Madrid, Spain | Semester at Comillas Pontifical University


The International and Graduate Affairs Office of The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law and Comillas Pontifical University have partnered to provide an exchange opportunity for students in both universities. To create opportunities for students to gain exposure to international law, comparative legal issues, and the systems and cultures of other nations. Global competency and an appreciation for cultural diversity are imperative skills that lawyers need to possess and meaningfully cultivate in order to be effective advocates, thought leaders, and citizens in today’s deeply interconnected world. Through the proposed exchange program, highly qualified law students from the partner schools would be able to sample the vast academic and cultural programs that each school has to offer and would return to their home countries armed with an enriched understanding of the law through a transnational lens.

Program Dates: One semester (credit-bearing program)

Fall Semester: Early September to late December (depending on exam schedule) Orientation for International Students: 3 weekdays before classes start

Spring Semester:  Mid-January to late May (depending on exam schedule) Orientation for International Students: 3 weekdays before classes start

About the Exchange Program

Comillas Faculty of Law offers a Master’s Degree in International and European Business Law. This program is offered entirely in English, and Moritz College of Law students would take courses during their semester abroad through this program. The program is designed not only for JD candidates at US law schools, but also for students from all over the world who have an undergraduate degree in law. Students take courses that are based in the case method, encouraging students to come to class prepared and ready to engage with classmates and professors through active discussion and debate. These courses are complimented with practical seminars and lectures, visits to law firms and professional seminars, and networking opportunities with leading Spanish and European legal professionals. The Faculty of Law is housed in the Comillas Catholic Institute of Business Administration and Management and offers studies in the area of Law, Business Administration and Management, and Political Sciences and Public Administration. Please read the information for Exchange Students studying law here and the Comillas Program Information Sheet here. Information in these resources are updated each Spring for the following academic year.

About the University

The Comillas Pontifical University is a private Catholic university in Madrid, Spain, founded in 1890 in the small town of Comillas before moving to Madrid in the 1960s. The University has about 8,000 students across both undergraduate and graduate programs, and boasts the honor of being the only university in Spain ranked in the top 100 in the world by the Times Higher Education 2013 ranking. The University has two campuses, Alberto Aguilera and Cantoblanco. The Faculty of Law is located on the Alberto Aguilera campus, which includes academic buildings, a sports gym, cafeterias, and library. Read more about the university on their website here and in their International Student Guide.

Applicant Eligibility

1L, 2L and 3L students are eligible to apply. Students must be in good-standing at the Moritz College of Law. Those students with an interest in International and Comparative Law will receive preference, but all students are encouraged to apply. Courses are taught in English.

Program Costs

Program Fee: Regular semester tuition paid to Moritz College of Law
Office of International Affairs Study Abroad program Fee: $150
Housing/Room and Board: Approximately $800 per month depending on housing choice
International Travel: Approximately $1000
Passport (if needed): Approximately $150
Supplemental Health Insurance: Approximately $40/month

Financial Aid: Eligible for Vogel International Fellowship (up to $1,000) and federal financial aid may apply.

Students should also budget additional amounts for miscellaneous expenses, including food, excursions, personal care items, and other living expenses. Please see this estimate of expenses for a student in Madrid provided by Comillas.

Housing and Room and Board

Comillas will provide assistance and guidance in securing off-campus accommodation in Madrid, since the University does not possess its own Halls of Residence. A large offering is available with families, private residences, and in apartments, with shared rooms or in individual units. The University Information and Accommodation office can help international students find appropriate housing. Please contact the Information and Accommodation Office via e-mail:  International students should begin their search for accommodation as soon as possible to find adequate lodging for their stay in Madrid. The Information and Accommodation office has also partnered with Students Global Relocation. Please see their website for more information and to fill out a contact form. Since the search for a flat or apartment is the sole responsibility of international students, and requires time and the signing of a contract, those interested in this possibility should arrive in Madrid at least one week before the start of classes.

Passport and Visa

Spain requires U.S. citizens to carry a valid U.S. passport when traveling to Spain for any purpose. Exchange students without Spanish citizenship should request a visado especial de estudiante (special student visa) at the Spanish Embassy or consulate in the US depending on your place of residence. For Ohio, please contact the Spanish Consulate in Chicago. In most cases, the student must deliver the application in person. Citizens of any country in the European Union do not need a residency permit or visa. In order to obtain a student visa, one must have a valid passport, proof of acceptance to a Spanish university, proof of sufficient financial resources to reside in Spain for the duration of the exchange program, proof of medical and health insurance policy, completed visa applications, two passport photos, and a money-order for the exact amount of the visa fee. Please read more detailed information in the International Student Guide or the Spanish consulate website.

