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Financial Aid for Your International Experience

Many of our students who normally qualify for aid are able to qualify for additional loans in order to help cover the cost of the fees associated with the International Experience. However, if this is something you will be reliant on for travel, you will need to look into this as early as possible to determine if you qualify.  There are several things to know about how this process works. 


  1. Your default state. If you are required to travel as a part of your program, your international experience was reflected in the total cost of your program and your aid package has been defaulted to run through summer term during the year you are scheduled to travel. 
  2. Federal Aid Yearly Limits. Federal Direct Stafford Loans max out at $20,500 each year for graduate students. Many of our students need and opt to take out additional loans to cover the total cost of their program (including the International Experience).  The most common is the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS loan. You will want to work with the loan office on this to see if you qualify.  
  3. Summer Travelers Need 5 credits to Qualify. While you may be defaulted to take out aid in the summer, you must be signed up for 5 credits during summer to qualify to receive aid. Therefore, if you are only planning to travel during the summer, you will need to sign up for a 1 credit independent study course (that we will offer) in order to meet the federal minimum enrollment to receive aid for summer. There will be no additional charge for this course. 
  4. Fall Travelers Should Consider a Revision Request form. If you plan on traveling during Fall term, you may want to fill out a Financial Aid Revision Request Form to redistribute your aid if you do not plan on taking summer courses. 


We recommend that you start the conversation with a financial aid advisor as early as possible. Students who wait too long to begin this conversation often miss out on funding options.