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FAQ for Advisors

General FAQ for Advisors
What is GO?
Global Opportunities (GO) was introduced in fall 2009 with the Central Curriculum at Susquehanna. It grew out of the faculty's desire to challenge students in their understanding of and engagement with cultural difference. GO is a cross-cultural requirement in which students are immersed in a culture different than their own for at least 2 weeks and up to a semester. There are preparation and reflection courses as GO emphasizes the learning that takes place on campus before and after the cross-cultural experience. 

What is the GO Mission Statement? 
The GO Program guides Susquehanna students, faculty, and staff in cross-cultural experiences that academically engage them in our diverse and interconnected world.  

What are the GO Learning Goals? 
Through completion of an off-campus cross-cultural immersion experience, students demonstrate a complex understanding of culture that enables them to:
1 – Recognize and reflect on their own culture, their ethnocentric assumptions, and differences/similarities between cultures.
2 – Recognize and articulate ways that their own identities and actions may be understood differently in various cultural settings.
3 – Describe how their cross-cultural experiences help them understand issues in different cultural contexts.
4 – Articulate how their own intercultural growth can enrich their personal development, academic development, and career readiness.

Who needs to GO?
All students must complete the GO requirement. GO is comprised of three parts and students must complete all three. This includes the Prep-to-GO course (semester prior to departure), Cross-Cultural Experience (time in another culture) and Global Citizenship/Reflection course (semester after return). Students must have their GO experience approved by the GO Office in order to be registered for the Prep-to-GO course, the first step in GO.

My advisee says they “can’t do GO,” what do I do?
There are no waivers for the GO experience. GO, at its core, is a cross-cultural experience. Please direct your advisee to the GO Office and the Office of Disability Services. GO works closely with the Office of Disability Services and students to find a suitable accommodation as needed, based on their situation. Students with varying abilities and accommodations have completed each type of program, though many students who have significant accommodations will choose to complete a GO Your Way program.

What is GO Long, GO Short, and GO Your Way?
  • GO Long – These programs occur during fall/spring semester. It is a traditional study abroad program where students are taking classes at an international university or study center. The students will follow the academic calendar of their host institution. Students work with the department, the Registrar’s Office, and GO through the course transfer process the semester prior to departure (see “course transfer” below).
  • GO Short – These programs occur during summer/winter break. It is a 2 to 6-week faculty-led program with a group of SU students and faculty/staff Program Directors. These are typically experiential-learning based programs in a cross-cultural setting. The program itself is typically non-credit bearing.
  • GO Your Way – These programs occur during summer/winter break. It is an immersion experience in a cultural setting different from one’s own for a minimum of 2 weeks. Beyond the basics, the requirement is extremely flexible. Students complete a GO Your Way through a study abroad summer school with a program provider or university, international internship, volunteer program, or a student-driven self-designed experience. The program itself can be credit bearing or non-credit bearing, depending on the program.
When can students study away?
Typically students will complete GO during their junior year. Students are eligible to participate in a GO program after completing 3 semesters. Therefore, the earliest for a GO Long would be as second-semester sophomores.
Transfer students can study away after their first semester at Susquehanna but need to work with GO within their first weeks on campus.
Students can complete GO as late as their penultimate semester for GO Long or the break between the penultimate and last semester for GO Short/GO Your Way. However, we strongly advise students to not wait until winter break of their last year since there is no back-up plan possible to graduate on time if they are unable to go for any reason.

