Spring 2021 FAQs

Spring 2021 Applicants

In the months ahead, we know that many students and their families will have questions related to the status of our Spring 2021 study abroad programs. We hope the FAQs below will help to answer your questions as you make plans for your Spring semester. Please feel free to email your advisor at any time with specific questions.

Special Note: This website and the FAQs are for students who plan to study abroad through the UNC Study Abroad Office in the College of Arts and Sciences. These FAQs were last updated on July 6, 2020.

Frequently Asked Questions

At this time, the Study Abroad Office is committed to running as many Spring 2021 programs as possible, provided that the programs remain open and accessible to our students. Applications are open from July 1 to September 10. 

Due to physical distancing, our study abroad advisors and our financial aid advisor are currently taking appointments via Zoom. Please reach out to an advisor to schedule a one-on-one Zoom appointment by visiting https://studyabroad.unc.edu/advising-events/. 

You can complete your entire application online, but we are still available to advise you through a Zoom appointment. You can make an appointment with an advisor by visiting: https://studyabroad.unc.edu/advising-events/. 

For information about how UNC is monitoring the spread of COVID-19, please visit https://carolinatogether.unc.edu/, and for up-to-date University guidelines regarding international travel, visit https://global.unc.edu/travel-global-operations/travel-warnings/. 

We will take into consideration the cancellation of your 2020 program when making admissions decisions. 

Yes. Please email your study abroad advisor or abroad@unc.edu to let us know which program you are applying to, and we will transfer your application fee to that program. 

If you have not started a new application in our system, let us know and we can open a new application for you and can transfer some pieces of your previously submitted application to a new program. 

If you have already started a new application, your advisor can review application items that may be transferable and work with you on items that may need updating.   

Email your study abroad advisor or abroad@unc.edu and let us know how we can help. 

If you have been awarded a summer or fall 2020 scholarship through the Study Abroad Office, there is a possibility you may be able to use part or all of the scholarship for the Spring 2021 semester if you are able to study abroad then. This possibility will depend on your spring study abroad program costs and any scholarship stipulations associated with your specific award. Please contact fa_studyabroad@unc.edu for more information. 

If you have been awarded a scholarship through a department or through Honors Carolina, please reach out to your department or Honors Carolina to find out more information.   

Some programs may adjust things such as program start and end dates. We will attempt to update online program brochures to reflect changes of which we are notified. 

We will host a virtual ‘Study Abroad Week’ from October 19-23, which will include lots of program specific info sessions that you can choose to attend. While Study Abroad Week occurs after the Sept. 10 deadline for Spring 2021the Study Abroad Office will host virtual information sessions to help guide students in selecting Spring 2021 programs. Check out our events calendar  for the most up-to-date information. 

Students who are accepted to study abroad will be in regular communication with their study abroad advisor and will be notified of any changes that are made to their program. If a program is cancelled (for example, because borders remain closed, or for other reasons), we may be able to switch your application to another program in the same term (as space and external deadlines permit). If we are unable to find another suitable program, students may defer to a future study abroad term or withdraw their application. 

Once students submit their applications to study abroad, the $50 application fee is not refundable. However, if a student’s program is then cancelled and they wish to study abroad in a future term, we can apply the $50 application fee to a future application.  

After students are accepted in early October to study abroad for the Spring 2021 term, they should be aware of the following financial obligations: 

Administrative Fee: The administrative fee is non-refundable and will be charged to a student’s account only after committing to a program. If the student defers or withdraws, or if their program is cancelled by UNC or the host organization before the program start date, the student will not be charged the administrative fee. For detailed information about the Study Abroad Administrative Fee, please visit https://studyabroad.unc.edu/unc-study-abroad-fee/  

Tuition & Fees/Program Costs: We will work with partner institutions and organizations abroad to refund partial charges when possible. Once the program has begun, most program costs are not recoverable, including tuition and program fees. Please review the Study Abroad Office cancellation and withdrawal information at https://studyabroad.unc.edu/cancellation-withdrawal-information-and-refunds-for-unc-study-abroad-programs/

Housing: If students pay housing costs out of pocket and a program is suspended early, students should request prorated refunds from the housing agency directly. If housing costs are included in the study abroad program costs, the Study Abroad Office will request a prorated refund on students’ behalf. Some (but not all) study abroad partner organizations are able to prorate housing costs and offer partial refunds if the program is terminated before the original end–date.  

GeoBlue fee and health insurance:Students will receive a refund of the Blue Cross Blue Shield GeoBlue insurance fee based on the date they return to the U.S., if they return before the original program end-date. Upon their early return, U.S. citizens and international students who are able to obtain a visa to resume studies at Carolina mid-semester become eligible to obtain the Blue Cross Blue Shield Student Blue health care available to Carolina students.

Deposits paid to host organizations/program providers: Students should contact the provider for options.