Financial Aid and Scholarships

MoneyA common misconception students (and families) have about study away is that it is too expensive. However, study away can be more affordable than you think! With planning and the right resources, you can make your dream a reality. 

Program Costs

Cal Lutheran Programs (Semester)
  • Standard semester tuition and fees.
  • Housing, at either the Standard or Mogen rate (depending on the housing type on the program)
  • $200 Study Abroad Enrollment Fee

Students will see these charges on their pre-bill and Student Account and therefore use the same payment process they would if they were on campus.

Students retain their full Cal Lutheran financial aid package, including state and federal aid, grants, loans, and Cal Lutheran-specific scholarships, awards, and grants, with the sole exception of work-study.

Semester at Sea

Please note that the Semester at Sea program follows a hybrid model. Cal Lutheran will nominate two students for each semester voyage as Cal Lutheran students. Two additional students may participate as Direct Enroll students (and thus pay Semester at Sea directly). 

Students who are nominated as Cal Lutheran participants are billed for Cal Lutheran tuition, Mogen Housing and the 190 block meal plan. They can use their financial aid package including Cal Lutheran specific scholarships, state, federal and loans aid to cover the cost of attendance. 

Students who are nominated as direct enroll participants will pay all costs of attendance directly to Semester at Sea. They can use their financial aid package including state, federal and loan aid to cover the cost of attendance. Cal Lutheran specific scholarships cannot be transferred. 

Affiliate Programs (Summer and Winter)
  • Student pays affiliate program directly.
  • The $100 Study Abroad Registration fee will be charged to your Cal Lutheran student account. You can pay it through CLUpay.
  • If you have been awarded a Study Abroad Scholarship from the Office of Education Abroad, it will be distributed to your account in the format that you have pre-designated with Student Accounts.
Faculty-Led Programs and Travel Seminars
  • For Travel Seminars, the student pays for the credits with their spring tuition. The travel portion is paid in installments during the spring semester.
  • For other faculty-led programs, students will be contacted directly with more information on payment.
  • The $100 Study Abroad Registration fee will be charged to your Cal Lutheran student account. You can pay it through CLUpay.
  • If you have been awarded a Study Abroad Scholarship from the Office of Education Abroad, it will be distributed to your account in the format that you have pre-designated with Student Accounts.


Office of Education Abroad (OEA) Scholarship

The Office of Education Abroad (OEA) endowed scholarship was created by the alumni board to help more undergraduate students study abroad.  Scholarship amounts vary from $250 to $1,500 and are awarded based on financial need, merit, and goals of study away. All applicants for each term are automatically considered for OEA scholarship. You do not need to submit a separate application starting from Spring 2023 application term.

Host Program Scholarships

We highly encourage all program participants to apply for grants & scholarships that may be offered by host organization/programs. See below for applicable program scholarships.

External Scholarships

These scholarships are available for students interested in study away. They are not affiliated with California Lutheran University. Please review each scholarship for eligiblity and application information.

Cost Factors

There are several factors to consider when selecting a program that is right for your budget. 


When considering locations, keep the cost of living in mind. Programs in global cities, such as London or Paris, will cost more than programs in cities such as Cape Town, South Africa; Santiago, Chile; or Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam. Expatisan has a cost-of-living calculator that will give you a comparative snapshot of costs. 


Our Cal Lutheran semester-long programs help mitigate costs by offering an international experience at the same price point as a semester on campus. However, we understand that living in another country for a semester may not be financially feasible for all students. If this is the case, we encourage you to look into faculty-led, summer or virtual opportunities, which generally range from one to eight weeks and charge a lower cost. Please note, however, that you cannot use financial aid, except for loans, for faculty-led and summer programs, which could make your overall cost higher. You can apply for scholarships for programs of any length, if you are receiving academic credit.


When thinking about your budget, start by considering how you spend money now and what might change while you're abroad. For example, perhaps you buy gas for your commute to school. While you're abroad, you won't need gas, but you may need to buy a subway pass to get around. 

Budgets will vary widely depending on your individual spending habits. Strategies such as cooking at home will help you manage your spending, but you'll also want to be realistic. A major part of experiencing a new culture is trying the local food, seeing the sites, and immersing yourself in it! 

We suggest reading "Half the Luggage, Double the Money.This is a great resource to begin thinking through some of the realities of living abroad. Once you're ready, you can use this budget template, created to help you get an accurate snapshot of what your study away will cost.