Johns Hopkins University (JHU) of the United States and the University of Havana have signed an academic exchange agreement allowing U.S. students to study Spanish for one semester in Cuba from 2016, official website Cubadebate reported Monday.
During their six-month study in Cuba, the U.S. students can conduct investigations on the island and exchange with Cuban students, the website said.
For the U.S. students, it will be "a unique opportunity to experience Havana during a time of economic and social changes," said Lori Citti, director of the JHU's Study Abroad Office.
"The 2016 spring semester in Havana will open a window into Cuban life and society during a critical period in the economic and political history of both countries," added Citti.
This academic agreement was made possible by the newly-established Consortium for Advanced Studies Abroad (CASA), a collective initiative involving seven U.S. universities: Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, the JHU, Northwestern, and the University of Pennsylvania.
It will expand the 15-day programs the JHU has had with the Caribbean nation since 2012.
The increased length of academic exchanges between Cuban and U.S. universities forms part of the ongoing rapprochement process between both countries, which reopened their embassy in each other's capital on July 20 after over half a century of animosity.