Financial Aid

Studying Abroad is Affordable

Students studying abroad during the academic year on a program approved by Wellesley College remain eligible for financial aid.  The Office of International Study creates budgets for each study abroad program, which Student Financial Services uses to adjust student awards for the semester(s) abroad.

Please review our powerpoint presentation and our FAQ below & contact us with any questions.

FAQ about Financial Aid & Study Abroad


Can I use my Wellesley financial aid when I study abroad?

Students who normally receive financial aid for on-campus study will remain eligible for aid for their semester(s) abroad on a Wellesley approved study abroad program.


How are the additional expenses for study abroad taken into account when awarding aid?

The Office of International Study creates study abroad budgets for each study abroad program, which includes estimates for the following items, which together create the total Study Abroad Budget for the semester(s) abroad:

  • Wellesley tuition

  • Estimated Program Room & Board

  • Estimated Airfare (one round-trip from the East Cost of the U.S. to the program destination)

  • Estimated cost of Books & Supplies

  • Estimated cost for Personal expenses (including local transportation costs) 

  • Participation Confirmation Fee and Program Deposits (if applicable)

If the total cost of attendance abroad is more than the cost of attendance at Wellesley, your Wellesley grant will be increased so that your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) remains the same.


How much aid will I receive?

Study Abroad Budget - Expected Family Contribution = Financial Aid Package


How does Student Financial Services know I'm studying abroad?

You let Student Financial Services know when and where you are studying abroad when you submit the Study Abroad Agreement.  SFS has access to the Study Abroad Budgets and will adjust your aid accordingly after you've submitted this form.


When will my financial aid be available?

Financial aid will be deposited to your Wellesley student account on the same disbursement dates as when you are on campus.  This is generally 10 days before the semester starts. Award information can be viewed online through Banner Self-Service and you will be emailed when your adjusted award letter is available to view.


What if I receive full or almost full financial aid from Wellesley?

If the total amount charged by Wellesley is less than your aid, the difference will appear as a credit on your account once your aid has been disbursed.  This credit will be refunded to you if you submit a Refund Request Form and can be used to pay your study abroad program bills and expenses.  Refunds will be direct-deposited to the bank you have set up with the college.


Who pays for my room & board costs? My airline tickets?

You must pay directly for those expenses, even if you receive full financial aid from Wellesley you must request your refund from Wellesley and then use that money to pay your expenses.  Neither the OIS or SFS will directly pay any of your non-tuition expenses to your study abroad program. 


What if I can't afford to purchase airfare before my aid is available?

In most cases students will want to purchase airfare before their aid is available to lock in the best rates.  Many students will do so with a credit card. Another option is STA Travel's airfare deposit program.

Students whose programs begin before Wellesley's semester starts should contact SFS early. You may have leftover loan eligibility from this current year to help. SFS will review what resources are available. 


What if my housing and meal charges are due before I get my aid refund?

Check in with your study abroad program. Some programs provide payment deferals for students on financial aid. 

SFS is also available to assist. Students whose programs begin before Wellesley's semester starts should contact SFS early. You may have leftover loan eligibility from this current year to help. SFS will review what resources are available. 


If my program charges a comprehensive fee for tuition, room & board and flight, how will I know what I need to pay?

The program should have a break down of the costs on their web site, or available upon request. You can also get this information from Study Abroad Budget Spreadsheet. In general, Wellesley pays the tuition only and you will pay all non-tuition costs. 


What if I owe money to my study abroad program and my financial aid is greater than Wellesley's tuition?

You should contact your study abroad program. It may be possible to request a payment deferral by supplying information from SFS about your aid and disbursement dates. It is extremely important to contact your program well before the payment deadline to avoid late fees or other issues arising from late payment.

If your aid is greater than Wellesley's tuition you will probably be eligible for a refund. Once you've received notification from SFS that your cost of attendance and financial aid have been adjusted, you should submit your program's deferral request form. Please provide your Wellesley ID number and due date with all requests.


What about Work Study?

It will be replaced by a student loan.


What if I receive an outside scholarship?

Outside scholarships are used to reduce the “self-help” portion of a financial aid package- that is, student loans, and student contributions from summer earnings, before making any reduction in grant aid. 


What if I have used a payment plan in the past?

Your payment plan for the semester you are abroad should be set up for the balance due to Wellesley. You will need to use other resources for your airline ticket purchase, room, meals, and personal expenses.


What if I am participating in the 12-College Exchange?

Your Wellesley aid may be taken to all of the institutions that are part of the 12 College program. Please note, however that you are responsible for any costs that are higher than those at Wellesley.  Your Wellesley aid can not be increased to cover any additional expenses at a 12-College Exchange institution.  Please contact Student Financial Services to arrange for your aid to be transferred.


What if I have more questions?

The Office of International Studies and Student Financial Services hold joint information sessions each semester. All students planning to study abroad who receive financial aid will be invited to these sessions & required to attend at least one session the semester before going abroad? Session dates are posted on the OIS calendar