Belgium Rooftops

Undergraduate Global Immersion in Belgium

Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium: Université catholique de Louvain (UCL)

Program Type

This is a semester exchange program, where students take classes (in English or French) directly at a partner university and substitute that semester for a semester at the University of Minnesota. The partner university will send one of their students to the Carlson School of Management to take classes in their place.

Exchanges often require students to demonstrate a high degree of independence, adaptability, and flexibility because support and service may be different from a US university. Examples of differences that exchange students should be prepared to encounter include varying housing options, the amount and timing of program details, grading based less on assignments and more on final exams, and an academic calendar that may differ significantly from the University of Minnesota.

Location and School

Belgium bridges two distinct European cultures: Romance and Germanic. Belgium is divided nearly in half by its French and Dutch speaking populations. Louvain-la-Neuve is located in French-speaking Belgium. Located just 45 minutes from Brussels, the capital of Belgium and an important nexus of culture and commerce in Europe. The headquarters of the European Union and a major international center, Brussels is only two hours from Paris or Amsterdam and just three hours from London.

Université catholique de Louvain (UCL) was originally founded in 1425, and is a forward-looking center of knowledge and innovation. UCL has a highly international student body and hosts a number of events as part of its service to incoming exchange students. The Louvain School of Management is a highly accredited business school that maintains a key Financial Times ranking.

Academic Calendar

Fall semester: early September to late December*

Spring semester: late January to late June

When selecting a semester exchange program, students should take note of academic calendars that differ significantly from the University of Minnesota. Consider potential conflicts such as holidays, family events, graduation ceremonies, and summer jobs/internships early in the selection process.

Work with Education Abroad Advisers and the Carlson Business Career Center for support addressing challenges.

*Final exam period is in January so students obtain advanced permission from UCL to take exams at Carlson.

Language and Academics

Students are enrolled in 15 S/N Carlson School International Business (IBUS 5300) credits for a semester at UCL and take 6 classes to earn a total of 30 ECTS credits in order to meet the minimum requirements.

UCL has a highly international student body with a large percentage coming from outside Belgium to seek advanced business studies and expertise. The international welcome desk hosts a number of events as part of its service to incoming exchange students. Assistance with housing, course selection, and cultural adjustment are just a few of the services provided. Courses are offered in both French and English. A sample of the courses available include:

  • Business Strategy
  • Business Strategy Case Studies
  • Operation and Management of Enterprises
  • Information Technology in Management
  • Human Resource Management
  • Human Resource Psychology
  • Marketing, Currency & Finance
For more information, visit Université catholique de Louvain-la-Neuve.


UCL offers limited on-campus housing in the form of furnished communal apartments, where students live in an individual room but share the apartment with 6–10 tenants, typically French- and English-speaking Belgians. Students also have the option of independently booking their own off-campus accommodation with estate companies associated with UCL or private owners. UCL also offers a home-stay option for international exchange students.

Budget Estimate 2013 - 2014

These estimates will vary based on student preference and exchange rates. All details subject to change based on economic and international factors. Most financial aid may be applied to study abroad programs.

2013-2014 Tuition $6,530
Program Fee (includes program administration and intl health insurance*) $2,500
Transportation (to and from program site) $950
Documentation** (passport, visa, immunizations) $900
Books and Materials $200
Room and/or Board $3,500
Essential Daily Living Expenses $2,000
Miscellaneous $500
Total $17,080

*Students should also maintain their U.S.-based health insurance plan while abroad.

**Travel to the Belgian Consulate in New York City is required to obtain a visa.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Most financial aid may be applied to study abroad. In addition, University of Minnesota students are eligible for education abroad scholarships. See Scholarships and Finances for additional information, and Costs and Billing for budget planning and cost comparison tools.


To be eligible for this education abroad program, you must be:

  • A University of Minnesota student who has successfully completed the I-Core curriculum or equivalent coursework
  • In good academic standing with a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Additional criteria may apply

The University of Minnesota is committed to the policy that all persons shall have equal access to its programs, facilities and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, or sexual orientation.

Application and Selection

Application materials include the online application form, a resume, and essay. Submit a completed application by the February 28th priority deadline prior to the academic year in which you wish to participate. Programs that do not fill following the priority deadline will be reviewed on a rolling admissions basis.

Admission to all programs is based on review of your application by the study abroad selection committee, and selection notifications are sent out within one month of the priority deadline or receipt of application during rolling admission. Once selected, students are given the opportunity to confirm acceptance, at which point they are subject to Education Abroad policies.

Quick Links

Contact Information

Global Immersion
Carlson Global Institute
CSOM 2-210
Phone: 612-625-9361
Fax: 612-624-8248

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