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Parents & Family (También en Español)

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Click for Vickies Video!
Click the video to hear adult student Vickie's thoughts on sending your child abroad!

Why should my student study abroad?
Every student who hopes to succeed in the global economy should study abroad. Studying abroad offers students competitive advantages and cross-cultural competence that open up a wealth of immediate personal and long-term professional opportunities.

The study abroad experience:
  • Helps students gain in-depth exposure to foreign cultures in a way that cannot be accomplished in the classroom or on a vacation.
  • Exposes students to new ways of thinking about the world and their home country.
  • Promotes intercultural competency skills and promotes greater confidence, independence, and self-sufficiency, skills that are highly valued by future employers.
  • Develops or improves foreign language skills.
  • Brings a unique intercultural perspective to a student's chosen major or academic study.
Guidance from the Global Engagement Office
The Global Engagement Office staff members understand that preparing for and participating on a study abroad program can be both exciting and overwhelming, so we provide support and guidance to students in all stages of preparation. However, we also require that students take an active role in preparing for their experience abroad, and we expect them to be responsible and complete all necessary steps prior to departure.
► What should my student and I do to prepare?
  • Before students board the plane and travel to their host country, there are several items that will require attention; students must complete an application and post-acceptance materials in a timely fashion.
  • Students must meet with their academic adviser to determine how study abroad fulfills their degree requirements.
  • The pre-departure process is important in assuring that students understand the academic nature of the study abroad program and are also prepared for the cultural differences they will encounter.
  • All students must attend orientation sessions, submit required documents available through their accepted application, and read pre-departure information and guides.
  • We also encourage students to read additional materials of their choice to prepare for life in their host country (examples include online newspapers, historical novels, and information from current and former study abroad students).
Parents and Families
Here's how you can assist your student:
  • Ask your student about any forms they need to complete for their specific program.
  • Ensure that your student is sharing information with you about financial aid and costs of the program.
  • Most importantly, students need your support! This can be a very daunting process for some students and most, if not all, items are solely the responsibility of the student. 
More guidance
For additional information about preparing to go abroad, and your student may want to read the UNCG study abroad guide, Going Places

► How much will it cost? 
The programs offered through UNCG  vary in cost, depending on the features of the program, geographic location, length, inclusions in the program such as excursions and cultural activities, and the level of on-site support. Program cost estimates are provided on the budget sheet links on each program information page. It is absolutely possible to find a program that will work in just about any budget by considering a variety of factors when researching programs including: program duration and location, program type, cost of living in host country, and student's personal spending habits.

► Can Financial Aid help?
Financial aid and scholarships are definitely options! UNCG students studying on UNCG approved programs can use most components of their existing financial aid packages toward the cost of studying abroad. There are many, many scholarship and funding opportunities available to students both at UNCG and externally.  See the Funding your Program tab for more information.

► What about health and safety?
The Global Engagement Office at UNCG considers the health and safety of our students a top priority. GEO does a quarterly audit of active program locations to determine potential risks to student health and well-being using U.S. Department of State Travel Advisories and Drum Cussac Country Security Profiles, among other resources. In accordance with safety protocols, GEO does not currently send exchange students to regions included in a level 3 U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory. On an as needed basis, GEO will evaluate active programs located in heightened risk locations to determine if the program falls within an acceptable level of risk for UNCG.

Students should meet with a doctor prior to going abroad for a general health check-up and to ensure all routine vaccinations are up-to-date. They should also discuss with a doctor any chronic health concerns and discuss treatment/health maintenance abroad.

Mandatory international health insurance is provided to all students who are enrolled in a UNCG study abroad program. This is a comprehensive insurance plan that provides a wide variety of services for students abroad, including 24/7 emergency assistance.

Though it is not likely, a student may experience a personal emergency while studying abroad. UNCG Global Engagement Office staff offer orientation sessions and provide country-specific information to students that should help them to prepare for possible in-country scenarios, but it is impossible to predict and prevent every possible situation. In the event of an emergency, it is important to remain as calm as possible so that the student can communicate the issue to the proper authorities, medical professionals, host institution representatives, their families, and/or UNCG.