Money Matters: Academic Year Study Abroad
Can I use financial aid to study abroad?
Yes! Princeton financial aid travels with you if you study abroad during the academic year. Students on financial aid who receive approval from the Office of International Programs for a semester or year abroad are eligible for financial aid based on the cost of the program and amount of their family contribution.
What types of expenses are covered by financial aid?
Financial aid covers the cost of attendance, which includes reasonable expenses related to your study abroad program (e.g. tuition, housing, meals, required student fees, books, daily living expenses, one round-trip coach airfare ticket, passport and visa fees, and required immunizations). Financial aid does not cover the cost of entertainment, optional travel, sightseeing, luxury accommodation, extended stays abroad, or multiple trips home.
Where and when should I submit my request for financial aid for the costs of studying abroad?
- The basic budget information and Princeton billing information will be listed in the Program Budget section of the Global Programs System (GPS). This is for your reference.
Once your program is approved, you must log in to fill out your financial aid budget form, which should include the basic program budget that has been provided as well as costs that reflect your specific expenses for the semester/year. The Office of International Programs will confirm your costs and forward the approved budget to the Financial Aid Office.
- Deadlines to submit financial aid forms through GPS: August 1 for fall semester and December 1 for spring semester.
Will my financial aid award change if I study abroad?
- If your combined expenses for a semester away (or a full year away) are more than the cost of staying at Princeton, University grant funds will be assigned to meet the additional costs. The normal student term-time job expectation will be replaced with a subsidized student loan.
- If your total budget for the semester (or year) is less than Princeton’s, the self-help portion of your award will be reduced, then your grant aid.
When and how will I find out how much financial aid I’ll receive for study abroad?
Before the beginning of your semester abroad, the Financial Aid Office will send you a detailed letter outlining the costs and how the financial aid will be used to cover your expenses. Financial aid is not normally released until Princeton’s registration date in the fall or the first day of classes in the spring.
Can I use financial aid to pay for early program fees (e.g. deposits, new passport, etc.)? How do I request an early release of funds?
Normally we assume that you will use part of your family contribution for these early expenses. If this is not possible, you should discuss your situation with a financial aid counselor.
My program is asking that I pay my program invoice before my financial aid is scheduled to be released. What should I do?
- If you/your family are able to pay the program before your aid is released, you should do so, and you’ll be reimbursed by Princeton later.
- If you/your family is unable to pay the invoice, the Financial Aid Office can send a letter to your program stating when your financial aid will be released and ask for an extension of the payment due date. You should provide the name and the billing address of the program as well as any required forms. If necessary, the Financial Aid Office may be able to release funds early. Contact a financial aid counselor to request a letter or an early release of funds.
I’m applying for a visa and need a letter confirming my expenses are covered by Princeton financial aid. Whom should I contact?
You should contact the Financial Aid Office. They will provide a letter explaining Princeton’s aid policies, which you can submit with your visa application. You should provide the address of the appropriate Consulate where you’ll apply.
I’m interested in applying for outside scholarships, either through my program provider (IES Abroad, CIEE, etc.) or external sources (Boren, Gilman). How will an outside scholarship affect my Princeton financial aid?
If you are receiving need-based aid from Princeton University, any outside scholarships will be included in your Princeton financial aid package (i.e. your financial aid award will not increase with the addition of an outside scholarship). You can find a description of Princeton’s policies in Terms of Your 2015-16 Financial Aid Award (.pdf)