Your Role

Families can play an important role in study abroad. It is important to find a balance between helping your student to make wise choices and allowing him or her to take charge of their own experience. Here are a few things you can do to help your student during this process:

  • Remain involved in the program selection process. Ask your student to explain why he or she has selected a particular program. Research the country, educational system, and culture together.
  • Contact your health insurance company to see if your student is covered while overseas. Ball State requires all students to purchase an international student ID card, which has some accident and emergency coverage. However, you should have your student check to see if additional insurance is included in the study abroad program cost or if this is something you will need to provide.
  • Make sure your student has a valid power of attorney agreement for the time period he or she will be abroad. This will allow the attorney-in-fact to sign documents, conduct banking, and access medical or academic records on the student's behalf. These documents can be drawn up, free of charge, by the BSU student attorney.
  • Help to make sure your student's passport and any required immigration documentation (student visa) is in order. Contact the appropriate consulate with any questions about visa applications.
  • Develop a plan for how to handle family emergencies that may arise while your student is away. Create a list of emergency phone numbers and email addresses.
  • Help with travel planning. Consider speaking with a travel agent to book flights or purchase rail passes. Contact the airline to find out luggage requirements before you pack.
  • Set up a doctor's appointment for your student. Every student planning to go on a BSU program is required to have a physical exam prior to departure. Ask the doctor about immunizations and health issues specific to the host country. Obtain typed prescriptions for any medications your student requires. It is a good idea to include a copy with the chemical breakdown because brand names vary worldwide.
Study Abroad
Student Center, Room 102
Ball State University
Muncie, IN 47306

Hours: Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Summer hours 7:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Phone: 765-285-5422
Fax: 765-285-3710
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