Beyond the classroom: International opportunities at Franklin University Switzerland
Source: Franklin University Switzerland

When thinking about which university to choose for your post-secondary education, what factors should you consider? Do you think about the course and whether it suits your interests? Or do you seek flexibility, allowing you to adapt your educational pathway as you grow?

Perhaps you’re concerned about the city, even the country, in which you will be living. What about travel opportunities, language learning, and possible career options post-graduation?

This year, Switzerland landed 5th place in the global happiness ranking, with beautiful alpine mountains in the north and some of the most beautiful lakes in Europe dotted around the country. If you choose Switzerland you also choose dreamlike snowy winters, warm summers and all the history and architecture found within this central European nation.

Franklin University Switzerland (FUS) is a private and independent liberal arts university located in the southern Swiss city of Lugano, offering Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees, study abroad, gap year and summer programs. Giving students a transformative international experience in a safe, supportive campus community, FUS combines the best of both American and Swiss education.

Here, you’ll do much more than simply read books, take notes and memorize facts. The university has a huge focus on integrative study, research, immersion and first-hand exposure to the world.

Besides studying in the library and researching, at Franklin you’ll also be travelling to new places, seeing new sights and figuring it out on your own, gaining new perspectives and developing new horizons

Academic Travel is integrated in the curriculum, with two dedicated weeks per semester included in the cost of tuition. This gives Franklin students the opportunity to travel to multiple locations to implement things learned in the classroom, as well as gain insights from people who research, work and live in these diverse places.

Source: Franklin University Switzerland

Destinations have included Greece, Iceland, Japan, South Africa, Scotland, the Baltics and Belarus, and more. These travel opportunities are not only a fun and engaging way to get to know your peers and faculty members, but also represent a chance to learn both academically and culturally.

Alumna Carly Jean Seedall, Class of 2018, International Relations Major, used these global excursions to focus her career. Making the most of her skills and interests, she made the move into the field of Natural Science:

“Academic travels to India and Bhutan as well as South Africa and Swaziland, familiarized me with the significance of climate change and pollution on an international level, topics covered in many journals published by the organization.”

The organization in question is Caritas Deutschland in Paderborn, with whom she completed a summer internship through Franklin’s Global Internship Program. This international experience granted her both an academic and multicultural outlook, as well as an additional opportunity to work in global work spaces to strengthen her language knowledge.

This experience has been invaluable in Carly’s career as she now works as a Copy Editor at Copernicus Publications in Göttingen, Germany, tasked as language editor for open-access academic manuscripts submitted by natural scientists from around the world.

This cross-curricular attitude is not unusual for FUS Alumni; Juliana Demartini Brito ’17 majored in Comparative Literary and Cultural Studies and Political Science at Franklin, and was recently awarded the prestigious, highly-competitive Gates Cambridge Scholarship, which covers the full cost of study at Cambridge University.

Her academic enquiries at Franklin covered topics of gender, sexuality and challenges in Latin America. She has been chosen to undertake a Ph.D. in multi-disciplinary Gender Studies at Cambridge in autumn 2019.

Source: Franklin University Switzerland

Juliana has high praise for FUS: “Without a doubt, the support I received from my professors to seek knowledge beyond the texts explored in class led me to achieve my academic goals.”

The flexible, international and inquiry led teaching at FUS doesn’t only benefit those studying languages and social sciences. Master of Science in International Management (MSIM), John Junod ‘18, has received a paid internship offer at Logitech International S.A., in Lausanne, Switzerland, after graduating this past May. He praises FUS for its personalized learning environment and opportunities.

The mission of Franklin University Switzerland is to provide a cross-cultural, multinational learning environment that inspires students to engage with the world. It’s evident that this mission is consistently achieved, with students appreciating the small class sizes, international outlook and availability of professors found at FUS.

Here, students have access to international internship opportunities, such as finance and marketing for The North Face in Lugano, Switzerland; marketing at ETA Fashion in Quito, Ecuador; and fundraising, partnership planning, financial & risk planning at Conservation Global in George, South Africa.

Franklin University Switzerland is also at the cutting-edge of technology within its own campus community. During the recent cryptocurrency boom, it developed its own cryptocurrency designed for students, by students. The currency is part of the Franklin Frank Community Engagement Program. Students can earn Franklin Franks by working with local institutions and non-profit organizations, which are requirements for certain courses, or trade Franks between fellow students.

More news in the world of finance at FUS, Karla Tadic ’16, a Master’s degree student at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), has been admitted to the prestigious European Central Bank’s Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM) traineeship program in October 2018.

Source: Franklin University Switzerland

Acceptance to the SSM program is highly competitive, though Karla’s education at FUS – as well as her post-graduation position as an Accredited Parliamentary Assistant to a Croatian MEP in the European Parliament – will ensure she has no problems adjusting to the multicultural work environment at the ECB.

Another recent FUS success story is that of Master of Science in International Management (MSIM) student, Alli Zeper ’18, who landed a job at global management consulting firm McKinsey & Company in St. Petersburg, Florida, as a Recruiting Administrator.

The Master’s program not only enabled Alli to build connections and develop her ‘soft skills’, it also helped push her outside of her comfort zone during the job search. She says: “McKinsey has always been a dream company for me to work for and my MSIM professors really encouraged me to go for it.”

If these Alumni outcomes prove anything, it’s that a Franklin education produces critical thinkers who are culturally literate, ethically aware and intellectually courageous. The university is adept at preparing students to become responsible, compassionate, collaborative leaders in an increasingly complex world.

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