When do students apply for GO? 
Applications are on
  • GO Long - next academic year (Fall and Spring): October 15 - November 15
  • GO Short - summer break: October 15 - November 15 (programs announced Oct. 1)
  • GO Short - winter break: March 15 - April 15 (programs announced March 1)
  • GO Your Way - summer break: October 15 - February 15
  • GO Your Way - winter break: March 15 - September 15

How do students apply to GO?
Students will apply online for all GO Programs via
  • GO Long programs require one application, but students must identify alternative choices within that application. GO Long programs require a faculty recommendation for their application.
  • GO Short students must apply to two programs during the application cycle. Programs running for the upcoming term are announced 9 months in advance. There are a set number of spots for each program so the applications are competitive. Priority for acceptances goes by graduation year.
  • GO Your Way students must complete a pre-application.  Only self-designed GO Your Way programs require a faculty recommendation for their application.  
Where can students study away?
Almost anywhere!
  • For semester options, we have about 15 SU-in GO Long programs that are strategic university partnerships in addition to other approved programs. The list of approved GO Long programs is updated every fall to reflect any changes. Most programs are offered both terms, but there are some that are only 1 semester. 
  • There are about 30 GO Short programs which occur during the summer and winter breaks. These programs rotate and are announced 9 months in advance of the term. In a typical year, about 10 programs will run during Summer break and about 4 programs will run during Winter break.
  • GO Your Way is during summer and winter breaks and can be a summer/winter program provider (taking classes abroad, volunteer programs, etc.) or a student-designed short-term program.
What should students consider when selecting a program?
GO recommends that students consider their academic and personal goals when deciding on a program. Additional considerations include but are not limited to: classes, cost, language, length, and location.
When selecting programs, it is important for students to identify a couple of programs they may be interested in attending.
  • For GO Short programs, students must apply for two programs. Students identify a primary and alternative program choice in the application process. It is important for students to think about plans if they do not get into either of their program applications – which does happen.
  • GO Long applications will ask students for a secondary option. Students for GO Long programs may also request a program change after being approved, but these are not guaranteed.

How are students selected for programs?
GO Long applications are reviewed by the GO Office. The application questions, letter of recommendation from faculty, and GPA are taken into account. This is a pre-approval and the students will need to be approved by the program/university itself.  Students must maintain good academic and disciplinary standing throughout the process.
GO Short program applications are sent to the Program Directors for review. They take into account the students responses of the questions in the application. Priority does go by graduating class. There are programs where there are more eligible students who have priority and good applications than spots. (For example: 30 students between their junior and senior years who are applying for 16 spots on one program). We recommend that students take into account the acceptance rates, which are posted on the online brochure. We also recommend students apply to programs of differing popularity.
GO Your Way applications are reviewed by the GO Office. The application questions and the meeting with the GO Office are taken into account. For programs that include a program provider, organization, or university; this is a pre-approval and the students will need to be approved by the program/university itself.  Self-designed programs include an academic recommendation that is also taken into account.
What are the GPA requirements to study away?
  • GO Long programs require a 2.5, but some require a higher GPA. These are noted on each program online brochure. 
  • GO Short programs require students to have a 2.0 GPA unless otherwise noted.
  • GO Your Way programs do not have a GPA requirement from Susquehanna. However, programs with a University or Program Provider require the GPA of the university/provider. 

Is there a required program type for specific majors?
The majority of programs are open to all majors. There may be some prerequisites for the program which are listed on the online brochure for the programs. We recommend that students completing a GO Long program fulfill some requirements (central curriculum or major/minor) to stay on track for graduation. Almost all GO Short programs are, by design, interdisciplinary. GO Your Way do not need to directly relate to a major, though we find that students use these experiences to further their resume/academic profile.
Language, Literature and Cultures; and International Studies majors are required to complete a GO Long program. International Business majors must complete a credit-bearing international internship (GO Long or GO Your Way program).

How do students register for the GO prep/reflection courses?
Because students are not approved to study away before the end of SU course registration, GO will collaborate with the Registrar's Office to register all students for the GO courses. GO courses are held on Thursday evenings (7-9 PM) students planning to study away should keep that time open. If there are exceptions to the Thursday evening time, GO will be in contact with students directly.
Will credits transfer from away back to Susquehanna?
Yes!  Study away credit is transferable with department approval for their major/minor (and approval coordinated by the GO office for Central Curriculum). Students must complete a course approval form and have it signed by the academic advisor. The department chair and the college and this determines how the courses will transfer.
During the semester prior to departure, students will select courses for a GO Long/GO Your Way program. At that point, students are working with the GO Office, the department head for the major/minor, and you (their advisor) for the course transfer process. Placement in courses is not guaranteed, so we recommend that students have alternate courses approved for transfer as backup. 

