Academics

Global ConnEXions

Learn from Anywhere. Build Your Community. Join a Global Network. Design Your Future.

As part of Northeastern’s longstanding tradition of offering relevant and innovative educational opportunities, we are proud to introduce Global ConnEXions—a first-year, project-based virtual program delivered through a unique and personalized virtual learning community.

Program Information

Global ConnEXions draws on and expands Northeastern’s signature experiential learning model by harnessing the power of place to create context for projects that seek to solve the pressing problems of our time. These projects, coupled with state-of-the-art virtual classes, immerse learners in Northeastern’s global network. Short, in-person opportunities at one of our global campuses bookend the year and foster team-building through intense, cohort-based experiences.

Global ConnEXions is a distinctive experiential program that empowers first-year students to design solutions to real-world global challenges by combining the flexibility of virtual learning punctuated with face-to-face community building opportunities.

With a focus on project-based learning, students spend the year developing the skills, knowledge, and experience necessary for successful twenty-first century careers. After completing the program, students will seamlessly build upon this foundation throughout the rest of their college experience, possessing the tools and skills necessary to engineer and navigate their own educational and professional path. Further, students will be well-connected to our global network of faculty, alumni, and corporate partners across multiple campuses and industries.

Why Global ConnEXions?

This innovative first-year program provides students with the flexibility to learn virtually from anywhere while affording them a unique opportunity to become an integral part of Northeastern’s global campus network. Further, students in this program will immerse themselves deeply in experiential learning from their very first semester of college life enabling them to design their own learning journey and craft a resume for successful careers in the modern world. Finally, this program is unique in its approach, providing students with the flexibility associated with high quality virtual learning combined with the benefits of face-to-face experiences.

Northeastern is uniquely positioned to leverage its global leadership in experiential education and its history of virtual learning to support students through this program. Northeastern has longstanding expertise in remote instructional delivery and pedagogical innovation, including the NU Start program, the Center for Advancing Teaching and Learning through Research (CATLR), and Self-Authored Integrated Learning (SAIL).

Every institution is shaped by its people and our culture is one of ongoing innovation. When you compare institutions, you’re not just comparing technologies or programs, but also asking: who do I want to learn with and from; who do I want to be connected to while I advance my journey as a lifelong learner; and who can help me realize my personal and professional goals? Between faculty experts, industry partners, and alumni, many of whom are global leaders, Northeastern offers a broad global network of people who are available to advise and mentor students along their journey. We’ve designed Global ConnEXions to ensure you are prepared to take advantage of this network from the moment you enter the program.

Distinctive Features of Global ConnEXion

  • A powerful combination of virtual learning and intensive residential experiences that immerse students in experiential learning, the power of place, and community.
  • An experiential first-year seminar of students, faculty, advisors, peer mentors, and integration coaches.
  • Unique, project-based courses focused on global challenges, designed and led by top research faculty.
  • Real world problem-based courses conceived and designed by students (in consultation with faculty experts) in their second semester.
  • Disciplinary courses selected to support project-based courses and progress toward the major.
  • A robust set of programs and services specifically designed to virtually connect first-year students to each other as well as the global Northeastern community.

The Residential Experience

The Residential Experience

Students will be required to participate in two in-person experiences in August 2021 and May 2022. During these ten-day long experiences, Global ConnEXions students will gather in one of our premier global campus locations—Boston, Seattle, or London—to interact with faculty, staff, current students, and alumni as they collaborate in a team-based, experiential project built around a theme related to that city. Please note: if travel is not viable, virtual accommodations will be made available to those students.

Further, mid-way through each semester, students will also have the opportunity to gather and share their progress on project-related work in a three-day face-to-face immersion, also at another one of Northeastern’s global campuses.

The Residential Experience

Students will be required to participate in two in-person experiences in August 2021 and May 2022. During these ten-day long experiences, Global ConnEXions students will gather in one of our premier global campus locations—Boston, Seattle, or London—to interact with faculty, staff, current students, and alumni as they collaborate in a team-based, experiential project built around a theme related to that city. Please note: if travel is not viable, virtual accommodations will be made available to those students.

Further, mid-way through each semester, students will also have the opportunity to gather and share their progress on project-related work in a three-day face-to-face immersion, also at another one of Northeastern’s global campuses.

  • Program Dates

    • Arrival Date: Tuesday, August 10, 2021.
      For those flying, fly into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, called Seatac Airport (airport code: SEA).
    • Departure Date: Friday, August 20, 2021.

    Transport from Seatac Airport to Cornish Commons:

    • We will provide transport from the airport on August 10 at 2:30 p.m. Please plan to land by 1:30 p.m.

