Cross-cultural Programs



Applications for May 2019 short-term experiences will be accepted online at the link above. It will open at 7 a.m. Oct. 10, 2018, and close at 5 p.m. Oct. 17, 2018.

Cross-cultural experiences are invitations to explore and grow. They offer a journey of personal discovery into the richness and challenges of other cultures and communities. Immersed in new environments, you will experience diverse lifestyles, make new friendships and learn respect for other heritages all while meeting personal challenges that build character. And, get hands-on opportunities to focus on the issues of peace and reconciliation and begin toward a path of lifelong mission and service. 

The cross-cultural experience is a pivotal element of the Bluffton University general education curriculum, which strives to place each student in an ever-expanding context from individual identity to global citizen. Through personal interactions in diverse settings within and outside of the United States, students are challenged to examine what it means to be a responsible citizen in the global community and to develop an ethic of justice, service and peacemaking.

meet Bluffton's cross-cultural requirement by choosing one of the following options:

Short-term Cross-cultural Experience

(3 semester hours)
The university offers a variety of experiences from which students may choose, according to their interest in a particular location or theme or their long-range career plans. Domestic and international experiences are available during the month of May.

Semester Program

Guatemala -  (15 semester hours)
Spend a semester investigating the integration of ancient Mayan culture and modern life. Live with Guatemalan families in Guatemala City and take Spanish classes at CASAS, Central American Study and Service program, classes about Guatemalan history and culture and about making peace. A field placement will give you the experience of a second Guatemalan community and an organization working to better the lives of the people in the community.

Washington Community Scholars' Center (WCSC) (15 semester hours)
Discover Washington, life, cultural diversity, career-building opportunities, a broad range of university classes and the connections between faith and work at the Washington Community Scholars' Center.

Alternative semester-long opportunities>>>>

Foreign Language

(6 semester hours)
Students may choose to study one foreign language for six semester hours as a way to fulfill the cross-cultural requirement. Currently Bluffton offers Spanish.

For more information, Contact
Elaine Suderman, Asst. director of cross-cultural programs
Cross-cultural program office
College Hall second floor

Semester program


Spend your semester experiencing the colorful culture and community, plus the beautiful landscape of Guatemala or explore the cultural diversity in Washington D.C.

 >>> more about the semester-long study abroad program.

Short-term Programs

Bolivia_short term

Bluffton University offers a variety of month-long cross-cultural opportunities that are completed in May and June.

>>> more about the various short-term cross-cultural experiences available.

Alternate programs

Alternate program

Students may choose from alternate cross-cultural experiences offered through different agencies to fulfill the university's cross-cultural requirement.

>>> more about these alternate opportunities