Silicon Valley, California
Summer 2018

This week-long study away program in Silicon Valley takes place during summer 2018. Students will earn 2 credits while focusing on networking and career paths in accessibility. The goal of the program is to introduce students to what accessibility is and why it is important, create opportunities to forge networks and develop possible career paths, connect them with alumni and friends of the College, and get a sense of the place and culture of Silicon Valley.

This program will require students to attend several lectures before and after the trip to Silicon Valley. During those meetings, we will lay the groundwork for what accessibility is, and prepare students to visit industry partners. While in Silicon Valley, students will spend the week visiting Teach Access industry partners, such as Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Adobe, Microsoft, etc. The trip will culminate in a pitch competition that will be judged by these companies.

Behind the scenes tours and visits will give students an opportunity to see daily work life at places we are visiting, allowing them to ask specific questions and to participate in professionally productive activities such as pitching project ideas, discussing career trajectories, and portfolio/resume review. Other benefits of the program include:

  • Gaining an understanding and appreciation for the field of accessibility
  • Connecting students with MSU alumni and friends in Silicon Valley
  • Exploring creative jobs and possible careers in accessibility
  • Seeing workspaces and understanding work processes in the industry
  • Gaining an understanding of local culture and space

Application Deadline: February 15, 2018; Program is now closed to applications

Tentative Dates: May 26-June 3, 2018

Eligibility: Students must have a 2.0 overall GPA. Preference given to College of Arts & Letters majors. 

Course Offerings:  2 credits of AL491: Special Topics in Arts and Letters, with an option for adding a third credit. The class will meet 4-5 times prior to departure and 2-3 times after returning. Class meetings after returning will be determined at a later date. Final projects will be due at the end of Summer Semester II.

Housing:  Stanford University Guest House (double rooms)

Estimated Program Fee: $1,200 - $1,400

Program fee includes housing, some activities, some local transportation, and some meals. Program fee does not include MSU tuition (2 credits required), travel fees to/from Silicon Valley, additional meals, and personal spending money. Tuition costs vary depending on class standing, resident/non-resident status, etc. Visit MSU Student Accounts for information on tuition rates. Students may use Financial Aid for this program.

For more information, contact Faculty Leader Kate Sonka at ksonka@msu.edu. 

Career Communities

Entrepreneurship, Business, and Innovation

Visual Arts, Arts Administration, and Performing Arts

Publishing, Editing, and Authorship

Design, Technology, and Media

International Affairs, Law, and Government

Nonprofit, Education, and Social Impact