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Williams College Study Away Pre-Departure Webinar
Transcript of Williams College Study Away Pre-Departure Webinar
Williams College Study Away
Let's travel the world:
Study Away Pre-Departure Webinar
What we're covering
This tutorial will take you approximately 30 minutes to complete. If clicking on a hyperlink, please open a new tab or window. You will need to complete a quiz at the end of this interactive webinar, so remember to take notes.
Health & Safety
An International State of Mind
For when you return
Although the application process can sometimes be frustrating, patience and perseverance are the keys to securing the documents you need before you leave. It is important to give yourself
If this will be your first passport, you'll have to apply in person. You can apply at either of the following locations near Williams:
U.S. Passport Office U.S. Post Office
County Court Building 67 Summer Street
207 South Street North Adams, MA 01247
Bennington, VT 05201 (413) 664-4554
Many countries require a visa - an official authorization stamped on a passport - for entry into, travel within, and exit from country. If a visa is required for the country in which your program is located, or for a country through which you'll be traveling, you'll want to consult with your program and obtain one before you leave.
This card serves as an effective means of proof of student status. It is also helpful in securing cheap air fares to Europe, Asia, and Africa as well as reduced admission to museums and a wide variety of cultural events. You can apply in person at the Registrar's Office, or by mail using an application.
There are several things you should be aware of regarding customs regulations and duty taxes. Most importantly,
TAKE THE WHOLE PROCESS SERIOUSLY!
For information about American customs, the booklet "Know Before You Go, Customs Hints" is an exhaustive treatment of U.S. customs regulations and duty rates.
If you have any concerns about local conditions of the areas to which you'll be traveling, you can call the Department of State Citizen Emergency Center at (202) 647-5225. You can also obtain this information from official passport agencies, U.S. Embassies, travel agents, airlines, and the State Department web page, which contains travel advisories as well as a summary of current conditions in each country, accessible at:
Health & Safety
The quality of your study abroad experience depends on your health and safety.
What is required?
In general yellow fever vaccinations are required by international health regulations. The Health Center staff will check your itinerary and provide you with the requirements for the countries you intend to visit.
If it has been 10 years since your last tetanus booster shot, make it a part of your pre-travel preparations.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
You need not examine volumes of data to know that sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), HIV, and AIDs are global concerns. If you are going to engage in sex always use a latex condom. While condoms are available in most parts of the world, we suggest you bring a supply from the U.S. to be sure of the quality.
Safety Precautions Abroad
While studying abroad, participants can have a major impact on their own safety through the decisions they make before and during the program and by their day-to-day choices and behaviors.
It is advised to keep a low profile and try not to make yourself conspicuous by dress, speech, or behavior.
Develop a plan with your family for regular telephone/Skype contact so that in an emergency, family can communicate directly about your safety and well-being.
ALWAYS carry phone numbers
and e-mail addresses for:
program Resident Director
International Programs Office of host institution
emergency phone numbers for host institution
U.S. Embassy and/or local Consulate
family at home and work
To prepare for your trip abroad, you should attend to a few details with regard to your insurance coverage
You must complete an online enrollment form before you depart.
Access Gallagher-Koster at:
College and University Students
and then click on
Study Abroad Insurance
Take the time to do the following before you leave so you are prepared in the event that you need medical care while you're away:
Become familiar with your policy
Be sure to have a current I.D. card from your insurance company
For questions about Williams College health plan, contact Angie Marano, Director of Administrative Services, Health Center
If you are not covered by the Williams College plan, you are responsible for securing your own coverage. Health insurance is required while abroad.
for when you return...
If you're a United States citizen and you don't have a passport, you'll need one before you go. Applications normally take from 2-8 weeks to process. Demand for passports is usually at its peak between January and August, so applying in the fall can significantly reduce the delays you might otherwise encounter.
For information on which countries require visas, check out:
For more information, visit:
Long term travel, or residence in many areas, pose particular risks to Americans without previous exposure and resistance to diseases.
The most common problems travelers experience are the disorders which arise from eating contaminated food or drinking contaminated water. Diarrhea is the most common result.
For the latest information regarding health warnings and
vaccination recommendations for your host country, visit
World Health Organization
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control
Avoid crowds, protest groups, or other potentially volatile situations, as well as restaurants and entertainment places where Americans are known to congregate.
Report to the responsible authority any suspicious persons loitering around residence or instructional facilities.
