Semester Away Program

Through the Semester Away Program, students who wish to augment their studies with academic work not available at Holy Cross have the opportunity to apply to study for a semester or full academic year at another institution or fully accredited program in the United States and its territories or Canada. 


The Semester Away Program encourages applicants who are interested in participating in: special programs offered by other institutions; complimenting their program of study with courses not offered at Holy Cross; and experiencing a different social, cultural, or academic environment. Students have pursued studies in a wide variety of fields through this program, including architecture, urban planning, marine biology, film making, journalism, and engineering. In addition to proposals for study at institutions or fully accredited programs in the United States and Canada, proposals for specific environmental studies programs located outside of the U.S. are also considered.

Successful semester away programs have included: 

  • the SEA Semester Program through Boston University and Woods Hole; 
  • the Tisch School of the Arts for film study at New York University;
  • enrollment at Historically Black Colleges and Universities;
  • the U.S. Department of Energy Research Program, where students pursue scientific research at national laboratories; 
  • the Appalachian Semester at Union College in Tennessee; 
  • and Gallaudet University — the world’s only liberal arts college that uses ASL as its language of instruction 

It is recommended that students pursue this semester away option during their third year, or the first semester of their fourth year. Proposals should be submitted no later than two weeks prior to the pre-registration period for which a student plans to be away from the College.