Adapted from Santa Clara University
Do I need to request a transcript from my study abroad program to be sent to Seattle University?
No matter what program you participate on, it is your responsibility to arrange for the transfer of credits back to Seattle University. Without official transcripts from your program abroad, Seattle University cannot credit you with the classes you have taken.
Please instruct your program provider to have your official transcripts sent to the following address:
901 12th Avenue
P.O. Box 222000
Seattle, WA, 98122, USA
When should I expect my credits to be posted on my program evaluation?
The time frame varies depending on when Seattle University receives your transcript. Once it is received, it is audited by the Admission's Office and sent to the Registrar to be posted based on your Course Approval Form on file. The process can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months after the conclusion of your program. Unfortunately, there is nothing the Education Abroad Office can do to expedite this process.
I took classes abroad that I did not get pre-approved on my Course Approval Form prior to departing. How do I get them approved now?
You will need to complete a retroactive Course Approval Form. This process works just the same as before and must be signed by your academic advisor and the chair of the department from which you're seeking credit. The form can be accessed here.
Upon returning to the U.S., what are some of the biggest surprises for students?
Based on responses provided by recently returned Santa Clara University students.
-How very hard it has been to adjust. I usually handle change very well; never did I think that I would experience culture shock (because I didn't going over), but boy did I when I came home!
-Not as much had changed as I had expected, which in some way was a relief.
-That half of the people I ran into everyday didn't even know that I'd been gone at all. Trying to answer "Hey, what's up?" after a year abroad is just mind boggling.
-That I missed the things I thought I hated
-The pollution and tackiness of American culture. It was disgusting to see the pains we take to be beautiful. And now I'm back in the same groove.
-How easy readjusting was.
-That everyone spoke English and I could actually have a deep conversation with someone and understand explicitly what was being said.
-That I didn't feel any immediate "return shock"-I was too tired and disoriented to feel much of anything.
-How little international news is covered in our main newspaper.
-That Americans can be just as inefficient as other countries.
-How much I missed the personal freedoms here; I was restrained in my actions and display of personality while abroad but didn't realize how much it affected me.
-People's unawareness about the world
-Realizing that I was in a different culture.
-How lightly my parents reacted to my return.
-I really missed the slower pace of life that I enjoyed abroad, and the meals, and the togetherness. It was hard to come back to a college campus after all that.
-How dull everything seemed.
-That some people were genuinely interested in hearing about my experience. This was a wonderful connection with some of my friends.
How have returning students dealt with coming back from abroad and readjusting to life in the U.S.?
Based on responses from recently returned Santa Clara University students.
-Spend some time alone to sort out our feelings, set new goals and priorities, and put things into perspective.
-Participate in a retreat to think about your new place in life.
-Write a letter or document to yourself, cataloging all the things you learned while you were abroad and that you don't want to forget - about yourself, your place in the world, your capabilities, etc. Consider writing this while you are still abroad and mailing it home to your "USA" self.
-Consider the techniques you used to adjust to your host country, and use those same strategies.
-Don't expect old friends to fit into your new needs. Seek out new friends if necessary.
-Join the International Club to keep learning & doing new things and meeting new people.
-Don't try to return to the old situation because people and circumstances have changed.
-Learn to distinguish between those who are mildly interested and those who want to hear the details.
-Seek out your good friends and share both the joys and readjustment problems.
-Listen to your friends' experiences too.
-Don't resent that your family/friends had experiences while you were gone, i.e., that life went on without you.
-Use diplomacy in raving about your host country: some people may feel that you have been disloyal to the U.S. and don't want to hear about your wonderful host country.
-Don't impose your cultural changes upon others.
-When asked stereotypical questions (such as "Aren't all Japanese short?"), respond with cultural relativism ("For Japan, no"). Tell the facts and don't get emotionally defensive.
-Maintain openness and be aware of your changes within and those of the environment.
-Avoid considering that your new attitudes and goals are superior to those of your family/friends at home.
-Stay healthy since stress may cause you to be unduly tired, easily depressed, or subject to minor illness. As simple as it sounds, make sure you get enough sleep and take care of yourself!
-Always rely on humor!!
See the Reverse Culture Shock and Readjustment page for more tips and resources.
What opportunities and resources are available on-campus to help returnees adjust and find meaningful ways to engage?
You might be back in America, but that doesn't mean you have to completely abandon the life you led abroad. There are innumerable opportunities to engage cross-culturally or to pursue your newfound interests right here in our own Seattle community. Click here for a list of resources.