With some programs we may be able to give an application extension, but be sure to contact your study away advisor BEFORE the deadline to request an extension.
Yes, though we recommend the recommender be from SSU. If this is your first semester here at Sonoma State University, or you are an incoming transfer student, you may need to get a recommendation from someone at your previous community college or institution. If you have any further questions about who to get recommendations from, you should speak to your study away advisor.
Sometimes the automatic email sent to faculty are directed to Spam/Junk. Be sure to tell them to check their SPAM folders within a couple days of you submitting their information in the online application. If they cannot find it or don’t receive it, email the study away advisor. The study abroad advisor is able to resend the link, and be sure to contact the study away advisor right away if you need to request for this to be done. However, it is imperative that you speak with your professor beforehand so that they know to either save or bookmark the email that they will receive with the recommendation form link.
NO, you cannot get a recommendation from a work supervisor. Do not request recommendations from employers, university staff, or administrators who have not had you as a student in a class.
That depends on the program. CSU IP, Direct Exchange, and Faculty-Led have no application fees. There is a fee to apply to NSE, including NSE Study Abroad. The application fee is $200, but students who apply by the Preferred Deadline receive a $25 discount. Furthermore, DACA and EOP students receive a $25 application fee discount. The NSE application fee in non-refundable.
Other programs also may have an application fee, or what is more common is a deposit after you are accepted. Be sure to read over all application and financial requirements.
If a student has a prescription for a needed medication, it is important they discuss studying abroad with their doctor. Their doctor may be able to help them figure out how to get the medication while the student is abroad. In some cases the doctor may be able to provide the student with enough of the medication for the student’s study abroad term, or they will need to figure out how they can refill the prescription while abroad. The student should also consult their insurance coverage regarding their medical needs. This information also applies to prescriptions such as contact lenses, birth control, etc.
That depends on the program. Generally, there are three types of housing options when studying away; living in on-campus housing, off-campus housing with other students that may or may not be sponsored by the host university or program, or staying with a host family. Different programs will have different combinations of these options available. Students will find out more about their housing selection after being accepted into the program and/or by the host university.
For students participating in NSE domestically, of course they are able to work as they are still in the U.S. For students studying abroad internationally, that will depend on the visa regulations of their host country. Some countries allow those on a student visa the ability to work a limited number of hours per week, such as Sweden, Denmark, the UK, and Australia, while other countries do not allow students to work while on a student visa, such as Spain and Italy. Ultimately, it is up to the student to be familiar with their visa requirements and regulations.
A benefit of participating in a SSU study away program is that all classes are guaranteed to transfer back, though it is up to the student by working with their academic department to make sure they are taking the right courses. The Study Away Programs page lists whether courses taken on specific programs will count as in-resident units or as transfer units.
The purpose of this section is to collect emergency contact information. Be sure to complete this section with correct and updated information for those whom you would want the program to contact in case of an emergency. Please note that it is only in emergency situations that those listed would be contacted. Those listed will not have access to your application nor your personal, academic, or other study away information.
That depends on the program, and what financial aid applies to the different programs can be found on the Study Away Programs page. When discussing study away, there are generally two types of financial aid - Federal Financial Aid and CA State-Based Aid. Federal Financial Aid includes the Pell grant, federal loans, and any external scholarships the student may have received that do not depend on the student attending a university in a particular state. CA State-Based Aid is any financial aid that is dependent on attending school in California,at a CSU, or at SSU, which includes Cal Grants, State University Grants (SUG), Middle-class Scholarship, EOP Grants, CSU Waivers, and SSU Scholarships. To see which SSU programs can use the different kinds of financial aid, be sure to check out the Study Away Programs page! Veterans and dependents of Veterans should contact the VA representative in the Financial Aid Office to understand how government assistance can apply to study away programs.
For CSU IP, NSE Home Pay, and SSU Exchange Programs, all financial aid applies and can be used towards program costs, except for work-study.
Participating in an external program is generally not recommended, particularly during an academic semester. Courses taken on an external program cannot be guaranteed to transfer back, and will be evaluated once the transcripts are received. Courses that do transfer back will count as transfer credit. Students will need to take a leave of absence from SSU, and therefore will also not be able to use any financial aid while participating in an external program.
