Returning to CSU
Welcome home and congratulations on successfully completing your education abroad experience!
We hope you had a great semester abroad. Your time back here in the U.S. can be one of great ups and downs as you adjust to life here in the U.S. again. Give yourself some time as you get back into things.
Your education abroad experience does not have to end just because you’ve returned to the US. Now that you are back, we want to let you know about some of the international events and activities going on here on campus this year. This website provides some information about things you can do to keep your international experience alive. Explore the links below to learn more about returning to CSU and our international activities.
The unsettled feeling that can accompany one’s return from abroad is what some refer to as “re-entry adjustment” or “reverse culture shock” and is a very common reaction for students coming home from abroad. Feelings can range from the sense that nobody understands how you’ve changed, to feeling panicked that you will lose part of your identity if you don’t have an outlet to pursue the new interests that were sparked abroad.
According to professionals in the field of International Education, 85% of people returning home have some kind of re-entry challenges, and of those, 15% have more serious difficulties adapting to their return. If you’re having difficulty with your return, think back to the adjustments you made to succeed while you were abroad. These same skills can help you in coming home. Remember that “W” curve of cultural adjustment. It may have included an initial euphoria, followed by lots of criticism, followed by general acceptance and understanding of the new culture. The same pattern applies to re-entry. The coping skills and strategies that were successful in helping you adjust to your overseas culture will be just as helpful in making the return home: get involved, identify a support group of other education abroad students, suspend judgment of others, keep a journal of your observations, and don’t forget to keep your sense of humor.
Coping, Adjusting, and Getting Involved
Many of the feelings you may experience come from the change you have undergone and the uncertainty about how the new, changed you fits into your old life. One thing to remember, change is a positive thing. You have new ideas and insights giving you a better sense of yourself. The goal is to figure out how to incorporate your new perspectives into your life back in the States.
There are several things you can do to feel comfortable again in the US while still retaining new knowledge and perspectives. First, do not consider education abroad a singular experience; instead, look at it as the start of a lifetime of international experiences. You can go abroad again! Second, find ways to continue pursuing newfound interests. Make the most of the resources that exist for you on your home campus and in your local community.
What’s Up With Culture – Select Module 2 – Welcome Back, Now What!
At the end of your program, please request you official transcript sent to:
Office of International Programs
ATTN: Education Abroad
Colorado State University
Laurel Hall, 1024 Campus Delivery
Fort Collins, CO, 80523-1024, USA
The Education Abroad office will do the initial processing of the transcript and will forward it to the Registrar’s Office for evaluation and processing into your academic record. The Registrar’s Office has up to 60 days to evaluate and process international transcripts once received; however, many transcripts are evaluated in less than 30 days. When your transcript does arrive, your credits will be posted on RamWeb. One official transcript is sent to us and must be kept on file here at CSU.
For host institutions that send electronic transcripts at the completion of your semester abroad, transcripts need to be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you need additional transcripts for employment or graduate school, contact your sponsor or host campus directly to order them.
Education Abroad Fair
Please come to one of our biggest events of the year – the CSU Education Abroad Fair! We’d love to have you join us to share your experiences with some of the 1500 students who will attend. You and other students who have studied abroad are now the most informed and the best advocates of international opportunities. Students come to the fair interested in hearing about your experiences and seeing your photos. We always need lots of help spreading the word about the fair. Consider helping by passing out flyers, hanging posters, staffing information tables in the student center, and more! If you are interested in volunteering with the Fair events, please email Education Abroad to volunteer.
Education Abroad Peer Advisors
Are you interested in a paid job right here on campus? Nearly every semester we receive applications from current and former education abroad students for Peer Advisor positions! If you are energetic, outgoing, and passionate about your own education abroad experience, this is a great opportunity to share your knowledge and advise students while getting paid. You will develop your communication, administrative, and leadership skills as well as further your international and intercultural interests.
Photos and Stories
Our staff would love to see your photos, you at your study abroad or internship site, pictures with your host family, and scenic shots! We want to hear your stories too.
Are you eager to share your stories about education abroad? Consider volunteering for the Education Abroad Pre-departure Site-Specific Orientations to be held this semester for future students studying abroad. Watch your email for dates and times to talk at program specific orientations.
Education Abroad Alumni at CSU – Student Organization
Join the Students for Study Abroad group that meets several times each semester to connect with other education abroad returnees, share your experience with prospective study abroad students, and get support as you transition back to life in Fort Collins.
Email the Students for Study Abroad group to find out more about the group and its upcoming activities.
International Activities and Events
Local and international activities can help you adjust to being back as well as help you integrate your time abroad into your academic life and long-term goals. Visit the International Events Calendar for a list of some of the international programs and activities taking place here at CSU.
International Area Studies
The Interdiciplinary Studies Program offers an opportunity for students, regardless of discipline, to supplement their academic programs with knowledge in the field of international development. The focus of the program is on the study of the structures, components, and processes of development (economic, environmental, socio-cultural, and political).
CSU Career Center
Contact CSU’s Career Center to learn how to market your international experience and utilize the new skills gained abroad as you search for jobs.