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Before You Leave

Begin planning your travel as soon as you submit your application for study abroad. Your program will provide resources to help you with preparations, but you can also consult Hamilton’s resources to get a jump on your travel planning.

Attend Mandatory Pre-Departure Session
All students studying abroad are required to attend the Hamilton pre-departure orientation, which is offered twice a semester. In addition, some program providers may have on-campus pre-departure orientations as well.  Your leave of absence is not approved until you attend a pre-departure session. 

Submit Your Petition for Transferred Credit
If you are going on a non-Hamilton program, prior to your departure you MUST complete the petition for transferred credit form. You are responsible for getting your department chair’s signature for courses you want to have approved for your concentration or minor.  The petition for transfer credit form is due December 1 for spring study abroad and April 15 for fall study abroad.

Most courses taken as electives can be approved by the Registrar. Decisions for granting credit are based on the course material you provide, so submit complete information about a given course (description, reading list, academic expectations, etc.). All completed form(s) and additional materials go to the Registrar’s Office.  More information can be found here.

Submit Your Waiver and Release Form
This form is distributed at the pre-departure orientation.  If you need to complete one and have not attended the pre-departure session, please contact Off-Campus Study at 315-859-4022.

Secure your housing for your return
Complete a housing proxy form and turn it into the Office of Residential Life.

Check your financial aid 
Stop by the Financial Aid Office and see Diane Barrett (315-859-4395). Tell her that you are going abroad and ask if your financial aid is in order, both for the semester(s) you are abroad and for the semester you return to Hamilton.

Let us know where you will be 
Update the Off-Campus Study Office about where you will be.  Some students may not have confirmed their program choice until after filing their Leave of Absence.  Contact our office to let us know what program you will be participating in. 

Get a physical and immunizations
Contact the Student Health Center (315-859-4111) for an appointment.  Some study abroad locations require additional immunizations.  Make an appointment with Diann Lynch in the Student Health Center to receive immunizations and other important health information.

Prepare your immigration documents
If you are not a U.S. citizen, check with the Dean of Students Office to make sure that your visa and other immigration papers are in order. U.S. citizens and noncitizens should also see passport and visa recommendations in section II.

Visit the Career Center
We encourage you to make an appointment at the Career Center to discuss how study abroad fits with your career plans. Also, begin planning for a summer internship or your fall job search BEFORE you leave campus, particularly if you will be away in the spring.


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