Rome: Drinking, the Italian Way
Rome, Italy 2019

Global Summer Studies

RISD Global Summer Studies are 3-week art and design travel courses, led by RISD faculty, that are designed to broaden perspectives, de-center experiences, and reframe assumptions by exploring the intersections of crafts, art, and design as they manifest around the world.

Global Summer Studies students engage these themes through immersive experimental curriculum developed by RISD faculty in collaboration with local partners in Africa, the Americas, Asia and Oceania, Europe, and the Middle East. Course topics align with RISD's core values, and create learning opportunities for students that invite innovative global thinking and scholarship. Global Summer Studies are open to undergraduate and graduate students currently enrolled at RISD or in other art and design institutions worldwide, as well as recent graduates and new professionals practicing in the field.

COVID-19 Update: Due to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic as well as RISD’s campus re-opening plans, all RISD Global off-campus learning programs for Summer 2020, Fall 2020, and Wintersession 2021 are suspended, including Global Summer Studies 2020 travel courses. Read more in our announcement here.

At-a-glance

When
Summer, 3 weeks, June-July

See the course description for specific dates.

Who
Open to RISD students, Brown University students, non-RISD students

2.5 GPA required. Non-RISD participants see eligibility requirements below.

Application Deadline
Due to COVID-19, the registration for Summer 2021 is under review.

First come, first serve. Limited spots available

Academic Credits
3 RISD credits
Instruction Language
  • English
RISD in Rome: Artistic Practice in Public Space
Rome, Italy 2018
Azores: Walk and Work with Wood
Ponta Delgada, Azores, Portugal 2019

Global Summer Studies 2020

From Seed to Cloth: The Mindful Approach to Craft in Thailand

Throughout this 3-week summer course, you will delve into the mindfulness approach to craft and creating while exploring 4 different cities around Thailand (Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Nan, and Sakon Nakhon).

Design with Nature in the Azores

In this 3-week travel course, you will learn about design with nature, by designing for nature. The volcanic archipelago of the Azores, situated along the mid-Atlantic Ocean ridge, will be the location and context.

RISD in Rome: Form, Leather, Color and Craft

This travel course at RISD's site in Rome will immerse you into new surroundings, and introduce you to the concepts of "form" and "color" by manipulating "leather" in combination with found objects.

RISD in Rome: Perspectives on Piranesi

This drawing course at RISD's site in Rome will explore the work of Giovanni Battista Piranesi, the engraver widely known for his picturesque illustrations of eighteenth century Rome, and his essential contribution to our contemporary understanding of antiquity.

RISD in Rome: Trash

The travel course "Trash (Art and Design)" at the RISD's site in Rome will explore both historic and present-day Rome through its waste and disposal. Studio work will include collage, printmaking, and installation collecting and using discarded materials.

Paris: Urban Design Renaissance Through Edible Landscapes

Paris, the urban oracle of High Art and High Culture, and innovation and esthetics, is writing a new chapter: The City of Lights is embracing permaculture. The Paris studio will open doors to creative thinking about how even our world’s densest cities might play a crucial role in sustainably producing their own fresh food.

Denmark: Design Seminar and Workshop

This course, based in the heart of Copenhagen, is a three-week immersion into the world of New Nordic Scandinavian design, with a focus on Denmark.

Apply to Global Summer Studies

For summer 2020, RISD Global planned to offer 7 creative and culturally immersive art and design off campus courses: 3 at the RISD site in Rome, as well as 4 in other diverse locations around Europe and Asia.

View details

About Global Summer Studies + FAQ

Explore answers to our most Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Global Summer Studies below:

Due to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic as well as RISD’s campus re-opening plans, all RISD Global off-campus learning programs for Summer 2020, Fall 2020, and Wintersession 2021 are suspended, including Global Summer Studies 2020 travel courses. Read more in our announcement here.

Is a Global Summer Studies right for me?

Because RISD Global offers a diverse and ever-evolving set of Global Summer Studies at our site in Rome and locations around the world, this program type is well suited for a wide variety of emerging artists, designers, and architects. Course topics, locations, and travel itineraries are based on faculty proposals and change annually, so there will always be something new and of interest to you! You can explore past courses in our programs database to get a feel for the type of courses we offer.

What credits do Global Summer Studies offer?

