Studying Abroad for DACAmented Students | University of Portland

Studying Abroad for DACAmented Students

Welcome to UP and to this journey of exploring a global learning experience abroad through the Study Abroad Office! All UP students, regardless of major, financial status and background are highly encouraged to consider incorporating an overseas learning experience into their college career. Our office invites students to attend scheduled events, make advising appointments, or just drop into the Study Abroad Office in Buckley 114 to discuss their unique circumstances, dreams, and all things global!

It is possible to apply and study abroad as a DACAmented students, however the process may be challenging and re-entry into the U.S. after studying abroad is not something the Study Abroad Office/UP can guarantee. It must be stated that the student may risk missing important DACA related policy updates while participating in study abroad. The Study Abroad Office encourages consistent revision of information and communication with family and support networks. Please note that UP does not have immigration lawyers. The Study Abroad Office cannot legally consult students. This page should not be relied upon as legal advice. The Study Abroad Office strongly encourages DACAmented students to consult with an immigration lawyer before apply to study abroad programs and/or traveling abroad. Look to our Undocumented/DACAmented Community Resources Page for non-UP legal resources

For undocumented students without DACA, it is strongly advised to avoid studying abroad. There is a high risk of being unable to re-enter the U.S. or return to UP. Undocumented students without DACA may also not have the sufficient immigration documents to apply for visa requirements to enter certain countries.

Requirements to Study Abroad

In addition to the regular application and pre-departure processes, DACAmented students will need to fulfill the following requirements and considerations. As stated above, it is recommended to consult with an immigration attorney while considering studying abroad at UP.

Advance Parole

To study abroad, students with DACA must apply for, and be approved for, Advance Parole, which will allow students to seek permission to travel abroad and seek re-entry back to the U.S. upon their return. DACAmented students who travel abroad without prior approval will lose their DACA status. When applying for Advance Parole, make sure to note any costs associated with filing and that all relevant sections of the form are filled out. Any mistakes filling out the form can result in delays or rejection of the application. Please take note of any court updates that may impact Advance Parole or DACA holders.

Advance Parole does not guarantee re-entry into the U.S. It permits those traveling abroad to approach a U.S. port of entry to request re-entry into the U.S. At the time of entry into the U.S., a Customs and Border Protection officer, or other immigration official, will check all necessary documentation. If the requirements are not met to their judgement, the officer/official can deny entry. Reasons for denial of entry can include, but are not limited to: past criminal offenses, immigration violations, or past times in unlawful status. Scroll down for ACLU's Guide to Enforcement at the Airport for more information. 

When filing for Advance Parole, it is recommended to file as far in advance of the start travel date as possible, as waiting times can vary widely (anywhere from three months to nine months). Due to this preparation period, it is recommended to look at programs as far ahead as possible, as well (e.g. if applying for study abroad in the Fall, look to programs occurring during the Fall & Spring of the next year). Note that the deadline to apply for Study Abroad for the summer, and the following fall and spring semesters is November 15th, without exceptions. 

As stated above, it is strongly advised to consult with an immigration attorney to discuss and learn the consequences of traveling on Advance Parole, the ability to re-enter the U.S. following the end of the study abroad program, and future immigration processes. 

For more information on Advance Parole, Informed Immigrant has an in-depth and frequently updated guide

Travel Visas

Depending on the Study Abroad program, a visa may be required for entry dependent on the following factors: length of stay, destination country, and passport-issuing country. The Study Abroad Office recommends that students begin researching the requirements of the destination country associated with their program(s) of interest, and to schedule a meeting with a member of the Study Abroad Office staff to learn more about the visa process if needed. Please note that appointments with Study Abroad Office staff to discuss visa applications are not intended as legal consultations and should not be regarded as such.

It is strongly advised to consult with an immigration attorney to discuss and learn about the visa process and future (im)migration processes. 


Students traveling abroad will need a passport to leave and re-enter the U.S. Students' passports should be valid for at least six months after the end of their planned return to the U.S. For example, if a program ends in June, the passport should be valid until at least November, six months ahead.

It is strongly advised to consult with an immigration attorney to discuss and learn about applying for a passport.

Financial Aid

The Study Abroad Office is committed to expanding access for all applicants to study abroad, and this includes financial access to cover the cost of study abroad programs. DACAmented students will need to consider the financial costs of studying abroad. Each program provides a summary of expected costs and expenses, and what types of financial aid, if any, can be applied towards the program's expenses.

Semester programs can use UP financial aid to cover the costs of tuition, and in most cases, other expenses (e.g. housing). Other programs do not have this option, and undocumented students do not qualify for federal student loans. Many scholarships listed on the Study Abroad office website are only eligible to U.S. citizens, though there are several UP scholarships that are accessible to all full-time students based on location and areas of study. The Study Abroad Office offers scholarships to applicants, but these may be competitive.

The Study Abroad Office is committed to supporting students in their efforts to identify further financial aid resources.

Prospective and current applicants are encouraged to pay attention to when the study abroad scholarship application is announced by the office and schedule an appointment with the financial aid office to identify whether they qualify for aid during the academic year they are planning to study abroad.

More Resources

Click here to book an appointment with Study Abroad staff for advising. As stated above, the Study Abroad Office cannot provide legal consultations to students, and discussions in meetings should not be regarded as legal advice. It is strongly advised to consult with an immigration attorney before traveling or considering studying abroad.

ACLU’s Guide to Enforcement at the Airport 

UP offers other ways to engage in multicultural experiences off-campus. The Moreau Center for Service and Justice offers immersion programs, and more information on immersions can be found here.


Updated 6.28.22