Yes! You can participate in a study away program your final year/semester however, it may delay your official graduation. In order to officially award your degree we need official transcripts and for your ARR to be all green. It can take several months (approximately 4-6 months) for an international institution to send official transcripts and for SSU to process them, and it can take longer if they need to go through a study abroad program office (CSU International Programs, USAC, etc.). How long this process can take will depend on location and program, so be sure to talk with the study away advisor if you plan to study away your final year/semester to discuss how long this could delay your graduation as well as other factors to consider.
Yes, of course! It may require additional research when selecting a program/location, planning prior to departure, and communication with their advisors. Not all locations are sometimes appropriate for specific physical limitations, and not all international universities provide accommodations that are common in the U.S. It is important this research is done prior to selecting a program.
Terrific to hear! Planning ahead is a great way to stay on track with graduation, which includes planning out which classes you plan on taking leading up to your time studying away. Keep in mind that program deadlines are usually the semester before studying away, and you want to get started on the planning and application process the semester BEFORE the application deadlines, which means ideally students will get started a year in advance. Make sure to keep the study away advisor updated on your plans and timeline!
In the meantime, there are two things you can do to help prepare:
1. Make Your Academic Plan
If you know where you are going to study away, then you can view the classes you likely have access to there. If you plan on taking major requirements while studying away, you can focus on taking GE and pre-requisite classes at SSU in the meantime. If your major is not available at the study away location, then you can optimize semesters in the meantime by taking major classes at SSU, and then planning out the GE, minor, and/or elective classes you will take while studying away. Keep in mind, there are some classes that can be more difficult to find when studying abroad, or they are not always appropriate for exchange students to take. Below is a list of classes you should plan on taking at SSU either before you study abroad or when you return to SSU. (A benefit of NSE is that pretty much ALL classes are available!)
- Critical Race Studies/Ethnic Studies/GE Area F
- CA Government/US Constitution graduation requirement (POLS 200)
- GE Area E (Lifelong Learning)
- US History
- GE Area B1, B2, and upper-division B for non-science majors
- You can only take upper-division GE on study away programs that count as in-residence, which are CSU IP, NSE, and SSU Exchange. If you are participating in a different program, you should plan on taking your upper-division GE classes at SSU.
2. Save Money!
Start making your financial plan regarding studying away, and start saving so you have more money to spend on personal travel and experiences. You can also find scholarships and grants that you can apply for. You can find tips and a list of scholarships available on our Financing Study Away webpage.
CSU International Programs
“Save” simply means that you have saved all of your answers in the online system, whereas “Submit” means that you are ready for your application to be reviewed. However, you are still able to go back and make changes after you click SUBMIT up until the application is marked as complete and officially submitted on the deadline.
Yes!! Please click “Submit” within each Questionnaire so that the advisor will be able to look over your application with you and make sure it’s all filled out correctly. You will still be able to make edits after clicking submit, up until the deadline.
Only advanced language programs require a foreign language recommendation. If your program does, then there will be a second box under ‘Recommendations’ that you’ll see when you fill out the application. Generally the following programs require a Foreign Language Recommendation: Chile, France (Paris only), Germany (direct enroll only), Mexico (Spanish only), Spain (Madrid & Granada only), and China (direct enroll). This recommendation should be filled out by a faculty member who has had you in a language class, or based on a 15 minute, in-person conversation. All information regarding the general faculty recommendation applies to the language recommendation as well.
National Student Exchange & NSE Study Abroad
There are more than 170-member campuses as a part of National Student Exchange. That means you have lots of options to choose from for your NSE experience! Here are some questions to ask yourself to help narrow down your options:
- Do you receive financial aid? If so, which payment plan is best for you?
- How competitive is it to get accepted to that campus? (Talk to Hope for details.)
- What are the GPA minimums for the host universities you are considering?
- Will you have access to your major courses? (Check under ‘Programs’ and ‘Conditions’ on the campus profile page.)
- What are you looking for in a campus? What type of college experience? Check out the different NSE campus categories and featured highlights.
- Is there a language requirement? (Canada, Puerto Rico, and NSE Study Abroad.)