Early financial planning is essential when considering studying abroad. Whether you plan to self-fund, utilize financial aid, or apply for scholarships to pay for your experience, studying abroad is an investment that not only takes time to save for but requires detailed and timely investigation to better understand how your current resources may be applicable (not all aid is directly transferable).
In order to adequately plan, you should obtain a preliminary overview of how much your experience will cost to help guide you as you explore ways to fund your studies.
Depending on when you go, what you take, and where/who you study through, some of your experience may be eligible for financial aid and you should take time to speak with your financial aid counselor to learn what pieces might be covered and to better understand what options are available to you.
Outside of loans, there are a myriad of scholarship or grant opportunities to explore. We have compiled a short list of scholarship opportunities to get you started in your search. Students already on Alfred State scholarship can occasionally apply the tuition portion of the scholarship towards their study abroad experience. Again, we recommend speaking with your financial aid counselor to determine what, if any, of your campus scholarship might be applicable.
We hope that you take time to really investigate funding options! Get creative with how you search study abroad scholarships and think about what makes you a strong candidate. Merit is often placed on academic standing but in the world of study abroad, many other factors regarding your personal life and location of study can play an important role in what type of financial opportunities you have access to. For instance, first generation college-goers, veterans, minority groups, or specialized language studies can all be searchable categories with regard to funding study abroad experiences.
It is also worthwhile to investigate funding opportunities within your own community - businesses, places of worship, and not-for-profits sometimes have money earmarked for community members wishing to advance themselves in some meaningful way.
Or look into starting a crowd-sourcing effort online and get your friends and family involved in your efforts.
Do not assume that study abroad is out of your reach! Be proactive, research opportunities, talk with your financial aid counselor, get creative, and start planning and saving early.