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Center for Global Education
Center for Global Education

Study Abroad Pre-Departure

Seville - FA 17

You've applied and been accepted to your study abroad program—now what?

Apply/Register with the CGE

If you applied for one of our Butler Exchanges, semester-long Faculty-Led programs (i.e. GALA and Semester in Spain), or our short-term Faculty-Led Programs (i.e. Leadership London, Butler in Asia Summer Internship, etc.), then you have already been registered with the CGE via your application! Please continue working on your post-decision signature documents, materials, and questionnaires.

If you have applied and been accepted to your semester-long ISEP Exchange or 3rd Party Provider (IFSA, SIT, IES Abroad, etc.) program, please start an "application" (profile, really) in our online application system for the program into which you have been placed/accepted.

If you have applied and been accepted to your summer 3rd Party Provider (IFSA, SIT, IES Abroad, etc.) program, please start an "application" (profile, really) for the 3rd Party Provider Summer Program

Once you have completed the pre-decision materials in this "application" by the November 1 (for the following spring) or April 1 (for the following summer or fall), the CGE will move you into your post-decision phase where you can start to work on your post-decision signature documents, materials, and questionnaires, which will be due by November 10 (for the following spring) or April 10 (for the following summer or fall).

View our Application Instructions. Here are some important online application system links:

Pick Up a Pre-Departure Packet

The Center for Global Education (CGE) will have the blue pre-departure packets available for our students going on Exchanges and 3rd Party Provider programs in mid- to late March for the following summer term and fall semester and in mid- to late October for the following spring semester. You cannot pick up the packets earlier than this. The CGE will announce the availability of the packets via our listserv,, and our social media.

With the implementation of our new online application system, our pre-departure packet is smaller than ever! These two vital forms are included and must be submitted to the CGE before you leave the country:

  • Course Approval Form: You will research the courses offered on your program, find equivalencies here at Butler University, and have these courses approved by the department chairs that courses would fall under.

  • Statement of Financial Responsibility: Butler University requires that all students going abroad meet with someone in the Office of Financial Aid to see how your financial aid package may be affected by studying abroad.

Attend Pre-Departure Orientation (PDO)

Each semester, the CGE hosts a MANDATORY pre-departure orientation (PDO) for students going on our Exchanges and 3rd Party Provider programs (Faculty-Led programs have their own program-specific PDOs). The CGE typically provides FREE pizza, great discussions on how to stay safe abroad and prepare for one of the best semesters of your college career, and an alumni panel full of wonderful Butler students who have been there, done that. PDO lasts for about 2.5 hours.

**There are NO makeup sessions and NO one-on-one appointments to go through PDO information.**

Our PDO will take place for all of our Spring 2020 study abroad participants on Thursday, November 7 from 5:30–8:00 PM in Pharmacy & Health Sciences Building, Room 150. Please click "Interested" or "Going" on our PDO Facebook event for reminders about the event.

Additional Responsibilities

  • Submit your university's or 3rd Party Provider's required forms
  • For students living in on-campus housing, you will register for the full year of on-campus housing via the lottery system and later complete an Intent to Vacate Notice for the Residence Life. This notice is NOT included in the pre-departure packet. You should contact the office of Residence Life so you are not charged housing fees during your semester abroad.
  • Apply for or update your passport, if necessary (your passport must be valid for at least 6 months past the end of your program)
  • Inform your parents or guardians of the procedure to get a passport so they have proper travel documents, if necessary
  • Make travel arrangements (like flight to/from your host country, airport transportation, etc.), if necessary
  • See if you need a visa to study abroad in your host country
  • Register with the U.S. State Department via their Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)
  • Check out country-specific information on the U.S. Department of State's website and the Center for Disease Control's (CDC) website (make sure your immunizations are up to date for your study abroad location)
  • Make sure you're covered by health insurance when you are abroad (some countries require a certain amount of coverage to get a visa)
  • Talk with your parents or guardians about filling out a Power of Attorney before departure. This grants another person the legal authority or permission to make decisions about your affairs while you are abroad. If interested, you can google for the form and fill it out in front of a notary.
  • If you need to store items in the Indianapolis area while you are overseas, renting space through might be helpful.