Make arrangements through your overseas program director or host university officials to register upon arrival at the U.S. consulate or embassy having jurisdiction over the location of your foreign study.
responsibility to request a transcript from your program and see that it is sent to:
International Education and Study Away Office
PO Box 518
Williamstown, MA 01267
It is highly recommended that you request a transcript for yourself for future references for graduate school and/or employment at the same time. You will not be able to get a copy of the original transcript sent to Williams.
You can register online for the next semester’s classes at Williams. All registration deadlines for students on campus will also apply to those studying away.
Fill out a Study Away Evaluation after returning to Williams. It is required as the final part of the study abroad process. Your transcript will not be evaluated for credit by the CAS (Committee on Academic Standing) until you have submitted a program evaluation to the Study Away Office.
Evaluation here: http://study-away.williams.edu/returning-students/study-away-evaluation/
get to know your destination
talk with other LGBTQ and allied people about their experiences in certain countries/regions
understand the context, customs, and attitudes in your host country
expressions of friendship may be quite different than those expressed among your U.S. peers
learn the laws of your host country regarding LGBTQ issues
once outside the U.S. you are no longer protected by U.S. laws
Cross-cultural communication requires the ability to explain your own lifestyle in a way that is understandable to the people of another country.
"Vegetarians should never feel pressured to change their lifestyle. The world is a place of diversity, and it is precisely this diversity that makes our planet so special. People in other countries are eager to hear stories about other places and ways of life - even vegetarianism. This is the essence of cross-cultural experience" (Christ, 1986).
before you leave the airport at your destination, visit the ATM so you have local currency
inform your credit card company that you are using your ATM card from your new destination
However, you will pay the fees of the institution you attend plus a $1,500 study away fee to Williams with the exception of financial aid students and students enrolled in the Williams Mystic or Williams-Exeter at Oxford Programme.
Application process remains the same as though you would be attending Williams.
Financial aid eligibility can be applied to your study away program, provided your plans receive approval by the Committee on Academic Standing (CAS), via the Study Away Office.
Financial aid will not be awarded until you have been accepted into the program and have notified the Study Away Office of your intention to go and submit your Study Away budget to Financial Aid.
Keep the Office of Financial Aid informed of your plans to study away, complete all necessary forms, and submit a copy of your program invoice(s) to the Bursar's office.
For up-to-date information, application instructions, dates, and deadlines, enroll in the Fellowships Site on Williams GLOW.
who to contact:
Katya King, Director of Fellowship Advising firstname.lastname@example.org
Lynn Chick, Fellowship Coordinator email@example.com
an international state
Go with the flow and don't sweat the details! Take opportunities as they present themselves, and remember that things have a way of working themselves out in the end.
Consider the customs of your new host country and make an effort to respect them, while recognizing that you don't need to sacrifice your own value system.
What does the rest of the world think about the U.S.?
learn local customs!
In many countries, the role of alcohol varies significantly from what we are used to here. In some countries, toasting with alcoholic beverages is an intrinsic part of the culture. In the same countries, however, there are strict laws that regulate acceptable drinking behavior.
When the excitement and euphoria of being in a new, fun place wear off, when things that were new now become everyday, when what was really cool now just smells bad or is uncomfortable, many people have a particularly pronounced down-turn in their overall emotional state.
This is a normal part of the integration process, and you should realize that everyone else is going, has been, or will go through the same thing, every time they go to a new culture.
Controller's/Bursar's Office: college bills, study away program invoice(s), set up direct deposit for refunds.
Gym: clean out locker
Financial Aid: submit study away budget
Library: return any books
Paresky Mailroom: forwarding address information and changes
International Student Advisor: for int'l students regarding I-20 signatures contact Ninah Pretto, Assistant Dean of International Student Services.
Study Away: email the Director of your course enrollment & any changes to your courses when you have arrived on your program and registered
It is available at: http://www.cbp.gov/travel/us-citizens/know-before-you-go
You have completed the online component of your pre-departure orientation!
Any questions you have may be answered on the Study Away website, so remember to look there first!
The completion of this quiz is mandatory. If the quiz is not submitted, you will not be allowed to study away:
any questions regarding this process may be directed to:
Tina Breakell, Director
International Education &
Hopkins Hall, Room 210
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FOUND ON STUDY AWAY WEBSITE!!
You WILL NOT pay Williams housing and tuition while abroad.
The card is recognized by universities, academic institutions, student organizations, national governments and ministries of education around the world. As well as being able to prove your student status internationally, it allows you access to benefits around the world!
to complete this WEBINAR click on the full screen icon and navigate with the right arrow button on your keyboard
Do not wear clothing or accessories that say "U.S.A." or "America." These items can easily categorize you.
