Study Abroad Program

Study Abroad students at the Great Wall of China

Want To Go Abroad? This Is It!

Experience the world through International Service Learning or Study Abroad. Participate in an International Service Learning project, where your actions can make a real difference in the global community, helping to solve our world’s most pressing issues. Or, engage in Study Abroad, where you can expand your global perspective through the lens of academic enrichment.

We are excited to announce the West Valley College Study Abroad and International Service Learning trips for Summer 2020:

WVC’s Study Abroad Program invites first-year WVC students in good standing to apply for a partial scholarship to attend the week-long Global Citizenship Seminar GCS 20 convened in Salzburg, Austria from June 2 to June 10, 2020.

The scholarship pays for the seminar fee (including room and meals) and roundtrip airfare. Awardees are required to contribute $200 to defer other transportation costs.


  • First-year status in good standing
  • Have completed at least 9 units by December 13, 2019
  • A commitment to enroll in Poli 004 (International Relations) in the Spring 2020 Semester
  • Passport (in hand by December 1, 2019) and documentation required to travel outside of the United States by May 1, 2020
  • At least 18 years old by June 2, 2020
  • Completed application form and other required documents

Procedure for Applying

  1. Complete the Study Abroad Scholarship Application.
  2. Applications due by 5:00 PM on Friday, October 25, 2019.

For additional information about the seminar, review the 2018 Salzburg Conference blog and contact Dr. Tim Kelly, Faculty Advisor for the GC Seminar.

Above and Beyond: Lake Titicaca Service Adventure

Led by Christopher Cruz and Molly Schrey

From ancient Inca cities to Lima’s sprawling landscape, and from lush Amazonian jungles to the snow-capped Andes, Peru’s culture and countryside offer no shortage of diversity. Take a journey into the southern region of Peru, where you’ll explore archaeological treasures like Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu. Then, venture south to one of the highest lakes in the world, Lake Titicaca, where you’ll be in the indigenous cultures of villages surrounding the scenic lake. Working together with locals, you’ll participate in meaningful service projects focused on eco-tourism, community development and cultural immersion.

10-Day Itinerary

Day 1: Lima

  • Meet your Field Director at the airport

Day 2: The Sacred Valley of the Incas

  • Take a guided tour of Lima
  • See the Cathedral of Lima
  • Visit the Larco Museum
  • Visit San Francisco Monastery
  • Take a walking tour of Miraflores
  • Take an optional Ceviche cooking class − Enjoy dinner in Lima

Day 3: The Sacred Valley of the Incas

  • Board your flight to Cuzco
  • Take a walking tour of Cuzco and see the Cuzco Cathedral
  • Explore local markets at the Plaza de Armas
  • Tour the home and studio of famed ceramicist, Pablo Seminario, and watch a live pottery demonstration

Day 4: Machu Picchu

  • Travel by train to Aguas Calientes
  • Explore the ancient Inca site of Machu Picchu, with your local guide
  • Take an afternoon hike to the Sun Gate or explore the site in groups

Day 5: Ollantaytambo and Cuzco

  • Travel by train to Ollantaytambo, an Inca archaeological site
  • Take a tour of Ollantaytambo
  • Visit the famous Pisac Market, known for its local crafts and meet craftsman for a silver workshop

Day 6: Transfer to Puno

  • Travel by bus on a full day’s journey to the shores of Lake Titicaca where you’ll serve.
  • Enjoy scenic views of the beautiful countryside

Day 7-8: Lake Titicaca Community

  • As communities evolve so do their needs. Here’s a glimpse at what a typical day might look like:
  • Visit Uros Floating Islands
  • Begin your eco-focused and community development projects in a nearby community
  • Evenings are a chance to draw connections between the day’s work and relevant global issues

Day 9: Lake Titicaca

  • Visit a secluded section of Taquile Island and walk along old pre-Inca pathways for beautiful views of the island
  • Stop by a traditional house where locals offer interpretations of their textile art and techniques
  • Take a kayak adventure along the coast of Llachon
  • Transfer back to Puno

Day 10:

  • Travel to Lima and depart for home

Day 11:

  • Arrive home

Study Interior Design and Photography in Rome

This unique study abroad program provides an intimate look into the worlds of interior design and photography. Special program highlights include: guided tours of the Colosseum, the Vatican museums and the Sistine Chapel, a day trip to Florence, an Italian cooking class, and more. Explore the architectural history of Italy through a photographic lens and how Italian architecture and design have shaped interior design today.


