In the Honors College, we believe that few things can so enrich and enlarge a student’s worldview and sense of themselves as study abroad. Our programs accomplish this by utilizing the host city as text, providing a framework with which to approach and understand these international experiences, and giving students necessary time for independent exploration. 
Explore more of yourself by exploring more of the world during our one-, two- and three-week faculty-led study abroad programs.  
The Honors College Study Abroad provides our honors students with the opportunity to study abroad, satisfy honors requirements, and earn college credit in our faculty-led one-, two- and three-week programs.

7-Day to 10-Day Cultural Immersion Programs

Azores - Honors Project Writing Retreat Spring Semester 2025 with travel during spring break

The Miradouro da Grota do Inferno: water filled volcanic craters, with green mountains and a sea behind them.

Earn 3 credits and satisfy your H7 or H3 honors requirement, River Hawk Experience Distinction (RHED)

The Honors College’s Azores study abroad experience is designed especially for students at (or about to enter) the Honors Project stage of their honors pathway. Escape to Ponta Delgada on the island of São Miguel in the Azores for a transformative 10-day writing retreat and cultural immersion experience! Delve into seven writing workshops and dedicated Honors Project sessions while also taking time each day to experience São Miguel. Tap into the power of resetting in a new environment, while embracing slow travel and immersing yourself in the picturesque landscapes and rich culture of the Azores.

We’ll sample geothermal cookery, visit hot springs, view dormant volcanic craters and the beautiful blue and green Lagoa das Sete Cidades. Excursions with local experts on the arts, sustainability, and permaculture will enhance your understanding of this beautiful island. Get unstuck, connect with fellow honors project students, and break through creative barriers in this fusion of exploration, productivity, and reflection.

Learn more about the Azores

Havana, Cuba - Winter Session January 2025

Honors students stand in Revolution Square in Havana, Cuba, in front of a large portrait of Che Guevara.

Earn 6 credits and satisfy two honors requirements, an Arts & Humanities requirement, a Social Science requirement, and three of the four needed to earn the River Hawk Experience Distinction (RHED) in Global Engagement.

Cuba is one of our closest neighbors – only 90 miles of water separate Cuba from the Florida Keys – and yet remains a mystery to us. The Honors College has one of the longest-running winter study abroad programs in Cuba. Because of the American trade embargo, Cuba has been cut off from the world’s largest economy for more than six decades, making Cuba one of the most distinct and unique countries in the world. There is no other place like Havana, Cuba! Our eight days in Cuba are jam-packed with activities, excursions, and lectures. As such, students can satisfy two honors requirements this winter in Cuba with our HONR 3200 seminars.

Learn more about Cuba

Madrid, Spain - Spring Semester 2025 with travel in May 12-21, 2025

Group of students in front of building in Madrid, Spain

Earn 3 credits and satisfy an honors requirement and an Arts & Humanities or Social Science requirement, and two of the four needed to earn the River Hawk Experience Distinction (RHED) in Global Engagement.

Located in the heart of Spain, Madrid is the nation’s vibrant capital where the country’s wondrous and varied cultures meet. This welcoming and stunning city is rich with many distinct neighborhoods that are worlds unto themselves. Madrid is enthusiastically alive. The city’s streets have stories to tell – it is a fascinating history – but those streets are just as interested in the stories you’ll be writing upon them. This is a spring semester HONR.3200 course with travel to Madrid in May for eight days, following commencement.

Learn more about Madrid

Eiffel Tower in Paris with flowering plants in the foreground.

Paris – Summer Sessions with Travel June 2025 & July 2025

Earn 3 credits and satisfy an honors requirement and an Arts & Humanities requirement and two of the four needed to earn the River Hawk Experience Distinction (RHED) in Global Engagement.

“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young [person], then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.” So wrote Ernest Hemingway, one of countless American writers who have been drawn to live and create in Paris. What took writers like Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, James Baldwin, Gertrude Stein and Richard Wright to, perhaps, the world’s most iconic and romantic city? What did they find there? In which ways did the city inspire them? How did they portray it on the page? And what remains of those literary representations of France’s dazzling capitol? This course will attempt to answer these questions and more while we explore and interact with the City of Lights during two weeks this summer.

Learn more about Paris

21 Day Cultural Immersion Program

San Sebastian, Spain – Summer Session I & II 2024

Professor talks to students on banks of Santa Clara Island in San Sebastian's bay.

Earn 3 credits and satisfy an honors requirement and an Arts & Humanities or Social Science requirement and two of the four needed to earn the River Hawk Experience Distinction (RHED) in Global Engagement.

The stunning and picturesque coastal city of San Sebastian is the crown jewel of Spain and the Basque Country. Miles from the French border, San Sebastian offers students the best of both worlds—it is a small and easy-to-navigate modern cosmopolitan city with a well-preserved old part, Belle Epoque architecture, and is rich with a distinct history and regional characteristics. The most popular study abroad program at UMass Lowell, we take multiple groups each summer to beautiful San Sebastian where they study Spanish and immerse themselves in the local culture for three weeks, travel to France, and satisfy an honors requirement with our HONR 3200 seminar. All levels welcome.

Learn more about San Sebastian

Coastal Spanish city with buildings with orange tiled roofs.

Semester in Spain – Spring 2025

This study abroad experience will satisfy four honors requirements, two Arts & Humanities requirements, and two Social Science requirements, while also earning students the River Hawk Experience Distinction (RHED) in Global Engagement. Students can also opt to take UMass Lowell online courses while in Spain for their specific degree pathways. 

Semester in Spain will utilize the vast and diverse country of Spain as our classroom. Students will spend five weeks studying with Julian Zabalbeascoa in San Sebastian, five weeks in Seville, and finish with five weeks in Madrid. Each city will host its own honors-specific seminar, while a fourth honors seminar will encompass the entire experience. While in each host city, we will explore the surrounding regions. Southern Spain feels like an entirely different country than the north, same for the eastern and western parts of Spain and its vibrant capital: Madrid. Over the course of the semester, we will experience much of what this wondrous country has to offer, and by the semester’s end students will have become experts on Spain, its thrilling history and culture.

Learn more about Spain

Scholarships

For featured scholarships that can be used for these programs, check out the River Hawk Scholarship Portal (use keyword search; Study Abroad). 
To learn more about study abroad in general, including non-honors study abroad programs, visit UML Study Abroad.
Visit our Past Study Abroad Experiences page!