Since the arrival of Benedictine monks and sisters in central Minnesota, Saint Benedict's Monastery, Saint John's Abbey, and the colleges they founded have been committed to global education. In 1891 monks from Saint John's established schools in the Bahamas and by the 1920s Bahamian students began enrolling at Saint Ben's and Saint John's, a relationship that still flourishes today. Monks from Saint John's established the Catholic University of Peking (Furen) in 1925 and sisters from Saint Benedict's Monastery arrived to set up a coordinate woman's college in 1930. In 1949, the Benedictines rebuilt Furen in Taiwan and the sisters established a girls' school in Hokkaido, Japan. Today, some of our longest-running international partnerships are with universities in China and Japan, while others have been built around the world.
By the late twentieth century, our Benedictine tradition of welcoming learners from across the globe to CSB/SJU and going forth into the world as students and teachers created a distinctively integrated and thriving approach to international education. Today, CSB/SJU features multiple faculty-led study abroad programs and is a nationally top-ranked institution in terms of the percentage of students who study abroad. On our own campuses, we welcome more international students than any other private college in Minnesota. In addition, each year CSB/SJU sponsors a wide array of global- and international-focused programming, with visiting scholars, lecturers, and performers who come to our campuses from around the world. In 2012 these achievements earned national recognition when CSB/SJU was named a winner of the Simon Award for Campus Internationalization. Our work continues.The current CSB/SJU strategic plan identifies 'Global Citizenship,' including the continuing development of global competencies and the internationalization and globalization of student learning, as one of five main areas of focus in the institutions' joint educational program.