A. Introduction

CUNY continues its commitment to provide CUNY students with international learning opportunities in all fields of study and to make available financial, administrative, and academic support to bring international students into its academic programs. The University Offices of Accounting, Budget, and Internal Audit have carefully reviewed the financial implications of these programs as they relate to the collection and accountability of tuition and fee revenues and the expenditure of funds.

Appropriate charges and the processing of these charges may differ depending on whether the program is offered by an overseas institution pursuant to an agreement with a CUNY college or is offered as a CUNY course taught overseas by a CUNY faculty member.

While there are a wide variety of programs, each falls under one of three types of overseas programs that exist at CUNY – International Exchange; Study Abroad; and Faculty-Led Study Abroad. The term “Host College” refers to the CUNY College that sponsors and administers the overseas program. The term “Home College” refers to the CUNY College where the student has entered a degree program, if other than the Host College.

NOTE: Each Host College is required to follow the CUNY International Travel Guidelines (the “Guidelines”) in planning for international study abroad programs. The Guidelines are available at www.cuny.edu/travel. All CUNY students on study abroad programs are required to complete relevant forms and enroll in the CUNY travel insurance program before traveling abroad.

B. International Exchange Programs

This type of program operates under an agreement between a CUNY institution and an overseas institution to exchange students on a 1:1 basis for a semester or an academic year.

A student from a CUNY college other than the sponsoring CUNY College who participates in an exchange program should register and pay tuition at the Home College. Depending upon the program, the student may be asked either to register for the program utilizing a CUNY permit or to register for blanket credit at the Home College. Exchange students from overseas do not pay tuition to CUNY, but rather to their home overseas institution.

The program administrator should review the exchange every year in order to determine that both institutions are adhering to the 1:1 basis.

C. Study Abroad Programs

These programs operate under an agreement between a CUNY college and an overseas institution providing instruction to CUNY students at a site outside the United States. Students pay “program costs” which include the cost of the overseas instruction (as determined by the overseas institution and remitted to that institution by the CUNY Host College) and administrative processing fees (which are retained by the CUNY Host College). No tuition monies are retained by the CUNY College. These costs may exceed the amount of CUNY tuition. Any additional costs are the responsibility of the student. There are two distinct processes which students must follow depending upon the circumstances of the study abroad program:

Enrollment of Students in Programs Sponsored through their Home College

In this instance, the student (with the assistance from the study abroad coordinator or director) is required to obtain permission from the relevant officials at the home college such as the registrar, the bursar, financial aid counselor and academic advisor before being able to participate in a study abroad program. The student begins this process by completing and submitting the forms required by the Study Abroad or International Studies Office. Once permission has been secured, the student must pay the necessary tuition costs to the home college bursar, before traveling abroad.

Enrollment of Students from other CUNY Colleges in Programs Offered through a CUNY Sponsoring Host College

In this situation, a student must obtain permission from the relevant officials at the Home College before being able to participate in a study abroad program sponsored by another CUNY college. The student then utilizes the “e-Permit” process to receive permission from the Host College to register at his/her Home college for the courses/credits he/she will be taking overseas. After applying to and being accepted by the Host College’s program, the student will pay the CUNY tuition and fees to the Home College, before traveling abroad. The Home College’s bursar will send to the Host College a check in the amount of the tuition payment issued from its local tuition and fee account. The Host College will then transfer the funds to the overseas institution to cover the program costs. The study abroad staff at the Host College must require the student to enroll in CUNY’s international insurance program, and complete and submit to them all relevant forms. The student will then pay any additional program costs to the overseas institution or the Host College Study Abroad office for transfer to the overseas institution as indicated by the specific program. All tuition costs should be remitted prior to traveling.

CUNY Faculty-Led Study Abroad Programs

In this program, a CUNY faculty member teaches CUNY courses to CUNY students at an overseas institution or site. The CUNY student from a CUNY college other than the Host College registers at the Home College for the course credit via the CUNY “e-Permit process” and pays CUNY tuition to the Home College. The student pays any additional program costs to the Host College.

The Home College’s bursar will transfer to the Host College funds equal to the amount of the tuition payment collected from its students for the faculty-led program and issued from its local tuition and fee account. Tuition funds may be used for faculty salary for the costs of instruction for the program.

Faculty leading programs may be reimbursed for expenses in addition to the salary referenced above, depending upon the institution, program and duration.

