Financial Aid + Scholarships

Financial Aid

In general, all federal financial aid, excluding Federal Work Study, should be available as long as students are earning credits toward their degrees while abroad. This includes Pell Grants, guaranteed student loans, and PLUS Loans. Some states also allow state financial aid to go with students abroad. You should talk to your study abroad or financial aid office about policies with regard to state and institutional aid.

If you are anticipating financial aid that will not be available before your program fee is due, you must arrange for us to receive official written notification of the source, amount, and release date of the funding. When we get this information from your financial aid officer or from the funding source, we will note the amount expected and defer the payment of that portion of your fee until the specified date.

If you are looking for additional funds to finance your study abroad experience, you may also want to check out the following websites:

International Education Finance Corporation


Gilman Scholarships

Students receiving a Pell Grant may be eligible for this scholarship which provides $5,000 for any semester or year abroad.

National Security Exchange Program (NSEP)

The University of Minnesota’s External Scholarship Database

Search for other available study abroad funding and scholarship opportunities.

Can You Afford NOT to Study Abroad?

International education is expensive, plain and simple. But getting the money you need to finance one of the greatest experiences of your life has never been easier. Whether with scholarships, grants, government or private loans, you can make it work. Read on to see what steps you can take to jump-start an unforgettable adventure.

Spending a year or semester abroad is one of the most enriching experiences you’ll ever have. Don’t believe us? Just ask any one of the quarter million American students who set sail for hundreds of foreign horizon lines in 2012. Whether you go to Perugia or Prague, Darjeeling or Denmark, it’s a sure bet that you’ll come back a changed person, with a profound new understanding of yourself and the great wide world around you.

But for some students—actually, let’s be honest—nearly all students, studying abroad takes a less-than-enjoyable toll on the proverbial piggybank. Between airfare, food, textbooks and travel expenses (those last minute flights to Milan can really hit hard) financial figures add up quickly to a daunting total, leaving most students wondering, and understandably so, “How could I possibly afford to do this?”

Trust us, it’s really easy. No seriously…

The first step is to schedule a meeting with your friendly financial aid or study abroad office. They want to help! Many schools, as you may see, readily offer scholarships and aid to students intending to study abroad. In some cases, a college or university might even provide additional monetary aid (for optional travel, books, gym memberships etc…) towards approved schools. Scholarships are also offered by third-party organizations. IIE (short for the Institute of International Educators), obligingly maintains a comprehensive list of just such scholarships.

Scholarships not doing the trick? If you’ve spoken with your financial aid office and the prospect of an adventure abroad still seems fiscally silly, fear not! You can still easily get the finances you need by taking out a loan from either the government, or a private organization. Both parties are more than ready to make it work, as both parties understand that studying abroad is a life-changing experience, an experience that opens a myriad of professional doors in the post-grad world, and an experience that inevitably facilitates remarkable personal growth.

Stafford or Perkins federal loans can be used to pay for your semester abroad, provided that your school approves your program. If you’re interested in using federal loans to study abroad, make an appointment with your school’s financial aid office as soon as possible.

Private loans, just like federal loans, help you pay for studying abroad. Federal loans require you repay the government, whereas private loans are administered by banks or other similar organizations. Private loans, furthermore, often cover costs that federal loans do not, like your airfare to and from your host country, or other cultural excursions. And in some cases, the interest accrued on private loans can be tax-deductible, which is a great alternative to using high-interest-rate credit cards to finance your time abroad.

So, what now? If you’re absolutely set on studying abroad (this is a wonderful thing!), and think you might want to take out or use a current loan to get you going, take some time to peruse the listed websites. Or, feel completely free to contact the Pantheon Institute at [email protected] or at [email protected] with any questions. We would love to hear from you!

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