Study Abroad by Program: SIT
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History of SIT
The School of International Training (SIT), is a nonprofit educational institution founded in 1964 that is still sending students abroad to this day! It was in the early 1960’s that the first director of the Peace Corps and SIT alumnus went out on an experimental travel exploration. This trip, The Experiment, was to conduct orientation and training for the earliest Peace Corps volunteers. This trip is pivotal to its history as these activities led to the foundation of SIT.
Today, SIT has more than 70 programs in about 30 locations. Participants choose anyone that they might be interesting in. The program is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc. (NEASC) and only continues to grow in size and credibility. The Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages program (TESOL), sustainable development, international education, peace-building, and conflict transformation programs are all available to participants.
Benefits of Choosing SIT
When choosing to study abroad with a SIT program, students are choosing to learn from local experts. Due to the fact that SIT has been around for so many years, they have developed an extensive network of in-country experts who are eager to help! This means students will be learning from activists, businessmen and women, artists, community leaders, and government officials in their host communities which is an experience unlike any other.
In all things SIT does for students, its highest priority is on the health, security, and safety of all students throughout the 80+ years in business. Over the years the program has developed proactive and reactive risk management strategies that are necessary when traveling anywhere. Some features of their strategies are 24/7 on-call availability, comprehensive student insurance, and emergency/crisis response protocols discussed through student orientation to have everyone prepared for anything that traveling brings along.
Focus on Global Critical Issues
SIT wants all of its participants to be well-rounded, contributing members of our global society and they execute this with their expertly formed programs. Their programs differentiate from other third-party study abroad programs by their combination of in-class study and hands-on fieldwork. Regardless of major study, all SIT programs focus on an issue of major global importance and range in many types of issues such as migration, peace and human rights, and environment and climate change. Students must learn about the issues larger than them and their life at their home university. SIT study abroad programs change students’ perspectives forever.
Another way that SIT participants learn about the importance of their host community is through the program’s commitment to reciprocity. Student participants always complete their programs by giving something back to their host city/community, whether it be their time in volunteer work in research and presenting that information to the community or as simple as writing bilingual books for the children.
SIT Special Programs
Choosing to study abroad with SIT is a fun process as they have so many options for programs and locations. With about 70 programs in more than 30 countries worldwide students can nearly hand pick what they hope to get from this experience. Language, duration, living situation, research or internships, and theme are all choices SIT participants make.
Can’t decide on just one country? SIT programs nearly encourage that predicament with their IHP/Multi-Country programs.
With two to four different destinations in mind, SIT programs offer a unique program called their Multi-Country Program that takes students on an adventure. Students have the choice whether they want to split up their time evenly amongst each country, or if they want to focus on one country and take excursions and trips to the others. This program option is only offer in both the summer and semester programs and is unique to the SIT study abroad program.
The International Honors Program (IHP) challenges the ways that students view their country and their education. IHP allows students to begin their study in the United States. Then, spend one month in three other countries or continents! The benefit to this program is to allow students to get a critical global perspective of the world they are living in. The program focuses on comparative research and analysis on an independent topic of the student’s choosing.
Each program has a different theme. These program themes observe global health issues, climate and environmental change, development, economy, and inequality. In 2017, the IHP programs focus on climate change in Iceland and Greenland. Or, traveling to Panama to explore tropical ecology, marine ecosystems, and biodiversity conservation among many exotic options.
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Passports & Visas
One of the most frequently asked questions from students planning to study abroad is regarding passports and visas. Any international trip requires a proper passport. Passports must be valid for up to six months after the return date of your trip. Passports can be renewed if expired or purchased and processed prior to leaving. Typically passports take 4-6 weeks to process, but expedited services are available if students need it ASAP.
Student visas are generally necessary when students study abroad. This depends on the country they are traveling to and as well as how long they plan to stay. For more information about your specific trip and visa needs please contact your study abroad program or the U.S. Embassy. If you think you need a passport processed fast, please drop us a line. We have a network of passport specialists that can help you get your passport as quickly as 24 hours.