Although enabling students to study abroad is one thrust of the internationalization efforts at MSSU, many have financial or family obligations that prohibit them from participating in the experience. The unique concept of focusing the fall semester on a particular country or continent was devised as a way to bring the world to every student at the university.
Since 1997, MSSU has organized themed semesters focusing on China, Africa, Latin America, America, Japan, India, Cuba, Russia, Mexico, France, Germany, Canada, Brazil, Egypt, Thailand, and Italy. The semesters have expanded from around a dozen scheduled events to more than 60 on occasion. This innovative approach introduces students to at least four different cultures during a typical undergraduate education.
While most universities emphasize study abroad as the primary vehicle to internationalize the campus, in reality only a small percentage of students actually participate in this endeavor. The internationally themed semesters at MSSU reach virtually every student, and at the same time provide a global perspective and cultural enrichment for the entire community.