CSB and SJU ranked highly in Open Doors 2013 report

November 11, 2013

The College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University are ranked No. 2 nationally among baccalaureate institutions with students who participate in mid-length study abroad programs, according to Open Doors 2013, the annual report on international education published by the Institute of International Education which was released Monday, Nov. 11.

CSB and SJU, which share the No. 2 spot with Colgate University, Hamilton, N.Y., had 360 students study abroad in mid-length programs during the 2011-12 school year, according to the most recent data released by IIE. Mid-length duration study abroad programs are those lasting one semester, one quarter or two quarters (CSB and SJU operate under the semester system). CSB and SJU were the highest ranked Minnesota colleges in the category.

It was one of four categories that CSB and SJU were ranked among the top schools nationally for study abroad and international students studying in the United States.

  • The 2013 report found that CSB and SJU ranked No. 4 nationally among baccalaureate institutions for total number of study abroad students, with 546 who studied abroad in 2011-12.

CSB and SJU have been ranked among the top six nationally in this category for the past nine years. CSB and SJU were ranked No. 2 in this category among Minnesota colleges.

  • The report also found that CSB and SJU ranked No. 34 among baccalaureate institutions for undergraduate participation in study abroad, with a 66.7 percent undergraduate participation rate in study abroad.   

"We are very proud to remain among the leaders of semester-long study abroad participation rates at a time when more students are trending toward shorter-term international programs," said Peggy Retka, director of Education Abroad at CSB and SJU.

"CSB and SJU are also experiencing growth in short-term program participation and we are working to remain strong in semester-long participation. We have launched two new semester study abroad opportunities for the 2013-14 academic year and work continuously to update our existing programs so that they stay relevant to the missions of CSB and SJU," Retka said. 

A total of 283,332 U.S. students studied abroad during the 2011-12 academic year, an increase of 3.4 percent from the previous academic year. The United Kingdom was the top destination, with 34,660 students. A multi-country destination (Rome and Athens, and Italy and Germany) topped the CSB and SJU list, with 75 students.   

CSB and SJU offer 20 semester-long study abroad programs, including 16 faculty-led programs. In addition, the Office for Education Aboard coordinates with offices and academic departments to offer more than 20 short-term international options each year, including credit-bearing study abroad, internships and volunteer programs.

  • Open Doors 2013 also reported that CSB and SJU ranked No. 15 among baccalaureate institutions with 263 international students for the 2012-13 academic year. CSB and SJU were ranked No. 2 in this category among Minnesota schools.

"The CSB and SJU community continues to be enriched by a strong number of students from a wide variety of countries and cultures," said Alex Schleper, director of international admission at CSB and SJU.  "The international students also benefit from and value the excellent academic program, the small classes, beautiful campuses, friendly atmosphere and globally minded environment that CSB and SJU offers."

The number of international students at U.S. colleges and universities increased by 7.2 percent to 819,644 students during the 2012-13 academic year, according to the report. This represents a record high number of international students in the U.S. China had the largest group of students studying in the U.S., with 235,597 students. China also had the largest delegation of students at CSB and SJU, with 89.