External Study Abroad


October 6, 2020: After a thorough review of current circumstances, CSB/SJU is unable to permit students to participate in Spring 2021  external study abroad programs. Please see our Study Abroad COVID program cancellation notice for more information on this decision.

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External Study Abroad Program

College of Saint Benedict/Saint John’s University students are occasionally interested in participating in programs that are not vetted or approved by the Center for Global Education (CGE). These programs are referred to as "external programs." The external process exists to facilitate participation on a program or at an institution that CSB/SJU does not have contractual relationship with.

The external study abroad program process allows you to remain enrolled at CSB/SJU and participate in study abroad programs sponsored by other universities and program providers, as long as you get the program approved through CGE. All External Academic & Financial Procedures & Policies are found on the External Program Application.

The College of Saint Benedict/Saint John's University strongly encourages you to choose one of the CSB/SJU sponsored program options. If you still decide to choose an external study abroad option, note:

  1. Transfer Credit: Transfer credit is the only type of credit you will earn on an external program. Transfer credit does not count towards your GPA. Not all external programs or courses available abroad are eligible for transfer credit at CSB/SJU. 
  2. Independence: Pursuing an external program requires significant independence from you, as CGE and CSB/SJU is not able to assist you with your program arrangements before, during or after your participation. You will need to explore program details including housing, cultural immersion, health and safety issues and support services on your own as well as facilitate your own transfer of credit once back on campus.
  3. Financial: While participating on an external program/internship state and federal financial aid is available, however NO institutional scholarships or internal financial aid will be transferred to the other institution. No state or federal aid is available for summer programs. 

External Program Application Process

1. Attend a Study Abroad 101 to refine your goals for your study abroad.

2. Research External program options using a study abroad search engine: https://www.goabroad.com/how-it-works (open with Google Chrome). Please note that all the programs listed in the search engine may not meet the requirements for approval at CSB/SJU.  

3.  Meet with CGE staff to discuss program options and other academic matters. 

4. Select a program and notify CGE of external program selection for approval (if you did not do so during advising session).  

5. Get courses pre-approved for your External Program using the External Study Abroad application.

6. Meet with a Financial Aid Advisor on your campus to discuss financial aid procedures for External study abroad. 

7. Complete the External Study Abroad application and online International Travel registration

8. Final application deadline: November 15* for Spring Programs or April 15* for Fall, Year-Long, or Summer Programs. 

9. If you need to cancel from your External Program, connect with the program directly for possible cancellation policies. Cancel through CSB/SJU by e-mailing [email protected] from your CSB/SJU e-mail account.

*Please note: These date are CSB/SJU deadlines for submission. The external program may have different deadlines for their application. It is important to be aware of the external program’s deadlines.

What CGE does/does not do: 

The Center for Global Education (CGE) offers the external program process as a service for students who want to study abroad on an external study abroad program and retain CSB/SJU student status and still have access to state & federal financial aid and loans during their time abroad. CGE staff do not advise on the safety or quality of non-affiliated programs or the application process to any specific program.

Things to consider when choosing an External Program:

  • In order to do an external study abroad program, a CSB/SJU student must be in good academic and disciplinary standing.
  • Transcripts need to come from an accredited, degree-granting, tertiary-level institution. If they do not, you will not receive credit at CSB/SJU for your work
  • The courses you take must be similar to courses offered at CSB/SJU in order for them to transfer back to CSB/SJU for credit.
  • Programs that don't offer at least full load of academic credits (12 CSB/SJU credits) with content associated with the CSB/SJU curriculum are subject to review and may not be eligible for external study abroad.
  • Review the organization's web site to be sure that there is clear information about faculty selection, course structure, support staff, emergency procedures, orientation, and housing.
  • Contact the organization directly to request information about the application process and program fees.
  • All students participating on an external study abroad program/internship are required to get CSB/SJU International Health insurance through our office. For the semester students, this is included in the $300 External fee. For short term programs/internships, you are required to pay our office for the cost of the insurance for the duration of your program. 
  • You will make all payments directly to the sponsoring provider. This payment may occur before your access to financial aid.
  • It is your responsibility to receive a transcript upon completion of the program. The credit must be posted as the host institution’s course on the host institution’s transcript.

Explore Further

  • Program Advisor: Joy Ruis, Center for Global Education