The services provided by International SOS range from telephone advice and referrals to full-scale evacuation by private air ambulance. The SOS network of multilingual specialists operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year from SOS Alarm Centers around the world. Your SOS membership, provided by Williams College, protects you against a variety of difficulties that could arise while you are abroad. International SOS is
health insurance. The coverage is designed to supplement the policies, procedures and support staff which Williams College already has in place.
E-mail health alerts
Lost document advice
E-mail security alerts
sexual harassment and Misconduct
the key to a successful trip is planning and preparation
: If you are not covered by the Williams College Health Insurance, it is your responsibility to secure your own coverage for the time you are away.
always carry a copy of the prescription with doctor's contact
Protection Measures for Travel Activities:
have your own mini first aid kit
: be aware of pre-existing conditions
always carry a cellphone and make sure it works in your destination
research safety information
If you have problems connecting to your PeopleSoft, you may either e-mail your course selections to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax your course selections to 413-597-4010
Any additional questions can be addressed to Mary Morrison: Mary.L.Morrison@williams.edu
For students planning to study abroad during
ENTIRE ACADEMIC YEAR
You must designate another student to act as your proxy when it comes time to select rooms for the next academic year. Please note that your proxy is responsible for acting on your behalf for Off-Campus Housing, Co-Op Housing, Quiet Housing, or Room Draw.
Housing Proxy form: https://student-life.williams.edu/student-housing/housing-proxy/
Deadlines are listed on the Office of Student Life website under "Important Housing Dates"
For students planning to study abroad during
By the October deadline, you may find a student who has a room on campus for the Fall Semester who will be away for the Spring Semester and advise us that you would like to live in that student's room when you return. The Room Share form is available online on the Office of Student Life website. If you choose this option, please remember that you may need a temporary room for January.
If you need a temporary room, a lottery will be held for Returning Students and you will be able to enter that lottery to choose your January room.
After the October deadline, if you have been unsuccessful in finding a Room Share match, we will email you an up-to-date list of students who will be on Study Away for the Spring who have not made a previous Room Share match.
By November 1, if you are still unsuccessful at this point, you will be entered into the December Returning Students Lottery and have an option to choose your Winter Study and/or spring room.
you must be enrolled as an on-campus student for the correlating academic term (fall, winter study, and/or spring) for your ID card to be activated for on-campus access during that term.
For students planning to study abroad during
You will need to participate in the co-op, quiet, and/or regular room draws.
You must designate another student to act as your proxy when it comes time to select your room for the next academic year.
Housing Proxy form: https://student-life.williams.edu/student-housing/housing-proxy/
, please be sure to turn in your room key to the Key Drop Box located near the Student Mailroom in Paresky.
A non-refundable charge of $75 will be added to your term bill if your room key is not returned when you leave campus.
Questions? You can reach the Office of Student Life by:
E-mail: Gail Rondeau Hebert email@example.com
Condoms are available for free at the Health Center.
PAY ATTENTION TO DEADLINES
Fellowship opportunities for Juniors include Beinecke, Truman, Goldwater, Udall, Pickering, Summer Travel and Language Study Grants. Deadlines are in the fall and winter.
Many post graduate fellowship opportunities (Fulbright, Watson, Rhodes) will have late summer and early fall deadlines.
reverse culture shock
Readjusting to life back in the U.S. can be challenging.
You may feel excitement, frustration, sadness, anger, & resentment
check out this website:
what's up with culture?
It was developed to support and enhance a student’s ability to make successful cultural adjustments both before going overseas and upon returning home from studying abroad.
The focus is generally on the concept of culture and how it impacts one’s ability to understand and function in a new and unfamiliar environment. It concentrates on the skills, attitudes, and behaviors which all study abroad students, regardless of their specific destination, will find useful.
Instructions here http://bursar.williams.edu/files/Health-insurance-documentation-2016-17.pdf
Storage is available at Greylock for FINANCIAL AID students who plan on studying away for the fall or the entire academic year AND who meet the criteria as determined by the Financial Aid Office.
Students are allowed to store up to 3 boxes and must have labels provided by Facilities.
You can pick them up at the Main Office of Facilities.
Other items such as furniture, bikes, etc. must be stored in an off-campus site. A local storage company - Connors Brothers @ 413-458-8141 - can provide storage rate information and details.
