Croft Institute for International Studies

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The Croft Institute for International Studies (or Croft) offers a B.A. degree in international studies in conjunction with the University of Mississippi's college of Liberal Arts. The degree combines the study of global economics, history, politics and social relations with the study of languages and cultures in a rigorous multidisciplinary curriculum.

In addition to a regional focus (Latin America, Europe, Middle East, and East Asia), Croft students select a thematic concentration on one of the following: global economics and business, international governance and politics, or social and cultural identity.

Croft students, more commonly known as "Crofties", pursue advanced proficiency in a foreign language as an integral part of their studies. Accelerated language programs are currently available in Arabic, Chinese, French, German and Spanish. Students may also choose to study Italian, Japanese, Portuguese and Russian. The University of Mississippi has one of the leading undergraduate Chinese programs in the U.S. through one of the few U.S. government sponsored Flagship Intensive Chinese programs in the nation.[1]

The Croft Institute for International Studies at The University of Mississippi was established in 1997 with major financial support from the Joseph C. Bancroft Charitable & Educational Fund. The Croft Institute's first full year of operation was the academic year 1998/99. The Croft Institute offers ten Croft scholarships of $8,000 dollars for four years to entering students each year. It also offers several other scholarships. Admission to the Institute is selective.


The Executive Director of the Croft Institute is Dr. Kees Gispen, a professor of modern European History with an emphasis on nineteenth-century and twentieth-century Germany. His particular area of expertise is the social history of technology. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley.

Dr. Will Schenck is the Associate Director of the Croft Institute. He received his BA in History summa cum laude from Boston College in 1999. He completed his Ph.D. in Romance Languages and Literatures at Boston College with a concentration in French and Italian Medieval Literature in 2008 and holds a Masters in French Literature and Civilization from the University of Paris III in France.


There are currently 28 permanent members of the faculty who teach at the Croft Institute. All have terminal degrees in their field, and have published numerous working papers, articles, and books.


The Croft Institute currently has 172 students (East Asia: 51, Europe: 68, Latin America: 42, Middle East: 8). The average ACT score of the Croft student body is 30.5.

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