started at USAC as a student worker and recently was promoted to a Program Advisor. I used to be very nervous to make a mistake, but working with USAC encouraged me to use those moments as opportunities to learn and grow personally and professionally.

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

I recently received an e-mail from a USAC student who just returned from studying for a semester in China. He thanked USAC for giving him the opportunity to see new parts of the world, meet interesting local people, and learn more about his own culture and heritage.

I love when students have personal connections to our programs because I believe that it enhances their experience, and they gain a greater appreciation for their own heritage.

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

Montevideo, Uruguay. Since this program opened, I have been dreaming of visiting this beautiful oceanside city. I love learning about Latin American culture, and I think that Uruguay would offer a unique experience separate from more traditional locations. The program also has super cool tours and fields trips offered – like visiting Buenos Aires!

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

USAC is unique because we have a lot of heart. All of us have studied abroad or lived abroad so we know how special it can be. I am proud of USAC every day, but we do have a pretty amazing Halloween party each year. I was so proud of my team for decking out in full Harry Potter themed attire this past year.

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

I think it’s really important to support your coworkers.

USAC is a successful company because we are one big family, and we help each other out.

Even though we have hundreds of staff members spread out all over the world, we're able to support each other near and far. Being supportive of one another sponsors a positive work environment.