To help meet the challenge of an increasingly global society, Connecticut College launched the Toor Cummings Center for International Studies and the Liberal Arts (CISLA) in 1989.

The CISLA Mission: To create global citizens who are culturally sensitive, politically and socially motivated and intellectually engaged. As one of the interdisciplinary academic centers, CISLA offers Connecticut College students the opportunity to prepare for the international world of today and tomorrow.

The following three questions form the theoretical framework of the CISLA experience:

  • What are the origins and dynamics of contemporary society?
  • What is the relevance of the past in understanding the present and the possibilities of the future?
  • What are the material, spiritual and ethical challenges of modernity?

The CISLA Experience: Year by Year

First Years are encouraged to learn about CISLA and come to a variety of information sessions scheduled throughout the year.

Sophomores¬†formally apply to our Center and are admitted to CISLA during the fall of their sophomore year. Once named CISLA scholars, they begin their CISLA journey with a gateway course designed exclusively for CISLA students, “Perspectives on Modern Global Society.”

Juniors continue to work towards reaching a certain level of oral proficiency in a foreign language, take courses on the origins and dynamics of contemporary society, complete critical professional skills workshops and focus on one region of the world and its culture.

The summer after the junior year, senior CISLA scholars complete a funded summer internship in their country of focus, using their foreign languages of study, in fields related to their proposed senior research subjects.

Seniors complete a Senior Seminar and integrative research project that explores an international issue related to the student’s major field, internship experience, and foreign language and culture studied.