Money Matters
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Financial Aid and Resources

You must apply for financial aid to receive it, and the process is almost always time-sensitive. It is your responsibility to follow all instructions from your financial aid advisor and complete all paperwork well before your departure. It is important during this process that you take the initiative to communicate with both your university’s study abroad/international programs and financial aid offices, especially to determine whether your financial aid will need to be processed through an alternate university.

If your home university is a USAC Affiliate University, you should contact your on-campus representative listed for more detailed procedures. Aid is available to you in many forms: your preexisting financial aid (federal, state [some state aid cannot be used for study abroad], and/or institutional), aid specific for study abroad, scholarships, private student loans, personal savings, and parental support. Regardless of what kind or level of aid you use during a normal term on your home university campus, you should (re)consider utilizing any and all of these resources to finance your study abroad.

If you are receiving financial aid/scholarships and at any point cancel or withdraw from your program, you may be required to repay any funds that have been awarded/distributed. You are also still responsible for any outstanding balance you many have.

Federal law allows you to receive financial aid from your home university while attending study abroad programs sponsored by your home university or other institutions. Studying abroad may have a different fee structure from that of your home university, so you should provide a copy of a USAC budget sheet to your Financial Aid office for any budget increases. A USAC budget sheet is available on your USAC Student Gateway account. Federal law also states that financial aid can cover all “reasonable” costs for a study abroad program, including:

  • Transportation to/from the program site
  • Tuition and fees for the program
  • Housing and meals
  • Other living costs
  • Textbooks
  • Health insurance
  • Passport and visa fees
  • Optional field study/tours

The items listed above are included in most cases; check with your home university for more information.

Financial aid resources