Your Return

Nearly two-thirds of Richmond graduates study abroad before commencement, making UR a national leader among peer baccalaureate institutions. But what's available to students once they return from study abroad?

"My greatest challenge was being with myself in an unknown and challenging environment -- putting expectations for myself into perspective and the parts of myself I wasn't comfortable with."

For Students, By Students

At the start of each semester, International Education hosts an experience crafted for recently-returned students like you: Your Return. This is a reflective, cross-campus journey intended to help you unpack (figuratively!) and process your recent international experiences. Organically evolving from a study abroad class led by Dean Merritt in 2016 and added to over the years by generations of UR students, Your Return is an opportunity for reflection and connection – two activities that can help with the adjustment back to UR.

  • REFLECTION - Returners take part in a contemplative walk around campus and engage with questions and prompts designed for reflecting upon and integrating experiences abroad with life moving forward. The walk takes approximately one hour, and can be done all at once or in smaller chunks as a participant's schedule permits.
  • CONNECTION - The walk is followed up by a recap dinner with Dean Merritt, study abroad advisors, and peers also recently returned. Returners enjoy a delicious, cozy meal while connecting over themes that were important while abroad and during the transition back to UR.

Your Return has even been featured on Richmond's CBS 6 "Building Better Minds"!

"I had to learn to be okay with not having a complete grasp of my surroundings or fully knowing my next step."

Who May Participate

Students, faculty, and staff who are recently back from a significant experience abroad are welcome to participate.

When We Offer the Return

The Return is offered once per semester near the beginning of the term. Our goal is to catch returnees as soon as they get back to campus and begin having them focus on their experiences abroad and making those experiences relevant as they transition back to life at Richmond.

"I have carried my confidence back to Richmond, but my abroad self was more independent and more on the go than my Richmond self."