International Student Exchange Program (ISEP)

Last updated: April 29, 2014

News & Events

ISEP Priority Deadline for Spring 2015

August 15, 2014

Students may apply for placement in Spring 2015 even after the deadline.  A lot of sites will continue to be open through August and September.


ISEP News Spring 2014

We currently have 6 ISEP students on campus, 2 returning students from Spain and France and 4 new students from Austria, Nicaragua, South Korea and Tajikistan.

Seventeen WCSU students are currently abroad this semester. They are in Bulgaria, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Iceland, Ireland, Japan, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand and Uruguay.

ISEP also has short-term summer programs. Students will soon be departing for Argentina, Costa Rica, Italy and Thailand.


Can I go and Study Abroad?

Yes, you can!  Western is a member institution of ISEP which means our students can go abroad to other ISEP member universities anywhere in the world at almost no additional cost other than what it costs to go to Western paying tuition, room & board plus travel expenses, international insurance, and the ISEP Fee (see "Other Major Costs" below).  Students can go for the summer, one semester, or an entire year but need to remember to apply about 6 months in advance of their travel to be considered within the priority pool of applicants. 

Students can go on exchange (which allows an international student to come to Western and take their place) or direct (which means they pay the host institution what they charge - which in some cases may be considerably higher and in some cases actually lower than Western).  Deadlines for direct placement are often extended so it is possible to apply just a few months before the intended travel.  Summer programs are also available but most at direct cost.  Please check the ISEP website for details.  

             Morocco                                                     Fiji                                                 Norway                                             Germany              

Where could I go?                     

Asia Canada & UK Latin America Europe    
China Canada Argentina Austria Italy Switzerland
Hong Kong England Brazil Belgium Latvia Turkey
India Northern Ireland Chile Bulgaria Lithuania  
Indonesia Scotland Columbia Czech Republic Malta Sub-Saharan Africa
Japan   Costa Rica Denmark Netherlands Botswana
Korea Oceania French Antilles Estonia Norway Ghana
Malaysia Australia French Guiana Finland Poland South Africa
Taiwan Fiji Mexico France Portugal  
Thailand New Zealand Nicaragua Germany La Réunion Middle East & North Africa
Vietnam   Puerto Rico Hungary Spain Morocco
    Uruguay Iceland Sweden United Arab Emirates

  Iceland                                            Botswana                                                 Austria                                            Malta

Are You Eligible?


  1. Be enrolled at Western Connecticut State University and be a member of good academic standing.
  2. Have a minimum GPA of 2.75.
  3. Have completed at least one academic year of college study at Western at the time the exchange program begins.


It depends on whether you are going on exchange or direct.  On the one-for-one exchange, you pay tuition, room and board at Western and then go to the other university at no extra cost.  If WCSU sends six students abroad to study, WCSU accepts six foreign students to study here.  On the direct program, you have to pay however much the host university charges, sometimes more, sometimes less than Western.  Direct programs are sometimes more limited in course selection.  All tuition pay will be handled through Western.  Financial Aid applies.

Other Major Costs:

  1. There is a $390 non-refundable application fee payable to ISEP when you first apply.
  2. International health insurance is required and costs approximately $70 per month for each month abroad and has to be paid in full once you accept placement (some countries are a bit more expensive).
  3. Travel expenses to the foreign university (flight and ground transportation).
  4. Additional expenses for visa applications and/or immunizations depending on the country you go to (some countries have expensive visas such as Australia where visa costs are $580).
  5. Living expenses in the host country. That includes books, personal items, additional travel expenses.  In some countries you may be allowed to work, in others you may not.

      Hungary                                            Turkey                                                 Japan                                           Portugal


  1. There are more than 300 study sites to choose from.
  2. You can study in English in many countries where the native language is not English.
  3. Scholarships and financial aid usually can be applied to ISEP.
  4. You can receive credit at WCSU toward your degree (mostly free electives) for courses satisfactorily completed abroad.
  5. You may study abroad for one or two semesters in many cases or over the summer.
  6. Your chances of getting a job upon graduation are enhanced.
  7. Your horizons are broadened by becoming immersed in a foreign culture.
  8. It's fun -- ask anyone who has done it!

       Argentina                                             Denmark                                            New Zealand                                     Sweden

WHEN and HOW to Apply:

Applications to study abroad with ISEP in Fall 2014 are due in the Student Affairs Office in Old Main 308 by February 1, 2014.

Summer application deadlines vary.  Please check the website: 

If you are planning ahead, applications for Spring 2015 are due by August 15, 2014.

What do you need to do to apply?

1.  Complete the 12 page ISEP application including (sounds worse than it is)

  • 2 academic reference letters from professors you've had here at Western
  • a 300-500 word essay
  • a copy of your passport page
  • original transcripts from WCSU and all of your prior universities
  • a language proficiency test if you plan to study in a language other than English
  • check or credit card payment of the non-refundable ISEP fee of $390

2.    If you have not met with the ISEP Coordinator, you also need to to set up a short meeting with him before that date. 

Costa Rica                                          Czech Republic                                      Netherlands                           China


Contact the International Services Coordinator:

Phone: (203) 837-3270
Midtown Campus, Old Main 308

Donna Warner, International Services Coordinator
OFFICE HOURS:   Monday    9am - 3:30pm
                              Tuesday   9am - 3:30pm
                              Thursday  9am - 3pm

Dr. Anne Atkinson, Associate V.P. for Academic Affairs, ISEP Coordinator

Visit the ISEP Website

      Scotland                                          United Arab Emirates                       Estonia                                                   Canada

What is the International Student Exchange Program?

The International Student Exchange Program (ISEP) is a membership organization of more than 300 higher education institutions around the world that are committed to international exchange. ISEP serves its member institutions and their students by facilitating affordable, university-level exchanges on a reciprocal basis. ISEP was established in 1979, under the authority of the Fulbright-Hayes Act. The program is administered by a central office at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and by the designated coordinator at each member institution. ISEP is supported by member and participant fees, together with a grant from the U.S. Information Agency. ISEP is dedicated to the principle that a period of study abroad ought to be available and affordable to all students, no matter what institution they attend or what their financial situation may be. With ISEP, this is possible because the program is based upon a reciprocal exchange of benefits.

           Thailand                                             Italy                                                   Uruguay                                             Australia

Meet the Students

Many students from WCSU have gone to study abroad with ISEP over the years.  Here are some of the more recent ones and pictures and comments from their experiences.   

Lindsay C.                                                                   Australia (Sydney) - Macquarie University

Eve H.                                                                         Botswana (Gaborone) - University of Botswana

Amy W.                                                                       Italy (Milan) - Universita Cattolica Del Sacro Cuore  

Alyssa C.                                                                     Japan (Hirakata) - Kansai Gaidai University

Alexandria A.                                                               Netherlands (Amsterdam) - Universiteit van Amsterdam

Jessica C.                                                                    Spain (Vigo) - Universidade de Vigo   

Leigh S.                                                                       Sweden (Stockholm) - Södertörn Högskola

Christopher L.                                                             Thailand (Bangkok) - Thammasat University


Links to Other Resources

ISEP Scholarship Page

Scholarship Brochure

Country Handbooks

Tips for traveling to Australia

Australian Slang Words

Parent Information

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