At Home and Around the World
Adventurous opportunities. unforgettable locations.
Students at all APCU member schools are eligible to participate in experiential learning opportunities through study away and study abroad programs offered through the APCU—from Atlanta and Lake Tahoe, to Northern Ireland and South Korea.
Immersed in heart of the Sierra at the Zephyr Point Presbyterian Conference Center, the Tahoe Semester uses a classical liberal arts model to engage the natural world through the integration of the humanities and the sciences. Students explore the natural world through the perspective of the biological sciences as well as from the vantage point of the philosophers, historians, poets, and theologians of the humanities. The semester also includes structured experiences in backpacking and extracurricular opportunities such as mountain biking, skiing, kayaking, hiking, rock climbing, stand-up paddle boarding, and trail running. These opportunities, as well as the rich curriculum, provide a chance to experience, investigate, and apply academic coursework through experiential learning in Lake Tahoe and the surrounding area.
More information, including how you can fulfill general education requirements, is available on the Tahoe Semester website.
Irish American Scholars
The Irish American Scholars (IAS) program provides a tuition-free opportunity for qualified students at APCU member schools to study abroad at one of four institutions in Northern Ireland for one or two semesters. Since its inception in 1995, more than 1,600 students have participated in this study abroad program. To learn more about studying in Northern Ireland, take a look at this information from the British Council.
Northern Ireland Host Institutions
Sophomore and juniors at participating APCU schools can apply to study in Northern Ireland in the following academic year. Applicants must have a minimum GPA of 3.2 and submit an application packet prior to February 1. The packet should include:
- The completed IAS application form
- A 500-word essay about you and why you would like to study in Northern Ireland
- A current transcript from your college/university (does not have to be official)
- Two references from faculty (typically your primary academic advisor and one other)
Your school’s study abroad advisor can nominate up to three students and submit application materials electronically. Each application is reviewed by representatives of the participating schools in Northern Ireland and the APCU executive director. Students are accepted into the program and placed at one of the participating schools based on the space, program of study, and preferred semester (fall or spring). Placements are final and cannot be changed.
Tuition and fees are waived for IAS at their Northern Ireland host institutions. However, participating students are responsible for costs associated with travel, housing, food, books, and living expenses. Some costs may be covered by student financial aid through the home college or university.
Note that Irish American Scholars may still be obligated to register and pay some amount of tuition at their home college or university during their semester abroad. Check with an international advisor to confirm any potential obligations.
Application Requirements 2022–2023
- An IAS nomination form completed by a faculty member or advisor at their home institution.
- A completed IAS application form.
- A copy of the applicant’s official academic transcript through the most recent fall
- Two letters of reference—one from the student’s academic advisor and one from a faculty member or administrator at the applicant’s home institution
- A 500-word essay describing the student’s educational objectives while studying in Northern Ireland.
- Additional requirements based on course of study as described below.
All application materials must be submitted as ONE COMPLETE PDF FILE via email on or before February 1, 2020, to Janna Wofford.
Coursework & Campus Selection Considerations
- IAS Program applicants should talk with their academic adviser or a study abroad coordinator to determine how participation in the IAS Program will affect progress toward their academic degree, particularly related to the use of credits completed in Northern Ireland.
- All of the participating Northern Ireland institutions prefer applicants for the Fall semester, especially for education students considering attendance at Saint Mary’s University College or Stranmillis University College. However, this is a preference and does not indicate that students will not be considered for the Spring semester.
- Registration for specific classes will take place after a student arrives in Northern Ireland. Students should be flexible in selecting courses and should not assume that all desired courses will be offered during the time they are in Northern Ireland.
- The University of Ulster (UU) has multiple campuses. Students attending UU are required to take all of their courses at one campus. Applicants should, therefore, confirm that all desired courses will be available through a single location.
- At Belfast Metropolitan College students can generally take classes in only one subject field. International students can only take classes in Higher National Diploma (HND) or Foundation Degree (FD) tracks. Business/marketing students must attend for a full year.
Additional Academic Program Notes
Students planning to study art must submit a portfolio of their work on CD with their application materials or arrange to upload the portfolio to the desired institution in Northern Ireland. Art students should have completed significant course work before applying.
Science or Math
Students planning to study science or math should have completed significant coursework in their field prior to studying in Northern Ireland.
Education/Teaching is available only at Stranmillis or St. Mary’s. Preference is given to students who have some in-classroom experience. Spring semester in Northern Ireland includes an in-school placement. Education students must obtain a background check and bring the results to Northern Ireland.
Students interested in studying a musical instrument will be directed to the University of Ulster, McGee and will be required to pay extra fees not covered by the tuition/fee waiver.
Program Selection & Placement
- Selection and placement of students is done by the institutions in Northern Ireland in consultation with the executive director of the APCU.
- The selection committee will consider a student’s field of study to see if there are matching courses in Northern Ireland. Students who cannot advance their studies in a chosen field or who have not completed a sufficient number of courses in their major will not be accepted. The committee will also consider a student’s interest in co-curricular activities, particularly those that relate to the student’s field of study.
- Qualified applicants who are not accepted may be put on a reserve list and offered a placement if another student declines. Applicants who are accepted will be notified in March and must accept or decline their offer by April 1.
- Students will receive follow-up information from their school in Northern Ireland in late spring or early summer. Placements are final and are not subject to negotiation. Accepted students must complete all required paperwork from their assigned school in Northern Ireland as requested.
The ATL Zacchaeus Fellows
The ATL Zacchaeus Fellows is a Christ-centered 9-month leadership development program for recent college graduates. Through paid degree-related work, spiritual formation, leadership development, and social impact, the ATL Zacchaeus Fellows learn to approach real-world situations through a Christian worldview. The ATL Zacchaeus Fellows Program catalyzes your career and your life for your most meaningful contribution to the flourishing of humanity.
From the largest PC(USA) Church, Fellows are provided housing, free of charge for 9 months + ~ 1/3 of their meal cost. We live in community, with full access to the gym, programming and worship of a 7,000 member church with highly engaged executive ties to Fortune 500 and local entrepreneurial business – all in the culturally vibrant ATL, home of the WORLD SERIES CHAMPION Atlanta Braves.
Seek out this wonderful “bridge year” option. Be closely supported by Mentors. Exit, catapulted over your peers – professionally and spiritually.