Can Engineers Study Abroad?

By Cameron Kaihara

As a mechanical engineering major, I never thought I could study abroad and still graduate on time. When I heard about a mechanical engineering program in Germany, I went to the study abroad office and met with an advisor. They told me that my assumption was a common misconception. I had heard from a friend that the engineering department wouldn’t allow me to go abroad, and if I did, they wouldn’t accept the credits I earned abroad. These statements are both wrong! Much to my surprise and relief I was told that it’s actually very easy to study abroad as an engineer, as long as you do your research:

  • Pick a time frame to go abroad, say your junior year, and then get a list of all the classes you need to take during that year.
  • Research universities in countries that you’re interested in. The easiest way is to go to the study abroad office website (www.clemson.edu/studyabroad) and find partner universities. These universities offer you the best chance to get your credits accepted by Clemson, however that doesn’t mean that you can’t go to a university that’s not on Clemson’s partner list.
  • Figure out what classes they offer at the university that you’re interested in and determine which ones fit with your required classes for that year.
  • Set up a meeting with your academic advisor and have them sign your coursework approval form.

When I went to Germany for the fall semester of 2012, not only did I do things most people will never experience, but I also learned a lot in the classes I took and was able to stay on track to graduate on time. So, if you’re an engineering major interested in studying abroad, set up an appointment at the study abroad office and we’ll help you get started!

Cam in Esslingen, Germany, the city he studied abroad in.

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