Although you're away from campus, Gettysburg and CGE are only a few clicks away.
Helpful Tools and Information While Abroad:
Be sure to get a list of local contacts from your program's on-site staff. In addition, here's a list of useful Gettysburg contact numbers:
Public Safety: 717-337-6911
Financial Aid: 717-337-6611
Health Services: 717-337-6970
Correspondence and Contacting Home
It is extremely important that you keep in regular contact via e-mail while you are off campus. All off campus studies students must continue to use their Gettysburg e-mail accounts while off campus. This is your official College e-mail address and all important information will be sent to you at that address.
When you get settled at your study abroad site, please e-mail email@example.com with your cell phone number and/or skype address. There are often occasions when Gettysburg will need to get in touch with you, and it is difficult if we do not have your contact information on file! Also, remember that Gettysburg College is not authorized to accept collect calls from students studying abroad. Many students stay in touch with Gettysburg through e-mail which is available at most study abroad program sites, and for all students via internet/cyber cafes.
Past study abroad students have suggested various ways that students can keep in touch with home when they are overseas. Almost all program sites have e-mail access. If not, many students suggest finding a cyber cafe to keep in touch by e-mail. Cyber cafes are usually coffee shops or restaurants that have internet access available for a fee. Some students sign up for the whole time they are gone, others just log on occasionally. Ask about local cyber cafes once you arrive at your program site.
Most students opt to purchase a cell phone when they are abroad. This is often the most convenient way to stay in touch. Speak with your program directly for more information about cell phones and keeping in touch with home.
Skype: More and more students are using skype technology to keep in touch with friends and family. This free service allows you to have “real time” conversations, and if you have a camera, “face to face” conversations via your computer. Skype can be downloaded online.
Accessing PeopleSoft Student Center
To access your Gettysburg Email, Student Center or CNAV while abroad go to: www.gettysburg.edu/current_students.
To successfully login to PeopleSoft Student Center you will need to make sure that your browser language setting is set to US English. Please follow these instructions:
Setting language preference in a browser
Internet Explorer: To change your language preferences go to Tools – Internet Options – General (tab) – Languages – Language preference.
Firefox: To change your language preference go to Tools – Options (Windows) or Firefox – Preferences (Mac OS X), and select Content (tab) – Languages – Choose (button).
Safari: On Mac OS X the language sent is that specified in the OS X system language preferences. To change those preferences go to System Preferences – Language & Text – Language.
Google Chrome:To change your language preferences go to Options (Windows) or Chrome – Preferences (Mac OS X), and select Under the Bonnet – Web Content – Languages & Spellchecker settings.
Opera:On Windows you can change your language preferences at Menu – Settings – Preferences – General – Language – Details (button).
In the rare event that you are having problems accessing PeopleSoft Student Center, you may write to IThelpdesk by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org .
*Only for students who are abroad for the entire academic year OR for the spring semester.
You will be contacted by email during the spring semester with information about pre-registration for the next academic year. All pre-registration information including course choices, are available on-line. Students will register on the Student Center which can be found in the left menu on the Current Student webpage.
Course Approvals From Abroad
On arrival at your overseas program site, most students will be asked to register for classes in much the same way that you register at Gettysburg. Some students will find that the courses they had hoped to take are full, canceled, too advanced, or too basic, and these students will need to get additional courses approved by Gettysburg College in order to assure credit transfer. If you need to get additional courses approved, you must do the following:
Log in to STUDENT CENTER – SELF SERVICE. Then look under the OFF CAMPUS STUDIES area, where you will see a tab that says COURSE APPROVAL – ADD COURSES. Click on this tab and you will be able to add additional courses to the list of courses that you had pre-approved. You will follow the same process as you did when you selected your previous courses.
Course Enrollment Verification Form
Once your final registration abroad is complete, log in to STUDENT CENTER – SELF SERVICE and click on the COURSE CONFIRMATION TAB under the OFF CAMPUS STUDIES area. You will see a list of all of the courses that you have gotten approved. Check off the courses that you have actually registered for and hit SAVE. This will send your final list of courses to the Registrar for final approved. Please note: if you are still seeking approval for your courses, you cannot submit this document until complete.
Culture Shock, Homesickness & Transitions
Extending Your Study Abroad Term
Sometimes Gettysburg students find that they are interested in extending their study abroad experience for a second term. If you are interested in staying abroad on your current program, or enrolling in a different study abroad program you should contact the Center for Global Education right away. You will need to have made this decision and completed the Gettysburg Application by October 15 to study abroad in the spring, March 15 to study abroad in the fall, and you will need to complete the regular petition and course approval process by the deadline. The October/March 15th deadline is already a two week extension on the usual deadline as we understand that for many students the Fall/Spring deadlines fall very early in their study abroad program. This process can be completed by e-mail, fax or letter. Please note that if you are planning on studying abroad in a different country, Gettysburg will give you the regular airfare credit for that country. If you are extending your stay in the same country, you will not receive an additional airfare credit. This is in keeping with the policy that academic year program students receive one round trip airfare credit.
Preparing To Return Home
Each study abroad student will receive a transcript from their program 6-8 weeks after the program concludes. Most programs will send one copy of the transcript to the student and one copy directly to the Center for Global Education. You are welcome to contact our office to see if your transcript has been received, but please remember to allow 6-8 weeks for processing by your program. Transcripts are sometimes held if you have any outstanding bills. Please make sure to pay all bills, and sign any necessary “transcript release” forms from your program before you return to the US. Also, check to make sure you have completed and submitted all academic assignments prior to your departure. This will expedite the processing of your transcript.
Return Flight Arrangements
In the vast majority of cases students will have purchased a round trip ticket for their study abroad semester. Whether you have a round trip ticket, or you need to purchase a ticket to return home, the best advice is to plan ahead. Many tickets have restrictions on the days you can travel, on whether you can change your return date, or on where you can depart from. It is important that you know everything you can about your plane ticket in advance, so if you need to make changes, you are able to do so. If you have a round trip ticket, contact the airline two months ahead of your departure, to make sure that have your reservation, and that you know exactly when and from where the flight departs. If you need to purchase a return ticket, do this as soon as you can once you have reached your host country. Flights fill up very quickly, and if you wait to make your reservation, you may get stuck with a date that does not suit your plans.
It is very important that you take the time to say goodbye. This may seem ridiculous, but many students return to the United States feeling as if they did not take the time to recognize that they were leaving a very special place. Say good-bye to your friends, teachers, favorite shop keepers, etc. Have that last “favorite food” and visit the places that have become special to you. Take pictures, write some thoughts in a journal - you will be thankful later.
Local US Embassies and Consulates
- List of US Embassies
- Students Abroad - US State Department website for students travelling abroad.
- Voluntary Travel Registration - Register with a US Embassy or Consulate for information and assistance during your travels.
The following are links to helpful information while travelling:
- Culture Shock
- Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered Travelers
- Travel Safety
- Women Travelers
- National Geographic Glimpse Correspondents Program
The Glimpse Correspondents Program is an exciting opportunity for talented young writers and photographers who will be living abroad for at least ten weeks. The program encourages participants to engage with people from other cultures, to seek out thought-provoking experiences, and to share their stories from abroad with others.