Preparing to go on a Penn Summer Abroad program
Welcome! This section of our website is for students who have been admitted to a Summer 2015 program. It contains the next steps and forms you'll need to complete prior to departure. Some programs may also have additional instructions and forms that can be found through your application website here or sent out by the program director.
If you received your admission letter and have not already completed the Statement of Committal be sure to do so prior to the deadline noted in your admissions email. If we don't hear from you by the deadline, your admission to the program may be withdrawn and your place offered to another applicant.
- By accepting your offer of admission via the committal form, you are letting us know to hold a space for you in the program while you complete the required pre-departure forms.
- If your decision to participate in the program is contingent on financial aid, you should go ahead and select YES on the form – choose the option that indicates participation is contingent on financial aid or email firstname.lastname@example.org with this information.
- There is no deposit, but you may be charged a fee if you withdraw from the program after you have enrolled. The only exception to this is for students who withdraw for reasons related to their summer financial aid package. The withdrawal policy is in the handbook and also on the Tuition section of the website.
The Statement of Committal form is accessed through your application website here. Log in to your application account to complete this required form.
- Travel Preparations Checklist: This is a general list of things to do/think about/research as you prepare for your summer abroad. Refer the Student Handbook for more details. Program directors may also provide additional country-specific information.
- Pre-departure Forms Checklist: Includes instructions for the forms below.
Items 1-3 must be completed and submitted to the Penn Summer Abroad office before you can be registered for courses. Refer to the deadline in the email sent to you upon your admission. Plan ahead. You will need to schedule an appointment with either your physician or the Student Health Center in order to complete the health forms. Print out the checklist above for further instructions.
2. Health Form
Health Information Form: Fill out and sign. Also must be signed by health care provider.
Medical Statement: Completed by health care provider.
Medical Treatment Authorization: Read and sign.
3. Proof of Health Insurance: Provide proof of health insurance coverage (copy of insurance card/and or policy) during the period of the summer abroad program. It is your responsibility to make sure that your insurance covers you adequately while on the program. Become familiar with the coverage provisions, deductible items, and the process for making claims from abroad.
Drop-off, mail or fax item items 1, 2, and 3 to the Penn Summer Abroad office by the deadline in order to be confirmed in the program.
Penn Summer Abroad
College of Liberal and Professional Studies
University of Pennsylvania
3440 Market Street, Suite 100
Philadelphia PA 19143
4. Global Activities Registry: You will be entered as part of the group in Penn's Global Activities Registry and will receive an email notice to verify your information and to add your flight itinerary no less than two weeks prior to departure.
During the period of the program, visiting students are considered Penn students in the College of Liberal and Professional Studies (LPS). You are advised to become familiar with Penn policies as they do apply to you during this period. The main source for these policies is the Pennbook.
After submitting your Statement of Committal, you will receive a letter from the Registrar's office within 10-15 days with instructions and the Setup Code for your PennKey. A PennKey is your personal username required to access protected electronic resources at Penn including your student account, Blackboard courseware, grades, library resources and Penn email account. You are required to set up your PennKey in order to fully participate in the summer abroad program.
Once you have a PennKey, enter your contact information, particularly an email address, in the Penn Directory so that you will receive all necessary communications. You may view your student account by logging in to PennInTouch.
For more information about setting up your account visit New Student Checklist.
- Passport: Make sure that your passport is valid for at least six months beyond the end date of the program. If you do not already have a passport or need to renew it, you should begin the process immediately. Passport application forms and instructions can be obtained at the U.S. Post Office or at http://travel.state.gov/.
- Air Tickets: Penn Summer Abroad does not organize travel overseas. Start researching flights early. There are many possibilities and a large variation in prices. Be sure to note any specific arrival instructions. Some programs may advise arrival at a certain airport within a certain time window (see the program calendar). You will receive the list of all students in your program. Contact the ones who are likely to travel from the same airport. You may be able to travel together. We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance that will provide coverage for lost baggage or unforeseen events that may require rescheduling your ticket.
- Visa: Most of the countries where Penn Summer Abroad has programs do not require U.S. citizens to have visas for a short-term stay. If your program requires a visa or other entry documents, instructions will be provided by the Penn Summer Abroad office. If you are planning to travel to countries other than the site of your program, check requirements with the consulates of these specific countries as you they may require a tourist or transit visa. Be aware of how much time it takes to get a visa for the country you are visiting.
- Non-U.S. citizens may have different visa requirements than U.S. students. If you are not a U.S. citizen, you should check with the consulate of the country of your citizenship and the nearest consulate of the country where you plan to study. You must also check on the visa requirements for each country in which you plan to travel on the way to or from your Penn Summer Abroad program site. Contact Penn Summer Abroad office for assistance as needed.
- If you are a U.S. Permanent Resident, you must bring your Green Card with you when you travel abroad, as it is required to re-enter the United States.
In addition, current Penn students who are non-U.S. citizens must notify the Office of International Students and Scholars of plans to study abroad. (Visiting students must notify the similar office at their home school.) You will need paperwork from this office to make sure that you will be able to return to the U.S. after completing your summer abroad program. U.S. permanent residents should also check with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services concerning regulations for reentry into the U.S.
- Immunizations: Make sure you receive all appropriate inoculations. Consult with your physician. Any of the following sites are good resources for information on required or recommended vaccines and immunizations for travel abroad.
- Refer to the Pre-Departure section of the Student Handbook for additional information.
Each program will hold pre-departure orientation(s) on Penn campus in the spring to provide important information about the courses and the program in general. Penn student attendance is required for all orientations. Visiting students who are not able to attend will be sent printed materials from the workshops and are expected to ask the program director about anything they do not understand. There will also be a mandatory on-site orientation upon arrival in the host country.