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Freshman Seminars Abroad (FSA)
Costs and Financial Assistance

Popular culture in Japan

Program-related costs

The MSU Student Accounts Office will bill you for the program (see below) and tuition for three (3) credit hours as part of your fall tuition bill. The tuition rates are set by the University and will reflect the same rate you pay for on-campus credits during the fall semester. For MSU tuition rates please see the Controller's web site.Opens in new window

A $100 program application fee is required. You will receive an electronic bill (e-bill) from the MSU Student Accounts Office for the application fee, which is applied toward the program fee and is non-refundable once you accept admission into the seminar. E-bills will go to your MSU e-mail account, unless you have put additional e-mails into the system. If you are denied admission into the seminar, you will receive a full refund of the $100 application fee.

Once you have accepted admission into the program, you will be billed a non-refundable and non-transferable $200 deposit. This deposit will be posted and due on your student account and must be paid by the due date indicated on the e-bill. This fee will also be applied to the program fee. If the application and/or acceptance fees have not been paid by the due dates indicated on the e-bills, you will accrue monthly late charges until the bill is paid in full.

Please see the application process and withdrawal policy web pages for more information on this topic.

All MSU bills are handled electronically, and MSU will send an email to you about these and other fees. To view your financial information, please see the Student InformationOpens in new window site. You have the option of having bills sent to parents or guardians, in addition to yourself.

The remaining program fee—the amount noted below minus the previously-paid $100 application and $200 acceptance fees—will be billed with the fall semester tuition bill. You can get important information about billing schedules, financial aid, and registration policiesOpens in new window from MSU. In general, MSU sets its tuition and fee costs in July, with bills going out toward the end of that month.

The program fee typically includes the following:

Amounts not included in the program fee for which you will need to budget include:

*Check the Controller's web siteOpens in new window for current tuition, fees and taxes.

Additional funds and spending money

You should bring enough money to cover additional meals and personal expenses (e.g., snacks, tourist visits, souvenirs, etc.). How much spending money you should bring depends on you and the location of the program. Surveys of past participants suggest that most students spend $500–$1,000 during the program. Since this is quite a range, you should talk with your program faculty about any special considerations for your destination.

You should also consult with your program leaders about the most appropriate ways to carry money abroad. In most countries, an ATM and debit card is the best way to access money. However, you decide to manage your spending money, we highly recommend that you have back-up options. In other words, you should have at least two methods of transporting money abroad (e.g., a credit card and an ATM or an ATM and cash).

If using electronic forms of money, we recommend that you apply for your debit and/or credit cards early and use them prior to departure to ensure that they work. You should also contact your banks and creditors to report your plans to travel abroad. Some banks will freeze accounts when a credit card or ATM card is suddenly used overseas. Also, funds for debit and ATM cards should be held in a checking account for access overseas.

If bringing cash, be aware that bank and exchange service hours can be limited in other countries, and due to travel time, these services may not be immediately available upon your arrival. You will need to consult with your faculty leaders if you need to access a bank or exchange service upon arrival. Please note that we do not recommend that you bring large amounts of cash/currency overseas.

Freshman Seminar Abroad (FSA) Scholarships

Students participating on an FSA program may be eligible for some awards created just for these programs:

Freshman Seminar Abroad Study Abroad Scholarships:

Depending on funding, the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education (APUE), Office of Financial Aid, Honors College, and the Office of Study Abroad (OSA) offer a limited number of scholarships specifically for eligible FSA participants (see below).

In all cases, to be eligible for the award a student must be (1) admitted to MSU with their deposit paid, (2) have submitted their application to an FSA program, and (3) have on file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at the MSU Financial Aid Office. These scholarship applications must be submitted online, using the student's "My Study Abroad" portal.

  1. 1. Awards funded through the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education (APUE) and Office of Financial Aid are designated for Pell grant eligible students who have demonstrated high financial need based on their FAFSA. Award amounts depend on funding and range from $500 to the full cost of the program in very limited cases. The deadline for the APUE awards is June 9, 2017 for summer programs and October 20, 2017 for Costa Rica. Awards are made on a rolling basis until funding runs out (i.e., we will continue to review students' needs past the deadline as long as funding exists).
  2. 2. Awards funded through the Office of Study Abroad (OSA) are for $250 and require applicants both high academic merit and demonstrate financial need. The deadline for OSA awards is June 9, 2017 for summer programs and October 20, 2017 for Costa Rica.
  3. 3. The MSU Honors College offers a limited number of awards for FSA participants who are also Honors College students. Scholarships will be awarded by the Honors College to the first eligible students who register for each program, so apply early! Scholarships vary in the amount and number awarded based on funding. Awards are made on a rolling basis until funding runs out.

**Please note: it may take several weeks after the deadline to select the recipients of these awards.**

Other financial assistance

Financial assistance is available when students make appropriate arrangements with MSU's offices of Study Abroad and Financial Aid. Students who need assistance should contact fsabroad@msu.edu to discuss options for financing the programs.

Financial aid is typically disbursed 10 days prior to the beginning of each semester (please note that, even though FSAs take place during the summer, they are considered fall semester programs and federal financial aid will not be disbursed until 10 days prior to the beginning of fall semester). Monies obtained from aid and scholarships are credited against a student's account, with any surpluses refunded to the student.

For more information on financial aid and scholarships, please see the following:


Program fees, dates and arrangements are subject to change, due to unforeseen considerations.

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