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Financial Policies

FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY:
Study abroad participants are ultimately responsible for their study abroad costs. Participants are encouraged to share the Financial Policies, which are publicly available on the website, with other parties including family, significant others, and/or friends who assist you financially.   


Depending on the program type, participants may be required to pay one or two “study abroad fees” toward their program application. Occasionally through study abroad scholarships and IPS Office events, participants may receive a waiver of a study abroad fee. If a student receives a waiver, they may use it towards any future study abroad program. 

$50 Study Abroad Application Fee: All study abroad participants pay an application fee to Millersville University for each program that they apply to. This fee is due at the time of application and is not refundable under any circumstance, as the fee pays for each participants’ application record in the Study Abroad Portal.  

$500 Study Abroad Participation Fee: Participants in any affiliated, Build-Your-Own, and/or professional abroad program pay a participation fee to Millersville University for each term that they are abroad. This fee is due at the time of application. The fee for a consecutive term will be waived if, at the time of application, students are applying for more than one back-to-back term.  

$150 Study Abroad Visa Service Fee: Some immigration processes require MU staff to submit visa documentation on behalf of the participating student (Example: The visa for Spain). This non-refundable fee helps off-set the associated travel costs for providing this service.

Depending on the program type, participants may pay a "program fee” or “program charge" to one or more organizations and vendors, such as Millersville University, a host university or program, airlines and travel companies, or other external organizations and vendors. If your program is cancelled, you withdraw, or lose eligibility, or are dismissed from a study abroad program, the following section outlines eligibility for program fee/charge refunds.  

Note: All eligible refunds referenced in this policy are subject to a processing fee for online payments.  

Millersville Study Abroad Fees: Both the $50 Application Fee and the $150 Study Abroad Visa Service Fee are non-refundable under all circumstances as both fees are paying for services or expenses that have been incurred. Participants may be eligible for a full refund (minus processing fee) of the $500 Participation Fee (if applicable) if a program is cancelled or if the program is competitive and the applicant is not selected.  

Exchange/Direct Partner University Program Charges: Participants may be eligible for a full (minus processing fee) or a pro-rated partial refund of the exchange/partner program charges paid to Millersville University, including items such as MU tuition and fees, MU housing, MU meal plans, and program-specific charges placed on MU bills. Refund amounts are determined based on campus-wide MU refund policies after the international partner reimburses the Millersville University or releases Millersville University from its financial obligation. 

MAPS Program Charge Payments: Program deposits and balance payments are paid directly to Millersville University through the Office of International Programs and Services (IPS). Program Leaders use these funds immediately as down-payments to pay external organizations and vendors to secure group booking rates for housing, transportation, and other program-related activity costs. Once Program Leaders have incurred expenses, participants are not guaranteed to be fully reimbursed the "program charge" paid to MU. Additionally, based on vendor payment deadline requirements, the program deposit may be determined to be refundable or non-refundable. The Program Leader will make every reasonable effort to provide either (1) a full refund (minus processing fee), (2) a partial refund, or (3) to provide vouchers equivalent to costs paid. Program charge payments are eligible for a refund if a program is cancelled or if the program is competitive and the applicant is not selected. Program charge payments are non-refundable if a student withdraws for a non-extenuating circumstance. 

Host University/Affiliated Organizations: For fees/charges paid directly to host universities or affiliated organizations, any refunds and transfers are only possible depending upon the individual financial policies of those universities or organizations. Charges may include, but are not limited to, deposits, tuition, placement fees, housing, meal plans, and others. IPS advises participants to review all contracts and payment guidelines carefully. Millersville University assumes no responsibility for losses or penalties through host universities or affiliated organizations. 

External Vendors: For fees/charges paid directly to external vendors, any refunds and transfers are only possible depending upon the individual financial policies of those vendors. Vendor fees/charges may include, but are not limited to, immigration fees, airfare, accommodations, airport transportation, and others. IPS advises participants to purchase fully refundable airline tickets and/or trip cancellation insurance to safeguard against losses or penalties. Millersville University assumes no responsibility for such losses or penalties through outside vendors.  

Included Activities & Excursions: Study abroad participants who choose not to participate in activities included in the program costs will not be refunded any portion of the program costs. Examples may include, but are not limited to, field trips, excursions, activities, and cultural events. 

Reduced Credit Load: Study abroad programs are not based on a per-credit tuition model and each program has a set number of credits included in the program design. Participants in a credit-bearing program who choose to take a reduced course load abroad will not be refunded a portion of the program costs for the difference in earned credit.   

Program Cancellation: If a program is cancelled by IPS, a Program Leader, or the host university/ affiliated organization, participants will be entitled to a refund of the $500 Participation Fee (if applicable). Circumstances may include, but are not limited to, low program enrollment, health and safety concerns, political or civil unrest, weather, or other natural disasters. Refer to the section called “REFUNDS OF PROGRAM FEES/CHARGES” for more information on refunds.  

Participant Evacuation: After the start of a program, if a participant is recalled back the U.S., they will be entitled to a refund of the $500 Participation Fee (if applicable). Additional costs for immediate return to the U.S. are the responsibility of the participant. If IPS or the host university/ affiliated organization have incurred any expenses on the participants’ behalf, IPS and/or the host university/ affiliated organization will invoice the participant for these expenses. Refer to the section called “REFUNDS OF PROGRAM FEES/CHARGES” for more information on refunds. 

Loss of Eligibility: If a participant is required to withdraw from a study abroad program due to conduct/behavior, academic reasons, or if they are later deemed ineligible, the $50 Application Fee and the $500 Participation Fee (if applicable) are not refunded. Ex. GPA falls under the minimum requirement, probation, suspension, sanctioned by the university, and other similar occurrences.   

Program Removal or Dismissal: After the start of a program, if a participant is removed or dismissed, study abroad costs will not be refunded. Additional costs for immediate return to the U.S. are the responsibility of the participant. If financial assistance is needed to return to the U.S., IPS may arrange a return flight and/or additional housing as necessary. If IPS, Program Leader, or host university/ affiliated organization incur any expenses on the participant’s behalf, IPS and/or the host institution/program will invoice the participant for these expenses.  

Emergency Delay or Interruption: Partial refunds may be available for study abroad costs when there is an emergency delay or interruption of a study abroad program. This will be determined on a case-by-case basis.  

Early Program Withdrawal: If a participant withdraws from a program after they are accepted, but before the program start date, the $500 Participation Fee (if applicable) will not be refunded. Students may request in writing to defer these fees to a future study abroad program. Refer to the section called “REFUNDS OF PROGRAM FEES/CHARGES” for more information on refunds. 

Late Program Withdrawal: If a participant withdraws from a program after the program start date, the $50 Application Fee and/or the $500 Participation Fee will not be refunded. For other program costs paid to MU, participants are not guaranteed to be fully reimbursed once MU has incurred expenses. Refer to the section called “REFUNDS OF PROGRAM FEES/CHARGES” for more information on refunds. 

Program Withdrawal Due to Extenuating Circumstances: Study abroad participants who casually withdraw from a study abroad program, are not eligible for a refund of the $500 Participation Fee (if applicable). Study abroad participants that withdraw due to extenuating circumstances are eligible for a full (minus processing fee) or a pro-rated partial refund of the $500 Participation Fee (if applicable) and other program costs paid to MU. Participants must notify IPS in writing with a summary of the circumstances and supporting documentation, if applicable. Extenuating circumstances that are potentially eligible for a refund are defined as: 
- Unanticipated change in financial situation, such as the termination of a main source of income or filing of bankruptcy. A financial emergency does NOT include: (1) Participant did not understand what they were financially accountable for, (2) Participant is not eligible for financial aid, or (3) Participant did not receive a scholarship they were counting on. 
- Medical situation or emergency/illness of participant or immediate family members. Can be physical, mental, or emotional.   
- Death of an immediate family member including parents, guardians, siblings, children, spouses, registered domestic partners—does not include grandparents.  
- Military Activation that conflicts with the program dates.  
- Other: A circumstance out of the participant’s control and requires supporting documentation of situation, process, and/or timeline.  

IPS reserves the right to put a hold on students’ Millersville University account if their MU bill, host university/ affiliated organization invoices, or external vendor’s bill related to their study abroad experience are not paid. This hold prevents MU students from registering for classes for a future term, applying for graduation, and requesting Millersville transcripts, until payment is received. IPS will also pause the processing of a study abroad transcript. 

Non-Millersville Students: IPS will also contact the home university of all non-Millersville student participants to pursue similar actions. Upon proof of payment, IPS will release the study abroad transcripts to the student’s home university.  

Travel Arrangements: Travel arrangements and costs are the responsibility of participants and/or Program Leaders. IPS staff may assist students to find resources. IPS assumes no responsibility for selection of vendor, payment of associated costs, refunds, or adjustments.    

Financial Emergency Request: MU student participants may request emergency funding if they find themselves in situations where they either (1) have a financial emergency due to theft or unforeseen circumstances, or (2) did not financially plan for unexpected cost of living expenses. No set amount of funding is guaranteed, and IPS must be reimbursed for all loaned funds. IPS will invoice participants for the loaned expenses.      
If you qualify for federal and/or PA state financial aid, you may apply it to your accredited study abroad program. After a participant is accepted to study abroad they must indicate on their application if they wish to use Financial Aid and/or apply for scholarships. IPS will prepare official cost documentation to the Office of Financial Aid for those that request it. Financial Aid will then recalculate a student’s aid package to determine if they are eligible to apply for additional aid. All federal funds will disburse as they normally would at the beginning of each semester to your account at Millersville University.  

Note: During Study Abroad Advising, it is strongly recommended that applicants take a completed Budget Worksheet/Cost Sheet, to the Office of Financial Aid to discuss financial planning. The Office of Financial Aid will discuss students’ specific financial situation and share information about alternative financing options. 

Summer Aid: Most students are required to be registered for a minimum of 6 credits in order to be eligible for financial aid. Any aid received during the summer will be deducted from the amount of aid available to you for the following academic year. Students who are enrolled in a course that is less than four (4) weeks, may not be able to use their aid towards their study abroad program. Contact the Office of Financial Aid to determine eligibility for federal aid towards your study abroad program.   

Academic Year & Spring Participants: The release of financial aid for the following academic year may be delayed while Millersville awaits the receipt of your academic transcript from the accredited institution. Transcripts from Spring semester study abroad generally do not arrive until September. Because Millersville University cannot confirm that you have made “Successful Academic Progress” (SAP) in the month of May for the previous academic year, without the transcript, your financial aid may be placed on hold until the transcript is received and processed. 

Federal Aid Regarding SAP: Federal Aid SAP is defined as earning 75% of all credits attempted at MU. (Example: A student completed 30 credits but earned 24 credits, which is 80%. This means they made successful academic progress and will not have issues with financial aid for the following academic year.). 

Appeal Your Federal Aid: To ensure that your federal aid is released without your study abroad transcript being received, complete an appeal form with the Office of Financial Aid, by indicating that you are studying abroad. This process will release your federal aid even if the transcript has not been received and processed. A Power of Attorney, processed prior to departure, may be required if someone else needs to complete this form for a participant in their absence. 

State Aid Regarding SAP: State Aid SAP is defined as successfully completing, at minimum, 24 credits for the academic year.  

Appeal Your State Aid: State Aid cannot be appealed for a reason of study abroad. However, State Aid will be retroactively released upon receipt and processing of the study abroad transcript confirming Satisfactory Academic Progress. If the transcript is received and processed, and you did not meet the minimum required SAP, you will be required to immediately reimburse the Office of Financial Aid for any money already received. Failure to do so will result in the Office of Financial Aid placing a hold on your Millersville University account which will affect registration/graduation. 

Financial Aid Withdrawal/Dismissal Impact: Participants are required to contact the Office of Financial Aid immediately if they receive any form of financial aid and return early from a study abroad program, as it may affect their financial aid package. 
Millersville University is able to offer a limited number of study abroad scholarship opportunities funded by generous donors and alumni. MU’s scholarship timeline and application review may differ from external national and state study abroad scholarships. 

Confirmation of Acceptance: All scholarships will be disbursed after IPS confirms the participant’s acceptance into a study abroad program. 

Disbursement: Scholarships will be disbursed directly to the student’s account. Scholarships will automatically be applied to any outstanding bills on their MU account, if applicable.  

Scholarship Impact on Financial Aid: Participants are responsible for contacting the Office of Financial Aid to determine how a scholarship impacts their overall financial aid package. If the scholarship recipient receives other forms of financial aid (loans, grants, other scholarships, etc.) a financial aid package may be affected by receiving a scholarship.  

Scholarship Withdrawal Impact: If the scholarship recipient withdraws from their study abroad program at any time, the scholarship must be repaid in full to Millersville University immediately.  

Deferring a Scholarship: Scholarship deferrals will be considered on a case-by-case basis and are only eligible if the deferral is within the same scholarship cycle (cycle begins in summer and ends in spring).   
Most international countries do not allow those on student visas to legally work abroad, or if they do, the country will charge additional immigration fees for a student work visa. (Example: You pay $500-$800 for a visa that you will first have to repay to make a profit). Regardless of whether a country allows you to be employed, IPS does not support participation in non-program related work placements due to the difficulty of balancing the additional work with the sanctioned study abroad program activities. It is also important to understand that labor laws and protections differ per country and IPS does not have the capacity to support these additional processes. For paid employment abroad, you may need to pay U.S. taxes on foreign-earned income. Keep this in mind when considering your available finances for your experience abroad. 
If you have any questions about the above policies please email Education.Abroad@Millersville.edu.