Develop or Renew a Faculty-Led Embedded Program

A faculty-led embedded program is a short-term education abroad experience that is offered as a component or supplement to an academic course taught in residence on a Penn State campus or online.  The international component is typically scheduled during a semester break or early summer, and it generally lasts 7-14 days.

A faculty-led embedded program can enhance the international offerings within a particular academic department, can support internationalization strategic goals of a college, and can allow for a student to gain valuable education abroad experience within the academic structure of a Penn State course.  The faculty leader assumes a great deal of responsibility for the development, proposal, implementation, and execution of the course - including the academic content, travel logistics, international site visits and activities, budgeting and payments, and health and safety of program participants.  This may seem like an overwhelming list of responsibilities, but there are a number of support resources to help the faculty leader throughout the entire process.  Please visit the embedded program development and resources page for additional information.

In order to minimize institutional risk and to ensure compliance with University Policy FN20, Global Programs requires faculty and departments (graduate and undergraduate) organizing and/or sponsoring embedded programs to submit course information and essential documentation to Education Abroad via the online embedded course development and proposal process, which is outlined for review.

Commonwealth Campuses Group Travel Grant Information

The Office of the Vice President for Commonwealth Campuses and Global Programs have established a fund to support Commonwealth Campus student group international travel that is part of a faculty-led embedded course and preferably part of a campus-wide internationalization initiative. 


  • The international travel must be credit-bearing as a part of a faculty-led embedded course(s); i.e. residential course(s) with an international travel component.
  • The course must be proposed and accepted through the regular process for embedded program development.
  • The course and travel component should be open to a wide group of students.
  • Preference may be given for courses related to a campus-wide thematic initiative.

Award Amount

  • Grants will range from $3,000-$4,000.
  • There will be approximately four to five awards available each academic year.
  • The campus must match the grant dollar-for-dollar.
  • The grant and matching funds must be distributed evenly to all participants who are students at a Commonwealth campus at the time of travel.


  • Complete and submit the online grant application, which includes uploading the following:
    • Course syllabus
    • Detailed travel schedule and itinerary
    • Per-student budget
    • Letter of support written and signed by the Chancellor or Designee confirming the campus' commitment to a dollar-for-dollar match

Evaluation Criteria

  • The proposed travel promotes global citizenship and has the potential to transform the participating students' educational experience and the campus at large
  • The campus shows commitment to a dollar-for-dollar match
  • The budget for students is feasible, responsible, and cost-efficient
  • The travel is open to a broad spectrum of students


In order to allow for effective budgeting and accurate marketing of program cost to students, the grant review committee will review applications monthly on a rolling basis.  Whenever possible, applicants will be notified of the application outcome within one month of grant application submission.

Final deadlines for applications are as follows. Applications are due by 5:00 p.m. (EST) on the following dates:

  • February 15 by 5:00 p.m. (EST) for travel during the summer, fall semester, or winter break (December-January) of the same calendar year.
  • September 15 by 5:00 p.m. (EST) for travel during the spring semester (January-May). Winter break courses (with travel December-January) can also apply for the September deadline, but note that the deadline of February 15 is considered the priority deadline for winter break programs.

If the deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, applications will be accepted through the following business day at 5:00 p.m. Early submission of applications is encouraged since rolling review procedures will be utilized and funding is limited annually. 

Information for Recipients

  • A standing committee appointed by the Vice President for Commonwealth Campuses and the Vice Provost for Global Programs will review applications and make recommendations for the award winners. The final decision will be made by the Vice President and Vice Provost.
  • Funds will be transferred to the campus finance officer approximately two weeks after award notification. Receiving campuses should contact their finance officers to access funds.
  • Campus grant recipients are required to submit a trip report to the Director of Education Abroad within three months of return from the trip, indicating the impact of the travel.
  • Travel to countries with United States State Department Travel Warnings must be in compliance with Penn State's travel policies. The award of a travel grant does not replace any requirements pursuant to those travel policies.
  • Contact Global Programs if the travel component must be postponed or canceled.

Review Committee

For questions about the grant application, deadlines, or processes, please contact our customized programs staff.

Members of the review committee include:

  • Jennifer Cushman, Chancellor, Penn State Beaver
  • Elizabeth Wright, Chancellor, Penn State Hazleton
  • Kate Manni, Director of Education Abroad, Penn State Global; Chair
  • Sarah Spiegel, Education Abroad Customized Programs Manager, Penn State Global