International Field Study Experience (IFSE)

Freiburg Germany birds-eye-view of houses

IFSE is an international, experiential learning program in which students have the unique opportunity to serve as international consultants for global organizations on a current challenge they are facing.

 

Overview

Throughout the program, students will work collaboratively in small, interdisciplinary teams and develop intercultural competencies necessary to succeed in the global workplace.

IFSE students will be combined into teams and asked to work together in order to solve a real-life business issue for an established multinational company.

IFSE Summer 2019 will meet for a total of 8 weeks online and one week (July 17-27, 2019) on location in Switzerland and Germany. Switzerland has a centuries-old reputation for leading change: a reputation spanning diverse sectors including technology, finance, governance, and education.

Students will meet with Zurich’s most passionate innovators who will share with you their ideas and solutions for work of the future. Your IFSE experience is both instructive and immersive; the time in Zurich is an opportunity to meet with your Swiss collaborators in their workplace at Education First.

In Germany, students will visit Freiburg, a city upheld as a role model for sustainable urban development while keeping its historical and cultural identity intact. At Freiburg’s internationally acclaimed Innovation Academy, students will meet with the architects of change and thought leaders for the future of Germany.

All graduate CPS programs are invited to participate. For GSIR students, this course is a capstone option. For all other CPS students, this course is an elective option that will require a course substitution form. Please contact your academic advisor for more information/ questions.

Why IFSE

  • Consult for real companies
  • Experience diverse organizational and national cultures
  • Engage with industry leaders
  • Experience deep cultural immersion
  • Hone research skills in a professional setting
  • Practice intercultural, interdisciplinary, and virtual teamwork
  • Explore the global problem of sustainability from an interdisciplinary perspective

Contact Us

Questions regarding course substitutions and how IFSE can best fit into your course map/ degree completion should be directed to your academic advisor and the GSIR academic advisor – Michael Boudreau (mi.boudreau@northeastern.edu).

Course Details

Class Deliverables

Students have the unique opportunity to serve as international consultants for global organizations on a global problem. Students will work collaboratively in small, interdisciplinary teams and develop intercultural competencies necessary to succeed in the global workplace.

What do I need to prepare for the course?

There will be pre‐departure orientation sessions (held on campus and virtually) 1 month prior to the departure date for all students.

All students should be prepared to engage fully with their teammates online throughout the course – this requires a lot of coordination and communication. Students should be prepared to be active team members throughout the course. 

Are there pre-requisites?

No. Any student with a GPA above 3.0, who has successfully completed a minimum of 24 q.h. in his or her program of study, is eligible to apply. Please speak with your Career and Academic Coach to discuss how to fit this class into your overall academic program. 

Who is the class instructor?

IFSE – officially ‘coded’ as INT 6900 will be taught by Dr. Fiona Creed. Dr. Creed and another faculty/staff member will also accompany Switzerland and Germany-based IFSE students on-ground during their one-week.

How many quarter hours is INT 6900?

INT 6900 is a 4QH course – 8-week class.

Does this course count as a Global Studies Capstone option?

Yes. Students who have fulfilled the general requirements (3.0 minimum GPA and 24 q.h. completed) and have also successfully completed GST 6109, may take INT 6900 as their Capstone.

Does this course satisfy the global requirement in the M.Ed.?

Yes, this course satisfies the global requirement in the M.Ed program. It also qualifies as an elective course in several other programs, including M.S. in Leadership, Sports Leadership, Organizational Communication, MAT, M.S. in Project Management, and M.S. in Human Services. Students are required to complete the Course Substitution Form and receive approval from their respective programs. Global Studies students can use INT 6900 to fulfill their Capstone requirement.

If I am not in the GST or M.Ed. program, would I be able to take this course?

Yes, however, please speak with your Career and Academic Coach to discuss how to fit this class into your overall academic program.

What will field study be like?

The week in-country will include various site visits to the corporate sponsor (Education First) and with local experts and small group meetings with the Northeastern faculty and classmates. This creates a real-life international business scenario that employees around the world encounter on a daily basis – that is: working with international teams, based in different time-zones, working within the context of different cultures, in order to achieve a common business goal that will increase efficiency and/or solve the issue at hand.

Summer 2019 will focus on Global Innovation and the problems of practice will follow the working themes of:

  1. Product Innovation
  2. Innovation in entering new markets
  3. Innovation and sustainability practices


Will this course be offered again?

Yes, annually.  This is the fifth year of on-location international classes. CPS is committed to providing short-term international opportunities for students. IFSE will run as an 8-week, online class for all participants in the summer quarter of the CPS graduate calendar/schedule.

