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Frequently Asked Questions about Financial Aid for Study Abroad

How will scholarships affect my financial aid package?

Students must notify the Office of Financial Aid of any and all financial assistance that they will receive that is not listed in their award package. Such financial assistance:

  • Will result in a reduction to a need-based aid package offered by the University of Richmond. Reductions for such assistance will be made first to the Self-Help portion of the need-based aid package, then to need-based grants/scholarships. We will only adjust grants/scholarships, due to the receipt of the additional assistance, if it is necessary in order to keep the total amount of assistance from exceeding the eligibility for need-based aid. Financial aid regulations do not allow the total amount of all aid received, regardless of the source of funding, to exceed the demonstrated eligibility for need-based aid.
  • May result in a reduction to a Merit or other non-need-based award offered by the University of Richmond. Total aid from Richmond sources may not exceed tuition, room, and board charges unless the student demonstrates financial need in excess of these charges. Total aid from all sources may not exceed the Cost of Attendance as established by the Office of Financial Aid.

We encourage you to contact the Office of Financial Aid to discuss how such assistance will affect a need-based aid package.

When will I know my financial aid package for my semester abroad?

Generally, financial aid packages are posted to Banner Web by the end of June for the fall semester, and early November for spring semester. Financial aid will also be reflected on tuition invoices generated by the Office of Student Accounts, assuming all applications and requirements are completed by the deadline date.

When will I receive my financial aid when I am abroad?

Financial aid for your study abroad program will be credited directly to your student account at Richmond 10 days before the first day of class at your study abroad program, assuming all applications and requirements are completed by the deadline date.  If your financial aid exceeds the tuition charge at Richmond, then you are eligible for a refund, which can be used for other educational expenses related to your study abroad program. If you have set up direct deposit for refunds with the Office of Student Accounts, your refund will be deposited into your bank account approximately 5 days later. You will receive email notification to your Richmond.edu email address listing the exact date and amount of the deposit. Otherwise, your refund will be mailed to you. Contact Student Accounts at 804-289-8147 or bursar@richmond.edu if you have questions about a refund.

Can I use my financial aid to cover my plane ticket and/or housing deposit?

An allowance for such expenses is included in your Cost of Attendance for the term you are abroad. If your financial aid exceeds the tuition charge at Richmond, you will be eligible for a refund that can be used to help pay for these expenses. However, your financial aid will likely not be available to you at the time these expenses are incurred. This is because financial aid for study abroad cannot be disbursed to your student account at Richmond until 10 days prior to the start of your program. Thus, you may need to pay for some expenses out of pocket and then reimburse yourself once the refund is processed.

Will my financial aid cover my housing expenses?

Standard program housing costs will be used to determine your eligibility for need-based financial aid. If you choose a higher cost housing option, you will be responsible for the additional housing expense. If your financial aid exceeds the tuition charge at Richmond, you will be eligible for a refund that can be used towards housing and meal expenses as well as other education expenses related to your study abroad program.

Can I get my financial aid early to pay my housing expenses at my study abroad program?

No, federal regulations prohibit the disbursement of financial aid earlier than 10 days before classes start at the study abroad program. However, if your financial aid exceeds the tuition charge at Richmond and you are eligible for a refund, you can contact the housing office of your study abroad program and indicate that your aid will not be available until the program starts. It is up to the individual school to determine if they will defer the payment until your refund is provided to you.

How do I get a fund certification letter to prove I have enough money to get a VISA?

If your financial aid exceeds the tuition charge at Richmond and will cover room and board expenses, a fund certification letter can be prepared to provide proof to the embassy that funds are available to meet living expenses while in the foreign country. You should request the fund certification letter at least 2 weeks prior to your appointment at the embassy. Send an email to: finaid@richmond.edu listing your name, UR ID#, study abroad program and the date of your appointment. Also indicate if you will pick up the letter from the Office of Financial Aid or if you would like the letter sent to you electronically.

Will I receive my travel allowance in addition to my financial aid package?

Travel allowances are available for semester/year-long programs only, not summer or Non-UR participants.  The travel allowance is automatically applied as a credit to the student's UR account 10 days prior to the first day of class abroad, and will be listed as "UR Abroad Program Travel Allowance" on the invoice/account.  Students do not need to submit any paperwork or request a reimbursement to receive the travel allowance. The travel allowance will be factored into the existing financial aid package for students receiving need-based financial aid.

Can my parents use the Installment Plan while I study abroad?

The Installment Plan may be used for a study abroad program, but can only be used to cover the tuition bill from Richmond. Contact the Office of Student Accounts for assistance in setting up the Installment Plan during a semester/year-long study abroad program.

Can my parent's borrow a Federal Direct PLUS loan to help with the costs of my study abroad program?

A parent may borrow a Federal Direct PLUS loan to assist with the educational expenses related to study abroad. The amount that may be borrowed is the Cost of Attendance minus all other aid the student will receive.

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