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First Generation College Students

As a first-generation college student, you may be the first person in your family to be presented with the opportunity to study abroad.  Speak with a study abroad staff member about your plans for study abroad and any questions you have. 

There are many misperceptions about study abroad! The Myths and FAQs page dispels myths about study abroad and shows you how easy it is to study overseas.

Things to Consider

  • Review the UM steps to study abroad.  By familiarizing yourself with these steps, you will have begun the study abroad process and will be prepared to begin searching for the perfect program using our study abroad program database
  • How long do I want to be abroad?  There are study abroad programs for different lengths of time - semester, full academic year, summer, winter, and even spring break!  You may have conflicts with work, conflicts with involvement on campus, responsibilities at home, or other considerations that limit how long you can be abroad.  Think about how you can fit an international experience into your college years and remember that it isn't the length of time but what you put into it.  And you can always go more than once!
  • How will my study abroad experience fit into my academic plan?  There are programs that will help fulfill concentration requirements so you can still graduate at your scheduled time. All UM study abroad programs award UM resident credit and course work applies towards graduation.  It is important to have conversations with your academic advisor early in order to identify courses that you may wish to take abroad, rather than early on in your college career. 
  • How will I make studying abroad affordable? Different programs have different costs, and it is the responsibility of the student to understand what costs will be incurred when they study abroad. All students should review the study abroad costs page on the website, as well as have a conversation with your study abroad staff member to ensure all associated costs are understood. 
    • If you receive financial aid, contact the Office of Financial Aid to learn about how your UM financial aid will apply to study abroad. Your study abroad staff member can review costs and budgeting, and discuss any other scholarship opportunities that you might want to pursue. 
    • Study abroad scholarships are also available from various outside funding sources including foreign governments and the US government! The Study Abroad Financial Aid and Scholarships link is a great starting point for scholarship research.  Apply early for scholarships!  Many scholarships have early deadlines! 


All Abroad

  • A great resource for funding advice, outreach materials, and study abroad advice specifically written with first-generation college students in mind.
Diversity Abroad
  • This website provides tips for first generation college students on how to best prepare for studying abroad and includes advice, scholarship information, student testimonials, and more.
Rebels Abroad
  • This UM student-run blog shows you the world through the eyes of fellow UM students!