Steps to Study Abroad
Faculty-Led Study Abroad: Faculty-led programs are usually short-term programs (a few weeks or a month) and often offered in the May mini-semester. Faculty-led programs are an excellent Study Abroad experience for most students. They are shorter and less intimidating than an entire semester abroad by yourself, but they still offer all the benefits of traveling. You also get an opportunity to get to know your professor better and learn more about their research and travel interests, as well as meeting JSU students you might not have had the chance to meet before.
Direct Student Exchange: Exchange programs are more challenging but also more rewarding. They tend to last at least six weeks and are usually an entire semester. Students usually go alone, and there are no JSU faculty or staff at the other university. Exchange programs are partnerships between universities, so JSU students will not be entirely alone or without support. The exchange university you choose will be prepared for you and will have many other American students studying
there as well. You will get an amazing opportunity to live in another country and make friends from all over the world.
Some programs require prerequisites, minimum GPAs, or recommendations from your professors, and some only require that you are interested in participating. Some are only for certain majors or minors, and some are open to everyone.
Check with the Office of International & House Programs, or the faculty member leading the program, or your advisor.
Once you know what you have to do and when, set deadline and due date reminders in your phone, start saving money, ask your family and friends for help, and commit to making this opportunity a reality!
You must have a passport to leave the country.
Information on Applying for/Renewing a Passport
Your passport can’t expire within 6 months of your expected return, so double check the expiration date and renew your passport if it will expire soon.
Be sure you can afford your plane tickets, hotel room, food, tuition, and fees and have a little left over to buy souvenirs or gifts. It may seem like too much, but don’t be discouraged. There are many scholarships and grants that are designed to help students study abroad. If you want help finding or applying for these, or if you want help finding ways to save up to study abroad, the Office of International House & Programs will help you.
Study Abroad opportunities are available yearly, so even if you are not able to go this year, you can start saving and preparing now for a trip next year.
Health and Safety
This should be one of your top priorities so as to avoid an adverse effect on the amount you learn, how much fun you have, and what you take away from your experience. Staying healthy abroad is not difficult; you have to make smart choices. Find the balance between having a great time, enjoying the foods, seeing the sights, and staying healthy.
Tips on staying healthy
- Make healthy food choices
- Take the time to get exercise
- Walk or bike as much as you can
- Go out dancing
- Join an intramural athletic team
- Ask around for the best and safest running trails, parks or circuits
- Watch your food portion control
- Practice safe sex to protect yourself from STDs
- Go easy on alcohol
- Find out if water is safe to drink in the countries in which you will be drinking.
Safety may not be your biggest worry however; you must be aware of some inherent risks in travelling, studying, working, and living abroad and you have to be prepared for them. You must always think about personal safety and plan to avoid any risks and danger.
Tips for staying safe
- Take health and safety precautions before you leave the United States
- Familiarize yourself with local laws and don’t break them
- Practice smart safety always; don’t put yourself in dangerous situations
- Get to know your new neighborhoods and locate necessities: banks, food stores, hospitals, post offices, laundry, Internet café
- Stay Healthy
- Use Common sense
- Stay calm and make decisions carefully
- Stay informed about local news
- Guard against petty theft and pickpockets
- If something unfortunate does happen, seek professional guidance and assistance
Source: A Student Guide to Study Abroad by: Stacie Nevadomski Berdan, Allan Goodman, Sir Cyril Taylor GBE
https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/banking/study-abroad-money-tips/ https://www.isic.org/International Student ID Card – offers discounts, etc
A free program offered by the Department of State that allows U.S. citizens and nationals traveling abroad to enroll their trip with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate in order to make themselves easier to get and keep in touch with in case of emergency.