After you are approved by Bryn Mawr and accepted by the overseas program you should take the following steps:
All study abroad students are required to attend the mandatory pre-departure orientation at Bryn Mawr. Students will be notified by email when and where the orientation will be held. An information packet which covers a wide range of topics will be provided at the meeting.
Notice of Departure
You should fill out the Notice of Departure with your Dean promptly after you confirm your participation in study abroad. You should pick up a copy of What to Do When You Leave Residence from the Dean’s Office or from the Student Life Office and read it carefully.
The College Post Office will block off the mailboxes of students studying abroad so that they will not receive any junk mail. Your “real” mail from outside will be forwarded to your U.S. forwarding addresses listed in the Campus Directory.
Your Bryn Mawr email account will remain active while you are abroad. Before you leave campus, we encourage you to change your password and unsubscribe from listserv. While abroad, check it regularly, since we will rely on it to correspond with you. If you choose to forward your Bryn Mawr email to another personal account, remember to check the Bryn Mawr account occasionally in case an important email was filtered out and not forwarded to you. Information Services provide detailed instructions on how to unsubscribe from campus Listserv: http://www.brynmawr.edu/computing/docs/webcat.shtml.
Bryn Mawr Housing
If you expect to study abroad in the fall, do not participate in Room Draw. If you participate in Room Draw and do not occupy the room during the fall semester you will be charged a $100 fee for canceling the room before June 15. A $500 cancellation fee will be incurred for cancellations after June 15.
If you will be abroad for the fall semester and need a room for the spring, fill out a Housing Preference Form ranking the dorms in order of preference. The form is available on-line at http://www.brynmawr.edu/residentiallife/forms/ and must be received by the Residential Life Office before December 1. Housing assignments will be confirmed via Bryn Mawr e-mail accounts approximately one week before the beginning of the second semester in January.
If you will be abroad for the academic year or for the spring semester, ask a friend to act as your proxy in the Room Draw. The proxy will not be allowed to choose a room if there is a balance on your Bryn Mar account. If the proxy arrangement falls through, ask the Director of Residential Life to assign you a room. Please remember that Residence Council will not automatically grant a room change if a student is unhappy with the room drawn by her proxy or assigned to her.
Unless you are an international student or live on the west coast, you will not be able to store any items at the college while studying abroad.
Travel Health Clinic locator: http://www.travelersvaccines.com/EN/Clinics/Clinic_locator.cfm
Students abroad: http://www.studentsabroad.state.gov/
UK travel advice by country: http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/
Travelers vaccine: http://www.travelersvaccines.com/
Universal emergency telephone number: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emergency_telephone_number
A safe trip abroad: http://travel.state.gov/travel/tips/safety/safety_1747.html
Safeti clearing houseonline newspaper: http://www.globaled.us/safeti/
All travelers between countries must have a passport. The passport is the official identification of your citizenship. New U.S. passports take four to six weeks to process, and they are valid for ten years. Students should make sure that their passports are valid until at least six months after returning from their study abroad programs and that their emergency information page is up-to-date.
More detailed information and a printable American passport application is available at http://travel.state.gov/passport_services.html The nearest post office branch that accept passport application are:
Ardmore Post Office
30 Ardmore Avenue (near the intersection of Lancaster Avenue and Ardmore Avenue)
Ardmore, PA 19003
Monday-Friday: 9 AM-4 PM
Saturday: 9 AM-11 AM
US Post Office, Bryn Mawr
Rite Aid (Passport photos)
1015 Lancaster Avenue
Bryn Mawr, PA 19010
Monday-Sunday: 9 AM-8 PM
Make two copies of your passport identification page. This will facilitate replacement if your passport is lost or stolen. Leave one copy at home with your parents; carry the other with you in a separate place from your passport.
International Students and Non-United States Citizens
Non-U.S. citizens, students on Permanent Resident Status (Green Card) and student on a non-immigrant F-1 Visa, should consult with the Assistant Dean and Director of International Programs to make sure that all their U.S. immigration paperwork is in place for their re-entry to the United States
A visa is official permission to visit a country and is granted by the government of that country. Visa formats vary considerably, from a stamp in the passport to an official document with photo attached.
It is your responsibility to inquire about visa requirements; this includes countries you plan to visit before or after your study abroad programs. You should check the consulate Website for initial information. Some study abroad program may provide detailed information about visa application procedures after you confirm your acceptance into the program.
Obtaining a visa requires considerable time and effort. It can take several weeks to gather all of the documents needed for the visa application. A growing number of countries also ask student visa applicants to make an appointment and/or apply in person. It is important to be informed, organized, patient, and flexible, which are important cross-cultural coping skills to develop for studying abroad.
International Student Identity Card
Students should obtain the International Student Identity Card if it is not provided by their programs. The card offers many benefits, including significant discounts on airfares, access to commission-free currency exchange, 24-hour Help Line emergency service, and basic sickness and accident travel insurance. It may be obtained on-line at http://www.myisic.com.
Once you know when you are expected abroad, you should book your airfare right away as the cheap seats tend to fill up. In the past, students have utilized web sites such as Student Universe at http://www.studentuniverse.com/
Study Abroad students are not billed the Bryn Mawr College undergraduate health fee while studying abroad. You are, however, required to carry comprehensive medical insurance while abroad. Some countries like Australia automatically enroll students into their insurance coverage. Be sure to read the materials provided by the overseas program carefully. You should also consult with your parents regarding purchasing additional insurance for travel, luggage, and other personal effects. The College’s insurance broker Special Risk Consultants at 610-489-6100, http://www.visitsrc.com can provide you with additional information.
You should take care of civil and legal matters, including arranging absentee voting, completing income taxes, and purchasing property insurance before departure, and appointing Power of Attorney, who will take care of your official or legal documents during your absence.
Credit card such as a Visa, MasterCard and American Express are honored overseas. Credit cards make transactions easy and are invaluable in a financial emergency. However, many American credit cards charge a transaction fee for overseas purchases. How much money you bring will depend on your budget, destination and personal spending habits.
For your flight, be sure to bring a carry-on just in case your luggage gets lost. You should include in your carry-on an extra set of clothes, toothbrush, toothpaste, pajamas, as well as any other items you might need on your first night overseas. It is important to fill and bring any prescriptions you might need for the entire duration of your trip. Do not pack documents into the luggage that you will check unto the plane.
The following documents should be carried in your hand or carry-on luggage:
As a general rule, pack lightly. You do not want to have to pay excess luggage fees. Also, you will have to carry heavy luggage by yourself once you arrive at the airport.