The University of Rhode Island encourages students to study abroad, but for students in professional health programs such as pharmacy and nursing, finding the time to study abroad and still fulfill program requirements can be tricky. But, by planning early with your academic and study abroad advisors, it can be done!
Studying a semester abroad is most feasible for students in their pre-professional years or before clinical courses for nursing students. Courses taken abroad can satisfy general education requirements. Studying for a semester at an international institution may fulfill the language and cultural competency requirement for graduation.
Summer programs are also available for all students interested in a short-term international experience. Several two to four-week summer programs led by URI faculty are offered each summer for three to six URI credits.
View these programs at http://www.uri.edu/international/study_abroad/summer.htm.
This informational sheet highlights semester study abroad programs with a healthcare focus, as well as short-term summer opportunities and international healthcare internships.
Why should I study abroad?
Studying abroad is a valuable opportunity for students to gain new skills, learn a new language, and experience a different culture, while earning academic credit. Employers and graduate schools value international experience in their applicants. An international experience is especially valuable to students in the health sciences. Studying abroad gives students the opportunity to prepare for work in a culturally diverse healthcare environment. By studying abroad, students in health science majors can gain a new perspective on global health issues and how culture and healthcare intersect. Also, knowledge of a second language is valuable in the job market, specifically when working in cross-cultural healthcare fields. Accelerate your language learning by participating in a language immersion program.
Do I have time to study abroad in my program?
Yes! Whether through a semester abroad in your pre-professional or pre-clinical years, or through a summer program, everyone can find the time to study abroad and still graduate on time! Pharmacy students may study abroad during their sophomore year.
Can I afford to study abroad?
All forms of federal and state financial aid, and many forms of university-sponsored financial aid can be applied towards URI affiliated programs- this includes Centennial Scholarships! Outside scholarships, such as the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, are specifically available to students studying abroad. Specific program sponsors and the OIE also offer affiliated scholarships.
Database of Scholarships for Studying Abroad
Benjamin A. Gilman Study Abroad Scholarship
Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Grant
Links to additional scholarships and scholarship databases and resources can be found through the
What if I don't speak another language/ I only speak English?
Spending time in another country is the best way to learn a new language. Don’t let language be a barrier to your decision to study abroad! Many host institutions offer classes in English for international students.
How do I choose where to go?
Is there a specific country you have always wanted to visit? Is there a specific language you would like to learn? Is there a specific subject you would like to study? Search available programs by location at
Or, visit the Office of International Education (located in Taft Hall) to pick up brochures and catalogs for programs that interest you.
Buenos Aires, Argentina- summer community public health
This program is designed for students with intermediate and advanced Spanish language skills who wish to explore health care issues in a developing country. Spanish language training will focus on public health terminology. Gain hands-on field experience by working with local practitioners, and immerse yourself in Argentine life by living with a host family.
Gaborone, Botswana- summer community public health
This program is designed for students with an interest in public health issues in developing countries. The course of study examines HIV/AIDS and other community health issues, and the governmental, societal, and environmental factors that influence healthcare. Gain experience in the healthcare field by participating in a community health practicum in rural health clinics, or an urban community service project. Experience the culture of Botswana through excursions in and around Gaborone. (CIEE)
Santiago, Dominican Republic- summer community public health
This program is designed for students with an interest in Spanish language, medicine, and the allied health professions in the context of underdevelopment and public health. Field experience takes place in semi-rural health clinics and urban areas, and students will have the opportunity to work with local public health experts. Excursions to sites of cultural importance in and around Santiago, including a weekend trip to capital Santo Domingo are included to expose students to local culture. (CIEE)
Denmark’s International Study Program- year/semester/summer sessions
With medical practice and policy, biotechnology and biomedicine, and nursing in northern Europe programs available, Denmark’s International study program (DIS), combines medically-related studies with coursework in the humanities and social sciences. Theory is brought into practice by interaction with Danish doctors and patients in the hospitals. Courses and taught in English. DIS places strong emphasis on combining classroom work with experiential learning so that you walk away with applicable, real life, cross-cultural skills for the global job market. (http://www.dis.dk/)
Study at a host institution in English
URI’s exchange partnership with Oxford Brookes University, England
Oxford Brookes University offers courses in Biology and Food Science & Nutrition, in addition to many other general education fields.
Interstudy- England, Ireland, Scotland, South Africa and Wales
Pick up an Interstudy catalog from the Office of International Education, Taft Hall. “Study Plans” clearly show which programs are offered at each of the international campuses. Health Science programs include Health Promotion, Nursing, Nutrition, Public Health, and Virology, just to name a few. (http://www.interstudy.org/)
The National Student Nurse Association (NSNA) is a pre-professional organization for nursing students. NSNA offers many programs
The Student Nurses Association (SNA) of URI was founded in 1980 as Rhode Island Student Nurses Association