Students Study Abroad at Campus in Luxembourg

Students and faculty visit Luxembourg Parliament President Mars Di Bartolomeo in the Chambre des Députés.

News Story: July 1, 2015

This summer, students had the opportunity to participate in an intensive study abroad program at the Sacred Heart University campus in Luxembourg City, Luxembourg. With an ideal location at the heart of Western Europe, it is a great place for students to be exposed to European culture. Luxembourg is the only Grand Duchy in the world and is the second smallest of the European Union member states, bordered by Belgium, France and Germany. Not only that, the city is surrounded by magnificent historical fortifications classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

The SHU in Luxembourg program is housed in the Chamber of Commerce, right in the heart of the financial district of the city. The campus was established in 1991 as a SHU MBA site and now also hosts the undergraduate summer study abroad program. Faculty from the Fairfield campus accompany the students in Luxembourg to teach and participate in site visits. Additionally, students are supervised by a program coordinator and an undergraduate resident assistant from Fairfield.

This year, students signed up to take one or two classes abroad for either two or four weeks. A total of 35 students attended the program from May 17 – May 31, while eight continued on until June 14. Class options included “Gargoyles and Angels: The Ways of Faith in Western Europe” taught by Professor June-Ann Greeley, “Marketing in the European Union” taught by Professor David Taylor and “Social Entrepreneurship” taught by Professor Leanna Lawter.

Because of its prime location, students had the chance to visit several other countries including France, Germany and Belgium. The classes incorporated various visits to educational sites such as the U.S. Embassy, the Luxembourg Parliament where the students met the President of the Parliament, a social entrepreneurship conference and many historical and cultural locations such as Notre Dame Cathedral and a concentration camp in France.

Nicole Cote ’17 says of her experience, “I have really been able to immerse myself in the Luxembourg and European culture. I have learned so much inside and outside the classroom and have made friendships that will last a lifetime. Besides exploring this one amazing country, I have also had the opportunity to visit five other countries and travel across Europe in ways I had only ever dreamed of.”

This is the second year that Taylor of the Jack Welch College of Business has taught his marketing course. “We live in an increasingly interconnected world,” he says, “and it is more important than ever for students to gain a global perspective. When students take a class abroad, they not only gain a deeper understanding of the classroom material, but also exposure to new cultures, languages, ideas, attitudes and even foods. It also gives them an increased awareness of their own culture and biases. For me, the best part about teaching abroad is to share in the students’ growth and self-awareness. It can be a life-changing experience for students, and as a professor, nothing is more rewarding than to be part of that learning.”

The program, which runs every summer, is ideal for students who are unable to spend an entire semester abroad because of extracurricular activities or other restrictions. “As a student athlete and a nursing major, a summer program was my best option and Luxembourg has been an amazing experience,” says Emily Falvey ’17. “The program was great because of the planned trips to neighboring countries that increased my exposure to different cultures. I would highly suggest the Luxembourg program to someone looking to go abroad!”