Each Summer, RISD Global offers 5-7 studio and Liberal Arts Global Summer Studies courses, which offer 3 RISD academic credits. Credits are typically assigned from the leading faculty’s academic department. RISD Global summer studies comply with RISD class attendance policy

Who teaches Global Summer Studies?

When you take a Global Summer Studies course you can be sure that your instructor will be a RISD faculty member and that your course will offer RISD credits. You can filter our programs database by faculty to see who has led Global Summer Studies in the past.

Do I need to be fluent in another language to attend?

No, all Global Summer Studies courses are taught entirely in English, though basic knowledge of the local language never hurts! As a global citizen, when at all possible, it is important to be able to greet people, ask for directions, thank people, etc. in the local language of the place you are visiting.

Do I need to be fluent in English?

Yes, English fluency is required. All RISD coursework is delivered in English.

I'm a Brown University / non-RISD student. How will I transfer my credits?

You may order an official RISD transcript at the end of Global Summer Studies which will detail your RISD course and credit information. Your home institution may use this to transfer your RISD credits, at their discretion.

When do Global Summer Studies take place?

Global Summer Studies are 3-weeks long and take place in June and July. All courses start and end on site in the course location. Course dates are listed on each specific course page.

How much do Global Summer Studies cost?

The course fee varies for each course and typically includes shared accommodation, studio space, local transportation, field trips, tours, guides and lectures, museums and/or site visits fees, some group meals, and travel health insurance. In specific cases, additional costs (airfare, materials, multiple meals, etc) might be included. Refer to the “At-a-Glance” orange box on the specific course page for a full outline of each course’s costs.

You are responsible for the following out-of-pocket expenses in addition to the course fee noted on the specific course page:

  • Airfare to and from the course location (unless the course fee explicitly states a group flight is)
  • Entry Visa (when applicable)
  • Transportation during non-program time and for personal activities unrelated to course activities
  • Meals (usually only a few group meals are included in the course fee)
  • Supplies and materials (unless otherwise stated in the course fee). You may choose to bring your own art supplies and materials or purchase them upon arrival. In some locations it may be difficult to source specific supplies and materials on site.

Please note: to participate in the RISD Global Summer Studies, all students are required to stay in RISD-provided housing for the duration of the course.

What is the deposit for?

Our Global Summer Studies require a deposit. The deposit is an advance on the cost of the class to reserve your space. The deposit will be credited towards your total course fee and the balance will be charged within 30 days or the payment deadline, whichever comes first.

Is the deposit refundable?

No. The deposit is not refundable as it is used to pay for course reservations and accommodations. However, if a travel course is canceled by RISD due to under enrollment or health and safety restrictions, deposits will be refunded to all registered students.

SFS Balance Payment Policy

Per Student Financial Services policy, RISD students who plan to travel on school-sponsored trips must first pay your student account balance in full. If your account has an outstanding balance you are ineligible for travel until full payment has been made and you may forfeit any funds already used to book travel arrangements.

Are scholarships available?

RISD Global partners with Student Financial Services and Institutional Engagement as well as the Office of Social Equity and Inclusion to offer limited need-based travel scholarships. Only RISD students are eligible to apply. Full and partial scholarships are awarded. A full RISD Travel Scholarship covers the course fee but not the out-of-pocket expenses, such as airfare. Learn more – Scholarships.

Are other funding opportunities available?

Finding funding for off-campus global learning experiences can seem daunting, but persistence pays off! Explore this proven list of trusted sources for external scholarship funding for off-campus programs, beyond the scope of RISD’s Travel Scholarship Funding. If you are a RISD student, you might also consider meeting with Student Financial Services to explore if you are eligible for alternate/private loans that can be applied to your Global Summer Studies course.

Is Global Summer Studies right for me?

If you are a RISD or Brown University student with a GPA of 2.5 and up, you are eligible for registration. If you are a college student currently enrolled at, or recently graduated from, another art/design college or institution around the world, you are eligible too! Learn more – Apply to Global Summer Studies.

How do I apply?

Good news – an application is not required to register! The registration process will be completed using RISD's online application portal, however. Learn more – Apply to Global Summer Studies.

Off-Campus Programs Policy

As per RISD's Off-Campus Programs policy, all Global Summer Studies students enrolled at RISD must remain in good standing, in terms of conduct and finances, up until and throughout your time on the travel course. Failure to remain in good academic standing can lead to removal from the course, either before or during the course.

