Global Perspectives


The purpose of this certificate is to help students increase their awareness of global affairs, apply their new insights to their academic concentrations, future career, and day-to-day life, and to contribute to the internationalization of our university. The program is open to undergraduate students of any major and class-standing. Both domestic and international students at NC State are welcome to apply for the certificate. This certificate program will also help other university programs: it can lead to recruitment of degree-seeking students who are interested in international awareness, increase study abroad involvement in all Colleges, lead to more involvement in university-sponsored activities, create greater diversity, and promote social tolerance and acceptance on campus. The GPC may also encourage students to enroll in classes they are not likely to take otherwise.

The goal of the Global Perspectives Certificate is to recognize students for their international studies and activities, and to encourage students to continue their global interests both overseas and within the United States.

The certificate allows students to document academic, professional, and co-curricular international involvement for future scholarship opportunities, employers and graduate schools. Upon completion, students will receive a notation on their transcript and an official certificate documenting their global experience during their studies.

Program Coordinator

Kasey Harris, GPC Coordinator
Phone: (919) 513-1937

Program Administrator

Dr. Bret Smith, Senior Associate Dean – University College
Park Shops 308


Curriculum: Students must complete four components for this certificate.

I. International Experience:
This must take place in a country other than the U.S., and must be educational in some way. Options could include study abroad, international internships, overseas volunteer programs, research abroad, being an international student in the U.S., or any other international experience approved by the GPC Coordinator in consultation with the GPC Advisory Board.

II. Academic Experience:
To successfully complete this portion of the certificate, NC State students must be in good standing and achieve a minimum GPA of 2.0 overall for the required courses.

a. Language requirement: Students must complete either the equivalent of FL 201 in the language in which they met the university foreign language requirement, or at least three credit hours at any level of study in a new language.

b. Course requirement: (12 credit hours), which may simultaneously fulfill GEP or other degree requirements. Four courses with strong international emphases must be chosen from three different categories: European and Eurasian Studies; Asian, African, and Latin American Studies; and Modern Global Issues. Students may substitute a course with U.S. multicultural emphasis in place of one of the required four courses. (International Studies major or minor automatically fulfills this requirement).

III. A. Co-Curricular activities:
One important purpose of the co-curricular requirement is to help internationalize the NC State Campus overall, increasing the amount of internationally related activity, and helping those students who choose not to go abroad to nonetheless benefit from global perspectives.

Certificate recipients must engage in co-curricular activities totaling at least 30 points in the GPC system. One hour is worth roughly 1 point. Ten points are awarded to semester-long commitments for certain activities or programs.

Students may receive a maximum of 7 points for attending lecture or cultural events, and a maximum of 15 points for any one organization (e.g. Italian Club). Examples of activities within these categories are provided below. The GPC website will include an extensive list of co-curricular opportunities in which students can participate. Each will fall into one of these categories:

One (1) Point Activities:
The following categories are worth 1 point for attendance at each meeting or event. If a student holds an office in an organization, they may also earn 1 point for each planning meeting:

  • International clubs on-campus
  • International events on-campus
  • International events in the community (in the U.S.)
  • OIS Programs
  • Lectures

Ten (10) Point Activities:
The following activities require semester-long commitments. Each are worth 10 points total for a semester:

  • OIS International Friendship Program
  • Alexander Global Village Resident (10 point maximum)
  • University Scholars Language Exchange Program (8 week/1 semester commitment required)

III. B. Community Service: Students must also complete at least 10 hours of volunteer service. The volunteer project must have an international focus (e.g. volunteer English tutor, helping immigrants with taxes or visas). Community service may be completed in the U.S. or in another country.

Note: For some events, students may have the opportunity to volunteer to help set-up, plan, or work (e.g. International Festival). Volunteering is active service to others, and is considered separate from attending an event or being part of an on-campus organization. Attending an event does not count toward volunteer hours. Students must complete 10 volunteer hours in addition to 30 points of co-curricular activities.

Documentation: Students must provide documentation proving their participation in these activities. This can be in the form of an email to the GPC Coordinator from the leader or president of an organization the student is in, showing the name of the student, the organization, and the number of meetings the student attended. For lecturers or events, students may save a ticket stub or program with the name of the lecture/event and the date. For programs listed on the University Scholars Program (USP) calendar, USP staff has offered to collaborate in the use of their attendance cards.

IV. Final Project:
Students must prepare a synthesizing project which answers specific questions about their experience in pursuing the Global Perspectives Certificate. The project may consist of a poster, a paper, powerpoint presentation, video, website, physical display or combination of media.

Before beginning the project, the students must create a proposal, and present it to their chosen GPC mentor/advisor for approval. This mentor will be the students contact for advice, guidance, and assessment of the final project. Assessment will be based on the provided rubric. The mentor then makes the final recommendation to the GPC Advisory Board for overall certificate approval. Students may choose any approved member of the NC State’s faculty or teaching staff for this mentor role.

The Advisory Board will identify faculty or teaching staff willing to serve as mentors/advisors. After confirming approval from mentors’ department head, the GPC Coordinator will post their names on-line, together with the maximum number of certificate candidates they will assist in a give semester (typically 2-3). Information for mentors will be available on the GPC website and workshops will be offered to answer mentors’ questions.

After approval by the mentor, final projects must be made available to the wider community in some way, such as by posting on the GPC website, or being presented on campus (classroom, residence hall, etc.). For students who choose to create a poster, an exhibition will be organized each semester by the GPC coordinator to fulfill the public presentation requirement.

Admissions Requirements

Applicants must be degree-seeking undergraduate students at NC State and must complete an online application as proof of fulfilling the requirements. To receive the certificate, students must be in good academic standing and have a minimum GPA of 2.0 for certificate courses overall. See section II for specific course requirements. There are no major or prerequisite requirements for this certificate.

Plan of Study and Registration Information

Contact the Program Coordinator.

Academic Structure

Term Effective: 1/2009
Plan Code: 02GPCTU, 32GPCTU
CIP Code: 30.2001
Description: Undergraduate Certificate in Global Perspectives
Offered via on-campus format only