Steps to Study Abroad

The planning stages outlined below will help you have the best study abroad experience possible. We recommend that you begin this process at least one year prior to the semester you plan on studying abroad.

Complete the Study Abroad 101

Attend an in-person Study Abroad 101 session or view the online Study Abroad 101 module to learn about: 

  • Program options
  • Available regions
  • Application deadlines
  • Scholarships
  • Financial aid
  • And much more!

Meet with a Peer Adviser or Campus Liaison

Peer Advisers 

Education abroad peer advisers are Penn State study abroad returnees who have enjoyed their experiences so much that they volunteer their time to advise other students on education abroad opportunities at Penn State. Each peer adviser can explain program options, give an overview of the study abroad process, as well as provide information about their experience abroad.

Visit our Peer Adviser Website

Visit our website to learn more about our 2020-2021 Education Abroad peer advisers and how to schedule a virtual advising appointment with them.

Commonwealth Campus & World Campus Contacts 

Each of the Penn State campuses has an education abroad liaison who can provide guidance on the study abroad process. Fill out the Education Abroad Interest Form or look up the liaison and links to other resources on your campus to learn more. 

Research Education Abroad Opportunities

First ask yourself, "What do I want to do?" instead of "Where do I want to go?"

Tip: Utilize the “advanced search” to compare program courses, dates, costs, and more!  

Make an Academic Plan

  • Education Abroad Course Planning Tool: Use this tool to put together a list of primary and alternate courses that fit into your 4-year academic plan. 

  • Working with your academic adviser: Bring the completed Education Abroad Course Planning Tool to your academic adviser to discuss how the courses you plan to take abroad will fit into your degree requirements. 

  • College Representatives:  Many Penn State colleges have advisers that can help you choose a program that matches your personal and academic goals. These advisers can also help 2+2 students planning to transfer to University Park.  

Find Your University Park College Representative

Education Abroad encourages all students to contact the international programs/study abroad coordinator in their respective college on the University Park campus while planning a study abroad program. These coordinators are an excellent resource for students and can help with the following:

  • Selecting a program that will fit with the student's academic plan
  • Identifying programs that are tailored to the student's major
  • Notifying the student of any college- or department-specific policies regarding study abroad
Global Programs University Park College Representatives
College Name Title Office
Agricultural Sciences Ketja Lingenfelter Assistant Director for Student Global Engagement 135 Ag. Admin
Arts & Architecture Kyrie Harding Academic Advising Manager 104 Borland
Bellisario College of Communications Mary Sergeant Academic Adviser 204 Carnegie
Division of Undergraduate Studies (DUS) Patricia Schempp Academic Adviser 121 Grange
Education Leila Bradaschia Director of International Programs 233 Chambers
Earth & Mineral Sciences Michael Gordon Academic Adviser 014 Deike
Eberly College of Science Vacant Global Experiences Coordinator 418 Kern
Engineering Sara Kuhlman Coordinator of International Experiences  208 Hammond
Health & Human Development Dennis Shea Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies and Outreach 345 HHD Building
Information Science & Technology Angela K. Miller Director, Undergraduate Recruiting & Student Engagement E131 Westgate
The Liberal Arts Susan Knell Director, Career Enrichment Network 101 Sparks
Smeal College of Business Elizabeth Labrin International Programs Coordinator (Academic Adviser) 202 Business
Schreyer Honors College Richard Stoller Coord. of Academic Advising/International Programs 10 Schreyer

Meet with an Education Abroad Adviser

Education abroad advisers work with a specific regional portfolio and can help answer questions about your country of interest including program selection, the application process, academics abroad, pre-departure processes, and cultural preparation. 

  • Scheduled appointments: You can meet with an education abroad adviser individually by scheduling an appointment with the appropriate adviser in Starfish. Phone and video-chat appointments are available for students not located at University Park. 
    • Please note that all advising appointments for the spring 2020 semester have been moved to remote advising via Zoom.
  • Walk-ins: Education abroad will not be holding walk-in advising hours during the remote learning period.

Research Funding Opportunities

  • Funding opportunities are available to study abroad students through scholarships. 

  • Global Programs, individual colleges, and academic departments, and other resources outside the university all have scholarships available.  

Submit Your Application

  • Read the instructions on our How to Apply page 

  • Be sure to complete all requirements by the application deadline for the term you are applying. Best of luck!