Summer Class at West Valley College Campus: June 1 – 16, 2020

Study Program in Rome, Italy: June 22 – July 3, 2020

Areas of Study

  • ARTS 62A: Basic Photography
  • INTD 20: Color Theory and Application
  • INTD 35C: Design of Historic Interiors

Program Opportunities

  • Examination of Rome through design and photography
  • Exploration of historical sites
  • Immersion into Italian culture, language, cuisine


Application due March 24, 2020

Confirmation Deposit due April 23, 2020

Contact Information

Interior Design

Cigdem Bulut

Diane Hurd


Dan Fenstermacher


Monday, June 22, 2020

  • Arrival into Rome
  • API organized airport reception and transfer to program accommodations
  • API cultural, health, and safety orientation
  • Neighborhood walking tour
  • API organized group welcome dinner

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Rome guided tour
  • Professors introduction to the program and project; team assignments (2 hours - space included)
  • Free evening

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Colosseum Guided Tour
  • Lunch on own
  • Field Trip to visit Piazza Navana and Pantheon
  • Free evening

Thursday, June 25, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Field trip to Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps
  • Guided tour to National Gallary of Modern Art
  • Free evening

Friday, June 26, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Studio Time for students (2 hours)
  • Maxxi and Macro (Modern and Contemporary Art Museums)
  • Free evening

Saturday, June 27, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel Guided tour
  • Free Afternoon/Evening

Sunday, June 28, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Free Afternoon/Evening

Monday, June 29, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Class (3 hours - space included)
  • Guided visit: Dogana Porto Fluviale and Ostiense Area Tour to view mix of contemporary pieces blended into old surroundings
  • Free evening

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Florence Day Trip
  • Free evening

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Field trip to Via del Corso (led by faculty)
  • Borghese Art Gallery (or Pamphilj Art Gallery) + Capuchin Monks Crypt
  • Studio time (3 hours)
  • Free evening

Thursday, July 2, 2020

  • Breakfast at Accomodations
  • Class (3 hours - space included)
  • Project presentations (3 hours - space included)
  • Farewell dinner with cooking class

Friday, July 3, 2020

  • API organized airport return

Multiple full and partial scholarships for WVC students will be available and are announced in both the Study Abroad Program and Scholarship webpage.

Students on service trip

Service Learning Institute

The Study Abroad Program is part of the Service Learning Institute.


WVC's Study Abroad Program offers various full and partial scholarships to students who wish to participate in scheduled short-term study tours abroad and in the United States.

Because scholarships are awarded based on information provided in each application, if changes occur in educational plans and/or financial situation, it is possible for designated scholarship recipients to become ineligible to receive a scholarship. If there is a change in your information or enrollment status after you submit your application, please contact the Financial Aid Office right away.


Trip Scholarship Submission Deadline
Salzburg, Austria Friday, October 25, 2019
Machu Picchu and Lake Titicaca, Peru Monday, November 25, 2019
Rome, Italy Monday, November 25, 2019
  1. Complete the Study Abroad Scholarship Application.
  2. Submit the following to Joe%20McDevitt by 5:00 PM on Monday, November 25.
    • Completed Work in Progress Report.
    • Letter of recommendation from a former or current professor at WVC and verify that it is emailed from a WVC email address.


  • Late or incomplete applications will not be considered.
  • Students must be registered for the trip for which they are applying a scholarship.

A committee made up of faculty members, staff/administrators, and private donors will select the recipients based on, but not limited to, the following criteria:

  • Match between the goals of GCS 20 and the student’s expressed academic and professional goals
  • Quality of essay
  • Strength of letter of recommendation
  • Completed Midterm Grade Check form
  • Financial status

Additional Financial Support Suggestions

Study Abroad Students in front of the Eiffel Tower

  • Review the external scholarships list in the WVC Financial Aid webpage.
  • Apply for an external scholarship.
  • Create a TripFunder webpage and request of family and friends that all holiday and birthday gifts be made to you in the form of payments toward your study tour.
  • Share your TripFunder webpage in whatever social medium you use.
  • Share your TripFunder webpage with anyone in your life who uses Facebook.
  • Use the payment plans offered by EF.

