Not even two years old, St. John’s University’s
Discover the World Program is growing in leaps and bounds. The
unique study abroad program, launched in Spring 2007 to provide
students with a global education experience, has seen remarkable
growth since its inception. This year’s fall enrollment represents
a 400 percent increase in just one year!
Discover the World, which allows students to live and learn in
three European cities during one life-changing semester, has caught
on with students. As more and more of them immerse themselves in
the cultures and language of Italy, France and either Ireland or
Spain, they return with glowing remarks about the program, the
faculty and the accommodations, says Karl Rutter, Director of
Recruitment for Global Studies.
They’re spreading the word that DTW is
“The program grabbed me with its unique opportunity to travel from
country to country. Not any three countries, but three interesting
ones that appealed to me as a person,” says Melissa Enaje, a
Journalism major from Stafford, Texas.
“I love fashion; therefore the opportunity to live in Paris was a
deal I couldn’t resist! I wanted to go to Spain because I have
cultural ties to the country and I’ve only heard good things about
it. Rome intrigued me with its history. The St. John’s Rome
Campus was also a great attribute of the program.”
“The more I learned about it, the more interested I became, and
when my family found out how affordable it was, they were
interested too,” explains Jennifer Rodstrom, who is majoring in
Communications with a minor in Business and Spanish. “My friend and
I both got accepted, but at the last minute she decided not to
go!! I went without her, and had the best time of my
life. She tells me every day she wishes she would have gone
“I have already recommended studying abroad to my friends,” reports
Christina S. Santiago who discovered the world this past spring. A
Sociology major, she chose to study in Rome, Paris and Salamanca.
“I had such a great experience that I want all of my friends to
have the same—and even better—experience.”
New St. John’s Campuses Enhance the
Two of the reasons students are signing up for Discover the World
are St. John’s recent acquisition of a new
Rome campus and the addition of a
Although the University has had a presence in the Eternal City
since 1995, the brand new campus, a four-story full-city block
located in the Prati section, includes eight classrooms, a chapel
and courtyard, a student lounge, administrative offices and, in
spring, will have 230 resident beds The also-new Paris location
allows Discover the World students to live in a beautifully
renovated historic building complex located in the popular St.
Germain district of the City of Light. The six-story building, with
about 20,000 sq. ft. of residences, classrooms, and space for
office and support staff, is easily accessible by both car and
Metro. In Dublin, the cohort resides in student housing provided by
All Hallows College while those who choose to study in Spain live
in housing provided by the University of Salamanca.
In addition, each semester, a five-day tour to cities like
Brussels, Belgium and Strasbourg, France is offered. And of course,
students take advantage of being in the center of Europe and take
their own trips to explore the continent.
“While I was in Europe, I was able to travel to 10 different
countries, and 16 different places within those countries. It
was the best experience of my life,” notes Jennifer Rodstrom.
Melissa Enaje adds that “the freedom to travel during our days off
One vital component of Discover the World that distinguishes it
from study abroad programs at other colleges and universities is
its service requirement. Service-learning has its roots in the
University’s Vincentian Catholic heritage of serving others that
began with St. Vincent de Paul, founder of the Vincentian order of
priests that established St. John’s in 1870. In each city of the
four cities, students engage in service learning activities by
working with seven charities. Last spring, Discover the World
students performed a total of 809 hours of service at Caritas of
Rome, Salvation Army, Lycee St. Paul, La Mie de Pain, Soeur
Rosalie, Colegio La Milagrosa and the Capuchin Friary.
Financial Aid Can Make It Happen
St. John’s willingness to provide financial aid to students who are
otherwise unable to take advantage of Discover the World is another
reason why the program is seeing numbers rise. Students are
surprised but pleased to learn that financial aid for study abroad
is not only available but available to students who are already
receiving financial assistance from the University.
They’re also amazed to learn they can stay on track for graduation
while they’re studying abroad due to the wealth of courses
available, both in the classroom and online. This online component
is what will make it possible for students in the University’s
Doctor of Pharmacy program to take advantage of the Discover the
World program this coming spring.
Those 43 Pharmacy students will be joining150 others who have
already placed their deposits for the spring semester abroad. The
193-student cohort is the largest to date and represents an
increase in enrollment of almost 300 percent over the 69 who
discovered the world last spring. All are destined to have an
amazing global experience.
There’s still time to place your reservation. Students interested
in having what others have described as “the best experience of my
life,” should contact the Office of Global Studies: firstname.lastname@example.org
or (718) 990-6105.
“There’s no better way to make your experience at St. John’s
amazing than studying abroad. I heard great things about the
program as well, and they were all true!” – Melissa Enaje, Class of