Above: Ngorongoro skyline. Photo by Janelle Shwazer via VIU Education Abroad Flickr.

Have you ever considered studying Culture in China? How about Business in the Netherlands? What about Design in New Zealand, or Education in Norway? VIU’s Education Abroad program provides opportunities to continue your studies at a university in a different country.

VIU has a list of exchange partners to choose from. These include universities in Australia, China, England, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sweden, the US, and the West Indies. The cost of studying full time at one of the partner universities is equal to the cost of five courses at VIU, plus student and activity fees per semester. These fees are paid to VIU. You are also responsible for travel, accommodation, food, and insurance costs.

There is also the possibility of studying at a university that is not on the list as a “visiting student.” However, in this case, you would pay tuition at the overseas institution rather than VIU, and your eligibility for student loans may be affected.

Credits from courses taken abroad transfer back as unassigned credit that may be used to fulfill general elective requirements, and if a course is similar enough to one offered at VIU, an assigned credit may be awarded.

Financial assistance is available for those interested in studying abroad. All students participating in the exchange program for one or two semesters automatically receive the IE Exchange Award of $2200. You may also be eligible for the International Education Stipend, which can be between $750 and $1000. Further financial assistance can be found with other scholarships, awards, and grants.

In order to qualify for VIU’s international exchange program, you must be a current VIU student and have completed 30 credits before the application deadline of October 3, 2016, of which a minimum of 12 credits must have been completed at VIU. You need to have achieved a minimum GPA of 3.0 or higher in your past two full-time semesters. You must also be a Canadian citizen or landed immigrant, and you must be planning to return to VIU to complete your degree or diploma.

More information on education abroad can be found on the VIU website, in bldg. 255, or by emailing educationabroad@viu.ca.