Study abroad fee starts in fall

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All students are charged per semester for international programs.

Grace Reyes

A new fee will be charged in fall to each student per semester, and it’s called International Education Fee Scholarship.

According to the board of trustees minute order on Dec. 13. the IEFS is a program “that ensures that all students have greater access to academic programs abroad regardless of socioeconomic status.”

Students at Alamo District Colleges will be charged $1 per semester for the scholarship.

“This has been passed by the Legislature in Austin,” Carol Fimmen, director of international programs, said.

“It has been approved by the government of Texas. All the universities in Texas charge this fee.”

Most Texas universities will charge students $2-$4 per semester hour, but for Alamo Colleges, it will be only $1 per semester.

“All the funds are going into one account, and there will be a committee of faculty members who have expertise in the international education that would develop the criteria of how the students will get awarded,” Fimmen said.

The  study abroad programs range between $4,000-$6,000 depending on which program is selected for the summer.

Students can learn Japanese in Japan, history of theater in London, digital photography in Italy, Spanish in Spain, composition in Sydney, psychology of death and dying in South Korea, physical geology in New Zealand, and business and communication in China.

The application deadline passed in November, but students can plan to apply for these programs in the fall for summer 2018.

When a student signs up to do a study abroad program, the student is required to pay a deposit of $200.

The deposite is non-refundable because this is money to hold the spot.

“The $200 deposit secures the student’s spot for the program because we do have limited spots available, even though we have never maxed out the capacity of what we can take,” study abroad adviser Maria Rivera said.

The Gilman International Scholarship sponsors the international education programs, which have been distributed throughout the country, and Alamo District Colleges is the top one to receive funding.

“We are being recognized as the lead community colleges of the nation for study abroad to receive scholarships from the Gilman program,” Fimmen said.

For more information, call Maria Rivera at 210-485-0084 or email


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