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Study Abroad:Funding Your Program

How to fund your study abroad experience

Your financial aid will travel with you for any approved exchange or study abroad program. In order to access financial aid for semester or year-long study abroad, you need to do the following:

  1. Go through the Office of Study Abroad to select a program or exchange which can be approved
    for at least 12 transfer credits (9 credits for graduate students);
  2. Have your Study Abroad advisor prepare a budget for your program which takes into account
    the following expenses: tuition, room and board, airfare, passport and visa, books, study abroad fee, and other charges related to education;
  3. Take the budget to the Financial Aid Office to meet with a financial aid counselor regarding re-assessment of your financial aid package.

Other than the budget, there is no special application for financial aid for study abroad. You simply need to insure that you have all regular application materials and other documentation on file in the Office of Financial Aid.

Financial aid can also be used for summer programs. Financial aid for the summer is taken out of what is "left over" from the previous year's package. In order to receive aid during the summer, undergraduates must take at least 6 credit hours. Many summer programs offer 6 credits. However, a student who takes a 3 credit course abroad must also enroll in a 3 credit course during another summer session to be eligible for aid. Graduate students need to be enrolled for 3 credits during the summer to be considered for financial aid.


  • Budgets for Fall programs will be reviewed beginning April 15.
  • Budgets for Spring programs will be reviewed beginning September 15.
  • Budgets for Summer programs will be reviewed beginning March 1. Students can often determine whether they are eligible for summer aid prior to this date.

The following types of aid are awarded by the Office of Financial Aid:

  • Pell Grant - undergraduates
  • Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant - undergraduates
  • Perkins Loan - undergraduates, graduates
  • Direct Stafford Loan - undergraduates, graduates
  • Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) - undergraduates

Students who receive any kind of scholarship or who plan to use VA benefits while studying abroad must notify both the Office of Study Abroad and the Office of Financial Aid.

Each student should check with the Office of Financial Aid to verify anticipated disbursement dates. In most cases, some or all of the financial aid award can be released prior to departure. Financial aid will be credited to the students' account and applied to program charges. If funds in excess of what is due are received, a refund check will be issued to the student.

Students who wish to apply for financial aid for the academic year following study abroad may be required to apply from overseas. Many spring participants should be able to file before they leave the country, but all full-year participants must file by mail or online from abroad after January 1.

ODU Grants and Scholarships

Deans' Education Abroad Awards
Deadlines: For Fall and Spring Semesters, April 15; Summer Session, February 15.

Deans' Education Abroad Awards are provided by ODU college Deans and the Office of International Programs to academically deserving students accepted for a study abroad program. Usually two or three awards of $1,000 each are available from each college for semester or academic year study abroad, and several summer awards (ranging from $250 -$400) are available from each college for study abroad. Eligibility: declared major, 2.5 cumulative GPA or higher, full-time enrollment, acceptance into a study abroad program approved by the Office of Study Abroad.

Contact the Office of Study Abroad for application materials.

Aalborg University Stipends
Deadlines: For Fall and Spring Semesters, April 15; Summer Session, February 15.

Aalborg University in Denmark is one of Old Dominion's exchange partners. This English-language exchange is specifically oriented toward students in the fields of Communication and International Studies. Stipends of up to $1,200 are often available from Aalborg University for semester or full-year exchange students.

Jane L. and Robert H. Weiner International Affairs Scholarship
Deadlines: For Fall and Spring Semesters, April 15; Summer Session, February 15.

Up to $2,000 awarded annually with priority given to a student with financial need who has been accepted for study at an ISEP member institution in a developing country.

Outside Scholarships
In addition to institutional financial aid, there are some outside scholarship opportunities for study abroad. A few which may be of interest to Old Dominion students include the following:

Bowman Travel Grants
This award is available for any student participating in a CIEE program to Central or South America, the Caribbean, Asia, or Africa. For more information on CIEE, visit the Office of Study Abroad or consult their website (www.ciee.org). Old Dominion is a co-sponsor of the CIEE program in the Dominican Republic.

Robert B. Bailey III Minority Student Scholarships
Also administered by CIEE, this award is available for minority students participating in a CIEE program in any region of the world.

Institute for International Public Policy Fellowship Program for Undergraduate Sophomores
The IIPP Fellowship Program, headed by the UNCF Special Programs Corporation, consists of a six-year sequence of intentionally designed education and training experiences critical to entry and advancement in international affairs careers. Program components include summer policy institutes, study abroad, intensive language training, internships, graduate school, and career counseling. Participation eligibility includes: sophomore standing, being of an underrepresented minority as determined by UNCF, US citizen or permanent resident, at least a 3.2 GPA on a 4.0 scale, strong demonstrated interest in international affairs (all majors encouraged to apply), and critical analysis and excellent leadership skills. Please visit www.uncfsp.org/iipp for more information.

