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  • Market in Thailand

Make First Year Abroad Affordable for Your Budget

CIEE First Year Abroad programs provide students with a unique international education experience. Rather than start college in the U.S. students can spend their first year of college in one of 14 incredible global destinations. Participate in a 12-week semester program earning 12-13 college credits per semester, or complete two 6-week blocks by studying in two different destinations.

CIEE program fees for First Year Abroad programs cover a lot, including:

• Placement with a carefully screened host family or local residence hall
• Online orientation before leaving the U.S. and in-person orientation upon arrival
• Supervision and support of local staff
• Pre-departure assistance
• CIEE-led educational trips and excursions
• International medical and travel insurance
• 24/7 support and counseling available to students and parents from CIEE headquarters staff
• Access to CIEE Alumni network

We want to make First Year Abroad (FYA) programs as accessible as possible for students who wish to apply, and we understand that a big part of that goal is offering financial support options. We’ve outlined a few different avenues to make FYA more affordable, and as you consider your options, feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions.


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Option #1: Financial Aid and Scholarships

When you’re a CIEE First Year Abroad participant, you’ll also be enrolled as a student at our academic home and school of record, Dean College, located in Franklin, Massachusetts. So, as you apply to First Year Abroad, you’ll also be applying to college (like a regular freshman!). 

You can fill out your free application for the Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) during the application process, which will assess your financial need, and if eligible, you’ll be awarded federal or state aid (if you’re a Massachusetts resident) that can apply to your first year abroad program. Use Dean’s federal school code—002144—when you complete the online application on the Federal Student Aid website.

In addition to any possible federal or state assistance, you can also apply for the Gilman Scholarship. The U.S. Department of State recognizes this scholarship as federal financial assistance and enables students of limited financial means to study abroad. And this includes CIEE First Year Abroad!

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Option #2: CIEE Discounts

When considering your financial options for First Year Abroad, peruse CIEE’s study abroad discount opportunities, too:

Refer-a-Friend Rewards: Earn extra cash when you refer friends to CIEE
Alumni Rewards: If you’ve studied abroad with CIEE before, you’re eligible for money off your next CIEE program

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Is First Year Abroad more affordable than a semester of college in the U.S.?

Tuition, program, and enrollment fees for CIEE First Year Abroad start at $16,800, which is more affordable than the average out-of-state college cost of $19,755, including room and board. Make sure to take a closer look at the cost of a specific first year abroad program you’re interested in for exact pricing.

First Year Abroad

Get Your Questions Answered

Register for one of our upcoming webinars to learn more about First Year Abroad. The CIEE team will answer your questions and help you get started on the next steps towards making your study abroad dreams a reality.

Fundraising Is a Great Way to Help Pay for Your Adventure Abroad

For alumni-proven fundraising tips, download the Student Fundraising Toolkit!

Check out the video below to see how a student raised over $5,000 for a CIEE program in just six weeks

Save when you apply for an First Year Abroad academic year program

Dreaming of a full year abroad? CIEE sweetens the deal with a $1,500 discount on your second semester when you choose a full academic year. This discount is automatically reflected in the prices listed on the program page and in the application. Academic year programs are available in the following locations: Monteverde, Costa Rica; Kyoto, Japan; Seville, Spain; Prague, Czech Republic.