Frequently asked questions about study abroad
1. What are the basic requirements to participate in the Study Abroad Program at Cerritos College?
- 2.5 overall GPA at the time of application
- Completion of English 100 with a grade of C or better or Pass
- Minimum 12 units completed at Cerritos College prior to the Study Abroad Program start date
- 18 years old or older
2. How much does it cost?
See our link to Financial Resources in the left menu. We'll break down the costs of upcoming Study Abroad programs, provide payment and refund deadlines, and suggest funding resources like scholarships, financial aid, and crowd sourcing.
3. Can AB 540 students participate?
This is a tricky question. We want every student to have the opportunity to benefit from study abroad, but we also want to ensure that no student is in danger of being denied re-entry to the U.S. upon return from international study. At this time, given the political climate in Washington, we don't advise undocumented students to participate. Technically, there are protections for "Dreamers," students registered with DACA, but even those students may be at some risk of difficulties upon re-entry into the United States. We strongly advise that undocumented students receive professional legal advice before choosing to travel abroad.
See what UC Davis' Study Abroad website advises about undocumented students and study abroad:
UC Berkeley also provides strong advice regarding study abroad and undocumented students:
4. What about international students? Can we participate?
In many cases, yes; that depends on your country of origin and your passport. Some countries require visas for individuals from certain other countries, even if those students are currently studying in the U.S. If your passport is not from the U.S., speak with the Study Abroad Program faculty and they will help you find out whether you need any additional visas or permissions. The Office of International Student Services will help with this advice, as well; you can find them at http://www.cerritos.edu/oiss/.
5. How do I get a passport?
Check out the guidelines at the U.S. State Department's website at:
To be accepted into the Study Abroad Program, students will have to provide a copy of their passport pages by a certain date to ensure they are eligible to travel abroad. See the "Apply" link for instructions and deadlines.
6. Why should I be interested in study abroad at all?
Study abroad is a life-changing experience. The California Colleges for International Education claim that community college students benefit significantly from study abroad, writing:
"Numerous studies confirm the benefits gained from studying abroad for all students, and especially for under-represented students. Benefits for all students from studying abroad include definite changes in perception and attitude towards global relationships, increased empathy towards politics and social service, significant learning curve growth in interpersonal skills, academic performance and reduction of cultural stereotypes. ...For 1st generation or immigrant students, all forms of study abroad provide an opportunity to re-learn their own cultures and histories. For students who have not traveled beyond their own neighborhoods, studying abroad becomes a life-altering experience. In addition, Study Abroad is typically looked upon favorably by universities and employers.
Study abroad is a recognized investment in the future ability of the student to interact in our multicultural world and assists them as they transfer to a four-year institution or as they proceed into the workplace environment. Most importantly, however, is that what benefits four-year college students in terms of study abroad also benefits community college students."
The University of California Merced's research illustrates just how significant the impact is on future success for students studying abroad. Check out their research here:
7. What happens if I want to drop the course while we're abroad?
Students must be enrolled in the course or courses in the Study Abroad Program to participate. If a student drops the program classes in the middle of the international study, or if the instructor drops the student for excessive absenteeism or issues regarding student conduct, the student may no longer participate in the program. Program faculty and site staff will assist the student in moving out of the program housing and arranging for an early flight back to the U.S.
Additional questions? Contact the Study Abroad Program faculty and we'll help answer them.