Frequently asked questions about financing your study abroad program

HOW WILL MY FINANCIAL AID BE AFFECTED IF I STUDY ABROAD?

If you are studying abroad in a Goucher approved program your aid is processed the same as if you were on campus attending classes.  You must plan EARLY and meet all financial aid deadlines.

If you are studying abroad in a non-Goucher approved program, federal financial aid may be processed for you using a consortium agreement if the host institution is a Title IV eligible school.  Goucher College may consider entering into a contractual agreement with a host institution that is either an ineligible school or a foreign organization in order to process federal aid on your behalf.  Goucher College may not process financial aid for students who attend a foreign school directly or enroll in programs through broker agencies.

I AM CONSIDERING SPENDING A SEMESTER AT ANOTHER INSTITUTION WILL THIS CHANGE MY AID?

It may be possible to take courses at another institution and receive aid for those courses from Goucher, however, only certain federal financial aid may be processed for you using a consortium agreement if the host institution is a Title IV eligible school.  To qualify, your combined enrollment must equal at least six credits, and your academic advisor must approve your request to take courses at the other institution. If approved, the billing office will disburse your federal aid to you and you will be responsible for paying the tuition at the other school.

CAN MY FINANCIAL AID BE USED IF I CHOOSE A NON-GOUCHER SPONSORED PROGRAM?

Goucher institutional aid (including Goucher merit scholarships and Goucher grants) may be used to support a maximum of one semester of study abroad in Goucher programs, a list of which is available in the Office of International Studies.
    
Goucher institutional aid may not be used to support study abroad in approved, non-Goucher programs, a list of which is available in the Office of International Studies. Students should consult with the Office of Financial Aid to determine whether they may qualify for need-based assistance to support their study in approved, non-Goucher programs.

Goucher institutional aid may not be used to support study abroad in non-approved programs.  The Office of Financial Aid will not process financial aid applications for non-approved programs; students should consult with the program they wish to attend to determine if aid is available through such program.

IS FINANCIAL AID AVAILABLE FOR STUDENTS PARTICIPATING IN INTENSIVE STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS DURING THE WINTER OR SUMMER?

The Office of Student Financial Aid does not award federal or institutional need-based financial aid for winter or summer programs.  Students may be awarded scholarships by OIS.  Students meeting specified criteria may apply for a Goucher loan in the maximum amount of $2,000.

Study abroad vouchers (formerly known as ‘travel vouchers’) in the amounts of $1,200 or, for ISP students, of $3,000 will be issued to students for any program that satisfies the study abroad requirement. The basic principle of this policy is that, except in very unusual cases, the voucher will be applied as a credit to a student’s account during regular disbursement cycles.  The voucher will be given when a student demonstrates planned participation in a program study abroad requirement, and will only be applied once during the student’s undergraduate career at Goucher for the student’s planned term of study abroad.

DOES GOUCHER OFFER SCHOLARSHIPS SPECIFICALLY FOR STUDYING ABROAD?

Please visit the OIS website or contact them for information regarding study abroad scholarships.

CAN I BORROW AN ALTERNATIVE PRIVATE LOAN TO HELP PAY FOR MY STUDY ABROAD PROGRAM?

The Office of Student Financial Aid will process alternative loans for students studying abroad during the fall or spring semester(s) through Goucher approved programs. Note that the amount borrowed will be based on the academic year and disbursed in two equal installments for fall and spring in accordance with the college’s standard loan processing policy.

CAN MY FINANCIAL AID BE DISBURSED EARLY TO HELP COVER PROGRAM COSTS AND AIRLINE TICKETS?

Students should plan to cover the costs and reimburse themselves after funds are available.  Loans disburse in the fall and spring after the add/drop period.

HOW DO I GET THE FUNDS ONCE MY FINANCIAL AID DISBURSES?

Funds will be applied to your student account during regular disbursement cycles.  Exceptions may be made in extreme circumstances for students who demonstrate an inability to financially secure study abroad-related requirements (airfare, etc.).  OIS, Financial Aid, and Billing will grant exceptions on a case-by-case basis. 

WILL MY LOANS GO INTO REPAYMENT IF I STUDY ABROAD?

If you are doing a non-approved program, you will be required to take a leave of absence from Goucher College.  During the time that you are on a leave of absence, if your enrollment is not reported by another institution of higher education to your lender, then your loans will enter the grace period.  You have a one-time six month grace period for your federal Stafford loan(s) before entering repayment.  Once your leave exceeds the six month (180 day) grace period, your loan will enter repayment and your first payment will be due within 45 days.  Your grace period begins with the last day you attend classes and extends until the day classes begin - when your enrollment is reported again.  Your loans may be deferred while you are in school but payment will be due immediately upon separation/graduation. 

WHERE CAN I FIND MORE INFORMATION ABOUT FINANCING MY STUDY ABROAD PROGRAM?

If you have questions regarding financing your study abroad program, please visit the Office of Student Financial Aid or contact Jennifer Ramina by calling 410-337-6024.  For more information about study-abroad programs, please contact the staff in the Office of International Studies (OIS) by calling 410-337-6455.