Three International Partnerships Open New Doors for Lehman Students

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A group of five people stand together holding documents.
It's official! From left: Associate Provost Karin Beck, IPCE Associate Dir. Eunice Cuevas, President Fernando Delgado, IPCE Dir. Stephanie Rupp, and faculty members Asako Tochika and Mari Sakaji.

With over 90 languages spoken on the Lehman campus, the College is known for its rich cultural diversity. Now, Lehman is adding an entirely different kind of cultural experience as three new partnerships with institutions overseas will expand students’ options for study abroad, language immersion, and travel—all of which can be life changing.

In March, Lehman, Osaka Metropolitan University in Japan, Paderborn University in Germany, and the University of Birmingham in the U.K. joined the network of partner institutions in South Korea, France, and Japan that host study abroad and exchange programs. Each institution offers a unique experience for students from Lehman and throughout CUNY.

“International partnerships are transformative journeys for students, fostering academic growth, professional development, and personal enrichment,” said Ambar Ramirez, global engagement coordinator for the Office of International Program and Community Engagement (IPCE), which facilitates study abroad programs for students.

Lehman students particularly interested in the social sciences can increase their fluency in Japanese at Osaka Metropolitan University while pursuing a range of course subjects. The program’s special draw is a Social Innovation course, in which students collaborate to identify social and global issues and generate impactful solutions.

Germany is home to Europe’s oldest universities—and the birthplace of humanities disciplines—while the Bronx is home to diverse communities of new Americans and the birthplace of art forms like Hip Hop. A cross-cultural exchange agreement between Lehman and Paderborn University means students from both institutions can enjoy unique learning experiences in arts and humanities fields, which are rarely the focus of study abroad programs according to IPCE.

"Few educational opportunities move the needle of personal growth more than studying abroad, said. Stephanie Rupp, Executive Director and Director of IPCE and Associate Professor of Anthropology. “From the challenges of learning in a new language, living in a new culture, and thriving with new friends, food, and freedom studying abroad expands students' horizons further than they ever thought possible."

For students who want an international experience without the obstacle of a language barrier,  Lehman is also partnering with three other CUNY schools—Baruch College, the College of Staten Island, and Queens College—in an exchange program with the University of Birmingham, where students from any CUNY college can pursue courses in law, social sciences, psychology, and related areas. In return, Birmingham students may attend any one of the four CUNY colleges that best aligns with their academic interests.

Nicole Flores, study abroad advisor for IPCE, can’t wait to help students access these new opportunities. “I’m secure in the knowledge that they will be well taken care of and that our partners understand the unique demographic of our students,” she said. “Studying abroad is a crucial aspect of our students' growth; it's always incredible to see the transformation they undergo upon their return.”

The application process for these and other 2024-2025 study abroad programs is currently underway. (Lehman students can pursue additional opportunities through highly competitive fellowship programs including Fulbright, the Gilman Scholarship, and the Boren Award, which may have different deadlines.) For more information about study abroad and to apply, contact the Office of International Program and Community Engagement.