As a parent, we realize it can be a difficult to let your child spend a semester across the world. But, through this experience your student will learn, grow, and gain self-confidence as they explore new areas of the world. They will develop friendships and understanding for other cultures and these four months will impact them for the rest of their lives.
Below are ways you can help and be involved before, during, and after the program.
Pre – Departure
To study abroad in any program students need a passport that is valid at least sixth months after their last day abroad.
If your student does not have a passport, you can look online to find a USPS location that accepts Passport Applications: https://www.usps.com/international/passports.htm
When your student has been accepted to our program they will be provided with step-by-step instruction on how to obtain a visa from a Lithuanian consulate in the US. We provide support and the necessary documents for this process and strongly encourage students to get their visa before they leave for their semester.
There are Lithuanian consulates located in the following cities:
- Chicago, IL
- New York, NY
- Los Angeles, CA
- Washington, D.C.
If your student is not able to go in person to one of these locations, it is possible for them to get a visa when they are in Lithuania.
- Students should ensure they are up to date on any immunizations and have any prescription or general medication that they may need.
- If your student is sick or needs to attend the clinic while in Lithuania, they will have to pay upfront and then submit their documents from the visit to be reimbursed by insurance.
- We highly recommend that your student obtains a bank card that does not charge foreign transaction fees and your bank should be notified of the travel dates to avoid any fraud alerts or frozen accounts.
- Students can withdraw money from ATMs in Lithuania, but there are usually withdrawal fees for each use.
During the Program
- Allow your students time to adjust. FaceTime and Skype make time apart a little easier, but can also cause your student not to be fully present where they are. While we encourage students to stay in contact, just know it might not be as frequent as usual.
- If your student has a problem or just needs to talk, there is always someone on campus that they can go to. In the CIE office we have an open-door policy and strive to support students however they may need. There is also a counselor on campus and members of Resident Life and Student Life who are always willing to meet with students.
- Safety is our top priority while students are traveling. We have crisis management procedures in place for all of our trips and alternative excursions planned if necessary
- Lithuania is a safe destination, but as with all travels it is important to take precautions and always be aware of your surroundings
- If your student travels on their own during the program we require them to submit their travel information so we know where they are and how to contact them
After the Program
Reverse Culture Shock
- When your student returns from their time abroad, it may take some time for them to readapt to their life back home. Most students will go through reverse culture shock because they’ve become accustomed to their life abroad and find their return to home is different than expected. It is helpful to listen so that students have an outlet to share about their experience and express whatever frustrations they may go through in their readjustment period.
We also encourage you to learn about the country where your student will be living! Lithuania is not a common study abroad destination, but it is full of unique history and culture. Learn more about the Baltic Way, our 7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the legendary Arvydas Sabonis, and much more on this website: http://www.lietuva.lt/100/en/discover-lithuania