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his summer, Auburn University students discovered calculus through Michelangelo and geology through Roman rocks in their classrooms inside a 13th century Italian palace. Next summer students will have even more options to pursue coursework overseas through the Auburn Abroad Core Curriculum Program in Rome.

Launched in summer 2016, the Core Curriculum Program allows students to choose two from among the several required courses offered, such as communications, geosciences, math and political science, while spending five weeks exploring one of Italy's most historic and iconic cities. In summer 2017, offerings will expand to also include Honors courses in POLI 1057 Honors Global Politics, COMM 1007 Honors Public Speaking, MATH 1617 Honors Calculus I,  PHIL 1027 Honors Introduction to Ethics and SCMH 1010 Honors Concepts of Science. In addition to the required six to eight credit hours, students also take a non-credit Survival Italian language course to help them better understand and navigate the local culture.

Auburn's strategic plan calls for internationalization of the campus, and study abroad programs are one vital way to provide students with global experiences.

"We know that students who study abroad gain essential skills such as adaptability, communication, intercultural awareness and problem solving," said Deborah Weiss, director of Auburn Abroad. "When students have the opportunity to go abroad early in their academic careers, they're able to use those skills in the classroom as well as in their future employment. It brings a whole new perspective to their college experience."

Auburn offers faculty-led study abroad programs in virtually every academic department. These programs are typically designed for students in a particular major. The Core Curriculum Program accepts all students beginning their sophomore year regardless of major.

Interested students can view a new video of last year's program to get a taste of the activities in Rome including tours of Florence, a food tour of Rome and student testimonials. To see this video, get more information and to apply to the program, go to www.auburn.edu/studyabroad/core.

The 2017 Core Curriculum Program will run May 15 through June 15. Applications are due Feb. 15, and students are encouraged to apply early. Students interested in any study abroad program are invited to attend the 30-minute Study Abroad 101 session offered Thursdays at 3 p.m., and Fridays at 11 a.m. in 242 Foy Hall.