Freshman Fall Abroad Pograms

Where will your heart take you?

SHU Freshman Fall Abroad Programs




The true worth of your Sacred Heart experience won’t be measured by facts we teach you or skills you acquire while you are here.

It won’t be something that we give you.

At Sacred Heart we believe that inquiry, pursuing knowledge and intelligent reflection – both inside and outside the classroom – create greater opportunities and choices. 

Freshman Fall Abroad (FFA) programs are a signature experience of Sacred Heart University.  As a SHU FFA student, you’ll spend your first semester in one of two places - Dingle, Ireland at the SHU campus or Rome, Italy at our partner university - before enrolling in classes on SHU home campus in the spring semester.  

A semester studying abroad is an exciting and intellectually stimulating way to begin your college career.  During the FFA program we challenge you to be fearless in your curiosity by making the world your classroom. 

Why do we offer FFA programs?

Because the discovery of your own talents, abilities, strengths, character, and dreams is the most valuable outcome we strive for as educators and mentors.  The FFA program provides you with an international foundation early in your academic career.  With programming that supports a broad range of educational, professional, and personal objectives, there is no better way to learn about yourself, expand your worldview, acquire marketable skills, and develop the habits of mind, heart, and spirit that will prepare you to engage purposefully in a global world.

Program Features
  • An opportunity to forge strong bonds with fellow SHU freshmen;
  • Small class sizes and specialized curriculum tailored to SHU core graduation requirements;
  • Carefully-chosen, university-managed living arrangements;
  • Integrated travel, volunteer, and extra-curricular activities;
  • Full-time staff members, in both Fairfield and abroad, to assist with your transition to college life abroad.


With a few exceptions*, if you are accepted to Sacred Heart as an incoming freshman you are automatically eligible to participate in an FFA program.  All you need to do is complete the FFA enrollment process for the location of your choice.  

You may be a good candidate for the SHU Freshman Fall Abroad program if you:

  • Wish to study abroad immediately, rather than waiting;
  • Possess intellectual curiosity and are ready for a transformative experience;
  • Love to learn through seeing and doing;
  • Have a keen interest in international travel;
  • Are open to immersing yourself in a different culture;
  • Have the maturity to balance academics, travel, and living abroad.

*Please note that students receiving scholarships for participation in varsity athletics are not eligible for the program.  Students receiving a merit award for participation in performing arts programs will not receive their participation grants during the fall semester abroad.  Non-scholarship varsity athletes should discuss with their coaches the impact that participation in an FFA program may have on involvement in the sport upon return to campus.

Enroll Now!

The early enrollment deadline is April 15th.  Applications open in December.

Enroll in the FFA in Dingle Program Now

Enroll in the FFA in Rome Program Now

FAQs are available on our program brochure web pages:
For further information about this program contact the SHU Office of Global Affairs.