Flickr Commons/Kaja Kozłowska
St. John’s is closing all study abroad office operations in Seville, Spain, the University announced Wednesday. The change comes on the heels of a fall semester announcement that Seville would no longer be part of the popular Discover The World program.
“The change in the way visas are issued for multi-site programs ultimately led to the decision to end office operations in Seville,” Matthew Pucciarelli, associate provost of Global Programs, said in an emailed statement to the Torch Friday.
In October, the University told the Torch that the same issue led to a switch in locations for DTW. Students in the program used to spend five weeks in Rome, Italy, Paris, France and Seville. But in September, SJU announced that Seville would be replaced by Limerick, Ireland.
In an email Wednesday, University Provost Robert Mangione said the visa changes “precluded Seville from remaining a part of the Discover the World: Europe program,” adding, “I deeply regret that these issues have now led us to make this very difficult decision.”
Operations in Seville will cease January 31, 2018.
According to the University’s website, the semester-long study abroad program in Spain took place during fall semesters only.
Junior Sieta Leon said she planned on going abroad to Seville during the fall 2018 semester and voiced disappointment in the University’s announcement.
“But I think as a whole the study abroad program needs to be diversified outside of Europe,” she said, adding that she would like to see more sites added in places like Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. Leon said she likely won’t participate in any study abroad programs now.
In his email, Mangione said the University is looking into developing more study abroad programs in Spanish-speaking countries.
“As a global University, we remain committed to our mission of providing rigorous and diverse academic study abroad opportunities to our students—many of whom come to St. John’s because of our global presence,” he wrote.
“As such, St. John’s will look to expand study abroad programming in the Spanish-speaking world even beyond our existing exchange program at the Pontifical Catholic University in Santiago, Chile, and the many faculty-led programs which take place each year in other Spanish-speaking countries.”