Funding your Exchange or Study Abroad Experience

The most important thing to know here is this: your UTC financial aid will apply to any of our approved study abroad and exchange programs included in the programs list on this website. This includes your federal aid, state aid, UTC scholarships, and outside scholarships (be sure to verifty this with the organization that offered you the scholarship to be certain).

Visit our Scholarships & Financial Aid section to see additional study abroad scholarships that may be available to you based on eligibility. 

Keep in mind that every program will have a different program fee, and this depends on a number of factors, including but not limited to:
  • Which organization you choose to study through (UTC faculty-led program, ISEP, a Bilateral Exchange, etc.)
  • What each program provides for you (for example: tuition, room, and board or perhaps tuition only)
  • Where you choose to go
  • How long you go
  • Whether or not you are required to obtain a visa, and how much it costs for a particular country, duration, and visa type
  • What your spending habits are like (!)
  • What financial aid you receive  

Another important thing to keep in mind: our Study Abroad Advisors are here to help you navigate these program options and associated fees, and help determine the best fit for you based on your interests and your budget. Don't rush ahead and decide you can't afford to a Study Abroad Advisor first!

Use this interactive budgeting tool to help you compare costs for study abroad program(s) with the estimated costs for studying at UTC!
Program Cost Comparison Budget Sheet

**NOTE**  Remember that the currency where you intend to study will be different than the U.S. dollar! For help calculating exchange rates visit this website.

Search for a Scholarship

Start Searching Early

The earlier you start researching, the better your chances of getting really significant funding. For best results, start researching possible scholarships one to two years prior to when you plan to go abroad. Most scholarship deadlines are well before your program deadline, often a year or more prior to the actual award year.

Look for All Sorts of Scholarships

Remember that you may be able to apply general scholarships toward international experiences, so extend your search beyond study abroad scholarships. Also check with the program sponsor about scholarships designated specifically for their program participants.

Program Selection Affects Your Scholarship Options

More scholarships are available to students going to non-traditional sites, i.e. outside of Europe and Australia. By going off the beaten path, you may be able to find less expensive opportunities with more scholarship money available. In addition, many scholarships or program fee reductions are available for students who choose to stay for a year versus a semester.

Tips for Writing Scholarship Essays

If a scholarship application requires an essay, answer all questions completely and thoughtfully. Proofread your essay carefully—review spelling, grammar, and structure as well as content—then revise your essay. If the scholarship application allows, ask someone to read your essay and give feedback. You are strongly encouraged to obtain feedback on your essay for scholarships awarded through the Learning Abroad Center; use campus resources, such as one of the writing centers or a tutor, to assist you. Save a copy of your essay to use as a
template for future essays. Chances are, other scholarships will require a similar essay, and you would only need to make minor revisions to your existing one.

Creative Suggestions for Raising and Saving Money

Be creative and diligent in finding ways to fund your experience abroad. Community organizations or your neighbors may be willing to help fund you. When asking for contributions, explain how you intend to use the money or donated items. Let them know what this experience will mean to you, and share something about yourself. In return for financial assistance, offer to contribute your services or knowledge once you return. This can include sharing your photos or stories, making a presentation, cooking a meal, promoting an educational or business exchange, or writing a newsletter article for a high school, church, or library program. You may also offer to update your donors with a monthly email newsletter while you are abroad.

More Suggestions for Funding & Saving

  • Find work or pick up extra hours during breaks to save up. Plan early and spend carefully now so you have enough time to save.
  • Check local libraries, high schools, alumni associations, religious organizations, chambers of commerce, city halls, Lions Clubs, travel agents, media (TV, newspapers, radio stations), country clubs (some will offer scholarships to students who worked there as caddies!), etc. for scholarships, or ask them to sponsor a pancake breakfast or raffle on your behalf.
  • Contact local heritage organizations for funding, especially if you are a member of that community or if you are planning on studying abroad in a country relevant to the organization's members. Examples include the Swedish-American Society and the Japan American Society.
  • Seek professional organizations in the area in which you plan to work, or are working, and inquire about grants or scholarships.
  • Ask credit unions, banks, or major corporations for donations or scholarships.
  • Have your parents ask their employers about scholarships for children of employees.
  • Ask a relative for a low- or no-interest loan.
  • Forego birthday and holiday gifts in exchange for financial assistance (gifts or loans).
  • Ask your friends and neighbors to help contribute money or used items, such as a backpack or travel gear. Also ask local stores to contribute supplies.
  • Sell your non-essential items at a garage sale.
  • If you have a talent, do artwork, bake cookies, or build crafts or similar items and sell them.
  • Ask your fraternity or sorority to sponsor you.
  • Organize a car wash in your neighborhood.
  • Arrange for someone to sublet your apartment while you are gone. You will not be able to receive financial aid to maintain an apartment, car payments, or other expenses at home while you are away.
  • Offer to let a relative or friend use your car while you are gone in exchange for helping you make your car payments. Or, if your car is paid off, ask for a small amount of money.
  • Shop around early for your international airline tickets. The internet does not always give the best prices. Try the newspaper, local travel agents, or look into group flight options offered by the program provider. Ask for a student discount whenever possible.
  • Look into alternative student loans if you do not qualify for need-based financial aid.