Frequently Asked Questions
- What is the minimum GPA requirement for permission to study abroad?
- Do I have to pay Vassar's tuition while I am away?
- Will credit for courses I take while abroad be transferred?
- Can I take courses in English in countries where the official language is not English?
- How do I know if a program is approved or not?
- Do I need a passport to study abroad?
- Will I need special vaccinations to go abroad?
- What is available at the Vassar College Health Services?
- How do I obtain an International Student I.D. Card?
What is the minimum GPA requirement for permission to study abroad?
Do I have to pay Vassar's tuition while I am away?
Will credit for courses I take while abroad be transferred?
Can I take courses in English in countries where the official language is not English?
How do I know if a program is approved or not?
The Office of International Programs and the Committee on Leaves and Privileges review foreign study programs annually to approve programs that meet Vassar's academic standards. Students should refer to the current list of approved foreign study programs before beginning their research, as participation in only an approved program will ensure that study abroad credits are transferable.
You may petition the Committee on Leaves and Privileges to approve the program. This entails providing materials with pertinent information on academic courses to the Office of International Programs. You will be notified of the committee’s decision in a timely manner.
Do I need a passport to study abroad?
Yes. It is your responsibility to make sure that you have a passport that is valid for 6 months beyond your expected return date. You need a passport before you can apply for a visa. The application process for a new passport can take from 4 to 6 weeks.
Requirements for student visas vary from country to country. You will need to check the State Department website for the consulate that has jurisdiction over your residence. You must have all of your documents in order before you apply for your visa. Some countries also require proof of immunization in order to obtain your visa. Please be sure to read the information on the consulate website carefully! Consulates are very unforgiving if you are not prepared! If you have any questions you can consult the Office of International Programs or your program contact for non-Vassar study abroad programs for assistance.
Getting a visa is your responsibility. Most consulates require that you appear in person to obtain the visa. Please be aware that the application process can take several weeks and in certain cases, there may be a limited window of opportunity to apply for the visa due to restrictions imposed by the consulate. For example, some countries will not allow you to apply for your visa more than 60-90 days in advance of your departure.
Will I need special vaccinations to go abroad?
What is available at the Vassar College Health Services?
The Vassar College Health Services offers travel counseling as well as immunizations for students studying or traveling abroad that can prepare and protect you against many of the most common travel related illnesses such as: Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B. Other travel immunizations available at the Health Center include: Tetanus/diphtheria, Typhoid, and Polio. Health services can also advise about and prescribe anti-malaria medications. Call for a travel clinic appointment. Please note that several travel immunizations are only available off-campus. These include Japanese Encephalitis, Yellow Fever, Rabies, and Oral Typhoid. They are available at these local locations:
Dutchess County Department of Health
387 Main Street
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
International Travel Health Consultants
243 North Road
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
Stuart A. Feinstein, MD
7 Fox Street
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
How do I obtain an International Student I.D. Card?
We highly recommend that students get an International Student Identification Card before leaving the U.S. In addition to receiving discounts on meals at some restaurants, museums, trains, flights, hostels, etc. your ISIC card also serves as an acceptable form of identification while you are abroad. The card also provides supplemental medical insurance in the form of basic accident, sickness, medical evacuation and repatriation for travel outside of the United States. Please note that this is not meant to be a substitute for your regular health insurance plan.
You can get your ISIC card from the Registar’s office on campus or order it online at:https://www.myisic.com/MyISIC/GetYourCard/GetYourCard1.aspx