    • Seattle-Tacoma International is located 16 miles from Cornish Commons. A car-share (such as Lyft or Uber) is approximately $40-50.
    • The Light Rail is the public train system serving Seattle. Purchase a $3.00 one-way ticket to Westlake Station. Westlake Station is a 40-minute train ride from Seatac. Upon arrival at Westlake station, the Cornish Commons housing is .4 miles away and can be reached by taxi/uber or is a flat walk all via sidewalks and crosswalks.
  • Northeastern’s Seattle campus is located in the heart of downtown Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood with views of the famous Space Needle and surrounded by Amazon’s global headquarters. With a variety of local cafes, shops, and restaurants to explore, students enjoy the walkability of South Lake Union neighborhood to stroll 2 blocks for a picnic lunch on Lake Union’s waterfront or to grab a free banana from Amazon’s community banana stand! With various other tech company’s increasing their office space, such as Google and Facebook, South Lake Union is also home to nonprofit innovators Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Path. Seattle is a seaport city, situated amongst many lakes, the Puget sound, and nestled between two mountain ranges. Although it has a reputation for rain, it mostly sprinkles and doesn’t stop people from getting about Seattle and the surrounding tree-filled nature.

    Northeastern’s campus in Seattle opened in 2013 and currently has more than 1,000 graduate and doctoral students earning degrees to meet the key needs of the region’s employers, including computer science, engineering, project management, data analytics, and education.

  • Global ConnEXions students in Seattle will reside at Cornish Commons, a newly built state-of-the-art student residence hall just 2 blocks from Northeastern’s Seattle campus. Cornish Commons is 1 block from Whole Foods, and in the center of the South Lake Union neighborhood surrounded by various local cafes, restaurants, shops, drug stores, and museums.

    Students will live with one Global ConnEXions roommate and will receive their roommate assignment upon arrival on-site. Each 2-bed room has its own private bathroom and includes for each student an extra-long bed, desk, dresser, hutch, and filing cabinet. Students have access to the building amenities including various shared common rooms, a fitness center, game room, TV lounges, full kitchens, and laundry facility. Northeastern will provide sheets, towels, and a pillow for each student.

  • As part of the 2021-2022 Global ConnEXions program, students participating in the Seattle pre-fall residency will learn more about Seattle from Museum of History and Industry experts, hear from local industry leaders, and connect with current and alumni graduate students. The 10-day stay will also include applied learning through a day trip to Bainbridge Island via the iconic Washington State Ferry system, walking tours through the historic Pioneer Square neighborhood, and various other trips to local historic sites. Students seeking further research around the city will be provided with local guidance throughout the residency.

  • Details and dates for the May Residential Experience will be provided as we get closer. Keep an eye on your email and check back here for additional updates.

  • The New College of the Humanities is situated in Devon House in St Katharine Docks, a vibrant and dynamic quarter in central London. Located next to the Tower of London, one of the UK’s most iconic heritage sites, and Tower Bridge, one of the most instantly recognizable structures in the world, St Katharine Docks are steeped in the history of London and the River Thames upon which the city was founded. Students will also carry out group work in Russell Square in Bloomsbury, just a stone’s throw from the British Museum and walking distance from the lively West End Theatre District.

  • Global ConnEXions students in London will reside at Chapter Kings Cross.

    Located a 5-minute walk from Kings Cross St Pancras, the neighborhood also boasts a trendy shopping location, Coal Drops Yard, scenic Regents Park, and YouTube London studios. Students will live in rooms with their own personal bathrooms, desks, and shared kitchen space. Kitchenware and linen packs will be provided.

    Students will also have free access to several large communal and study areas, either for private study or group work, and access to a free on-site gym. Chapter Kings Cross has CCTV in and around each property, as well as an electronic key entry system for the main entrance, common areas, each flat, and bedroom and free wifi.

    Staff and security are on site 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

  • As part of the 2021-2022 Global ConnEXions program, students participating in the London pre-fall residency will learn more about London from leaders and practitioners, and connect with current and alumni graduate students. The 10-day stay will also include walking tours through London’s historic Bloomsbury university district, as well as visits to iconic sites in Westminster and Whitehall. Students will learn about the city’s historic former docklands, as well as visiting parks such as Hampstead Heath with its sweeping panoramic views of London. Students seeking further research about the city will be provided with local guidance through the residency.

Coursework

Students will take a specially designed 1-credit first-year seminar (INPR 1000) focused on adjusting to college through the process of Design Thinking. Small sections of 25 students will be led by trained Integration Coaches, who facilitate student connections to their peers, their faculty, and to the myriad opportunities within our global network. Coaches will also assist students in making connections between their project-based work and their coursework. Additionally, the seminars will take advantage of facilitated reflection, a key component of Northeastern’s experiential learning model, through our unique SAIL program.

Students will also take a 4-credit project course of their choosing, each of which is designed by top research faculty. These projects provide unique opportunities for students to work in small teams to propose solutions to real-world problems. Click here for a list and description of the project-based courses in fall 2021.

