Why SiPN & Program Description (Top 10 Reasons)

1. It’s a Network:

Students can choose classes from any of the member universities in our network. They are located close to one another in the cities where we operate. Commute time between schools can vary from 5 to 30 minutes.

2. Academic and Research Excellence:

You probably didn’t know that Portugal’s oldest university dates from 1290, and is the ninth oldest university in the world. After a long period of stagnation under autocratic rule, Portugal is the European nation that has made the greatest strides in learning and innovation since its democratization in 1974. This amazing progress is reflected in the quality of education offered by its universities, several of which are well-placed in various world rankings. The dramatic growth in foreign students in Portugal over the past decade is reflective of this recognition.

3. Build your Own Program:

SiPN is designed to serve many different kinds of students. For those who are not yet ready to take all of their coursework in Portuguese, they can still cover their major or general education-type requirements through a wide array of offerings taught in English, while also taking whichever class level they require for a Portuguese language course. Or for those who are ready to direct-enroll in regular university classes taught in Portuguese, we can provide that too.

Consequently, we provide two main types of classes: core curriculum (taught in English) and direct enroll classes in our partner universities (taught in either language).

In order to make the search for these many options easier, we have organized your choices by semester or summer in the tabs under Build Your Program.

4. Affordable and All-inclusive Experience

SiPN is powered by FLAD, a major Portuguese non-profit foundation. This is why our program fees are so much lower than competing programs in Western Europe.

SiPN’s fees include: tuiton, housing, insurance, monthly transport pass, Portuguese SIM card, airport arrival, transfer and welcome orientation package, welcome and farewell dinners, guided tours, and 24/7 on-site support.

5. Student Oriented

All staff members are service-minded, and are ready to handle questions or problems from individual students or from parents, since the first established contact until the moment students receive their transcript package. SiPN operates on a 24/7 basis both for on-site purposes and also for emergency matters.

6. Scholarships

FLAD and SiPN provide several partial scholarships each editon. Also,  SiPN alumni will enjoy priority access to a Fulbright grant to Portugal.

7. SiPN field trips

Enjoy frequent visits to sites of historic and cultural importance not only in Lisbon and Porto, but also to other sites of interest located in different destinations throughout the country. Check out our videos here!

8. Learn Portuguese

Portuguese is the third most widely-spoken European language. Studying in Portugal will give you the chance to learn the language and explore the culture, economy, and history of the nearly 200 million people in the Far East, South America, Africa and Europe who use the most spoken language in the southern hemisphere.

9. Genuine European Experience

This sun-filled country in southwestern Europe is brimming with old-world charm and new-world excitement, a dazzling variety of landscapes, cultural attractions galore and some of the friendliest people in Europe.

Portugal has always welcomed new people and cultures. In 2015/16, Portugal received approximately 34,000 international students, and a large proportion of these are in the cities of Lisbon and Porto. The country has no significant anti-immigration political parties or movements, and remains incredibly open to foreigners, as evidenced by the many favorable testimonies of those who work or study here and the rapid growth in expatriates choosing Portugal as their residence.

Portugal has so much to see… but many students nevertheless want to take advantage of Lisbon and Porto’s location to visit other countries. Students can hop on a low-cost airline and visit some amazing locations in just a matter of hours.

Lisbon: There may be no better place on the planet to be young and bold – if only in spirit .” – The New York Times

10. Lisbon & Porto– A Perfect Combination of Natural and Cultural Attributes

Lisbon has long been one of the prettiest cities in Europe. Its pitched hills and valleys are like a Mediterranean-flavored San Francisco with way better weather, and the streets seem to wear art on every surface. In 2017 it won the World’s Leading City Break Destination from the World Travel Awards, which also considered Portugal “the World’s Leading Tourism Destination in 2017.”

Porto was voted a European Best Destination 2017 by the European Travel Awards and it is perhaps one of Europe’s hottest cities at the moment for everything that is design, arts & culture, and urban renewal. It was also voted European Capital of Design 2017 by the European Design Awards.

Thanks to its landscapes, its culture, to its unique combination of location, climate, history, safety, cost of living and the quality of its universities and infrastructure, the experience of studying abroad in Portugal will be an unforgettable one.

Program description

The Study in Portugal Network (SiPN) study abroad program is managed by the non-profit Luso-American Development Foundation (FLAD), with the support of the Portuguese Ministry of Education and Science, the US Embassy in Lisbon, the Fulbright Commission in Portugal, AICEP, and the Lisbon City Municipality, among others. It offers North American students the opportunity to spend a semester, year or a summer in the vibrant capital city of Lisbon, Portugal. Eventually, SiPN seeks to expand beyond Lisbon to include other quality Portuguese universities in other cities.

The program’s primary aim is to increase the number of students from North America who study abroad in Portugal. SiPN provides an academically rigorous but flexible study abroad program that is designed to meet the needs of undergraduates from a variety of majors. Its core curriculum is focused on Portugal’s place in Europe and Lisbon as a safe and attractive cosmopolitan hub from which to explore themes related to the larger Lusophone community of some 260 million people.

SiPN is designed to serve many different kinds of students. For those who are not yet ready to take all of their coursework in Portuguese, they can still cover their major or general education-type requirements through a wide array of offerings taught in English, while also taking whichever class level they require for a Portuguese language course. Or for those who are ready to direct-enroll in regular university classes taught in Portuguese, we can provide that too.

Consequently we provide two main types of classes: core curriculum (taught in English) and direct enroll classes in our partner universities (taught in either language).

The core curriculum is designed for students who do not yet feel ready to take their social science or humanities classes in Portuguese. They also provide the core identity for the program and its semesterly-offerings. The faculty of the core curriculum are published experts with Ph.Ds in their respective fields, hand-chosen by the academic council of SiPN to teach in our program. Many of them have previously taught or done graduate work in North America or other English-speaking countries. Our core classes also enroll Erasmus and local Portuguese students, for a truly international classroom experience, taught in English.

Direct enroll classes may be conducted in either Portuguese or English. For example, each semester SiPN provides all levels of Portuguese language courses (A1 – C2) for whichever level you require. More advanced Portuguese learners have even greater choices and can elect to take all of their coursework in Portuguese through direct-enroll classes at any of the 4 schools in the consortium in virtually any field, providing for a fully immersive experience. For those who are looking for other choices outside of our core, the SiPN universities provide hundreds of direct-enroll classes each semester in business, economics, and many other fields, all of which are taught in English and open to participants of SiPN. Nevertheless, for students who need at least some courses taught in English, SiPN strongly recommends that students take at least 2 courses from among our core offerings.

In order to make the search for these many options easier, we have organized your choices by semester or summer in the tabs under Build Your Program.

Students seeking such direct-enrollment courses taught in Portuguese (excluding the A1 – C2 language classes that is) should check out our partner schools’ website listings here:

ISCTE-University Institute of Lisbon

University of Lisbon

Catholic University of Portugal

NOVA University of Lisbon

The program also includes a portfolio of internship options for credit, a range of cultural immersion tours and the option for students to connect with a Portuguese family through our Visiting Family Program