Where do Global Summer Studies take place?

Global Summer Studies occur in a variety of destinations in Africa, the Americas, Asia and Oceania, Europe, and the Middle East. Sometimes they visit RISD in Rome. You can explore past courses in our programs database.

How is housing different? What should I expect?

Student housing varies around the world and on our programs. Make sure you read your program page carefully to determine if the housing situation will match your comfort level. Typically accommodation is in hotels or dorm-style (or equivalent) and booked in double rooms, but can also include tents and camping, or pods in Tokyo, among many other variations.

Can I find my own accommodation and not pay part of the program fee?

No, mandatory group accommodation is included in all Global Summer Studies courses. For health and safety reasons we require that you reside with the group. You are not permitted to find alternative accommodation at any stage during the course.

Can I get a single room?

Requesting a single may be possible in some venues, but is not guaranteed, and in such cases you will be directly responsible for the difference in total accommodation fee. If you anticipate needing a single to comply with a formal disability accommodation, please get in touch with Disability Student Services well in advance of your global learning program to see if this is possible.

Can I request a roommate?

Yes, in most cases you can. If you do request a roommate, make sure that your potential roommate requests you as well!

Will there be a group airline reservations?

Usually not. We realize many students have different departure points and post-trip destinations, so traveling with the group to and from the course location is typically not compulsory. We simply require that you arrange your schedule to be at a prearranged meeting point on the first day and remain with the group until the final day. You will be asked to provide your flight schedule details to RISD Global so we know when to expect you.

In special cases when group flights to and from the course location are included in the course fee, this will be noted on the program page.

Do I need a passport?

Yes, participation in Global Summer Studies requires a valid passport that should not expire within 6 months of the return date from your course. Additional requirements may apply.

  • U.S. citizens: Check the Department of State website for application/renewal guidance.
  • Citizens of all other countries: Check your embassy/consulate’s website for renewal guidance. If you have an I-20 form, you must also ensure that you get it signed for travel by a member of the Office of International Student Services (OISS) before departing the United States. If you are a Permanent Resident you should carry your green card together with your passport.

If you determine that your passport is not valid prior to travel, contact RISD Global immediately!

Do I need a visa?

This depends on your citizenship and the countries to which you are traveling to and through. Check your destination country’s embassy/consulate website for visa application guidance. You are responsible for maintaining their own legal status and applying for your visa (if applicable). Upon request, RISD Global will provide you with an enrollment letter in support of the visa application.

Do I need health insurance?

Yes, travel health insurance offered by RISD Global’s preferred provider is included in your course fee. This is supplementary coverage meant to complement, not replace, your standard health insurance coverage.

I am an international student. What should I think about prior to travel?

Be mindful that you may need a visa to visit the course location. Check the country’s consulate/ embassy website for visa application guidance. RISD Global can assist, upon request.

If you have an I-20 form, you must also ensure that you get it signed for travel by a member of the Office of International Student Services (OISS) before departing the United States. If you are a Permanent Resident you should carry your green card together with your passport. For further support, don’t hesitate to reach out to the Office of International Student Services (OISS)

Will my phone work internationally?

It’s essential that you have a working phone with data throughout the duration of your global program. Check with your cell provider to ensure you can add an international plan to your coverage or replace your SIM card with a local (or international) SIM in advance or upon arrival.

How do I prepare for handling money internationally?

  1. Tell your bank your destination and travel dates.
  2. Get to know your bank’s policies for international transaction and exchange fees.
  3. Make sure you have a chipped debit or credit card, and request a pin for ATM withdrawals.
  4. Get to know the exchange rates for currency in your travel destination.
  5. Consider that many countries are more cash-based than the US, so you can't always rely on a debit card or credit card for small purchases. Make a plan for having local cash upon arrival.
  6. Always have a backup plan! Work with trusted family or friends to understand how you will access funds if you need them in an emergency.

How can I prepare for my physical/mental health while off-campus?

We recommend a physical checkup with your primary care provider prior to travel. If you take daily medications, request a refill with enough medication to last the duration of your trip. If you currently see a mental health professional on a regular basis, share your travel plans and brainstorm how you can maintain your mental health away from home. Once enrolled, you are eligible to contact our travel health insurance provider in advance to explore local services in your course location and even make appointments and order prescriptions in advance. For further support, don’t hesitate to reach out to RISD Health and Wellness

I am a RISD international student. What should I think about prior to travel?