Applying

Important Dates for IFSE 2019

EF registration closes: April 15, 2019. It is essential that you reserve the travel part to enroll on the course.

Please enroll here: https://www.efcollegestudytours.com/professors-trip/2206917UK 

Summer registration opens for INT 6900 on April 8, 2019


Cost – Global Innovation in Switzerland and Germany IFSE 2019

In addition to tuition students are charged a program fee of $3860 through our travel partner Education First (EF). EF is an international education company that specializes in educational travel, academic degree programs, in language training, and cultural exchange. EF will focus on travel, safety, and country-specific support while abroad and will also provide logistical support from beginning to end of the trip.

What’s included?

Airfare & transportation: Buses, trains, cruise ships, ferries and subways—covered. EF take care of getting you around so you can enjoy the ride.

Hotels: Safe, comfortable hotels with private bathrooms will be waiting for you at your destination.

Regional-style meals: Traditional breakfasts, lunches and select dinners bring local flavors to life as part of your program experience.

Full-time Tour Director: Your culturally-connected Tour Director is with your group 24/7, providing deep local insight while handling all logistics abroad.

24-hour Emergency Service: Travelers can count on EF's dedicated emergency service team.


How to Apply

  1. Discuss INT 6900 with your academic advisor to determine how it fits into your academic program.

    If necessary, submit course substitution request to your academic advisor.

  2. Enroll here to reserve the on-ground stay in Switzerland and Germanyhttps://www.efcollegestudytours.com/professors-trip/2206917UK

    You must enroll separately for the online class through Northeastern. Registration for INT 6900 opens on April 8, 2019.


Common Questions

Does this qualify for academic year 2019-2020 financial aid?

Yes. Please contact the Student Financial Services office for specific information.

If I am on financial aid, do I need to take two courses to qualify?

Yes, you will need to take the required minimum number of credits to qualify for aid. We will work with your faculty to make adjustments so that you can maximize your study and research time in Switzerland and Germany

How do I secure my spot in this course?

Register via Education First to reserve the travel portion.

https://www.efcollegestudytours.com/professors-trip/2206917UK

You must register for the 8 week online course (INT 6900) separately through Northeastern University. 

Is there a cap on how many students can attend from any one program?

One of the objectives of this course and opportunity is to increase understanding of the ramifications of globalization and to also offer a highly interdisciplinary experience. There is, however, a cap of 20 students.

What do I need to prepare for this course?

For Switzerland and Germany bound IFSE, there will be pre‐departure orientation sessions (held on campus and virtually) 1 month prior to the departure date for all accepted students.

All students need to be prepared to engage fully with their teammates online throughout the course – this requires a lot of coordination and communication. Students should be prepared to be active team members throughout the course!

Travel & Logistics

Will Northeastern arrange my visa?

No. Students are responsible for obtaining their own tourist visas for travel. All U.S. students must have a passport valid at least six months after the end of travel.

I am an international student, how will my visa work?

IFSE is an online class. You are not required to enter the U.S. at any point for this class. This class will not qualify you by itself for a student visa. If you are a current international student on a student visa and plan to stay in the U.S. this summer, please contact the Office of Global Services to determine your ability to travel for this class.

Can I bring a friend, partner, family?

Our liability insurance does not allow for any persons on this trip who are not registered for the class. Accommodations are included in the program fee and are for students only.

Testimonials

Testimonial from student who was part of IFSE 2016:

Testimonial from student who was part of IFSE 2016: 

Testimonials from students who were part of IFSE 2015

Maria Alcaraz

Jonathan Hoogendorn

 Arlie Reeves

Faculty

Fiona Creed

Fiona Creed headshot

Fiona Creed oversees and teaches the International Field Study Experience (IFSE), and is also an Associate Teaching Professor and Faculty Lead in the Master of Science in Global Studies and International Affairs program. Fiona’s career spans the diplomatic, academic, entrepreneurial and nonprofit sectors. She began as a policy analyst at the EU Delegation to the United Nations in New York City and developed that experience into her Ph.D. research on the often-fraught EU representation at the UN. As an assistant professor at University College in Cork, Ireland, Fiona taught international relations and European studies. Seeing a market opportunity, she went on to build and subsequently sell an online retail business in the United Kingdom.

Upon returning to the United States, Fiona served as the Executive Director of the United Nations Association of Greater Boston, a nonprofit organization that educates students in diplomacy and global issues through its experiential learning program, Model UN. Fiona also served as a project lead and advisor at SOLVE MIT.

Fiona completed her BA and MA degrees at University College, Dublin, Ireland, and her Ph.D. at University College, Cork, including two years as a visiting scholar at the Yale University MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies.