Loyola operates a program at Katholieke Universiteit at Leuven (KULeuven). Founded in 1425, KULeuven is the oldest Catholic university in the world and one of the premier academic institutions in the Lowlands. This picturesque, historically rich university has a vibrant intellectual and social life. KULeuven has about 45,000 students; almost 6,000 of whom are internationals. It is world-renowned for philosophy and theology, but our students take courses in many other departments as well.
Belgium is a very small country located in the heart of Europe. It is bordered by four countries: France, the Netherlands, Germany, and Luxembourg. There are 9 million people there, and three official languages (Dutch, French, and German), though English is widely spoken. Leuven is a town of 80,000 people that is located 20 miles east of Brussels, in the Dutch-speaking Flanders region. It is less than three hours by train to Amsterdam, Cologne and London, and just one and a half hours from Paris. In Leuven, the campus is the city and vice versa. With its cobblestone streets and impressive gothic architecture, it is a quaint and charming city that pulses with the life of the university.”
Criteria for Applying
- Typically sophomores with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 may apply.
- If you have a CQPA between 2.8–2.99 then you may apply for an appeal.
- An online application with a brief essay must be submitted by 5:00 P.M. December 3 (Wednesday after Thanksgiving break).
- Advisor's signature is required on application.
- You must be able to find courses which fit into your Loyola program and allow full-time participation.
- You cannot be on disciplinary probation nor have a history of serious disciplinary problems.
- If you have a CQPA between 2.8– 2.99, then you may apply for an appeal to PECS’ Admissions Office. As part of the appeal process, you must submit the following documents by January 9, 2015 to the Office of International Programs:
- a letter from you explaining why you did not meet the minimum, cumulative GPA requirement of a 3.00 and why you still want to study at KULeuven for the year and not another study abroad program.
- an unofficial transcript from Loyola that includes 3 semesters of undergraduate studies
- an official transcript from any previous institution (s) - transfer students only
- a recommendation letter from a Loyola faculty member that can attest to your academic abilities (strengths and weaknesses). The letter from the faculty member should be in a sealed envelope and sent directly to the Office of International Programs by January 9, 2015.
- a list of possible courses you would need to take abroad.
- The above items will be evaluated and a final decision will be made by the PECS Admissions Office in Belgium. Once all information is submitted to the Office of International Programs, it will be sent to KULeuven. The later you submit the documents the later the final decision on your application. A final decision from PECS may not be made until after February 1.
- Attend an information session on Leuven.
- Attend a registration session to determine if your degree program matches the course offered abroad.
- Discuss with your major advisor the possible courses you can take abroad and see if there are any potential problems he/she sees with your plans to study in Leuven.
- Academic reviews will be based on current course offerings.
- Registration will take place abroad and the course offerings for the term you will be abroad will be finalized overseas.
- Save as many electives for abroad to help with potential registration problems.
- Discuss with your family if taking a summer course(s) is an option to help with any unexpected academic problems that could occur at Loyola or abroad.
- Students are eligible for consideration for all forms of federal, state, institutional and private sources of aid, with the exception of the federal work-study assignment.
- Loyola's financial aid can be used on this program.
- All students must have a comprehensive health plan, which includes hospitalization and accident coverage that can be used while overseas.
- All students must have a valid passport. The passport must have at least 18 months left after the study abroad program end date.
- Federal College Workstudy is forfeited for the entire year a student is abroad. It is possible a student may lose their College Workstudy for the returning semester at Loyola. Contact the office of Financial Aid for specific information.
- Bedding is not provided, but linens can be bought upon arrival.
- Students should budget for any start-up costs associated with study abroad.
- Students pay a study abroad fee and a reduced comprehensive fee. Accepted students must submit a study abroad deposit to hold his/her spot in the program.
- Please consult the Financial Aid office regarding your financial aid package.
Items not included in the Loyola charges but that should be budgeted for:
- *Meals (past students suggest budgeting $1,500–$5500);
- Bedding packages;
- *Immigration fee (to enter and stay in Leuven);
- Cell phones and other communication expenses;
- Medical and dental check-ups (immunizations up to date);
- *Start-up costs (bedding, etc.);
- *Health insurance (if you do not have a health plan that is valid abroad or you purchase the recommended Belgian health plan while abroad);
- Travel to and from the departure city/airport (United States);
- Personal travel (hostels, hotels, airline or rail tickets, food, etc.); and
- Bike rentals (optional and most students do not purchase).
Documents for Abroad
Currently, the following documents are required to travel and study in Leuven:
- Valid, signed passport (with 18 months left after the program end date);
- Student visa (allows students entry into the country and requirements can change at any time);
- Immigration fee (obtained in Leuven at City Hall in Leuven);
- Letter from health insurance company verifying health coverage that is valid abroad;
- Official letter of acceptance from KULeuven;
- Letter of support from Loyola University Maryland; and
- Photos for visa, KULeuven application and file in Leuven
- Prepaid envelope with a tracking system (to receive your passport and visa)
- Students who be 21 years of age or older BEFORE departure will have to obtain an FBI background check as part of the visa application.
Internships in the States and Studying in Leuven
**Please keep in mind that study abroad information, dates, benefits, and fees are subject to change without notification. You are encouraged to contact the Office of International Programs directly for the most up-to-date information regarding any study abroad programs offered at Loyola.
- Due to the dates of the Leuven program (August – June), it may be difficult to arrange for a summer internship after studying abroad. Please keep this in mind when applying to the Leuven program.