NC State’s Global Perspectives Certificate program gives students yet another option to make the world their classroom. Launched in 2009, the program recognizes students for their international studies and activities, and encourages them to continue their global interests in the U.S. and overseas.
All undergraduate degree-seeking students of all majors — including undergraduate and international students — may take part in the program. Students completing the program receive an official certificate and a notation on their transcript documenting their global experiences during their studies.
“The Global Perspectives Certificate program aligns with NC State’s strategic plan goal to engage locally and globally,” said Kasey Harris, coordinator of the Global Perspectives Certificate program. “Students are encouraged to take globally-focused classes on campus that count toward their degree, while also pursuing international experiences.”
Students complete academic coursework including a language requirement, and one course each in African, Asian and Latin American studies; European and Eurasian studies; and modern global issues. The program also includes requirements for co-curricular activities, volunteer service and a final project with a faculty mentor.
Of course, one of the most popular requirements among students is the international experience component. This could include study abroad, international internships, overseas volunteer programs, research abroad, or being an international student in the U.S.
“So many irreplaceable memories and experiences were created [in my study abroad experience], as well as friendships that have been sustained, despite now being on opposite sides of the country,” said Jaliyah Scott, a senior industrial engineering major. “I can honestly look back on my experiences at NC State and say that I have no regrets. I challenged myself to meet new people and gain new experiences and because of that, I can graduate undergrad with confidence in my ability to adapt, maintain independence, and appreciate support systems in all aspects of my life.”
Students like Scott gain access to faculty mentors to guide them through the process of proposing and completing their final project for the program. This mentor serves to provide advice, guidance, and assessment for the project, which synthesizes the student’s experience in completing Global Perspectives Certificate program requirements.
To supplement program requirements, the Office of Global Engagement and local global-focused organizations offer a variety of academic, cultural and social events to enrich the overall student experience. This includes campus-based events like a global tea and coffee time and academic talks, and off-campus events including art exhibits and international festivals. For those interested in gaining a well-rounded experience at NC State, the Global Perspectives Certificate program offers unique programming that equips students for the future.
“The program is a great way to internationalize your studies, but you don’t have to limit yourself to only fulfilling the requirements,” said Sue Alley, a senior marketing major and English minor. “Push your boundaries and step outside your comfort zone. Go abroad for as long as you can, because NC State gives students so many great opportunities to do so. But aside from experiences abroad, the GPC showcases many cultural events and activities across campus. I encourage you to try everything that interests you. The cultural experiences and knowledge you gain will last a lifetime.”