Making Preparations!

The opportunity to study abroad will add significantly to students' academic and personal dimensions by enabling them to develop a much broader understanding of the world. As you study, live, travel, and meet new people in the country you will be studying in, you will experience a heightened satisfaction from having immersed yourself in another culture. An amazing journey awaits you!

Financial Planning

Before Study Abroad

Before Study Abroad

First Step

A First Step information session with a study abroad team member in the Office of International Education is required for all study abroad applicants as a starting point. The session will guide you in how to select the best program, complete a study abroad application, and discuss course approval, transfer credit and registration processes.

Before scheduling an appointment, please complete the following tasks:

  • Review the study abroad web pages (
  • Explore study abroad program possibilities by asking yourself these key questions:
    • How long do you want to go abroad?
    • When would you like to go abroad?
    • What do you hope to accomplish while abroad?
    • Do you want to fulfill major course requirements or take core curriculum courses?
    • Do you want to improve or learn a foreign language?
    • Do you want to live with a host family?
    • Do you want to stay in a big city or a small town?
    • Do you want to incorporate an internship into your experience?
  • Begin reviewing course equivalencies for your intended study abroad program by consulting the USG Goes Global equivalencies list, if participating in one of the European Council programs, or obtaining copies of foreign course syllabi to review during your First Step information session. If you need assistance securing foreign course syllabi, the Office of International Education will be happy to provide assistance.
  • Complete the online Study Abroad Transfer Credit Form (log-in here)

Ready to get started? Schedule an appointment!

The Office of International Education is located in the Hargett Administration Building.

Academic Advising

After completing the First Step information session, you need to schedule an appointment to meet with your academic advisor to discuss your study abroad plans. Before meeting with your advisor, you should review your DegreeWorks audit in conjunction with your study abroad program materials. Bring an up-to-date copy of your DegreeWorks audit report to the meeting, as well as the Study Abroad Transfer Credit Form (log-in here) to complete with approval from your academic advisor.

Financial Planning

Once you have approval for study abroad courses you plan to enroll in with your academic advisor's permission, please contact the Office of Financial Aid to schedule a counseling meeting to determine eligibility for financial aid, including Pell Grant, Federal Direct Loans, and/or HOPE Scholarship, to use towards payment of a study abroad program. Please refer to the Study Abroad Using Financial Aid information sheet prior to meeting with your financial aid counselor. The Office of Financial Aid can be reached by phone at 912.279.5722 or by email at

Career Counseling

Students are encouraged to meet with the Director of Career Development, Brian Weese, before leaving on a study abroad trip to discuss potential career paths or how to begin thinking about careers in relation to your international travel. including how you feel about living or working abroad and ways to get professional experience while you are overseas.


Students will need to obtain a passport and ensure it will be valid for at least six months beyond the expected stay abroad
  • Take a photocopy of the signature and photo page of your passport, visa, and other essential documents for ease in replacing them if lost or stolen. Email this to yourself and pack a copy in a secure place separate from your passport.
  • Leave a photocopy of these items with a close friend or family member who could fax it to you if you lose all copies and need to replace your passport while abroad.


In many countries, students are required to obtain a visa in order to study for a summer, semester, or year. To learn more about visas, visit U.S. Department of State Visa Information.

International Students

To maintain your nonimmigrant status, international students need to contact the Office of International Education before traveling on a study abroad to obtain a travel signature on their I-20/DS-2019.

Pre-Departure Orientation

The Office of International Education hosts pre-departure orientation sessions for students preparing to go overseas—attendance is mandatory for students on non-faculty-led programs. Orientation covers student conduct, preparing for culture shock and cultural adjustment, maintaining good health, and diversity abroad. Students who have completed their study abroad application and associated requirements will be notified by email of the pre-departure meeting.

During Study Abroad

During Study Abroad

Cultural Adjustment

During their study abroad program, students may experience physical and emotional discomfort from being in another country or in a place different from their place of origin. In order to effectively manage that change, the following suggestions are offered:
  • Be flexible; tolerate ambiguity; expect things to be different.
  • Be patient; don’t try to understand everything immediately.
  • Give yourself permission to fail; experiment with new customs.
  • Develop a sense of humor; don’t take things too seriously.
  • Identify cultural informants who can help you learn.
  • If problems arise, assume your share of the responsibility.

Cultural adjustment occurs in phases and students may experience the various phases with differing levels of intensity.

Students can also prepare for cultural adjustment before going abroad by reading books about the culture, travel guide books, local magazines or newspapers and by meeting people from the country you will be visiting. The web resource “What’s Up With Culture?” is also a useful tool aimed at enhancing successful cultural adjustment for study abroad participants.

