Depending on the cost of the study abroad/global experience program, the financial aid received may or may not meet the student’s full demonstrated financial need. Students may need to apply for a private scholarship or a supplemental loan, to bridge the gap between their aid and the cost of the study abroad/global experience program.
Global Experience Program Application Procedures
- Interested students should schedule an appointment to meet with the Director of the Office of International Programs, to review the proposed study abroad program and to go over the application procedures.
- The student should then schedule an appointment to meet with their academic advisor to review their progress towards degree and the students proposed study abroad program.
- The student must complete the Global Experience Program application.
- The student should arrange to have an official transcript of your college/university course work sent to the Office of International Programs.
- The student must obtain two letters of recommendation.
- Upon acceptance the student will be asked to fill out and sign three additional forms:
- Acknowledgement of Risks and Responsibilities
- A Financial Agreement Specific to the program for which you are applying if you are applying for a UIS program.
- Signatures Form:
- Academic Advisor
- Director of Financial Assistance (if you are applying for aid)
- The Dean of Students or proxy
- The student
- For students who are applying for non-UIS programs they will also need to submit the application for that program. This will be forwarded to the program by the Office of International Programs along with your transcript, relevant letters of recommendation and an official letter from the Office on International Programs certifying that you have been approved to study abroad on that program. Non-UIS Programs may not be eligible for federal financial aid.
Frequently Asked Questions About Study Abroad
Q. Does the student need to register at UIS?
A. Yes. The Office of International Programs will assist the student in registering for UIS courses in order for the student to receive financial aid payments.
If the student is taking courses at a different institution, the student must enroll in the UIS Global Experience Program course (UNI 480) for the same number of credit hours as (s)he is taking at the corresponding institution. The student will be charged $50 for enrollment in this UIS course and will pay actual tuition and fees at the institution sponsoring the program.
Q. Will the student receive more grant eligibility as a Study Abroad student?
A. Study Abroad students’ grant eligibility is based upon enrollment level, and the student’s Expected Family Contribution (RFC) not on the student’s educational cost. Loan eligibility may increase as a result of the increased cost of Study Abroad.
Q. What if more financial aid is needed?
A. If the student needs additional funding and (s)he is a dependent student, then his/her parents may wish to consider a PLUS loan. An independent student may pursue alternative loan options to meet expenses if grant and federal Stafford loans do not meet the complete need.
Q. How is the bill at the abroad institution paid?
A. The student is responsible for making sure his/her study abroad fees are paid in a timely manner. Usually all financial aid will be credited to the student’s UIS billing account, once the Office of Financial Assistance receives confirmation of the student’s arrival and registration at the study abroad institution. The student’s excess funds will be direct deposited into his/her bank account.
Q. Will financial aid disburse early because the student is participating in a Study Abroad program?
A. No. All study abroad students receive financial aid payments on the same disbursement schedule as other UIS students. Financial aid is scheduled to disburse no earlier than 10 days prior to the start of every semester per federal regulation.
Q. What if the study abroad institution expects payment prior to departure or inquires about pending financial aid?
A. Provided the student’s completed his/her award letter online and completed all financial assistance paperwork the student’s designated financial aid advisor, may be able to create a letter for the student which details his/her financial aid and informs the study abroad institution of the pending disbursement date. Most institutions will accept this letter as proof that the student has pending aid and may be willing to work out a payment plan or postpone the due date for the bill. Please remember that the decision is at the discretion of the student’s study abroad institution.
Additional information is found at the Study Abroad/Global Experience Program website.