Q&A with the President of Dean College

Authored By:

First Year Abroad

If you’re curious about our academic home and school of record, Dean College, you’ve come to the right blog! 

Follow along as we sit down with Dean College to learn more about the school (both academically and in the fun sense!) and, more importantly, to better understand how they value international education and why they’re the perfect partner for CIEE First Year Abroad. 

What Is Dean College? 

If you need a little refresher, Dean College is the academic home and school of record for CIEE’s First Year Abroad (FYA) programs. This means that when you apply to First Year Abroad, you’ll be enrolled as a student at Dean College in its Associate Degree of General Studies program. As soon as your courses start abroad, you’ll earn college credits toward your two-year or four-year degree (all while getting to go on an adventure around the world…but we digress.) 

Once you’ve completed your first year or semester abroad (in one or two incredible international cities), you’ll have options once you arrive back in the States, including: 

  • Go on to earn your degree at Dean College 
  • Apply to a CIEE partner college or university to ease the transfer credit process 
  • Use your international experience to impress the admissions team at your dream school of choice 

Choosing Dean College after CIEE First Year Abroad  

High school student abroad wearing CIEE bag

If you choose to go on to earn your degree at Dean College after your First Year Abroad experience, your next steps are easy. Since you will already be enrolled at Dean, all you’ll need to do is head to campus, determine your new housing arrangements, and continue with your next set of courses. You can complete the Associate Degree of General Studies or transfer to another one of Dean College’s bachelor’s degree programs. 

Some popular undergraduate majors at Dean College include: 

  • Business Management 
  • Sport Management 
  • Musical Theatre 
  • Exercise Science 
  • Dance 

There are 21 four-year degree options and 15 two-year degree options available to choose from at Dean College. And if you’re having trouble pinpointing a degree right away, don’t worry. Many undergraduate students enter as an “undecided” major to buy themselves time to figure it out! 

Note some other fabulous facts about Dean College: 

  • 17:1 student-to-faculty ratio 
  • Robust academic support and tutoring teams 
  • Success and career advisement 
  • Study abroad office 
  • Senior capstones 
  • Undergraduate research opportunities 
  • Campus-wide research symposium 
  • Dean Career Advantage: Four-year integrated approach to career preparation 
  • 100% of bachelor’s degree students participate in at least one internship before graduation 
  • Ranked 29th for Best Regional Colleges – North  

In addition to exciting degree options, comprehensive on-campus support, and academic opportunities, Dean College is fun. Located in beautiful Franklin, Massachusetts, there’s much to do on and off campus. You’ll stay busy with over 30 student clubs and organizations, volunteer opportunities, and even daylong trips. 

Some more popular on-campus clubs include dance groups, the Power88 radio station (First Year Abroad segment, anyone?), and an e-sports club. There’s almost always an athletic event or theatre performance to attend – talk about range! 

Off-campus, you’ll have the chance to familiarize yourself with Franklin, a safe and quaint Massachusetts town with local hangout spots at restaurants, bookstores, game stores, local community stages, and more. You’ll feel at home in Franklin. 

Within walking distance from the campus, you’ll find the commuter line to Boston (need we say more about this fabulous city?), and you’ll be right near the sandy beaches of Cape Code and Rhode Island. You can dive into New England sports culture with visits to Gillette Stadium and watch those other Bostonian teams in action, like the Bruins and Celtics. 

At Dean College, you’ll find a supportive space to help you thrive academically and within the greater community. And while these are phenomenal attributes, one of our favorite things about the school is how highly they regard international education. 

Dean College and First Year Abroad 

High schoolers abroad sitting on fence

Take a look at our recent Q&A with Dean College President Kenn Elmore to see how much he values student experiences like First Year Abroad and why we’re proud to have Dean as our academic home and school of record. 

How Does Dean College Value an International Education? 

We want students to be transformed by studying abroad, and to bring those experiences into their studies. We encourage each student at Dean to obtain a passport and try to travel the globe. 

We understand that students who travel on programs like CIEE First Year Abroad learn to see the world for the complex and interesting place that it is, seeking to understand commonalities and differences across the world. We are excited to have students go abroad as soon as possible and possibly again later in their college career.

What Kind of Support Can Students and Parents Expect When They Return from a First Year Abroad Program? 

Our study abroad office will be ready to help students transition back to the States after their First Year Abroad experience.

Plus, our passionate faculty, superb academic support and tutoring, and dedicated success and career advisor will help you succeed in the classroom and get you career-ready. 

How Does Dean College View an International Education in Relation to Students’ Future Careers?  

Studying abroad gives students an advantage in their careers. They will have gained different perspectives while abroad, but perhaps more importantly, they will have demonstrated the ability to take initiative and to drive their own education path. 

We are always updating our curriculum to increase global awareness. Most recently, we’ve included a new internationally focused course, Sports Production: From Local to Global, for Sports Broadcasting or Communications students. This course will examine sports production in countries around the globe. But we envision many more globally-minded opportunities to come. 


No matter what route you plan on taking after your First Year Abroad, know that going on to earn your degree at Dean College is an exceptional choice. From its academic support and on- and off-campus activities to a team that supports global awareness and international education, you’ll thrive at Dean.