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Study Abroad in Singapore

This May, for the first time ever, our undergraduates participated in a ChE-specific study abroad course in Singapore, one of the most exciting hubs of engineering education, research, and industrial development. 26 ChE students enrolled, which is a resounding success, as typically 12-15 students sign up for other study abroad courses.

The ChE study abroad initiative stems from the School’s 2015-19 Strategic Plan, which aims to “Educate undergraduate and graduate students who will be successful in a global environment.” The goal is to have at least 20% of our undergraduates participate in a summer, semester or spring break study abroad. In the context of a global economy, this type of study abroad will not only give our students a glimpse into how education, research and governmental planning shape the economic and social evolution of a nation, but will also differentiate Purdue ChE students when competing for a job.

The course was led by Professor John Morgan and Managing Director Cristina Farmus and included a series of lectures at the National University of Singapore, and visits at 3M and DuPont chemical plants and research facilities on Jurong Island. On the cultural side, the group visited the Gardens by the Bay, the Flower Dome, the Singapore Zoo, the National Orchid Garden, and sampled a variety of foods in China Town, Little India and local hawker centers. Besides exposure to the Singapore educational, research, industrial and cultural environment, students also participated in a two-day trip to Malaysia’s capital, Kuala Lumpur, which broadened their understanding of the South East Asia culture. The program provided a good balance of educational and cultural activities.

Group photo of students in Singapore

Due to generous subsidies from the School ($500 per student), Global Engineering Programs ($1,000) and Purdue International Programs ($8,000), the cost of the program for students was extremely affordable. An extra $1,000 per student Purdue Moves scholarship was available for students participating for the first time in study abroad.

Given the excellent response from the students, for 2016 the School is planning a study abroad course in Colombia during Spring Break and a Maymester course in Switzerland. Both programs will blend academic activities with industrial visits and cultural events. For details on the upcoming courses or becoming a sponsor for study abroad, please contact Cristina Farmus at cfarmus@purdue.edu