By visiting this page, you have taken the first step towards your study abroad experience! Planning to study abroad can be a little intimidating at first, but this is why we have created the following section. To help you ask the appropriate questions and ensure that you find the right program for you! Use the steps below as a guideline to jump start your study abroad experience!
Click here to browse our FAQs for more information. If you are an online student, you might want to consider this resource for further ideas to consider.
1. Research Your Program Options
Take time to browse and research all of the study abroad options that Columbus State has to offer. We offer programs in over 70 locations across the world and that range from one week to one year. You can start your research by browsing the Study Abroad program search here. To join our listserv and receive email notifications about study abroad programs, scholarships, events and deadlines please email email@example.com and let us know that you would like to join our listserv.
2. Attend a Study Abroad Information Session
Not sure where to start? Attend an info session to learn the basics about studying abroad and get advice on selecting a program. Talk with a Global Ambassador, a study abroad peer advisor, to gain insight on studying abroad. These forums can introduce you to the opportunities and possibilities you never knew existed. Soak up all the information you can in order to narrow your decision to a couple of options before individual advising. Information sessions are offered throughout the Fall and Spring semesters.
3. Stop by Schuster 117 during our regular business hours (8:00am - 5:00pm Monday through Friday)
We understand that sometimes it is easier to "talk it out," or maybe you know exactly what you are looking for but just have a few quick questions. Our study abroad team will be happy to address your questions and concerns about taking the leap to study abroad. Although it is best to make an appointment, we welcome walk-ins during our business hours. To schedule an appointment with the Study Abroad Coordinator, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your preferred days/times.
4. Choose Your Program
When looking for a program, it is important to keep in mind your geographic, language and cultural interests, as well as your academic interests and personal goals. Not all programs are right for everyone, so think about what kind of program would best suit your needs. This decision depends on your comfort level and own expectations for studying abroad.
The questions below can help you narrow your search:
How long do you want to go abroad?
When would you like to go abroad (J-term, Spring Break, Maymester, Summer, Semester, or Academic Year)?
What do you hope to accomplish while abroad?
Do you want to fulfill major course requirements or take core curriculum courses?
Do you want to improve or learn a foreign language?
Do you want to live with a host family, stay in hotels or a dormitory equivalent?
Do you want to stay in a big city or a small town?
Do you want to incorporate an internship or service learning opportunity into your experience?
5. Make an Appointment with the Study Abroad Coordinator
Meet with the Study Abroad Coordinator who can further advise you on your study abroad program selection. The study abroad coordinator will also assist you with the application process and any other questions that you may have. To set-up an appointment e-mail email@example.com or stop by the Center for Global Engagement located in the Schuster Student Success Center.
6. Research Your Funding Options
Several financing and scholarship options are available for you to help fund study abroad. You should set up an appointment with your Financial Aid Counselor to discuss your options. Also, browse our Paying For Study Abroad webpage for more information on paying for study abroad and how to apply for study abroad grants & scholarships. We host one Funding Study Abroad Workshop each Fall (during International Education Week) & Spring Semester, so be sure to mark your calendar to attend!
7. Apply for a Program
We recommend that you submit your application early as spaces are limited. Check with CGE to be certain of the deadlines as they are different with each program. You typically apply one to two semesters before the term of your study abroad program. For any faculty-led (shorter) programs, you will need to have the Study Abroad Faculty Approval Form signed and uploaded into your online application before you can be accepted to participate.
8. Get a PassportYou will need to have a valid passport to be able to Study Abroad. If you do not have a valid U.S. passport, please apply for one immediately. Processing times vary, but generally, it takes about 4-8 weeks to receive a new passport. If you already have a passport, make sure the expiration date is at least 6 months after your scheduled return. If you need to renew your passport, allow 4-8 weeks as well. Please visit the Passport page in the US Department of State Website.
9. Pack your bags!
Attend the mandatory pre-departure orientation, research your destination, and pack your bags. Take lots of photos while you are there and keep in touch with us!