Be mindful that you may need a visa to visit the course location. Check the country’s consulate/ embassy website for visa application guidance. RISD Global can assist, upon request.

If you have an I-20 form, you must also ensure that you get it signed for travel by a member of the Office of International Student Services (OISS) before departing the United States. If you are a Permanent Resident you should carry your green card together with your passport. For further support, don’t hesitate to reach out to the Office of International Student Services (OISS)

How do I submit required documents to RISD Global, once accepted?

You will continue to utilize the status page of your online application portal to complete tasks and uploads relevant to your participation in Global Summer Studies, such as important health and safety processes. You are responsible for checking the portal frequently and completing these tasks in a timely manner once accepted to your Global Summer Studies course.

What are Pre-departure Meetings?

You will meet your fellow Global Summer Studies participants at our mandatory pre-departure meetings, where you will learn more about your class, itinerary, assignments, important preparation actions to be taken, travel arrangements, health and safety information, and what to pack! Meeting days, times, and locations will be communicated to you upon your acceptance.

How else can I prepare?

For more general pre-departure preparation suggestions, visit our Study Globally FAQ.

RISD reserves the right to cancel a course due to under enrollment. As such, all students are advised not to purchase flights for participation in Global Summer Studies until the travel is confirmed, which happens no later than one week after the final Global Summer Studies payment period.

In cases where Global Summer Studies do not reach minimum capacity, the course may be cancelled after the last day of Global Summer Studies registration period. In case of a RISD approved cancellation prior to course departure/commencement, all payments will be refunded in full.

Any cost incurred for travel reservations in such situations is the participant’s sole responsibility.

RISD Global Summer Studies follow the RISD withdrawal policy for off-campus global learning programs

Scholarships

Increasing financial aid is a central pillar of RISD’s equity, inclusion and diversity commitment. With income inequality and student debt at unprecedented heights, we are working to provide greater support and access to students interested in pursuing learning experiences through RISD Global.

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1:1 Advising Session

Have questions? The RISD Global team is available to meet for a 1:1 advising session. We can give you more information about your study options, help you figure out which program makes sense for you, and assist you with the application process.

Schedule an Appointment

Global Summer Studies Planner

Apply for Global Summer Studies course from January-April. Global Summer Studies courses are open to all RISD students with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5. College students currently enrolled in another art/design college or institution around the world, or professionals practicing in the field are also eligible.

GSS 2020

Winter/Spring 2020

December 2019
Courses announced
January 2020
Jan 21 - General Infosession + Registration Open
January-February 2020
Course specific infosessions
February 2020
Feb 16 - Scholarship application closes
Feb 20 - Scholarship awards announced
April 2020
April 12 - Course registration closes, final payments due.
April 13 - Courses confirmed
April/May 2020
Mandatory pre-departure meetings


Summer 2020

June/July 2020
Global Summer Studies courses begin
Global Summer Studies courses end


Explore: Summer Studies Travel Course

Browse past and present programs

Categories

Semesters

Locations

Years

Open to

Faculty

Departments

Division

List
Map
Rome, Italy

RISD in Rome: Perspectives on Piranesi

Summer 2020
Summer Studies Travel Course
Illustration; Interior Architecture
Rome, Italy; Venice, Italy; Florence, Italy

RISD in Rome: Form, Leather, Color and Craft

Summer 2020
Summer Studies Travel Course
Industrial Design
Ponta Delgada, Azores, Portugal

Design with Nature in the Azores

Summer 2020
Summer Studies Travel Course
Architecture
Paris, France

Paris: Urban Design Renaissance Through Edible Landscapes

Summer 2020
Summer Studies Travel Course
Landscape Architecture
Copenhagen, Denmark

Denmark: Design Seminar and Workshop

Summer 2020
Summer Studies Travel Course
Furniture Design
Bangkok, Thailand; Chiang Mai, Thailand; Nan, Thailand; Sakon Nakhon, Thailand

From Seed to Cloth: The Mindful Approach to Craft in Thailand

Summer 2020
Summer Studies Travel Course
Apparel
Rome, Italy

RISD in Rome: Trash

Summer 2020
Summer Studies Travel Course
Architecture
Rome, Italy; Florence, Italy; Orvieto, Italy; Assisi, Italy

