What is InterFuture?

InterFuture is an independent non-profit organization offering a unique study-abroad experience for exceptional undergraduate students.  Each year a select group of undergraduate students are accepted into the InterFuture program to design cross-cultural research projects and then conduct their individual research projects in one or two locales overseas.

InterFuture is an extraordinarily rewarding and challenging experience in overseas cultural immersion and cross-cultural research.

Students who qualify as InterFuture Scholars join a group of outstanding, imaginative undergraduates from around the United States who have the remarkable opportunity to design and carry out, a personalized intercultural research project.

InterFuture Scholars typically travel abroad during the second semester of their junior year.  During an eight-month preparatory period, students design a cross-cultural research project and attend three InterFuture conferences. InterFuture students orginate from all academic fields, from the social sciences to the humanities, from the natural sciences to business and management.  Each research project is designed to reflect the participants’ diverse interests.

Participants conduct their research abroad, in both a European and a non-European nation, if possible.  Overseas for three to seven months, InterFuture Scholars become immersed in the host culture, studying with a local expert and living with local families.  Upon returning home, Scholars prepare a final research paper documenting their cross-cultural research and share their findings through classes, workshops, exhibitions, and action projects.  The research papers prepared by InterFuture Scholars are submitted to their home institution for appropriate academic credit, usually equivalent to that which would have been earned at the home campus during semester(s) they were abroad. 

Through this approach, tested and honed with over forty years of field experience, InterFuture provides intercultural education of the highest quality to students from cultural and ethnic backgrounds of wide diversity.   The program is committed to intercultural research, international understanding, and unparalleled opportunities for talented undergraduate students to experience intellectual and emotional growth.
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"InterFuture was for me both humbling and empowering. It was humbling in that I was dropped into a completely new environment where I was a newcomer and had to start completely from scratch.  I've lived in a number of places, but have never let go of so many aspects of myself and opened myself up to as many different experiences as I did in Ghana.  Though I was prepared and had researched my topic as much as I could prior to going on locale, there was obviously so much to learn and there were times in the first couple of weeks when I felt that I knew very little. What was empowering was the progress that I found myself quickly making and the confidence that I gained from my experiences.  I know that I could not have achieved what I did in the past year and a half without the help of InterFuture staff and people in Ghana, without the support of my wonderful host family, and without my determination and hard work."
        -Rea Zaimi, InterFuture Class of 2010

 

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