Non-traditional Students

Non-traditional Students often have different responsibilities such as those tied to families, professional, and other obligations at home that do not affect many " traditional students" in the same way. Thus it is important to take these factors into consideration when studying abroad. There are a variety of programs with a variety of lengths to consider. Many traditional students have various life experiences that often allow for deeper cultural exploration and a variety of perspectives that can impact their's and other participants study abroad experiences.

Things to consider

  • Think about what makes you a non-traditional student, as it can vary greatly. What resources does the host institution and host culture have to support my needs?
  • Do I have other responsibilities at at  family, home, or professional obligations that will affect the study abroad program selection and length?
  • Will there be any other participants that I can relate to on the program? Are there opportunities to connect with students and others from the host culture that I can relate or have more in common with?
  • What can I learn from my fellow participants and those from host culture who I may not relate to immediately?
  • What  type of housing accommodations would you prefer? Are those options available in the programs you are considering?
  • How will this study abroad experience relate to and enhance my academic, personal and career goals?

Additional Resources

We have curated some additional resources that include networks, articles, blogs,  etc. As you explore the impact that your identity will have on your study abroad experience feel free to check out the information below.


Students who are comfortable with exploring their identity here at NC State will be better prepared to engage with the issues raised above. In order to best prepare, you may want to consider working through identity-related questions and topics with resources on campus. The resources within the Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity is a great place to start.

Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity NC State Scholarships