Office of INTERCULTURAL LEARNING

Financial Aid for Study Abroad

We hope to provide you with some basic information to help you get started on your search.

FINANCIAL AID INFORMATION FOR STUDY ABROAD PARTICIPANTS

1. Submit the Consortium Agreement provided by the Office of Intercultural Learning to your Study Abroad Program. They will return the completed form to SU. Upon receipt of this required form, the Financial Aid Office will then determine your financial aid eligibility for the semester in which you are studying abroad. An award letter will be mailed to you.

2. A common question that is asked is, “which types of financial aid are allowed for study abroad expenses?” Listed below are examples of types of aid and whether or not they are allowed to cover study abroad expenses. The “Other Programs” listed are not limited to the examples provided.

 

TYPE OF AID ISEP/London/Wash, DC Other Programs (ex. ISA/IES/SIT/GLCA)
     
Merit Scholarship YES NO
Kahler Scholarship NO YES
SU National Merit Scholarship YES NO
SU Scholarship (need-based) YES NO
SU Grant (need-based) YES NO
Pell Grant YES YES
SEOG/LEAP/SLEAP YES NO
TEG/Texas Grant YES NO
Dixon Scholarship YES NO
Byrd Scholarship YES YES
Gold and Silver STAR Loans YES YES
Gold and Silver PATH Loans YES YES
Federal Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans YES YES
Federal Perkins Loan YES YES
Federal Parent Loan (PLUS) YES YES
Private Educational Loans YES YES
Outside Scholarships YES *check with donor

3. If you are borrowing loans to cover study abroad costs, then follow the directions that will be provided with your award letter to complete the individual loan processes. The Stafford, Perkins, PLUS, Gold and Silver Path loans can be completed online. Additional private educational loans are available through other lenders- a lender list is available in our office. Please complete the loan processes PRIOR to your departure.

4. Thanks to the generosity of the Kahler Foundation, a limited number of scholarships will be available for study abroad participants. Because the funds are limited, students demonstrating financial need as determined by the financial aid process, will be considered first. All study abroad participants are automatically considered for the Kahler Scholarship.

It is strongly suggested that a “thank you letter” be sent to the Kahler Foundation in acknowledgment of the scholarship. More information on this process will be available through the Office of Intercultural Learning.

5. Check with the Study Abroad Program to see if they offer merit scholarships or need-based grants. Please notify our Financial Aid Office if you are the recipient of such an award. Pay close attention to the filing deadlines.

6. Financial aid funds, including loans, will be disbursed to your SU student account no earlier than 10 days before classes at SU begin.

7. You must provide the Business Office with your written permission to release your funds. Prior to leaving the country, please submit the Release of Funds form that is provided by the Office of Intercultural Learning AND a copy of the billing statement that you have received from your Study Abroad Program to the Business Office. Funds will be mailed directly to the Study Abroad Program. If you receive more in financial aid funds than your billed charges as noted on the billing statement, then you may request that the Business Office refund you the difference. If you do not leave written instruction with the Business Office AND you have excess funds on your account, the funds will remain on your SU account. If you have questions about the status of the release of your funds, please contact Judy Offield in the Business Office at (512) 863-1927, or via email at offieldj@southwestern.edu.

8. Please be prepared to purchase your airplane tickets in advance and to take some spending money with you. Do not rely solely on financial aid funds to cover expenses you might encounter when you first arrive at your destination. The availability of funds depends on the timing of your completion of the application process, the date the funds are disbursed to SU, and the written request of the release of funds provided to the Business Office. If you receive scholarship funds from outside sources, these funds may not be available at the same time as the rest of your financial aid. The date that your funds are applied to your student account does not correspond to the date that the Business Office will be able to process your refund request.

9. If your program needs notification of pending financial aid, it is your responsibility to contact the study abroad program and find out what they require. If they have a specific form that needs to be completed, submit the form to the Financial Aid Office. Please allow at least 72 hours for completion of the paperwork. Most programs are satisfied to simply have a copy of your financial aid award letter.

10. The deadline to apply for financial aid for the next academic school year is March 1st. Prior to the Christmas holiday, the Financial Aid Office will mail home instructions on how to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The letter will be mailed ONLY to current recipients and/or applicants of need-based financial aid. If you wish to apply, then contact our office to request information. If you only receive a merit scholarship from SU, and you do not wish to be considered for need-based aid, then you are not required to submit the FAFSA. The link for filing the FAFSA online for the next academic school year will be available on the SU web page after January 1st.

Your FAFSA must be submitted by March 1st in order for you to be considered on time. Late applicants should expect to be penalized. Late applications will be processed AFTER all other on time applications.

If you have any further questions, contact

Financial Aid Office, P.O. Box 770, Georgetown, TX 78627, Phone (512) 863-1259, Fax (512) 863-1507, finaid@southwestern.edu