University Studies Abroad


Why choose USAC?

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 more than 25 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.



USAC logo

USAC Scholarships and Financial Aid

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

$500 - $1,000

Diversity & Inclusion

LGBTQIA+ Support

There are LGBTQIA+ friends, colleagues, and allies throughout the world. However, cultural understanding of gender identity and sexuality does vary from country to country. USAC has compiled a lot of resources to help you through that learning process.

Accessibility Support

USAC is dedicated to working closely with students with disabilities to ensure the best study abroad experience possible. You may request reasonable accommodations after your initial application is complete. We routinely receive requests for scheduling, material, and environmental accommodations for the classroom setting, which may include assistive technology, scribes and readers, printed material, and interpretation.



Environmentally-conscious students choose USAC because many of our programs are held in some of the most sustainable countries in the world. There are options to take coursework in sustainability and the environment, as well as field trips and studies where students can leave a lasting impact on their host country.


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Yes, I recommend this program

Chile: 1st Adventure Of Many

I'm glad Chile was my first international experience because it was amazing. It was my first time out of the country, and I'm not fluent in Spanish, so everything was definitely new for me. USAC provided fun out-of-city trips, informative classes, and a supportive home stay family. With a month of experiences and newly developed Spanish skills to finally talk to my house mom, this study abroad experience was the perfect introduction to being of the country. I'll always cherish this experience as the start of my many travels.

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Yes, I recommend this program

The best semester of my life!

I studied abroad in Alicante, Spain during the Spring 2023 semester and it was an unbelievable experience. I made so many great friends and met amazing people during my time abroad. The directors at USAC Alicante, as well as the professors enhanced my experience in so many ways. Luís, Verónica, and Marta all took the time and effort to make every student comfortable in what can be a very nerve-wracking, but of course exciting, transition. My friends and I traveled to many different countries while in Spain, such as Morocco, London, Budapest, Italy, and Germany. We also went to the island of Ibiza and other places in Spain frequently. I also was able to volunteer through the Service Learning course that they offer and work with children and faculty in the community. It was truly an experience that changed my life and I will always be grateful for this opportunity.

  • Beautiful City
  • Amazing directors/professors
  • Close distance to other countries and cities
  • n/a
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Yes, I recommend this program

Living My Dream: Studying Abroad in Scotland

I had always harbored a lot of anxiety about studying abroad, so my family was shocked when I decided to apply to this program. I'm so endlessly grateful that I did, as my fears melted away a couple days after I arrived. I got my own room and bathroom at Stirling University, which, as someone who has always shared a bathroom, felt very fancy. My suitemates and I cooked and ate dinner together every night, which was a new experience for me as at my college, I usually rely on the dining halls. The other people in my program were from across the country and even a few were from Australia! I took a Scottish History class that I adored. Learning about Scottish history and then getting to see the places it occurred made me feel so alive and inspired. It was so fascinating to get to stand in the room where David Rizzo was murdered in Hollyrook house. Mary Queen of Scots life story has always felt so fantastical and dramatic that it was surreal to walk in her shoes in some of the places she lived.
In my English class, we discussed the definition of science fiction, the history of the genre, and themes of colonialism, gender, queerness, patriarchy and utopia. One of the most memorable of the works we read was The Wasp Factory, by Scottish author Iain Banks. The book tackles questions about gender and sexuality, but is very dark, repressive and dystopian. One weekend during my time in Scotland, my suitemates and I traveled to Edinburgh for a Pride celebration. As I marched in the Pride parade, I thought of The Wasp Factory which came out in 1984, and reflected on how the nation's ideas about sexuality have evolved to become more accepting since then. The parade was a living example of the freedom LGBTQ+ individuals in Scotland now have to celebrate their identities with support from the general public. Holding my bisexual flag high in the air, I could feel the joy of Scotland’s queer community reverberating around me. It was a long walk through the city but I never felt tired. Instead I felt fueled by the energy of my beautiful community and incredibly proud of the progress that has been made in LGBTQ+ equality.
Through this experience, I gained a lot more self-confidence. I was able to thrive in a new country where I didn't have my friends and family to rely on. I was able to face difficult issues like getting caught in the rain in Glasgow and getting a migraine in Aviemore. I was exposed to so many new experiences, like swimming in a loch, and met so many new people. Learning about Scottish history and getting to see the places it occurred made me feel so alive and inspired. My teachers were full of stories and advice, and campus itself was picturesque.

  • built my confidence about traveling
  • broader cultural knowledge
  • no language barrier
  • difficult to get food as the school did not provide any
  • classes are long
  • homesickness
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Yes, I recommend this program

USAC, Lyon, and my amazing experience!