Community & Conduct

Students studying abroad are expected to uphold the same behavioral standards as a member of the Mariner community; you have the honor of being an ambassador for CCGA! As such, students are held to the same standards as other students as outlined in the CCGA Code of Student Conduct. Please review this document before departing for your study abroad program.

Violations of the Code of Conduct, Academic Integrity Policy, or other Federal/State/Local laws/Laws of a Foreign Country are subject to disciplinary action by the College regardless of whether the action occurred on or off-campus as long as the student is currently enrolled at the College.

Before a student travels abroad, s/he will be asked to complete the following forms:

Sustainable Travel

Review the below resources if you would like to minimize your ecological footprint while traveling abroad!

After Study Abroad

After Study Abroad


Reverse culture shock is part of the re-entry adjustment process after returning home from an education abroad experience. Reverse culture shock may include many feelings of boredom/frustration/uncertainty, negativity towards American behavior, reverse homesickness, feelings of resistance/resentment toward family and friend. The length of time that the re-adjustment phase lasts typically varies from student-to-student and depends on the individual. The important thing is to be patient with yourself during this adjustment period.


Staying Involved After You Return!

Once you return from study abroad, there are ways to stay globally minded. Not only are there opportunities to work or volunteer with the Study Abroad Office, there are also internationally themed courses, groups, and organizations.

Market Your International experience

While your experiences are fresh in your mind, think abou how to describe what you've learned about yourself and the world to a potential employer or in a graduate school application. If you took specific courses that demonstrate a knowledge base that is relevant to a job you are applying for. If the courses you took were not directly related to a job you are applying for, a brief description of your study abroad experience might be more appropriate than a list of course titles.

Health and Safety

Health & Safety

Travel Preparation

The U.S. Department of State travel website has resources for students abroad and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention has location-specific packing lists for students traveling abroad and a page devoted to study abroad.


The Center for Disease Control and Prevention provides immunization information. The EPA’s insect repellant calculator or the CDC’s bug bite prevention page are great resources! The CDC has an app called "Can I Eat This?" that can help you figure out if food is safe to eat.

Safety and Security

The College of Coastal Georgia does not send students for study abroad in countries under current US Department of State Travel Warnings. Students are strongly advised against personal travel in their free time to countries under current Travel Warnings - travel advisories

Emergency Response Procedures

In the event of an emergency or crisis, the first point of contact for students should always be the Faculty or Program Director. They are well prepared to lead an education abroad program and are trusted on behalf of the institution to lead the program. There are situations where students may not feel comfortable and in those cases, should follow faculty protocol.

Health and Accident Insurance

The University System of Georgia has negotiated a USG insurance policy for all study abroad participants in University System of Georgia study abroad programs with CISI (Cultural Insurance Services International). If you would like more information on study abroad insurance for USG study abroad participants (students and accompanying faculty/staff), or you are a currently enrolled participant you may find more information online at CISI USG Study Abroad Programs.

Beginning August 1, 2018; the following rates are effective:

  • Daily ... $1.25
  • Semester ... $172.00
  • Year-long ... $378.00

Diversity and Inclusion


If you are a student who is interested in participating in a study abroad program and have a disability or a condition that may affect your academics, traveling, and overall experience in the program, please make an appointment with the Office of Disability Services. You can contact Jennifer Zak, Director of Counseling and Disability Services, at 912.279.5806, or

Students abroad face a new cultural context around issues like race/ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, and disability. Customs, beliefs, laws, facilities, and social practices are likely different than in the United States. If you have questions or concerns regarding study abroad, please contact Brittany Garcia, Coordinator of Student Engagement and Intercultural Programs, at 912.279.5805, or

The resources below may be helpful when considering a study abroad opportunity.

  • Mobility Abroad
    Students with a disability or a condition that may affect their education abroad are offered support resources for international travel.
  • First Generation Students Abroad
    Students who are the first in their family to go to college and offered the opportunity to study abroad have several resources at their disposal to plan for an international experience.
  • LGBTQ Students Abroad
    For students who identify with the LBGTQ community, studying abroad resources are available to learn about gender expression and identity abroad.
  • Religion and Spiritual Life Abroad
    The Pluralism Project engages people with the realities of religious diversity. The website offers extensive information on world religions and focuses on the meaning of religious pluralism.

  • Women Abroad
    Students of all genders may encounter cultural, legal, and social issues affecting gender roles and relationships studying abroad.

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