Traveling more affordable for qualifying students
Writer: Johnell Lytle-Davis
April 26, 2006
Filed under Uncategorized
Studying abroad in places like Thailand or China may be more affordable than students think.
The cost to study abroad for a semester usually ranges from $4,500 to $6,000, including airfare. The summer programs range from around $1,600 to $3,000, without airfare. But the cost of staying in Santa Barbara is not cheaper. The going rate for rent is usually from $600 to $800 per month, added to the cost of food, rent, transportation, books, classes and the skyrockets.
Associate Dean Carola Smith, director of the study abroad program, said many students complain that traveling the world is “too expensive.”
“I was one of those people,” said Kendra Czarnecki, a student gearing-up to study abroad. “I never thought I would be able to go.”
After careful planning and months of saving financial aid checks, Czarnecki will travel abroad in the fall.
“I don’t live an easy life,” Czarnecki said. “I work full time and I pay for my own rent, but [now traveling is] definitely a possibility. I just had to open my mind to [this].”
Students have several options to help with their financial needs. One is to file a detailed multi-paged Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
When filling out the personal statement for financial aid, a student must state they are going to be studying abroad. When the financial aid form is processed, depending on the students needs, the amount may be larger than if the student were to stay in Santa Barbara.
The college also offers scholarships for every program. It is also looking to create a scholarship that multiple students would receive, ranging from $300 to $500. The money could be used towards books, tuition or other trip expenses.
“I worked for about six months saving up spending money for the trip,” said Megan Macias, who participated in the London program in Fall 2003. “My parents paid for some of the schooling and then I got about $1,000 from financial aid, and a $250 scholarship from the Montecito Country Club.”
Participating in the study abroad program offers a valuable experience not only academically but also culturally, which may be more affordable than staying in Santa Barbara, Smith concluded.