My experience in Lyon, France was incredible. I am a French major, and this program allowed for me to improve my skills and enhance the richness of my speaking. I was able to practice daily, and I used my knowledge everywhere. The classroom was helpful, but I learned most of my knowledge by travelling around and meeting new people. I volunteered and practiced through that outlet as well. The food was incredible, and the people were hospitable. Overall, I had an incredible time, and I couldn't recommend this program more!

  • Food
  • People
  • Easy access to travel
  • Difficult
  • Homesick
  • Hard to leave!
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Yes, I recommend this program

Just Say Yes!

Studying abroad in Spain had been a dream of mine since my first Spanish class, eight years ago. The experience was everything I could have wanted and more. I distinctly remember the day I left for my flight to Madrid—all alone!— my brain was overflowing with every emotion from sheer terror to overwhelming excitement. Now, I smile and laugh thinking about that version of me because she truly did not know all of the adventures, memories, laughs, good food, cultural experiences, festivals (Hogueras) and friends that became family that were awaiting her!

Alicante has so much to offer: good food, amazing beaches, vivacious night life, and authentic cultural immersion. A typical week day in Alicante consisted of morning Spanish classes at the beautiful Universidad de Alicante, daily "comida" with my host family (all in Spanish!), sailing class on the Mediterranean, sunset at Playa San Juan or Postiguet, followed by nightly tapas and hangouts with friends. Every day was filled with a new adventure whether that was learning new Spanish phrases or vocabulary as we sailed along the coast of Alicante, trying a new 'comida tipica" de Alicante, or simply spending time with my host family.

My time in Alicante will forever be one of my favorite seasons of life! If you are on the fence---just say yes!!

  • endless adventure: sailing, beaches, hikes
  • authentic spanish culture and people
  • community
  • public transporation to campus


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Alumni Interviews

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


Why did you choose this program?

I chose USAC's Nagasaki program because they offered a lot of classes that I wanted to take. Teaching Foreign Languages, Peace Studies, International Relations, Traditional Arts, and Martial Arts sounded like amazing, once-in-a-lifetime classes to take in Japan. The location was also very important to me. I didn't want to go to a big city and I knew that I wanted to be surrounded by nature. Nagasaki has so many mountains and hills. It's such a beautiful place. It was also the most affordable of USAC's Japan program options.

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

USAC helped with a lot of the paperwork process. They had a few webinars. One was for understanding the visa process. They gave us some online guides on how to do stuff, like how to prepare for the flight, health and safety stuff, and how to adjust once you're finally abroad. USAC also gives out scholarships if you apply on their website. I ended up being given $2,500 in scholarship money from them.

All I really did on my own was fill out the forms/applications, mail out the visa application, and book my flight.

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

If you plan to come to Nagasaki University of Foreign Studies, then I have two pieces of advice for you. The first is to save up as much as possible. Even though everything is much more affordable in Japan, you will end up going out a lot with friends and the money adds up fast. My second piece of advice is to make as many friends as you can within the first week or two of being here. That is when everyone is very social. People form their groups fast, so don't be shy. If you are too shy to start a conversation, just sit somewhere alone on campus, and right away, people will come up to you to talk.

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

An average school day is different for everyone here. But in general, classes for most start at either 1st or 2nd period. The classes work in a way that kind of makes it feel like high school. We have 6 periods but most of the classes end at 5th. 6th-period classes are really just for make-up classes. Classes are an hour and a half each. Students in our program usually have about 1-3 classes per day. Language classes are twice per week. For other semesters they have been four times per week. When we're not in classes or doing homework, we are usually exploring and/or out with friends.

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

Honestly, one of my biggest fears was just getting here. I have a huge fear of airports (not airplanes) because there are so many things that can go wrong. Once I finally got to Japan, though, I was completely fine. Somehow, nothing had gone too wrong. Looking back, I think it was a good thing to worry about, but not to the extent of how much I was worrying. Now my biggest fear is the thought of going back to the U.S. I love it here so much that I hate the thought of myself willingly going back by the time my visa is up.

Do you feel homesick?

No. I only miss two things, which are my dog and my best friend. I can FaceTime my friend, though. We even have plans for her to come to Japan at the end of this semester so that we can travel around the country. But I can't do that with my dog.

My point is that a lot of the other people in my program are pretty homesick. But I'm not. So, if you're really close to your family then, yeah, you will probably really miss them. But if you don't have much that you're leaving behind for a semester or two, then you shouldn't have to worry too much about it. Plus, you can always Facetime or message them.

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.