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Programs : Brochure

This page is the brochure for your selected program. You can view the provided information for this program on this page and click on the available buttons for additional options.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Program Type:: National Student Exchange Class Eligibilty:: 2nd year
Minimum GPA:: 2.5 Language of Instruction:: English, French, Spanish
Areas of Study:: Architecture, General Education Housing Options:: Apartment, Dormitory
Internship & Service Learning Opportunities:: YES
Program Description:


The National Student Exchange is a not-for-profit consortium of nearly 200 accredited, baccalaureate-granting colleges and universities in the United States, Canada, Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Through NSE, these member institutions provide exchange opportunities for the multitude of undergraduate students for whom an overseas experience is not appropriate, comfortable or affordable. 

St Louis


NSE consortium schools are found in almost all 50 states including various locations within the United States, Canada, Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Montreal, Guam
For more information about these host institutions, visit NSE website.


NSE expands course and program offerings by using the resources of nearly 200 campuses across the US and Canada. NSE offers options for students who may be interested in trying out studying away closer to home and are seeking new academic, cultural and personal experiences to enhance their undergraduate education. Students can exchange for a single term or a full academic year. Sixty-five percent of NSE students exchange for a full academic year offering them a full immersion opportunity at their host environment.

For more information regarding the consortium schools, to search for unique and notable academic programs, and to search by Major fields, visit

You will earn transfer credit on this program.

You are highly encouraged to get your Major, Minor and GE courses pre-approved prior to applying to this program.

Major Courses: Provide the course descriptions to your Academic Advising Center/Faculty Advisor to determine the course equivalencies and how credits will transfer back.  You are highly encouraged to consult with their academic advisor/faculty advisor to complete any necessary paperwork prior to applying/departure.
Minor Courses:  Consult with the Minor Department to discuss the best way to seek course pre-approvals.
Credit Transfer of GE Courses: Pick up the GE Course Substitution for Study Abroad form at the Cal Poly International Center (Building 52- Room E32). Please provide the course descriptions of the GE courses you wish to have approved when submitting the form.  Allow four to six weeks to hear back about substitution approvals. You will hear back about your GE petitions with an email notification from
To review the NSE member campus profiles and the available university catalogs, visit the NSE website.


This program is open to students in all Majors.
  • Minimum GPA 2.5
  • Minimum sophomore standing
  • Minimum of two years college level French (Quebec schools) or Spanish (Puerto Rico schools).  No language requirement for U.S. mainland
  • Completed one term of full-time attendance at an NSE member campus prior to submitting an application
  • Home and host campuses may place a higher GPA and/or additional requirements for exchange participation
  • Not actively on academic probation
  • Good disciplinary standing
  • Eligibility requirements are applicable at the time of application and at the completion of the term prior to your exchange 

How to Apply
Prior to starting the application please ensure that you have completed the following steps:
  • Register in advance for and attend a Study Abroad 101 Workshop 
  • Complete the advising module available at 
  • Review resources on
  • Schedule your NSE interview by contacting the NSE Coordinator, Chuck Petranek. Email contact:  Phone#: (805) 756-1411.  Interviews will be held at the Cal Poly International Center and must be completed by February 28th for those intending to be priority placed at the annual NSE March placement conference.
  • Select and prioritize exchange sites (it is recommended to include at least one school with "excellent" or "good" probability of placement listed where the payment plan is specified).
Begin the Cal Poly NSE application available here. Please note that your NSE application is due in its completed form on February 28th. 
  • Pay the $200 NSE application fee at the University Cashiers Window located in Admin Bldg. 01, Room 131E.  Cashiers hours are Monday-Friday 9:00am-4:00pm. Payment methods accepted are cash or check.  Not available for online payment.  Indicate to the Cashier that payment is for "NSE_OUTGOING."  (Very important that you provide this code).  Upload a photo or a scanned copy of this receipt in the appropriate questionnaire on the application.
The NSE application requires an electronic faculty recommendation. You can list the faculty members' name (click on directory lookup so the email address will be entered). You will want to select a faculty/instructor who you had for a Cal Poly course and give them a heads up before you list them as a recommender. The electronic recommendation will include the following questions regarding classroom observations:
  • Academic performance
  • Attendance
  • Class participation
  • General suitability for NSE
  • Any reservations for NSE participation
Once you have completed the questionnaires, signature documents, and faculty recommender, you should be able to submit your NSE application (click on Submit Button at the top).

Program Details

Students arrange their own housing prior to departure using information provided by the host university. Available housing options include dormitories and local apartments.
Students can be placed for a single term up to a full academic yearlong exchange.  NSE schools include both semester-based and quarter-based calendars.
To review the program dates, see the NSE member campus profiles at NSE website.
Special Events/Planned Activities
You will find many opportunities to join clubs, play sports and get involved in extracurricular activities.  Some of the NSE schools provide service-learning, internships, or community engagement opportunities. There often are events arranged by either the NSE Coordinator or another office at the host campus.  

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Academic Year 2019 04/11/2019 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA
Fall Semester 2019 04/11/2019 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission, where applications are reviewed and accepted on a rolling basis.