Finally, students will choose three additional discipline-based courses from a menu designed to complement the knowledge needed in the project course. Click here for a suggested list of courses to complement the project courses. Of course, we understand that each Northeastern student has individual needs, so you can see the full list of Global ConnEXions courses here. These courses also reflect foundational and advanced first-year courses that students will need to fulfill for their desired majors and to meet university general education requirements. Some students may also wish to take a remote course outside of the Global ConnEXions list. These options provide maximum flexibility to meet student interests and aptitudes while simultaneously building a community of learners around the project course.

Students will take a 4-credit problem-based course of their own design and interests, guided by faculty expertise. In addition, they will choose three disciplinary-based courses to support their project interests and to move them forward in their progress to their degree.

Once students have completed the year in Global ConnEXions, they will have the option of transitioning back to the Boston campus, or leveraging connections made during the program to study, work in one of the global campuses for a year.

Tuition and Fees

Tuition for the Global ConnEXions program will be the same as Undergraduate Day tuition in Boston. There will be an additional $2,500 program fee per semester, covering the in-person experiences (please note, students are responsible for their own transportation costs to and from those experiences) and additional required university fees may apply. For the inaugural year of Global ConnEXions, students will be awarded a grant equivalent to the $2,500 per semester program fee* to recognize the special nature of this trailblazing cohort. Students who have been offered academic merit scholarships will be able to use their award during the program. Federal and institutional need-based aid may be adjusted based on final budgeted costs of the program.

*This grant cannot exceed billed expenses and will only be applied to the program fee.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Talented and independent first-year students with a passion for learning by doing, who seek the flexibility of virtual learning but crave in person connection and interactions. Northeastern is uniquely positioned to leverage its global leadership in education and history of remote learning to support students through this unique approach. Further, students who have been impacted by changes in global mobility will find this program is a way to complete first-year studies without falling behind.

  • This program embraces experiential learning, which is at the heart of Northeastern’s approach to education and provides eager and entrepreneurial students with educational continuity and an opportunity to experience Northeastern’s global network in a unique first year experience that is flexible and challenging. Students will complete the program with academic and professional skills that will enable them to craft the rest of their learning journey to maximize their skills and build on their successes.

  • Yes! Students who begin their Northeastern experience in this program are actively welcomed, full members of the Northeastern community. Students in the program will participate in our dynamic learning community with support from academic advisors, faculty, peer mentors, and integration coaches who will ensure their integration into Northeastern’s robust global network.

  • Yes, students in the program will be able to participate in some clubs and activities connected directly with Northeastern’s Boston campus. However, participation in some clubs and activities will not be available until students begin their studies at the Boston campus. In keeping with the spirit of Northeastern as a community of active leaders and learners, Global ConnEXions students will be encouraged to create new activities within their first-year seminars.

  • Students will be able to explore a research theme with a faculty member, collaborate with their peers to consider real world problems in an interdisciplinary first-year seminar, and reflect on their journey with the SAIL program.

  • While class sizes will be determined by the size of the Global ConnEXions cohort, it is likely that class sizes will closely resemble those on our Boston campus.

  • Academic advisors will work with students in Global ConnEXions to ensure they are completing coursework that will help them progress towards their degree while in the program.

  • Students in Global ConnEXions will connect from all over the world to build a shared learning community.

  • Students will be connected to their college and department through a range of resources, including peer advisors, academic advisors, faculty, and integration coaches. Integration coaches will also ensure that students are connected to their home college, other students in the program, and resources in Boston.

  • Yes.

  • The majority of classes are completely asynchronous. The first-year seminar will have a synchronous element in order to connect students, but the course will meet at a time agreed upon by students in each class section. Project courses will require students to arrange synchronous meetings with their team members, but these times are based on their own schedules and time zones.

  • Students in this program will choose from a curated selection of courses designed for first-year students. These courses are the same as those offered on Northeastern’s main campus in Boston. Additionally, students will have the opportunity to complete problem-based courses on compelling global themes that are new to Northeastern.

  • Academic advisors from each college will work with students during the program to select courses that will help students progress toward their degree.

  • Yes, all courses will be taught by Northeastern faculty.

  • Courses in the program will be taught via Canvas, but some courses will also utilize additional learning platforms and resources.

  • A student who enrolls in Global ConnEXions will be considered a “commuter” student for financial aid purposes and will have a reduced Cost of Attendance that does not include the allocated costs for room and board. A reduced Cost of Attendance may result in a change to a student’s need-based financial aid as well as the overall amount of loan funds a student or parent may borrow. Students should contact Student Financial Services (sfs@northeastern.edu) to understand how their financial aid award may be adjusted by enrolling in Global ConnEXions.

    Please note that merit scholarship awards will not be impacted by a decision to enroll in Global ConnEXions. Additionally, after a student completes the program and in future semesters resides on-campus, their Cost of Attendance will be adjusted to reflect the room and board costs; need-based financial aid awards may increase at that time.