Health Insurance

As an international student in Spain, you will need to show that you have health insurance that meets the minimum insurance coverage under European Union Law. When applying for your student visa, you will need to bring written confirmation that your insurance coverage meets the Spanish and European legal requirements. This includes proof that your insurance is unlimited and that your plan includes the following benefits: medical and drug treatment, prescription drugs and materials, hospital in-patient treatment, rehabilitation treatment, repatriation in the event of an emergency, and pregnancy and childbirth. Please contact your insurance customer service and request a “Certificate of Coverage,” which must be signed by someone from the insurance company. Please take a hard copy of this “Certificate of Coverage,” along with a print-out of your “Coverage and Benefits Summary,” and your Insurance Identification Card when you request your student visa. If you have OSU student health insurance, please call Health Smart Benefits at 1-844-206-0374 to request a “Certificate of Coverage” and print your “Coverage and Benefits Summary” from here.

Required Supplemental Health Insurance

While participating in an Ohio State study abroad program, students are required to maintain their primary insurance coverage. Students are also required to apply for and purchase supplemental insurance through GeoBlue Services for the duration of the program. Once you are admitted to the program, you will be mailed a link to apply for supplemental health insurance.

Course Selection

Comillas Faculty of Law offers a wide-range of courses taught in both English and Spanish. Moritz students may take courses in the Comillas Master’s Degree in International and European Business Law program, or in the undergraduate Law program. Please see course offerings by semester and course descriptions. This information is also available on the Comillas website. The undergraduate program also has many courses offered in Spanish. Students will work with the Office of International and Graduate Affairs and the Comillas Faculty of Law to determine a course schedule that meets both ABA study abroad requirements and Moritz College of Law requirements to ensure the transfer of credit hours and maintain progress towards graduation. The OSU Moritz Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs and Registrar would be consulted for determinations about the applicability credits for exchange students under their auspice.

Application Requirements

Applying to study abroad is a three-step process:

Step 1: Internal Application within the Moritz College of Law

Please complete the online application and upload required materials:

  1. “Statement of Educational Objectives” (up to 250 words) explaining your interest in the exchange opportunity and what you hope to accomplish and gain by studying abroad
  2. Official copy of law academic transcript (undergraduate transcript not necessary)

Step 2: Once pre-approved by Moritz, complete the Office of International Affairs study abroad application ($150 program fee) and related paperwork (orientation, risk management, supplemental health insurance)

Step 3: Complete university partner application and submit required materials

Students will receive an email from Comillas with instructions on how to complete their application for the exchange program and a list of required documents to submit.

Application Deadline

Applications are due by March 1 for studying abroad in the next calendar year, but early applications are encouraged. If applying as a 1L, note that no decision will be made until first semester grades are posted.

Decision Timeline

The internal review process at Moritz takes approximately 2-4 weeks. Admitted students work with Assistant Dean Fernández-Álvarez on academic proposal to the Academic Affairs committee to have all credits pre-approved before departure.

Pre-Departure Orientation

All Ohio State students participating in any OSU sponsored study abroad program must attend a pre-departure orientation organized by the Office of International Affairs. Possible dates for this orientation will be shared with students once they are accepted to the program.

ABA Criteria for Approved Study Abroad

The American Bar Association has criteria that must be met in order for study abroad programs established by ABA-Approved Law Schools to be approved. These criteria are listed on the ABA Criteria for Approval of Foreign Semester and Year-Long Study Abroad Programs and the Criteria for Foreign Summer and Intersession Programs. The Assistant Dean of International and Graduate Affairs will work with students to ensure that these criteria are met. For further information, please contact the Office of International and Graduate Affairs using the contact information below.

Contact Information

Moritz College of Law Contact Information

Megan Avellana, Assistant Director
Office of International & Graduate Affairs
The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law
55 W 12th Avenue, 361 Drinko Hall
Columbus, Ohio 43210
Phone: +1-614-247-0098/ 

Universidad Pontificia Comillas Contact Information

Ms. Mónica González Rodríguez
"International Relations Coordinator, Faculty of Law"
C/ Alberto Aruilera 23
28015, Madrid, Spain
Tel: (34) 91 542 2800 EXT 2220