Despite what some may believe, study away does not have to be expensive. There are many low-cost study-away alternatives at Susquehanna, including both short-term and semester-long programs. There are a number of programs identified for their affordability. But there are also a number of important considerations in choosing the most affordable option:
Many students work year-round, so attending a GO Short program means taking less time away from a job, an important factor that can make this choice the most affordable. The cost of each GO Short program is determined by its length, distance from campus, and cost of living in the area. Most GO Short programs in the U.S. and Central America are quite affordable, but don’t overlook programs that go to other parts of the world either! In some cases the low cost of living in another country has allowed us to keep costs down. And since need-based aid is available to cover a portion of the costs to fulfill the cross-cultural requirement on a GO short program this will be the best choice for many students.
Susquehanna students who choose to attend a GO Long (semester) program also continue to have access to their university financial aid. All state and federal aid, as well as Susquehanna need-based and merit aid can be applied to study away on these approved programs. This is not always the case at other colleges, but at Susquehanna study away is an integral part of the curriculum so we have chosen to support it fully. Unfortunately work-study funds cannot be accessed, since you cannot work for the university while off campus.
Students who choose a GO Short program may qualify for need-based financial aid in the form of a GO Short grant. These programs are offered outside of the typical academic year, so standard aid packages do not apply, but need-based GO Short grants may be awarded to students to fulfill the cross-cultural requirement. During their first semester at SU, students receive notification from the Financial Aid Office indicating the portion of GO Short costs that will be provided by the university in the form of a GO Short grant.
Some of our study away program partners also offer scholarships. There are often both need-based and merit scholarships available and many of our students have received such aid. These scholarships may impact the overall university financial aid package, depending on the total expense of the program. In many cases program partner scholarships may replace student loans. Other partners offer travel grants.
There are many ways to keep costs low while studying away. Choose a smaller city or a town in a rural area that will have a lower cost of living than the big capital city. Pay attention to where and what locals eat and drink. Not only will you save money, but you also will learn more about the culture!
Remember, the true cost of a study-away program does not include extensive travel to lots of other countries and cities. While some students may choose to take such trips, they should be thought of as vacations, just as they would be if you were on campus. In fact, students who spend more time in the city and region of their program always have a much more satisfying cross-cultural experience than those who visit a different country and city every weekend. There can be great value in taking the time to really getting to know another place by exploring it deeply. Such students make real connections with people and institutions that can turn into opportunities for further study, internships, jobs, and lifelong friendships.
There are many programs with a total cost—including airfare—that is the same or less than if you stayed on campus. See a list of programs.
There are also many more programs where room and board cost will be about the same as if you stayed on campus. And even with airfare, most of these only cost about $500–1,000 more than a semester at Susquehanna.