Students with Children
Interested in studying abroad but have children? It can be difficult but not impossible!
For students that are parents, a great concern may be how to care for your child(ren) while abroad. International study is possible with a family and can be just as rewarding, but as I'm sure you are aware, there are nearly countless considerations that you'll have to keep in mind. But with careful planning you can create an experience abroad that will benefit both you and your family!
Important Questions to Ask
Can you find a host university that will provide housing options to accommodate your family? What are the off-campus housing options?
Are you traveling abroad with a spouse or partner that will be able to care for your child while you are in class? If not, what childcare options are available at your host university or in your host city that will work for your budget?
Do you have family members in school? What educational options will exist for them to continue their educations while you are abroad?
Be aware of extra costs that are associated with traveling with children. These include international health insurance, visas, immunizations, and flight tickets for the entire family.
The following link offers a comprehensive guide on International Health Insurance, including its coverage, when it should be obtained, and other relevant details:
For students with a family a shorter program may be more advisable. Study abroad timeframes aren’t just limited to semester or year-long students, there are also programs that stretch over the spring, winter, and summer breaks. While lower on time these programs are often more flexible when it comes to care, health and other obligations that may come up with a longer program.
While the logistics can be harder to plan the benefits of studying abroad with children for a semester can have a HUGE payoff. Some big things to consider would be child-care, schooling options, housing, and language barriers. The key to all of these is to start planning early. But you’re not alone! The PIC staff in the Study Abroad Center will be happy to help narrow things down and give support along the way.
When it comes to housing the best case scenario would be that the program you’re going through would be able to provide it. Oftentimes the program provider already has a system in place when it comes to determining housing with consideration of needs. If the regular housing doesn’t meet these needs then they should be able to assist in finding better arrangements.
On the other side of things it may be necessary to search for housing on your own before the start of the program.
Below is a list of resources students should examine when budgeting for their study abroad program and/or their accommodation needs. This is not an exhaustive list so we encourage students to conduct their own searches or stop by our office so that we can direct you to more resources!
The majority of aid you receive at GVSU is applicable to studying abroad
Attend a first-step meeting or contact Padnos International Center
Walk-In Advising Hours
130 Lake Ontario Hall
Monday - Friday: 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Browse Programs & Research!
Meet with a study abroad adviser
Choose a Program and apply
Share Your Story!
Have you studied abroad with a child? Congratulations! You did it! We want to hear about your story. Please contact PIC and share it so that future study abroad students with children can read about your adventures, the trials you faced, as well as the advice you have!