EF College Study Tours supports students in the following ways:

  • EF offers a discount to students who have participated in previous study tours with EF.
  • EF offers a discount to students who refer a friend to enroll in a study tour as well.
  • EF offers generous scholarships. To apply, click on Beyond the Classroom Scholarship.
  • This year, EF is offering up to $20,000 in scholarships.
  • To Apply
  • 1. Write a brief essay (no more than 250 words) answering the questions, "What perspectives do you think will be challenged by traveling? What new perspectives do you expect to bring home with you?”
  • 2. Complete the Beyond the Classroom Scholarship application.
  • 3. Submit the application by the deadline.
  • EF allows students to arrange payment in an installment plan.
  • EF provides a TripFunder site, an online donation page that is secure, easy to share, and applies 100% of contributions to the student traveler. This approach is excellent for students who wish to request that birthday and holiday gifts be made to them as a donation. 


Frequently Asked Questions


Study abroad can mean several things: long-term study abroad entails spending the entire semester, or a year, taking classes at a university outside of the United States. Short-term study abroad entails going on a study tour that lasts from one to two or more weeks. WVC offers short-term study abroad study tours mostly during summer and winter semesters, when it is easier for students to participate. Students may register for classes that include a study abroad study tour, or they may join the study tour without completing for-credit courses. From time to time, WVC's Study Abroad Program also offers study tours within the United States and service learning opportunities locally and abroad.

The top ten 21st century skills are adaptability, analysis/having a solution mindset, collaboration, communication, digital fluency, having an entrepreneurial mindset, empathy, resilience, self-awareness, social and diversity awareness. Exploring other cultures and languages helps you to hone all of those skills. Studying outside of your familiar environment helps you to mature, to expand cognitively, to broaden your intellectual curiosity, and to understand the significance of being a global citizen. Studying abroad helps you to gain cultural competency, international experience, language capabilities, and other skills needed in our increasingly globalized societies.

No, at this time there are no language requirements for participating in any of WVC's study abroad programs.

Each study tour is different. The logistics of some study tours are organized by program providers, and in such cases the program providers may include international emergency medical and travel insurance. If the logistics of a study tour do not include international emergency medical and travel insurance, you will be required to buy that insurance. Check the specifics of the study tour that interests you.

Each study tour has a specific application. Therefore, check the details of each study tour.

WVC strongly supports students who have been granted Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and their access to higher education, including the experience of studying abroad. But, since the January 20, 2017 start of the new presidency and administration, there have been changes to US governmental policy that are likely to impact DACA students. DACA students traveling outside the US may not be allowed to re-enter the US. Therefore, we advice  that DACA students discuss the risks associated with re-entry with their legal counsel.

WVC is committed to fostering diversity and inclusion. Race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, religion, and ability are some of the different aspects of identity. You may feel strongly about one or more of those aspects. But while traveling abroad, depending on the location and situation, there may be different cultural norms and standards. Consequently, it may happen that you feel that an aspect of your identity is not perceived the way that you expect. The key to succeeding in a travel abroad program is to be fully knowledgeable about yourself and the country where you will study. That way, you can anticipate how your identity may be perceived and how, therefore, you will want to best represent yourself.

Funding the Trip

If you have financial aid you may use it, as you usually do, to pay for registration in the classes linked to the study abroad study tour.

No, not necessarily. Some scholarships are need-based and some are merit-based. Check the details of each listed scholarship. Note that if you register for a class that is embedded in a Study Abroad Program study tour, you may use your financial aid to pay for the class registration and fees.

Qualifications vary depending on the scholarship, but generally, these are the requirements: be a student in good standing at WVC, have the required GPA, have clearly articulated goals for wanting to study abroad, have completed a certain minimum and maximum number of credits, have a letter of recommendation from your professor at WVC, complete the specific requirements of the particular trip, have all documents necessary to travel to the particular country.

The amounts vary. Check the particular scholarship for the particular trip. Most are full scholarships, but some are partial scholarships.

That depends on the number of applications received and the number of scholarships available.

WVC Study Abroad Program arranges for all scholarship monies to be paid directly to the specific and pertinent program provider for the study tour.

If you have questions that are not included in the list, please email the Director of Study Abroad Program Renee Paquier.

Last Updated 11/25/19