Fall is here! Okay, I’m jumping the gun a bit. Officially, we’re still 1 week away. But here in the midwest, you can feel it in the air. We’re on the cusp of my favorite season – boots, cozy scarves, autumn leaves, pumpkin patches, and, in my case, a birthday. In the words of F. Scott Fitzgerald, “Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.” Well, Fitzgerald, so does the study abroad marketing cycle.

Students have returned to campus, and study abroad offices tend to be firing on all cylinders in the fall semester. All systems are go with the fair, advising, class visits, application processing, and more. So quick, pop-up solutions for marketing and campus exposure before major deadlines are a priority. When the air feels crisp, we reserve a table in a high traffic area and set up a (drumroll please)… Study Away Cafe.

What’s involved?

  1. Ordering some apple cider, hot chocolate, and cookies.
  2. Decorating the table with a few pumpkins and fun signs (especially one that says Free Apple Cider, etc!).
  3. Bringing some catalogs and/or other print materials to hand out.
  4. Staffing a few student interns or study abroad alumni.
  5. Giving out some goodies – no strings attached! Then chat students up about study abroad while you’re getting their order ready.
  6. Bringing an optional sign-up sheet, so you can follow up with students who are interested in learning more.

Bonus Step: Print out a sticker like the one below and stick it to the thermal cups for more campus exposure of your event!

A mini-event like the Study Away Cafe allows you to spend minimal time/resources prepping while also continuing to market study abroad on campus during the busy fall semester. And once you’ve run the event, you can save all of your signs and designs and reuse for the next year! Here’s to a successful autumn season!

By Nicole Hughes, Campus Coordinator