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Parents & Family

Supporting Your Student

The Study Abroad Office encourages parents and families to support their student’s international experience in ways that are unique to your relationship. Please feel free to reach out to us with any questions you have! We welcome the opportunity to collaborate with you for your student’s success.

Studying abroad provides students the opportunity for academic and personal growth, to challenge themselves and to experience the world from a new perspective. Students who invest personal effort in the entire process receive the most benefit, and the Study Abroad Office encourages students to assume responsibility for the experience they are about to have. We are here to guide and assist each student, through group and one-on-one advising, pre-departure orientations, and continued support while abroad.

The Study Abroad Office adheres to NC State’s policy regarding communicating with parents under the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the federal legislation that governs the privacy of student records. While the Study Abroad Office is happy to answer questions from a student’s support network, in many cases we are not able to share information due to FERPA regulations.

The Study Abroad office is student-centered and will send all correspondence directly to the student. In keeping with university policy, we consider it the student’s responsibility to keep their parents and families informed about their Study Abroad enrollment and experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

The benefits of studying abroad are tremendous. In addition to cultural, personal, social and academic growth, students who study abroad are more marketable upon graduation. In today’s world, employers and graduate schools increasingly value an overseas experience. Many employers – in banking, engineering, marketing, the computer industry, and many other areas – are looking specifically for overseas experience when evaluating applicants.

Each program offered has its own page on the Study Abroad Office website. The program pages contain a description of the location and/or university, and information regarding eligibility requirements, cost, accommodations, and more. Parents and family can find the information page for any program by searching our website.

You can support your student by encouraging them to be in regular communication with our office, and to complete all pre-departure requirements. Additionally, our office is happy to provide you with program-specific information and resources upon request.

The Study Abroad Office is available to help, answer questions, provide assistance, and support students every step of the journey. Students participating on semester and full-year programs are required to attend Study Abroad 101, as well as meet with a study abroad advisor prior to applying to any program. In addition, the Study Abroad Office requires all students to participate in a mandatory pre-departure conference program where program participants are informed about topics including passports, visas, immunizations, housing, and health and safety.

Students are able to obtain contact information from former participants or international students from the country in which they will be studying to ensure your student feels fully confident about their upcoming experience.

Costs for studying abroad vary depending on length and type of program. However, most of the semester and year-long study abroad programs offered by NC State are exchanges, which involve international students coming here in exchange for NC State students going abroad. This means that students pay their regular tuition and usually pay for room and board upon arrival abroad.

The cost of participating on an NC State summer program can often be lower than the estimated cost of attendance for 6-8 credit hours during the summer at NC State. Consequently, students can study abroad for about the same cost as staying on campus at NC State either during the semester or summer.

Extra program costs typically include passport fees, airline tickets,  meals, personal expenses, and any travel the student undertakes while abroad. Personal spending will vary, and we discuss budgets and travel in the
pre-departure orientation.

Students are able to apply financial aid (including loans, grants, and scholarships) towards the cost of any credit-bearing study abroad program, whether or not it is sponsored by NC State. Financial aid eligibility is determined using the total cost of studying abroad, based on official program budgets provided by the Study Abroad Office or by the sponsoring institution (if the program is not an NC State program). Students who receive financial aid and are planning to study abroad need to contact the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid.

The Study Abroad Office coordinates a competitive scholarship process each application cycle. Typical award amounts are $500 – $1500. All eligible students are encouraged to apply for these scholarship opportunities. Additional outside scholarships and personal fundraising resources are also available.

Student safety is our highest priority. General safety issues, as well as any country specific precautions, are discussed at the mandatory pre-departure orientation and are included in the materials provided to the students by the Study Abroad Office.

All students from NC State participating in a university-sponsored program abroad are required to carry a GeoBlue health insurance policy (often included in the cost of the summer programs).

The Study Abroad Office takes every precaution to ensure student safety. All NC State students on faculty-led, NC State sponsored programs are registered with the local U.S. Embassy upon arrival. Students on semester or year programs register with the U.S. Embassy on their own via the US Department of State’s Smart Traveller Enrollment Program, and they are given the information on how to do so during orientation.

The Study Abroad Office also has a Study Abroad Emergency Response Team to manage any emergencies that may occur while students are abroad. This team receives U.S. State Department travel information and is available 24 hours a day through the NC State Campus Police.