Prospective Student FAQ

Wondering what it takes to get into Franklin? Wanting to find a school that is the right fit for you? Curious about student life? I've gotten a lot of admissions related questions this week, so I decided that a "prospective student frequently asked questions" post was in order!
^^ This is a picture I snapped today on my walk home from class, not particularly related to this post but if you were wondering what autumn looks like in Lugano, there is your answer!

Academics At Franklin
The travel opportunities are great, but they are FAR from everything Franklin Switzerland has to offer. Getting a university education abroad is much different than just living abroad for a year. Not only do students spend the academic year immersed in and exploring European culture, but Franklin also provides many educational opportunities which challenge students of all levels. I know I have grown academically over the last two years and learned much!

What majors are offered at Franklin?

Click here for a list of all our majors and here for a list of all minors offered at Franklin

What is the best academic program at Franklin?

I have had the chance to take classes in many departments ranging from Economics to Biology to Math to Politics to Italian! And every class had its own positives and negatives. Some I enjoyed more than others, just because of my personal interests, but in all cases I appreciated the professors' knowledge on the subject and felt that I learned something new! I don't think there is one "best" program at Franklin. I do believe, though, that if you pick a program that you are passionate about and enjoy, then you will have the best experience!

When do I have to pick a major?

Honestly, don't worry about it as an incoming student! When I first arrived on campus, I thought I would do a combined history and political science major. But after taking a semester of classes I found a passion for environmental studies and discovered that I liked the courses offered under the international relations major better. So now I am working towards an international relations major with a double minor in environmental studies and Italian. The liberal arts style of education, coupled with a mandatory core curriculum allows for academic exploration without any negative impact on your credit progress.

Can I double major?

Yes! If you fulfill the necessary credit requirements for two majors you can double major. It requires a lot of extra time, credits, and works so most students instead opt for a combined major or a major + minor combination. A combined major is available in as a combination of two of the following majors: (1) art history and visual culture, (2) communication and media studies, (3) comparative literary and cultural studies, (4) economics (5) French studies (6) history, (7) Italian studies, (8) literature, (9) management and (10) political science.

Student Life
What is the hardest thing to get used to as a new student at Franklin?

For me, it was homesickness! Not all students feel the same way, but for many students, the first year is the first time we have spent an extended period away from home - and that can be tough! But it is not necessarily unique to Franklin. Any college student living away from home is going to go through the same feelings.

What is the hardest thing about living in a foreign country?

In my experience it is the language barrier. I am learning Italian at Franklin, but it is not something I have picked up easily like some of my friends. I dislike the feeling of isolation that accompanies not being able to communicate with locals. But this may be a blessing in disguise as the fact that the locals speak a foreign language also means that I have incredible Italian immersion opportunities in my everyday life! It has definitely helped with the language learning process.

Will I fit in?

I'm quite certain you will! We often joke that Franklin is the "Island of Misfit Toys". We mean it in a very endearing way because we all seem to come from different backgrounds and life experiences. Yet, we find our way to Franklin and just seem to fit! I love that aspect of Franklin culture! People from all different walks of life coming together and forming bonds of friendship is unique and can be a very positive aspect of campus life.

What are students like?

It is hard to have an exact definition (see above answer^^) but I would say in general the "typical" Franklin student has: a strong sense of adventure, is flexible, is willing to engage in class discussion, is passionate about knowledge (whether garnered in class or while exploring the world) and has an eagerness to learn about and from other cultures.

Campus Life
What kind of student clubs are there?

LOTS! Seriously, there are many many clubs and I couldn't possibly list them all here. But I will share some highlights: The Franklin Voice (student newspaper), soccer (women's and men's), basketball, volleyball, zumba, Tandem (language learning), The Political Discourse Society, Literary Society, Honors Society, Latin Club, Asian Club, Texas Club, PACE (LGTBQ), the Alpine Adventure Community, and Student Government. Plus many more!

What are the dorms like?

Nicer than your typical dorm in the US! Bathrooms are never shared with more than three people and lots of dorms have kitchens/kitchenettes. Click here to see a post I wrote a few months back which outlines all the different dorms and their amenities.

How will I do my laundry?

Each student living in campus dorms receives a laundry card preloaded with 40 Swiss francs each semester. And each dorm has their own set of laundry machines (usually located in the basement or on the ground floor). I have never used more than the 40 francs. But if you do need to reload it, just go to the Office of Student Life and pay out of pocket.

How does the meal plan work? Do you have a cafeteria?

A full meal plan (1,600 Swiss francs per semester) is mandatory for your first year. Whereas sophomore students are charged a partial meal plan (350 francs a semester) and junior/senior students are free to load meal cards with whatever amount they want. We have two locations on campus where you can use this card to pay for meals, North Campus Dining Hall and The Grotto. The NC Dining Hall is open for breakfast and lunch most days, it has a salad bar and a weekly menu. The Grotto is located on main campus and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The Grotto has a weekly menu and a daily menu you can order of off as well (I recommend the kebab wraps!) More info here!

Admissions At Franklin 
Will a score of ____ ACT or ____ on the SAT get me into Franklin?

I am not the Admissions Office, nor do I have any sway over them, so I can't say for sure! But I can tell you that the Admissions team here at Franklin is dedicated to working with students on a one-on-one basis. If you have some kind of extenuating circumstances that impacted your work, if you have a great need for financial aid, if you aren't a good test taker but love writing, let Admissions know! They are great at evaluating the potential in students and really take into account all aspects of a students education beyond just a test score.

How is the financial aid?

Again, I can not guarantee you financial aid or scholarships as I don't work in the Financial Aid Office. But I can say that Franklin is very generous with scholarships for hardworking students, academically gifted students, and those with financial need! US federal financial aid (if you submitted for FAFSA) does apply to Franklin as we are an American accredited school. Just make sure to follow all instructions from the financial aid team when it comes time to apply for aid after your admission. AND if financial aid is important to you I highly recommend applying by the December 1st deadline which gives you scholarship priority. Learn more about financial aid at Franklin here and here!

Did you visit the school before committing?

No, and most students do not. I did visit other colleges in the US and almost didn't decide on Franklin, because I was hesitant to commit to a campus I had never visited. For me, it truly was a leap of faith! I trusted my instincts and now I love it here!

How do I apply? What forms do I use? When is the application deadline? 

Click here for that info and much more on all things related to Admissions!

And that is it for round one of FAQs! Have a question I didn't answer? Comment below OR feel free to email me at 


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