About Yale

Yale: A Global ​University

Founded in 1701, Yale University consists of three major components: Yale College, the four-year undergraduate school; the Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences; and thirteen professional schools. Yale College, the heart of the University, provides instruction in the liberal arts and sciences, and offers a curriculum of remarkable breadth and depth. While Yale is located in historic New Haven, Connecticut, a port city about 120 kilometers northeast of New York City, the University’s engagement goes beyond the United States dating from the earliest years of the nineteenth century, when faculty members first pursued study and research abroad. Today, Yale has become a truly global university – educating leaders and advancing the frontiers of knowledge not simply for the United States, but for the entire world.

View the timeline of Yale’s history.

International Framework

Yale’s International Agenda organizes the ambitions and interests of Yale’s deans and faculty around three overarching goals:

  • To prepare students for leadership and service in an increasingly interdependent world.
  • To attract the most talented students and scholars to Yale from around the world.
  • To position Yale as a global university of consequence, through the increasing scope of research collaborations, teaching programs, international projects, and public engagement. 

Read the 2009-2012 Framework and the Progress Report.

From 2005 to 2008, the schools and other units of Yale instituted the strategies in the first Internationalization of Yale: The Emerging Framework, achieving the results described in the Progress Report on Internationalization of Yale: 2005-08.

International Statistics

  • Number of international students: Yale University - 2,249 (18% of total student body) Yale College - 581 (10% of undergraduate student body)
  • Number of Countries and Territories Students Represent:118
  • Top 10 countries where students come from: China, Canada, South Korea, India, United Kingdom, Germany, Singapore, Mexico, Australia, and Italy
  • Number of International Scholars:2,327
  • Top 10 countries where scholars come from: China, India, Germany, Canada, South Korea, Italy, United Kingdom, Japan, and Spain
  • Yale University is a member of the International Alliance of Research Universities.

See more international statistics about Yale students and scholars.

See more facts related to Yale University.

International Historical Facts

  • Considered the father of modern scientific education in America, in 1805 Benjamin Silliman B.A. 1796, M.A. 1799 was the first science professor in the United States to be sent abroad on a scientific mission.
  • Yale became the first academic institution in the Western hemisphere where Sanskrit could be studied when in 1841 Salisbury was appointed Professor of Arabic and Sanskrit Language and Literature. In 1854, he endowed a permanent chair in Sanskrit.
  • Yung Wing was the first person from China to earn a degree from an American university. In the 1870s, he founded the Chinese Education Mission, an organization that brought Chinese students to the United States, many of whom went on to play major roles in the modernization of China.
  • Yale has a history of cultivating Chinese educators, with the following notable examples: Tang Guo’an, Zhang Yuquan, Zhou Yichun, and Cao Yunxiang, four of the first six presidents of former president Hu Jintao’s alma mater, Tsinghua University, studied at Yale; Li Denghui (Class of 1899) served as the first president of Fudan University; and Yan Yangchu (Class of 1918) founded the Mass Education Movement to promote literacy among the Chinese population.
  • Kan’ichi Asakawa earned his doctorate degree from Yale in 1902, and in 1907 was hired as an instructor in Japanese history and appointed as curator of the East Asia Library at Yale. When he was promoted to full professor he became the first Japanese professor at a major U.S. university. Asakawa’s career at Yale spanned nearly half a century, and he is remembered as a pioneer in Japanese Studies having also built the foundation for Japanese research collections at Yale and at the Library of Congress.
  • In 1911, Bingham organized and directed the Yale Peruvian Expedition, which rediscovered the lost mountaintop ruins of the Inca settlement of Machu Picchu. Bingham taught South American and Latin American history at Yale from 1907 to 1924.
  • Albert Ernst Rudolph Goetze, who taught at Yale from 1936 to 1965, discovered tablets of the earliest Babylonian law code, thereby ushering in a new phase in the study of ancient legal codes.

Explore an illustrated timeline of Yale’s history >>

Bringing the World to Yale

Yale is extensively involved in international studies, offering over fifty foreign languages and more than 600 courses related to international affairs. On campus, the academic study of and engagement with the international world is also facilitated through the numerous centers that make international affairs pervasive throughout the University’s curriculum. For example:

  • The Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale is the University’s focal point for encouraging and coordinating teaching and research on global affairs, regions, and cultures around the world. The Center offers a number of master’s and undergraduate degree programs, supports extensive research activity, and houses councils for region and area studies that offer hundreds of lectures, conferences, workshops, and events each year.

  • The Jackson Institute is the home for Yale’s master’s degree in Global Affairs and new undergraduate Global Affairs major as well as courses open to all students and taught by Yale faculty and distinguished practitioners.

  • The Center for Language Study, the Center for the Study of Globalization, and the Center for International Finance augment the growing set of international programs and activities in Yale’s professional schools.

Explore Yale’s full list of International Centers and Initiatives.

Yale in the World

On-campus engagement is coupled by international experiences available to all students. In 2012 the Institute of International Education noted that more Yale undergraduates have an international experience than those at any other Ivy or AAU institution.

  • Yale College’s Center for International & Professional Experience (CIPE) assists students so that all undergraduates have the opportunity to study, work, or conduct independent research abroad; more than 1,300 go abroad each year.
  • The Yale School of Management was one of the first major business schools to require all first-year students to travel abroad on faculty-led trips.
  • The Yale School of Architecture incorporates an overseas trip into the curriculum as part of every student’s final-year studio course.
  • The Yale Medical School, School of Nursing, and School of Public Health have programs that bring students around the world for clinical work and research.

The University supports and facilitates faculty research and collaborations with colleagues and institutions around the world, creating opportunities for multi-disciplinary, transatlantic research, and education. For example,

  • There are several joint labs and centers in China that focus on law, genetics and agrobiology research.
  • In Latin America, there are the Peru-Yale Center for the Study of Machu Picchu and the Inca Culture in Cusco, in addition to the Yale-Universidad de Chile International Program in Astronomy Education and Research, which gives Yale faculty and students access to one of the world’s most important observatories.
  • The Global Network for Advanced Management that the Yale School of Management launched with over 20 other partner schools around the world fosters substantive ties and exchanges amongst these leading global business schools.
  • Collaborations also exist with Tecnológico de Monterrey in Mexico, University College London in the United Kingdom, University of Tokyo in Japan, National University of Singapore (NUS) in Singapore, as well as Pantheon-Assas University (Paris II) and École Normale Supérieure (ENS) in France.

Explore the world map to learn more.