FPA International Experience Fund

The Rundown

Each year, the Faculty of Public Affairs sends dozens of students on international learning experiences in countries such as Guatemala, Nicaragua, Rwanda, and Kenya.

Some of our students are conducting field research, others are volunteering with NGOs and many are learning about the culture from local academics and leaders.

Our students are responsible for covering the costs of these trips. This year, we’re asking for your help to set up a fund that will help with the students’ airfare and lodging.

From now until December 2, 2016, the Dean of the Faculty of Public Affairs will match every dollar you donate to the FPA International Experience Fund. 

The Background

International experiences contribute to the essential mission of the Faculty: to prepare graduates who will address regional and global challenges and help to build better societies and stronger democracies at home and abroad. Our graduates become leaders in fields such as politics, media and communications, economics, international relations, and law.

These international experiences add a real-world component to the education FPA students receive on the Carleton campus.

The Rollout

On Giving Tuesday, FPA is focusing on three international student experiences: the Bachelor of Global and International Studies (BGInS), Alternative Spring Break, and the Centre for Media and Transitional Societies internship.

Bachelor of Global and International Studies (BGInS)

Now in its second year, the Bachelor of Global and International Studies (BGInS) provides students with a global perspective on their field of study, as well as the opportunity to study abroad. We partner with 30 overseas placement partners to find educational placements for our students around the globe.

“The mandatory international experience is an essential part of the BGInS degree program. It enables our students to engage with different cultures, study different economies and governments, and travel and operate within the international environment. They are responsible for the cost of this educational experience.”
—Orlaith McCaul, International Experience Manager, Bachelor of Global and International Studies (BGInS)

Alternative Spring Break

The Alternative Spring Break program sends FPA students to assist with community projects in countries such as Honduras, Guatemala, and Peru.

Political Science alumna Lauren Kateily (’16) had this to say: “These experiences changed my life. It opens your mind and changes your perspective on everything,” says Kateily. “Participating in Alternative Spring Break was the best decision I ever made in university.”

Centre for Media and Transitional Societies (CMTS)

CMTS began as the Rwanda Initiative, a program in which Carleton journalism and communication students worked as interns at media organizations across Rwanda, assisting in the restoration of that country’s devastated media environment. In 2009, the initiative was expanded to several other countries and renamed the Centre for Media and Transitional Societies.

FPA students spend eight weeks in an international news organization, gaining invaluable knowledge about the media and culture in an African or Asian country.

“I worked in the newsroom at TV10, Rwanda’s first privately run newscast,” says Marina von Stackelberg (BJ ’14). “It was an unfathomable learning experience. I could not have done it without the financial assistance I received from Carleton.”

The Benefits

These programs enable students to work alongside residents in a mutually-supportive environment to gain real-world international experience, which is an important component of a degree from the Faculty of Public Affairs. They learn about the culture, the economy, and the way of life in another society. And when they return, they enrich our classrooms at Carleton.


Linda L'Heureux

Ron Smith

Marco Blefari

Julie Dickson

Sarah Mohammed

Mary MacGregor

Karen Keyes

See Donor Wall