Acknowledgment and Assumption of Risks and Release Agreement
Off-campus Health Coverage Verification
Registrar's Office: if you are currently a sophomore, you need to turn in the "Major Declaration" form during the April preregistration period.
If you want to register for either a WSP 99 or a WSP trip, the deadline for those courses is late-September. Information for 99s is available on the Registrar's website now; information on travel courses will be available by August.
If you will be registering for a regular WSP course, it may take several rounds of choices to place each student in a course. If at all possible, you should keep your Williams e-mail active or forwarded to give you equal advantage during the WSP registration process.
Course information is available online at: http://web.williams.edu/admin/registrar/ at least a week before each registration period opens and study away students are emailed shortly before registration opens.
Any additional questions, contact Barbara Casey: Barbara.A.Casey@williams.edu
Prior to studying away from Williams, contact Donna Denelli-Hess firstname.lastname@example.org at the Health Center to schedule an appointment for Travel Health Counseling. Before meeting with Donna, you must complete these forms:
be submitted to Karen Ryan in the International Education & Study Away Office before your departure. Failure to do so will jeopardize any credits earned being transferred to Williams.
Many of the problems you encounter will involve self or cultural identity, interpersonal relationships, role changes, and poorly fulfilled expectations. Some people have a more difficult time re-adjusting to life in the States than others. As always, being prepared and knowing what to expect are key elements in handling the whole process smoothly and successfully.
First and Foremost
: RESEARCH & READ UP
Learn as much as you can about your host country through textbooks, cookbooks, movies, newspapers, internet, magazines, fiction; whichever medium you prefer!
After you have enrolled in courses from your host country, inform Director Tina Breakell of your course selections so she can determine if they will be approved for academic credit.
You are required to select Liberal Arts courses abroad that are similar to those offered at Williams.
For example, you are able to take Economy courses, NOT Business or Marketing courses.
International Travel Questionnaire:
Return Questionniare and Release to Health Center.
Authorization for Release of Medical Information:
Before departing, we advise that you photocopy the front page of your passport and keep the copy with you at all times. If you lose your passport, this copy will help you replace it quickly!
It is estimated that more than 200 U.S. citizens die each year because of road accidents abroad. We’re not trying to scare you, but it is important to be aware of the rules of the road in the country you’re visiting.
The International Education & Study Away Office strongly urges that you DO NOT DRIVE while abroad.
Also, if you are on public transportation (and you feel the driver might be a lunatic) get off immediately!
Passport/Visa: You must have a passport to study abroad. Apply for a visa after you are accepted to your proram. This is timesensitive! Be diligent!
A special thanks to Danielle DeSanty for developing this orientation.
Each year students who are studying outside of the country apply and win fellowships. We encourage email conversations and Skype appointments very early in the application process.
If you ever find yourself receiving unwanted sexual harassment or misconduct while studying away, you should seek help right away. Your program should have an individual or office responsible for assisting you in such situations, usually a Resident Director or the International Student Office. You also have the support of the Williams College Title IX Officers and the Director of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response.
While awareness and response to sexual assault and misconduct vary in
each country and culture, you should not feel that you need to accept behavior that makes you uncomfortable simply because it might be part of the "cultural experience."
Williams has several resources available to all of our students regardless of where they are studying.
Do not hesitate to make use of these resources at any time.
Your safety and well-being is of our highest concern.
You must register and log your trip before you travel while you are abroad using this link:
This is important to do so that we will know your location in the event of an emergency and SOS will be able to assist you further.
: Students studying away should sign up to receive reimbursements and/or refunds directly into their US bank accounts. Please fill out the Direct Deposit Authorization Form found on controller.williams.edu/forms.
You must supply an email address to which the payment advice will be sent. When a payment has been processed, you will receive an email alert. If at any time, your bank account or email address changes, you must submit a new form to insure payment is not delayed.
If you have any questions or concerns, contact Accounts Payable, accounts email@example.com or call 413-597-4009 or 413-597-4453.
do not carry a lot of cash
Course Plan Approval: Email firstname.lastname@example.org with courses you intend to enroll in to be reviewed for Williams credit elgibility. Notify Study Away Office with any changes.
Study Away (Required Before You Depart):
Meet with Donna Denelli-Hess at the Health Center
Pre-Departure Webinar and Quiz
Risk and Release Agreement*
Health Verification Form
Any medical forms to the Health Center
*US State Dept. Travel Warning in effect will require a second Risk and Relese Agreement