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Carolina ranks 18th among US universities for study abroad in 2020 ‘Open Doors’ Report

In 2018-2019, 2,479 Carolina undergraduate, graduate and professional students studied abroad. Among doctorate-granting universities, UNC-Chapel Hill ranks 13th for long-term programs and 18th for short-term programs.

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The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill ranks 18th for the number of students earning credit for study abroad in the Institute of International Education’s 2020 Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange, which presents comprehensive data on international students and scholars at U.S higher education institutions, as well as data on U.S. students studying abroad for academic credit.

This ranking reflects credit-bearing activity in 2018-2019 conducted by students from all schools across UNC-Chapel Hill, including short-term study abroad programs and medical and pharmaceutical rotations pursued abroad.

The Open Doors top-25 list is based on institutions with the highest total number of students who have participated in international activity for academic credit, including undergraduate and graduate students. According to Open Doors, the overall percentage of U.S. students studying abroad increased by 1.6% over the previous cycle reported, 2017-2018. In 2018-2019, 347,099 U.S. students studied abroad, including 2,479 Carolina undergraduate, graduate and professional students. Among doctorate-granting universities, UNC-Chapel Hill ranks 13th for long-term programs and 18th for short-term programs.

In addition, 43% of UNC-Chapel Hill undergraduate students studied abroad before graduation, one of the highest rates for a public university in the U.S.

“Prior to COVID-19 and restrictions to international travel, I am pleased to see that Carolina continued to perform really well in students participating in study abroad,” said Barbara Stephenson, vice provost for global affairs and chief global officer. “With the launch of the Global Guarantee, we saw a record 43% of our undergraduates take advantage of the opportunity to study abroad. While numbers will be down in the immediate future because of our current global situation, we are proud of how well we performed before the pandemic and excited now to expand our portfolio of global opportunities, many of them virtual, to ensure that all Carolina students have access to a transformative global education.”

The Institute of International Education publishes Open Doors annually in conjunction with the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Founded in 1919, the Institute of International Education is a private not-for-profit leader in the global exchange of people and ideas. It creates programs of study and training for students, educators and professionals from all sectors in collaboration with governments, foundations and other sponsors. These programs include the flagship Fulbright Program and Gilman Scholarships administered for the U.S. Department of State. In addition, the Institute of International Education conducts policy research, provides resources on international exchange opportunities and offers support to scholars in danger.