I am a department or program head, how do I approve courses? 
For program and department heads, and other designated reviewers, you will receive requests via email. Each request is for one foreign course. 
  1. Appropriate reviewers are automatically selected based on the foreign class information that the student is seeking approval for.
  2. Reviewers will have the option to deny a request, approve a request, or to send the form back to the student for editing.
  3. In approving a request, reviewers will be required to enter the SU equivalent course that the foreign course will count as at SU.
    1. Students are required to enter “suggested” SU equivalent course information when they fill out the form initially, but approvers get the final say on what the foreign course will count as.
  4. After a determination has been made on a course approval request, the student, their primary advisor, and the GO Office will all receive a copy of the outcome. 

Can students take major, minor and/or central curriculum courses away on a GO Long/GO Your Way program?
Yes, students can take major, minor, and central curriculum courses away. Previously transferred courses are outlined here. If there is a course that a student wants to take that has not been approved previously, they should follow the instructions on the same page (here) to submit the course from the GO program for review.

Students will continue to work with you, as their advisor, to plan what courses to take while at Susquehanna. If your advisee has questions about courses on a GO Long, you can direct them to the online brochure, which includes links to previously offered classes at the GO program under “academics”. This can assist students in what courses may be offered in the future.

Which central curriculum requirements can be taken on a GO Long/GO Your Way to fulfil those requirements?
Commonly, students will be able to take courses that fulfill central curriculum requirements. The most transferred back central curriculum requirements are:
  • Artistic Expression
  • Diversity
  • Ethics
  • Historical Perspectives
  • Interdisciplinary
  • Literary Expression
What academic requirements are there for GO Long programs?
Students will take at least one course while they are abroad related to learning more about the culture of their host country. This could be a thematic perspective on a topic, language learning, or course specific for study abroad students. The required course(s) for each program is reflected in the online brochure under “courses”.
Students are required to take the equivalent of 12 US credits during a GO Long program in order to maintain full-time student status.

On a GO Long/GO Your Way, my advisee’s schedule changed after they got abroad, now what do we do?
That’s OK! The course approval process can still be completed remotely if things change. The process is the same as above since it is an online form. 

How does a GO Long/GO Your Way affect my advisee’s GPA?
While the credits will transfer, grades do not for most GO Long programs (as long as the student passes the course).The student must receive at least a C- in order for the credits to transfer. Grades do not transfer back for GO Long programs except for the SWSB London and SU-in Washington programs. 

If a student is planning to attend graduate programs, most graduate programs will factor in the grades obtained while away as part of the overall GPA.

Can students use financial aid or scholarships while studying away?
Students receive the same aid package (grants/scholarships) as at Susquehanna for GO Long programs. Additional scholarships can be found on the scholarships section of our website.
GO Short students may be eligible for a GO Grant that could cover a percentage of the program cost.
Limited need-based aid is available for GO Your Way students. 

How can advisors help?
Talk to your advisees early, especially first year and sophomores, about studying away, so that students have time to plan and fit study away into their plan of study.
Fall of Sophomore year is when students planning to complete a junior-year GO Long program need to apply. Fall of Junior year is when most students completing a GO Short will apply. Sophomores are able to apply but priority goes by graduation year.
Great questions to ask your advisee are:
  • What are you thinking for your GO program?
  • When are you planning to study away?
  • What goals do you have for GO?
  • How might you use your GO program to build on your major courses at Susquehanna?
What are the next steps for my advisee?
Encourage students to meet with a GO advisor to talk about their options. They can sign up for an appointment online

Students should review all the resources on our website and sign up for an advising session online. Online we also have student resource pages for different student identities, and student FAQs for GO Long, GO Short, and GO Your Way.

Advisors should review the major-specific FAQ for GO. If your department does not yet have one, please contact Molly Roe, Director of GO, to work with us on developing it!