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NAFSA Session: Special Issues in International Student Funding

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by

Shelby Harrington

on 7 November 2013

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Transcript of NAFSA Session: Special Issues in International Student Funding

Special Issues in Student Funding
Government Grants and Loans
Government Sponsorships
Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, UAE
Citizens eligible for language training, BA, MA, PhD (includes AA as pre-transfer for BA)
tuition and most fees
SACM endorsed medical insurance
living expenses
Must be on list of approved programs
Must maintain satisfactory progress
enroll full time
pass all classes
Host institution responsible for verifying progress and invoicing agency for payment
Funding Advisor often contacts academic institution directly, and has high volume caseload
Government Currency Conversion
CADIVI (Venezuela)
Government entity that processes requests for using foreign currency (U.S. dollars)
Only approved for specific majors and programs
Students must submit extensive documentation for request
Verification of acceptance
Verification of enrollment
Specific costs (itemized)
tuition and fees
medical insurance
living costs
books and supplies
Proof of citizenship (student and sponsor)
Proof of relationship (student to sponsor)
Documentation must be verified by several agencies
Notarized (+ verification of current notary status)
Apostille (Sacramento)
Approved by VZ Consulate (SF)
Submitted in triplicate to the VZ financial institution
Review by CADIVI officials is segmented
Impacts on Student Experience
Impacts on Institution
Tips and Best Practices
Students request official verification of status, and often need additional specific information outside of standard requests
Often needed during peak times (admissions, registration, end of semester)
FERPA restrictions
Delays in receipt of payments
Communication with 3rd party (invoicing funding agency)
Completing forms in foreign languages
Verifying document authenticity
Designate a staff member or office to process requests
Create templates (examples: NAFSA Region XII Conference website)
Set timelines and expectations for students; explain during orientation and publish link on office website
If possible, allow payment deferrals or payment plans for students
If possible, expand offerings for methods of payment (wire transfers, invoicing, payment plans)
If possible, create a direct contact at the funding agency
Added level of stress during academically demanding times (finals, registration, pre-arrival)
Process can be lengthy
Students must travel at times to fulfill requirements
Additional costs of document verification and travel
Translating requirements from home country agency
Navigating institutional requirements (FERPA)
Missed documents = denial; delays in paying for classes
Funding is not guaranteed, and may not cover all costs expected by students
Falling into cycle of back-payments (paying previous session with current funding)
Sweden
CSN Funding:
Every Swedish citizen eligible for 240 weeks funding for upper post-secondary school
covers tuition and fees
living expenses
travel costs
Consists of grants and loans
Must submit verification of academic records prior to receiving funding for following academic session
Passing grades in equivalent of FTE
Accredited institution
Transferable units
Can submit up to 3 weeks prior to program/session start date
On-line accounts expedite the process
Finland
Ministry of Education and Culture
Grant and government-guaranteed loan covers studies and housing
Applies to vocational, university, and professional programs
Applicable abroad at institutions equivalent to Finnish orgs
Institution must submit verification of progress on Finnish form (not always translated)
Norway
Lanekassen
Covers studies and living/travel expenses at accredited institutions in the U.S.
Requires proof of acceptance including costs of tuition and fees
Confirmation of studies each semester on the Lanekassen form
Granted for classes at Sophomore-level or higher (this may change 2014); also granted for 200-level classes
Requires official seal of institution
Can be submitted electronically
Full transcript