Study Abroad

Michigan State University has a long history of international engagement and has led the nation in study abroad participation among public universities for the last six years. MSU’s Office of Study Abroad (OSA) administers over 275 programs taking place in more than 60 countries around the world. Each year, close to 3,000 students are transformed by their educational experiences outside of the United States and can be found in classrooms, research labs, field stations, and internships sites throughout the world.

The Department of Animal Science offers four study abroad programs to introduce students to a variety of cultures and diverse agricultural systems while helping students fulfill their experiential learning requirements.

The College of Agriculture and Natural Resources also provides information about study abroad opportunities and resources.

For more information and application deadlines, visit OSA’s website or visit their office located in room 109 International Center.

Additional Considerations:

Financing study abroad

Calendar of study abroad events

The Horse Industry of Ireland and Northern Ireland

horse in Ireland

The differences between the U.S. horse industry and those of Ireland and Northern Ireland will be explored. Students will interact with equine professionals both in the industry and in academic and government institutions.

Ireland and Northern Ireland are countries with a wealth of pastureland and a people with a strong affinity to the horse. The natural beauty of the two countries is seen in their many lakes and waterways, green rolling landscape, hedgerows and stone fences. Castles and historical structures such as churches and state houses dot the landscape, adding to the charm and appeal.

Major breeding, training, racing and schooling farms will be visited and studied. A variety of breeds and disciplines will be represented. Special emphasis will be given to the racing and jumping industries.

The Irish Draft and Connemera breeds were developed in Ireland and will be studied as important contributors to the economics of the Irish horse industry.

Additional studies include rural development programs in both Ireland and Northern Ireland. Comparisons will be made between the two programs and what is available in the United States.

Offered summer semesters, even years.

Dairy Husbandry and Environmental Stewardship

The Netherlands farm

This program focuses on animal agriculture, especially dairy farming, and how economic, environmental, and social policies have affected it. Students will be introduced to the culture and history of the Netherlands and its environmental resources and concerns.

Similarities between animal agriculture in the Netherlands and Michigan will be discussed. Dairy farming in the Netherlands is similar to dairy farming in the Great Lakes region of the United States. Like southern Michigan, the Netherlands has a temperate climate, borders large bodies of water, and has many people coexisting with intensive agriculture. Thus, the challenges in dairy husbandry and environmental stewardship for Michigan and Dutch agriculture are similar.

Students will tour dairy farms, visit agricultural companies, and spend two days living and experiencing life on a working dairy farm. We will interact with students and faculty from Wageningen University and CAH Dronten.

We will also take time to appreciate the rich Dutch culture. We will visit the Anne Frank House and take a canal ride in Amsterdam, spend the day biking in Wageningen, and view the windmills at historic Groningen. Additionally, we will explore the beautiful cities of Ghent, Belgium and Cologne, Germany.

Offered summer semesters, even years.

Food, Agriculture and Natural Resource Systems in South Africa and Swaziland

Stellenbosch South Africa

This program, offered by the department of Animal Science in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, will tour the Highvelds and Lowvelds surrounding Johannesburg, Pretoria, Pietersburg, Durban, Port Elizabeth, Mossel Bay, Stellenbosch, and Cape Town in South Africa, and Mbabane in Swaziland. Students will earn six credits while visiting several national parks, including Kruger, and meeting with government officials and university/college representatives, as well as with the agriculture society.

The course of study will focus on exposing students to agriculture production and policy. Students will be exposed to economic development, rural sociology, and environmental issues as they relate to agricultural development. A significant component of the program will consist of visiting some of southern Africa's noted universities and colleges, such as the University of the North and Stellenbosch University.

During the program, students will familiarize themselves with some of the agriculture and economic challenges in the southern region of Africa. Students will visit with farm families and discuss issues that affect their daily lives. They may also visit food processing plants, commercial livestock facilities, and small-scale fruit and vegetable facilities.

Offered summer semesters, every year.

Emerging Issues and Sustainability in International Agriculture in Vietnam

Vietnam farm

This program focuses on emerging issues and sustainability in international agriculture. Global animal protein intake rates are anticipated to increase between now and 2050 because as household income increases the amount of animal protein intake increases as well. At the same time, there are continuing global challenges to livestock and poultry producers including access to international markets, global competitiveness, and the impact of world politics.

Vietnam is not unlike many other tropical and sub-tropical regions of the developing world in that there is a strong desire to increase animal protein consumption through domestic production. As Vietnamese animal agriculture undergoes its expansion a unique opportunity is presented to work with and learn from the Vietnamese on common issues such as environmental and social concerns related to large-scale animal agriculture production. Students will be introduced to the culture and history of the Vietnam and its environmental resources and concerns.

Students will visit agricultural operations and interact with local producers. We will also have discussions with faculty and students from Agricultural Universities as well as visit with leading agricultural companies.

In addition to the opportunity to study agriculture, Vietnam offers a rich cultural history. Students traveling on this program will have the opportunity to visit Hanoi, explore pagodas and the Imperial citadel in Hue, and cruise down the Ha Long Bay.

Offered summer semesters, odd years.