It is a pleasure to work with your student in preparation for their academic experience abroad. Regardless if this is your son’s or daughter’s first or fifteenth time abroad, you may have mixed feelings; we invite you to read the Letting Go letter, written by two Penn professors and parents, outlining a philosophy similar to Penn Abroad’s. Recall the adjustment your student made when they first arrived at Penn, and now think of them today—not only have they managed, they are succeeding. Study abroad is similar but on a greater scale. Rest assured they are ready to handle this new experience.
Your student has entered into a selective application process and must demonstrate to Penn Abroad and to their university/program abroad that they have the academic and emotional capacity to succeed in a foreign setting. Penn Abroad has also developed thorough pre-departure programming to set your student up for success abroad. For example, all students:
- attend an advising session with their Penn Abroad Program Manager
- attend an advising session with their Academic Advisor(s)
- participate in mandatory pre-departure orientations
Students are also encouraged to:
- reach out to Student Ambassadors and past participants
- attend specialized “Know Before You Go” sessions
- contact our office with any questions that may arise throughout this pre-departure process
Though you may have many questions, your first point of contact should always be your student. We believe study abroad starts well before setting foot on foreign soil. Penn Abroad has set the expectation that students be totally invested in their study abroad preparations from adhering to deadlines, navigating the visa process, attending orientations, talking to past participants, and staying abreast of current events in the region.
Except in the case of emergency situations, per Penn’s Parental Notification Policy, Penn Abroad communicates directly with students, rather than parents, in order to empower them and fully engage them in this important process. The best way for you to be involved is to encourage your student to invest in and shape their own experience.
Thank you for encouraging and supporting your student. We enthusiastically welcome them into this process. It is our sincere hope that their term abroad has a lasting impact beyond the time spent out of the country.
Academic and Financial Policies
For complete information on Penn Abroad's Academic and Financial policies, click here.
Study Abroad Options
For questions about what study abroad options are available for your son or daughter, click here.
Health and Safety
For information about health and safety abroad, click here