All US students will be selected based on the following criteria:
- Good academic record with GPA 3.0 or better
- A desire to learn Portuguese and participate in exchange program in Brazil
- Interest in the fields of sustainable energy or aeronautical engineering
The selection will be made without regard to race, national origin, religion, gender, age, or disabling condition. Once selected, a meeting will be organized by the program coordinator to provide relevant information to all participants. A faculty advisor will be assigned to each student to assist with the development of a study plan to prepare for language training, design project participation and study in Brazil.
Note: Special consideration will be given to students who are also pursuing the five-year BS-MS dual degree program.
Recruitment of Brazilian students will also begin during the first year following a similar recruitment process. We would like to encourage those who have desire to pursue advanced degree in U.S. to apply so they can readily be involved in the research program to be developed between partner schools.
Language Preparation and Assessment
All applicants to the program have to agree to pursue studies in both Portuguese and English.
US students are required to take at least two Portuguese language and cultural training courses prior to their departure.
For Brazilian students, English has been required throughout their education and proficiency will be verified by the Brazilian program coordinator; all students must score at least 213 or 550 on the TOEFL CBT or paper examination, respectively. If deemed necessary, Brazilian students can also take intensive English as a second language course in either FSU or Pitt.
Internships and Research Experience
There are opportunities for both US and Brazilian students to undertake internships in the host countries after their exchange terms. At FSU, through the BS-MS program and the assistance of our Advisory Council, we have been able to send many of our students as coordinated summer interns to major corporations such as Cummins and Lockheed-Martin. Locally, we have established long-term relationship with companies such as Turbocor, a leading compressor manufacturing company, for project sponsorship and summer apprenticeship program. Additionally, short-term research positions are generally available for exchange students in major research centers such as the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (NHMFL), Center for Advanced Power Systems (CAPS), Institute for Energy Systems, Economics and Sustainability (IESES), and the Florida Center for Advanced Aero-Propulsion (FCAAP). At Pitt, strong institutional connections and well-established co-op programs have provided many of their current FIPSE Brazil students with internship placement and this practice will flow through to the proposed FIPSE effort. Other research opportunities will also be arranged depending on individual interest and availability of positions.
Student Credit Recognition
Per bilateral agreements to be signed between partner schools, all four institutions will recognize the transfer of academic credits from the host schools if a grade of "C" or better is earned. Each university will arrange a set of courses, such as the Sustainable Energy course sequence, that exchange students may take which will be approved by the program coordinator at their home institution before their departure. The faculty advisor will develop a course plan with the exchange students to make sure all pre-requisites are satisfied and the approved credits can be used to satisfy graduating requirements so the student can graduate on time.
Tuition/Fees and Stipends
Per bilateral exchange agreements, participating students will pay tuition and fees at their respective home institutions without incurring additional tuition or fees from the host institution.
Each exchange student will receive a stipend of $3,500 in the form of an international education scholarship which will cover travel ($1,200), room and board expenses ($2,000 for five months), passport/VISA and miscellaneous expenses ($300).
If available, students will utilize university housing during the academic semester. Appropriate arrangements will be given to Brazilian students depending on their individual situations.
Student Support and Services
Both FSU and Pitt have highly regarded study abroad and international exchange programs. There are comprehensive guidelines and application processes already in place to prepare students for the international experience.
At FSU, Dr. Kidwell Cadence, the Program Director of the Global Pathways Certificate and Exchanges program at the Center for Global Engagement, will work with the local program coordinator to provide administrative assistance to international exchange students in terms of admission, registration immigration, and all relevant matters. The University of Pittsburgh has a comparable process and similarly successful experience.
All four universities are equipped with modern, high-speed equipment for web-based communication and video conferencing. The consortium will conduct regular meetings between program coordinators and participating students to discuss cultural activities, coursework, and student adaptation issues. Visiting students will be given email accounts and access to web-based communication systems. In particular, the international capstone projects will require international design teams to share design documents and project progress on dedicated web sites. Students and faculty advisors will arrange regular web-based team meetings with the final design presentation delivered in a coordinated virtual setting from two countries.