SIT announces new study abroad programs in Portugal, Spain

Announcement Date: December 18, 2023   |   SIT Study Abroad

Fall 2024 features digital storytelling in Lisbon, social movements in Seville, cryptocurrency in Geneva, Mandarin language in Ho Chi Minh City

A vintage yellow tram car in front of colorful houses in Lisbon. Door and tile colors include bright red, green, yellow and orange.
A vintage tram on a street in Lisbon.

Aspiring digital storytellers will be excited to learn about SIT Study Abroad’s newest offering, one of 46 programs enrolling now for fall 2024. On Portugal: Multimedia Storytelling and Intercultural Communication, SIT students will have access to advanced multimedia studios at Universidade Autónoma de Lisboa (Autonomous University of Lisbon) as they explore a range of ways to communicate and narrate across cultures.

Based in the dynamic and culturally rich city of Lisbon, SIT’s partnership with the university gives students access to state-of-the-art television and radio recording and editing equipment under the guidance of media and arts professionals.

The course is applicable to a range of disciplines as the lines between art and commerce, producer and consumer, content creator and audience are increasingly blurred in today’s media landscape, where media artists, journalists, designers, and content creators must work across mediums, platforms, and cultures. In the private sector, too, corporations rely on user-generated content campaigns and consumer communities to create and market new products.

On an excursion to Seville, Spain, students will visit a defunct textile factory that has been transformed into a hub for media arts exhibits and performances.

A panaromic view of Geneva shows old European buildings against a mountain backdrop.
Geneva is a leading financial center,

SIT’s fall 2024 roster also brings a new, cutting-edge focus on Switzerland: Banking, Finance, and Social Responsibility. Based in Geneva, one of the world’s leading financial centers and a hub for international organizations and NGOs, the program addresses ethical banking, sustainable finance, artificial intelligence, and cryptocurrencies. Starting in the fall, the program drops its French language requirement and adds a new course, Alternative Finance, Cryptocurrencies and AI.

The course looks at influences from outside of mainstream finance such as citizen’s initiatives, NGOs in the field of microfinance and local currencies, and cryptocurrency start-ups. According to the program’s academic director, Dr. Goran Jovanovic, “AI and machine learning are drivers of massive social and economic change but also are drivers producing new trends with seemingly unstoppable decision-making power over the destinies of citizens, businesses, and states.”

Women in traditional dresses with dramatic ruffled skirts dance flamenco in a plaza in Seville.
Young women dance flamenco on Plaza de Espana during famous Feria festival in Seville.

In another change this fall, SIT’s semester program in Spain has a new name, a new location, and a new focus. Spain: Social Movements, Democracy, and Cultural Identity will be based in Seville, a city rich in cultural history drawn from Spanish, Roma, and Arabic influences. There, students will examine the “politics of the streets” including feminist and anti-austerity social movements, anti-eviction organizations, educational and environmental advocates, and independence movements.

“These movements have emerged to consolidate neglected rights, raise awareness of political and social conflicts, show discontent, and advocate for the rights of minorities and disenfranchised identities,” according to Academic Director Dr. Victor Tricot. “This voluntary gathering and collective action acts as a catalyst for broad social change or transformation and has become a hallmark of Spanish politics.”

The Spain program also includes excursions to Girona and Barcelona as well as to Morocco to examine relations and tensions between North Africa, Spain, and the European Union.

A large blue tricycle with a green cover over the passenger section stands against an old yellow wall.
Tricycles like this one carry tourists around the UNESCO-listed ancient town of Hoi An in Central Vietnam.

A new language option has been added on Vietnam: Culture, Social Change, and Development. Starting in the fall, students may choose to study Vietnamese or beginning, intermediate, or advanced Mandarin. The latter is a new offering with an emphasis on oral expression and comprehension and integrates learning about Chinese culture to promote cross-cultural awareness. The Mandarin instructor, Dr. Ly Gia Yen, is a lecturer at Ho Chi Minh City University of Education. She is of Vietnamese-Chinese heritage and lived and studied in China for nearly a decade.

Through our campaign called Africa: See for Yourself, SIT also continues to encourage students to study abroad on the African continent. For fall 2024, choices includes 14 different semester-long programs in 10 African countries, plus five International Honors Programs that spend about four weeks each in one or more African countries.

Details on these and all programs offered by SIT in fall 2024 are available at The application deadline for most fall programs is May 15, 2024.