D. General Program Management

Study abroad programs must be managed by an on-campus CUNY faculty or staff member who is designated as the Program Director. The Program Director is responsible for both the administrative and academic aspects of an international program. Among some of the responsibilities of the Program Director are:


For all types of programs described above, agreements between the overseas institution and the CUNY College must be developed and submitted to the CUNY Office of International Programs within the University’s Office of Academic Affairs. In conjunction with the University’s Office of the General Counsel, all agreements will be reviewed and must be approved as to form prior to sending a proposed agreement to the overseas institution. These agreements should state the period of study abroad covered, the services to be provided, the number of students to be served, the tuition and other program costs and the institution to which all funds are to be paid. Agreements should cover a period not to exceed three years; however, options should exist to include up to two renewals for periods of two years each. Therefore, at a minimum, agreements should be reviewed every seven years (if all options are exercised). Model form agreements are available at www.cuny.edu/studyabroad

Please note that in all CUNY study abroad program agreements, the terms “home” and “host” are used differently than in this Manual. In the international agreements, the term “home” college refers to the CUNY college sponsoring the program and responsible for its administration; the term “host” refers to the overseas institution the student attends while abroad. In a Student Exchange Program, a CUNY college may also be a “host” institution to the foreign exchange students studying there; and the foreign institution would be the student’s “home” school.


Once the University Offices of International Programs/Academic Affairs and the General Counsel have approved an agreement, the college planning to enter into a relationship with an overseas institution must submit a Board resolution for the Chancellor’s Report describing the agreement with the overseas Institution, except for faculty-led programs. Any significant or material changes in the agreement or the program itself will require a new Board resolution. A fee increase of less than 10 percent shall not be regarded as significant for purposes of the required revision. In cases involving CUNY-wide programs (e.g., CUNY China, CUNY Paris Exchange, CUNY Program for Study in Israel), resolutions and agreements must be filed by the CUNY College that sponsors the program.


Some study abroad programs are sponsored through a consortium (e.g., the College Consortium for International Studies – CCIS), which helps to facilitate the operation of these programs. Consequently, a consortium fee is charged to the student by the organization. This fee is not a CUNY or college-imposed fee. The fee is paid either directly to the consortium by the student, or , in some instances, the CUNY host college may collect the fee and transmit it to the consortium on behalf of the student. The CUNY host college is responsible for paying any annual membership fees in order for its students to participate in the overseas programs of the consortium.

Financial Aid

Students should inquire about financial assistance at their home college’s financial aid offices. As a general rule, students enrolled in any of the above-described international programs including consortium agreements with non-CUNY led faculty are eligible to apply for Federal aid programs such as Pell, FFEL loans, etc. Students are not eligible for the State’s Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) if any tuition payments are made to the foreign institution either directly by the student or by CUNY. Thus, only students enrolled in International Exchange Programs and CUNY Faculty-Led Study Abroad Programs may be eligible for TAP, provided the total tuition charge does not exceed the CUNY tuition payable to the CUNY institution. Additional fees and expenses that are part of the cost of education overseas cannot be added to the tuition cost in determining the student’s TAP award; nor, are these costs considered “fees,” if they really are tuition. All TAP and Federal aid requirements must be met and documented by the student’s CUNY home college.

Other-than-Tuition Fees Charged for Overseas Programs

Any fee charged to students must be submitted to the Board of Trustees for approval through the Vice Chancellor for Budget and Finance. This request should specifically indicate the nature of the charge, number of students, an estimated amount of fees to be generated and the purpose of the fees.

Application/Administrative Processing Fees

These fees must be included in the agreement between the CUNY College and the foreign institution. If assessed, this Application/Administrative Processing Fee is used to cover CUNY operational costs and is retained by the Host College.

Material Fees

Material fees, which must be approved by the Board of Trustees every two years or whenever the fee changes, may be charged for courses provided that the student will own the end product of his/her work when using such materials (see Material Fee section of this Manual for definition). Material fees for overseas study have been interpreted to include overseas expenses such as travel, room and board, excursions to historical sites, admission fees to museums, food, etc., as long as the student directly benefits.

E. Waiverable Fees

Student Activity Fee, Consolidated Fee and Technology Fee

These fees will be waived for any CUNY student enrolled in a study abroad program once the appropriate Board resolution has been approved indicating the waiver of these fees.

Study Abroad during Winter Intersession

The procedures for handling Study Abroad students during winter intersession are indicated in the permit section.

F. Study Abroad In Brief

Faculty Led Programs Study Abroad Programs Student Exchange Programs
Faculty CUNY faculty at International Institution International faculty at International Institution International Faculty at International Institution
Tuition Charged by Home College Charged by Home College Charged by Home College
Tuition Note Host College bills Home College Student pays tuition differential (if any) to Host College for transmittal to International Institution Student pays Home College and studies at overseas host institution without further tuition charge
Program Fees Billed and Paid at Host College Paid by student directly to Host College for transmittal to International Institution Paid by student directly to International Institution
Consolidated Fees Generally Waived Generally Waived Generally Waived
Student Activity Fees Generally Waived Generally Waived Generally Waived
Technology Fees Generally Waived Generally Waived Generally Waived