RISD in Rome: Illustrating Dante's Inferno

Summer 2019
Summer Studies Travel Course
Illustration
Hoedspruit, South Africa

South Africa: Art + Science of Conservation

Summer 2019
Summer Studies Travel Course
History, Philosophy, & Social Sciences
Copenhagen, Denmark

Denmark: Design Seminar and Workshop

Summer 2019
Summer Studies Travel Course
Furniture Design
Rome, Italy; Venice, Italy

RISD in Rome: Drinking, the Italian Way - Re-Evaluating the Vessel

Summer 2019
Summer Studies Travel Course
Industrial Design
Tokushima, Japan

Japan: Papermaking and Puppet Theater

Summer 2019
Summer Studies Travel Course
Printmaking
Ribeira Grande, Azores, Portugal

Azores: Walk and Work with Wood

Summer 2019
Summer Studies Travel Course
Architecture; Industrial Design; Interior Architecture
Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo: Bike Building

Summer 2018
Summer Studies Travel Course
Industrial Design
Rome, Italy

RISD in Rome: Artistic Practice in Public Space

Summer 2018
Summer Studies Travel Course
Graphic Design
Hoedspruit, South Africa

South Africa: Art and Science of Conservation

Summer 2018
Summer Studies Travel Course
History, Philosophy, & Social Sciences; Liberal Arts Elective
Burren, Ireland; Dublin, Ireland; Aran Islands, Ireland

Ireland: Illustrating Irish Myths and Legends in the Burren

Summer 2018
Summer Studies Travel Course
Illustration
Copenhagen, Denmark

Denmark: Danish Design Workshop

Summer 2018
Summer Studies Travel Course
Furniture Design
Kyoto, Japan

Japan: Book Shaping and Visual Ideas

Summer 2017
Summer Studies Travel Course
Printmaking
Rome, Italy

RISD in Rome: Maps and Stories

Summer 2017
Summer Studies Travel Course
Architecture; History of Art & Visual Culture
Reykjavík, Iceland

Iceland: Artistic Practice in 24-Hour Light

Summer 2017
Summer Studies Travel Course
Graphic Design
Rome, Italy

RISD in Rome: Sensing The City: Augmented Interaction with the City of Rome

Summer 2017
Summer Studies Travel Course
Industrial Design
Rome, Italy

Ireland: Illustrating Myths and Legends in the Burren

Summer 2017
Summer Studies Travel Course
Illustration
Seoul, South Korea

South Korea: Housing Hybrids

Summer 2017
Summer Studies Travel Course
Interior Architecture
Richelieu, France

France: Gastronomie + Printmaking in Richelieu

Summer 2016
Summer Studies Travel Course
Architecture
Rome, Italy

Rome: Discovery Through Drawing

Summer 2016
Summer Studies Travel Course
Interior Architecture
Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo: Bicycle Design and Making

Summer 2016
Summer Studies Travel Course
Industrial Design
Burren, Ireland

Ireland: Illustrating Irish Myths and Legends in the Burren

Summer 2016
Summer Studies Travel Course
Illustration
Copenhagen, Denmark

DIS (Danish Institute)

Summer 2016
Summer Studies Travel Course
Interior Architecture
Berlin, Germany

Berlin Through Your Lens

Summer 2016
Summer Studies Travel Course
Photography
Nuremberg, Germany

Nuremberg: Purposeful Play + Toy Design

Summer 2016
Summer Studies Travel Course
RISD CE
Copenhagen, Denmark

Denmark: Seminar on Scandinavian Design

Summer 2016
Summer Studies Travel Course
Furniture Design
Waalijk, The Netherlands

The Netherlands: Sneaker and Wearable Technology Design

Summer 2015
Summer Studies Travel Course
Apparel
Rome, Italy

Rome: Discovery Through Drawing

Summer 2015
Summer Studies Travel Course
Architecture
Paris, France

Paris: Urban Landscape Through a Cultural Lens

Summer 2015
Summer Studies Travel Course
Landscape Architecture
Copenhagen, Denmark

Denmark: DIS (Danish Institute)

Summer 2015
Summer Studies Travel Course
Interior Architecture
Rome, Italy

Rome Summer

Summer 2014
Summer Studies Travel Course
Architecture
RISD in Rome: Artistic Practice in Public Space
Rome, Italy 2018
Rome: Illustrating Dante's Inferno
Rome, Italy 2019