International Field Study Experience

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

About IFSE

Throughout the course, 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 work together in order to solve real-life business issues for a global organization. Global topics are explored, such as political, economic, sustainable development, and others.

All graduate CPS programs are invited to participate. For Global Studies and International Relations 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.


  • Consult for real companies
  • Engage with industry leaders
  • Hone research, teamwork, consulting, and presenting skills
  • 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 Global Studies and International Relations academic advisor – Michael Boudreau ([email protected]).

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?

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. Darin Detwiler.

How many quarter hours is INT 6900?

INT 6900 is a 4QH course – 12-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?

This online course allows diverse students to engage in individual and team research collaboration and presentation with a “client” – a real world global industry leader. Students also will gain valuable insight from a Global Speaker Series. This course includes readings, on-demand videos, “live virtual class meetings,” and team meetings. Live meetings and speaker events will be recorded for asynchronous viewing (if student is unable to attend live). While this course involves virtual meetings, there is no physical travel component.

Submit an application through your advisor prior to enrollment.

How to Apply

  • Discuss IFSE with your Academic Advisor to determine how fits into your academic program.

Darin Detwiler

Dr. Darin Detwiler, LP.D., M.A.Ed., is a prominent figure in the field of food policy, serving as an Associate Teaching Professor at Northeastern University’s College of Professional Studies. He has served in Lead Faculty and Assistant Dean roles at CPS.  Detwiler was honored with the College’s Excellence in Teaching Award in 2016 and at Northeastern University Academic Honors Convocation in 2022 and 2023.

With over 30 years of experience, Detwiler has consulted on food safety issues both in the U.S. and internationally, earning him a reputation as a respected and well-connected expert in food policy and technology, serving in current roles such as the Chair of the National Environmental Health Association’s Food Safety Program Committee and as an advising member of the FDA Foods Coalition.  His advisory roles have included significant appointments, such as two terms on the USDA’s National Advisory Committee and serving as the Senior Policy Coordinator for a leading national food safety advocacy organization, advising the FDA. His expertise is widely recognized, featuring in Netflix’s documentary “Poisoned” (2023), various industry magazines through his columns and articles, and books he has authored, as well as in top media outlets, including The New York Times and on networks like CNBC and CNN.

His awards include the International Association for Food Protection’s 2022 Ewen C.D. Todd Control of Foodborne Illness Award as well as their 2018 Distinguished Service Award for dedicated and exceptional contributions to the reduction of risks of foodborne illness.  Long referred to as “one of America’s leading food safety advocates,” in 2023, he was named as one of 21 People Who Have “Shaped the Last 30 Years of Food Safety.”

Before his tenure in higher education, Detwiler accumulated over two decades of teaching experience across various subjects, including math, biology, environmental science, physics, forensic science, and history, at both the high school and middle school levels. His exceptional teaching has been recognized with numerous awards, such as the Washington State Governor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2013, the Washington State PTA Outstanding Educator Award, and the AMGEN Award for Science Teaching Excellence, among others.

A U.S. Navy Nuclear Submarine Veteran, Detwiler holds a Doctorate in Law and Policy, an M.A.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, a B.A. in History, and a B.Ed. 

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.