- Alina Selby ’14
- Hometown: Finleyville, PA
- Major: Mechanical engineering
I’ve always been interested in how things work and how I can make things more efficient.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Who can study abroad?
A: Mount Union students of any major can study abroad as long as they meet the GPA requirement specific to each study abroad site.
Q: Where can I go?
A: Mount Union students wishing to study abroad have the option of attending over 40 different institutions in 25 countries throughout Europe, Asia, Latin America, Africa, and Oceania.
Q: How long can I study abroad?
A: Students have the option of studying abroad for a month-long summer session, month-long winter session, for a semester-long fall or spring session, or for an entire academic year.
Q: How much does it cost?
A: The cost for study abroad during the academic year (not including summer) is unique to each student and reflects the financial package he or she earned to attend Mount Union. Generally speaking, it does not cost more to study abroad than to stay on campus and study at Mount Union. Costs such as airfare, passport, visa, etc, are additional costs.
Q: What is USAC?
A: USAC is the University Studies Abroad Consortium an organization which specializes in offering high quality study abroad programs, support and service to American and international college students wishing to gain the most from their experiences abroad. Their office is located at the University of Nevada, Reno. Their website is www.usac.unr.edu.
Q: When should I apply for a passport?
A: You should apply for a passport AS SOON AS POSSIBLE! Even if you are only in the initial stages of planning your study abroad experience, you should apply for your passport immediately! Because of the increased waiting period currently for passports (around 4-6 weeks), applying NOW will eliminate headaches later. For additional peace of mind (at twice the cost but highly recommended), opt for the expedited service which guarantees your passport will be returned within two weeks.
Q: Will I need a visa to study abroad?
A: International student visa regulations change frequently. For most countries, a visa is necessary for stays longer than 90 days. Students will need to check the website of the embassy of the country where they will be studying for the most up-to-date information regarding the application process for acquiring the appropriate visa.
Q: Do I have to know another language in order to study abroad?
A: No. Students do NOT need to know another language to study abroad. Though some of our programs are language-intensive (learning the language of the host country), most of the courses offered abroad are taught in English. In fact, some students choose to fulfill their Mount Union language requirement while studying abroad.
Q: Will my credits transfer?
A: Yes. All credits and grades earned abroad in one of our approved programs will transfer back to Mount Union. A transient credit form must be completed by the student prior to departure abroad, listing the courses to be taken while abroad and how they will transfer back to Mount. This form will be completed upon acceptance into your study abroad program.
Q: Will I have the opportunity to travel while abroad?
A: Absolutely. While abroad, most students have ample time to travel both in-country and (depending on location) out-of-country. This is one of the essential benefits of study abroad - to gain as many culturally-enriching experiences as possible.
Q: Are the locations abroad safe?
A: All of the destinations in which Mount Union sends students to study abroad are safe. We can assure you (and your parents) that, if they were not safe, we certainly would not send you there. In fact, most of the program destinations have been visited by our staff to ensure the safety of the location and facilities. With this said, students must be held responsible to act in a way deemed appropriate to the specific location. You will not be in America, and therefore, American rules are not applied. It is the responsibility of the student to observe and be informed of the social norms and appropriate ways to behave while abroad. Remember, you are a representative of this country, of Mount Union, and most importantly of yourself. So, please act accordingly and be respectful of the culture in which you are a visitor. You will certainly learn a great deal by doing so.
Q: Will I have a support network while abroad?
A: Yes. Most programs to which we send students abroad have a native Resident Director (plus additional staff). Their responsibilities are to organize the program logistics at the host institution abroad, to meet and orient students upon arrival, and to act as additional support and to provide guidance as issues arise while abroad.
Q: Why should I study abroad? What are the benefits?
A: Truthfully, the benefits of study abroad are countless. They are both tangible and intangible. Here are just a few:
- Gain the ability to adapt to a new environment, both personally and professionally;
- Experience outside of your comfort zone and interacting with people of different cultures will make you much more marketable to future employers;
- As our world has become smaller and more globally-interconnected, students put themselves at an extreme disadvantage if they don't gain some kind of international living/learning experience;
- Most importantly, by studying abroad you will expand your understanding of the world, yourself, and your home!