Association of Teachers of Japanese Bridging Scholarships
This award is available for students majoring in any field who are studying for a semester or a year in Japan, and would be particularly appropriate for Old Dominion students participating in the exchange program to Kansai Gaidai. The scholarship is worth approximately $2,500 (one semester) to $4,000 (academic year). Visit their website (http://www.colorado.edu/ealld/atj/Bridging/scholarships.html) or inquire with the Office of Study Abroad for further information and application.

Freeman-ASIA Program
Freeman Awards for Study in Asia (Freeman-ASIA) provides scholarships for U.S. undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia. The award assists the recipient with the cost of the study abroad program and related expenses, including airfare, basic living costs, local transportation, books, etc. Interested students should apply to Freeman-ASIA in the academic term before their study abroad program begins. Applications must also be endorsed by both the study abroad adviser and the financial aid adviser by the specified deadline. For more information: http://www.iie.org/en/programs/freeman-asia. Contact: Office of International Programs, 683-5195, oip@odu.edu.

NSEP Boren Awards
Boren Awards provide up to $30,000 to US graduate students and up to $20,000 to US undergraduates for area study, language study, or increased language proficiency. Students must study abroad in areas of the world that are critical to US interests and underrepresented in study abroad, including Africa, Asia, Central & Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin American, and the Middle East. The countries of Western Europe, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand are excluded. All students must study the language and culture of their selected country. Boren scholars study less commonly taught languages, including but not limited to Arabic, Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Swahili. French and Spanish may be funded under certain limitations. Contact campus advisor Steve Bell in the Office of Study Abroad at sdbell@odu.edu and visit the Boren Awards website at: http://borenawards.org. Campus deadline for applications: January 22, 2013. All application materials must be turned in to the Office of Study Abroad by this date.

Fulbright Fellowships
For graduating seniors and graduate students; support study and research in many fields of study in most regions of the world. Deadline for completed online applications is October 1, 2012. A campus interview is required and will be scheduled after receipt of applications. Visit the Fulbright website at http://us.fulbrightonline.org/. Contact: Office of International Programs, 683-5195, oip@odu.edu.

Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program
The Gilman Scholarship Program provides assistance of $5,000 to study abroad for students receiving federal Pell Grant funding at the time of application. Award amounts vary depending on the length of study and student need with the average award being approximately $4,000. Applicants must be US citizens, be undergraduate students in good standing and be applying to or have been accepted for a program of study abroad eligible for credit by the home institution. Approximately 1,200 scholarships were awarded during the 2008-09 academic year. Students who apply for and receive the Gilman International Scholarship to study abroad are then eligible to receive an additional $3,000 Critical Need Language Supplement from the Gilman Scholarship Program for a total possible award of up to $8,000. Fifty Critical Need Language Supplements were offered to Gilman Scholarship recipients during the 2008-2009 academic year. Study in Cuba or a country currently under a Travel Warning issued by the US Department of State is not allowed. Application materials and instructions must be downloaded from the website at http://www.iie.org/en/Programs/Gilman-Scholarship-Program

German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)
Scholarships to highly qualified undergraduate students for study abroad, university language or summer courses, senior thesis research and/or internships in the Federal Republic of Germany.

Australian Government Endeavour Awards

The Endeavour Awards is the Australian Government's internationally competitive, merit-based scholarship program providing opportunities for citizens of the Asia-Pacific, Middle East, Europe and Americas to undertake study, research and professional development in Australia.

The Endeavour Awards aim to:

  • Develop on-going educational, research and professional linkages between individuals, organisations and countries;
  • Provide opportunities for high achieving individuals from Australia and overseas to increase their skills and enhance their global awareness;
  • Contribute to Australia's position as a high quality education and training provider, and a leader in research and innovation.

Endeavour Awards are given out in two rounds per year, with various scholarships and grants given out in each round. For more information, please see: http://www.deewr.gov.au/INTERNATIONAL/ENDEAVOURAWARDS/Pages/Home.aspx

A number of competitive graduate scholarships also exist for international study and research. The Office of Study Abroad has a listing of these scholarships and the ODU faculty and staff members who serve as advisors.

Students may also find the following search engines helpful for locating outside funding: