Advancing disability rights and leadership globally®

Fund Your International Exchange Experience

A collection of foreign currency.
A collection of foreign currency.

“How can I afford to go abroad?” is likely a big question on your mind. By making some decisions about the type of international exchange you want to participate in, you can begin to anticipate the types of funding you will need.

You want to go abroad but the cost seems daunting, right? Did you know there are many sponsored (meaning paid-for!) programs, scholarships, fundraising and tuition-exchange programs out there? Cost is important, but don’t lose track of the investment you are making in your independence, experience, and education.

To get started, think about the international exchange opportunities you are most interested in. Some questions you can ask yourself about funding include:

Do I want to intern abroad?

If so, are there paid internships or opportunities that offer room and board options? Are there scholarships through university career services or professional development funds through your employer?

Do I want to volunteer?

If so, do I need assistance with planning my volunteer experience, which might mean an administrative fee? Or do I want to plan my volunteer experience independently or with less support abroad to reduce the cost? Are there volunteer opportunities like the Peace Corps that provides living stipends?

Do I want to participate abroad for a few weeks or several months?

If so, how does the exchange rate and average costs of things compare abroad? Will I save money by living abroad longer or is it more expensive abroad?

Do I want to participate in an academic international exchange experience?

If so, will I get academic credit and thus be able to apply my financial aid and perhaps vocational rehabilitation funds towards it? Is it a direct exchange where I just pay my home tuition while attending a university abroad?

Do I want to apply for fellowships or other funded programs?

If so, do any programs match my interests? Am I eligible to apply? What are the deadlines and the process for applying?

While MIUSA does not directly provide financial resources for international exchange, we can point you in the right direction.

See the Table of Contents for where to go next.

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