Ten students from Arrupe College of Loyola University Chicago recently returned from its first-ever study abroad program, which was fully funded by IES Abroad. Given that this was the first time most of these students had ever been abroad, we were excited to reach out and hear what they had to say about their study abroad experience.
The program—which was designed by our Customized & Faculty-Led Programs team—was made up of 10 students and three faculty members, including Father Stephen Katsouros, S.J., who is the Dean and Executive Director at Arrupe. A two-year college of Loyola University Chicago, Arrupe College continues the Jesuit tradition of offering a rigorous liberal arts education to a diverse population with limited financial resources, many of whom are the first in their families to pursue higher education.
“We are delighted that the Arrupe students had a great experience participating in experiential learning, cultural immersion, and self-discovery," said Dr. Mary M. Dwyer, President and CEO of IES Abroad. "IES Abroad looks forward to our long-term commitment to Arrupe College, which will benefit numerous underrepresented students each year.”
The fully funded program was developed around Arrupe College’s sophomore seminar, Finding Purpose and Identity: A Journey in the Spirit of St. Ignatius, with students and faculty taking a 10-day tour of the route of St. Ignatius. The program wrapped up at the end of May, and given the students' satisfaction with the experience, IES Abroad will continue to fully fund it in years to come, enabling even more underrepresented students to study abroad who might not otherwise have the resources to do so.
"[The students] left their comfort zones, embraced a new opportunity, flourished in a new environment, and built community," said Father Katsouros. "IES Abroad made the dream into a reality."
Watch the video below that chronicles the students' journeys on Arrupe's first-ever study abroad program: