Before Leaving Barnard

Once you have been admitted to a program and have decided to attend, take the following steps:

  • File a Notice of Study Leave form (which includes a waiver) via myBarnard. For students interested in studying abroad for the Spring 2015 Term, these are due by Friday, October 31, 2014 by 5:00 p.m. You will not be officially on leave until you submit this form. Bills from the bursar, memos from the registrar etc will assume you are NOT studying abroad until you submit the Notice of Study Leave. This is very important!! To submit, log onto your myBarnard account, click on the Academics tab, on the right-side menu there is are drop-down options for Study Abroad, choose the Notice of Study Leave form. Complete and submit.
  • File for study leave course approvals on myBarnard as soon as you can. Information on the credit approval process is detailed on the getting credit pages.
  • Attend the mandatory study abroad pre-departure orientation the semester prior to your time abroad. If you do not attend, you risk not being able to study abroad under the auspices of Barnard College, which means you are no longer a registered Barnard student and you may not receive Barnard credit for the courses you take overseas. Please visit the study abroad calendar for up to date information regarding the next pre-departure orientation.
  • Contact the Barnard Student Health Service at (212) 854-2091 to schedule a pre-travel visit 4-6 weeks in advance of your departure. You may need to update routine vaccines or you may need recommended or required vaccines based on travel destination (the CDC is our resource for recommendations: A pre-travel visit consists of any needed vaccination and travel health counseling. Travel health counseling covers topics such as water and food precautions and personal protective measures against mosquitoes and insects that carry disease. Depending on where your study abroad program takes you, you may need prescriptions for malaria, traveler's diarrhea, altitude sickness prevention and more.
  • Find out if you will need a visa. Look into this early. The visa process is often long and stressful. Your visa may also cost you up to $500. Please check with your program or the relevant consulate to see if there is anything you need from Barnard, as your home institution.
  • If you will need to take any limited enrollment courses (e.g., labs, seminars) in your first semester back, be sure to go to the appropriate department even before leaving to find out how to sign up while abroad.
  • Request a deferral from the Chair of the Physical Education Department (206 Barnard Hall, x42085) before leaving campus if you have not completed the Physical Education requirement prior to studying abroad during your junior year. You may otherwise risk receiving an F on your transcript for failing to complete the requirement on time.
  • Leave a forwarding address with the staff in the student mailroom if you want your mail sent to an address in the United States other than your permanent home address.
  • Remember to review a copy of "A Guide to Living Abroad," a booklet given to you by the Office of International Programs at the pre-departure orientation.
  • Students studying abroad in countries on the U.S. State Department Travel Warning List must obtain the signature of a parent or guardian on a hard copy of the waiver, even if the student is over 18. Please submit signed hard copy waivers the Office of International Programs in 10 Milbank Hall.
  • International students at Barnard may be subject to different travel requirements for leaving the US, entering their destination country and re-entering to the US, than those to which US citizens are subject. If you are an international student on an F-1 visa, make sure the travel validation on your I-20 will not expire before you return to the US (it is valid one year from the date on which it was last signed). If it will expire, please contact Mark Farrell ( to get an updated signature.
  • It is recommended that you designate a Power of Attorney (PoA) before you head abroad so that the entrusted person can manage your personal and financial affairs while you are out of the country.  Granting a PoA is a legal process that involves drafting a notarized document that delegates another person to act as your legal representative in specific situations (e.g. signing checks written to you). Be sure to consider all situations where you will need your delegate to act on your behalf and make sure that your PoA takes them into account.