Loyola University Maryland

International Programs

Newcastle: Information for Parents

Program Director

Laura Palilla
Assistant Director
Office of International Programs
Phone: 410-617-2910

Thank you for your interest in our study abroad programs! The goal of this page is to help you better understand the Newcastle study abroad program and highlight distinguishing features and components that will interest you as a parent. More detailed and updated information are given to your son or daughter in information sessions, academic reviews, workshops, and pre-departure orientations. Once you read this information, we strongly encourage you to discuss this with your son/daughter first. Please know all information is given to the students, and we ask students to share all of this with you.  

Sending students abroad is a partnership that includes students, parents, university personnel, and our overseas partners. We realize that you will have questions, and if our website or your son/daughter cannot answer those questions, we will be happy to discuss the study abroad process and program information with you. Please keep in mind that due to the FERPA federal regulation (Family Education Rights and Privacy Act), we will not be able to discuss specific information regarding your son/daughter; however, if your son/daughter is willing to sign a waiver form indicating the specific information to be shared with you, we will be more than happy to discuss specific matters regarding your son/daughter.

We hope you find this information helpful in assisting your son/daughter to accomplish his or her goal of learning, living, and serving abroad. We look forward to working with you and your son/daughter.

General Information

Loyola students can study abroad at Newcastle University in Newcastle Upon Tyne in the United Kingdom. The program is available for a single semester or for the full academic year. The fall semester runs from late September through mid-December and the Spring semester runs from late January through mid-June.

Criteria for Acceptance and Application Requirements

For the Loyola study abroad program in Newcastle, students must have a minimum 2.750 CQPA. They should apply to Loyola’s Office of International Programs by the second Wednesday after Thanksgiving break of their sophomore year in order to be considered for year-long, fall, or spring semester spots in their junior year. Applications for the full year in Newcastle are considered first before the single-semester applications. Disciplinary records from the school’s Office of Student Life are taken into consideration when reviewing applications. Students should mark down second and third choices in the event that we cannot offer them a spot in the Newcastle program.

Travel to Newcastle

Loyola will arrange group travel to and from Newcastle. Loyola does not pay for any flight deviations or tickets changes at all. If a student wishes to change their ticket, they must contact our travel agent at Frosch Travel, 410-433-9300.

Departure

The airline tickets for the group are electronic. The students will receive an email confirmation from our travel agent once ticketing is complete. They should print it out and bring it to the airport just to be safe, but their passport is technically all they need to check in. The group will meet at the Newark Liberty International Airport or JFK International Airport. It is important that everyone is there on time. Once they arrive at the airport, they do not need to wait for the rest of the group to check in. Please make sure your student checks in as soon as they arrive and then proceeds through to security. They should check their bags through to Newcastle. They will receive a boarding pass for the flight from London to Newcastle as well.

Baggage

The group flies on British Airways and all their policies and baggage regulations are subject to change.

On-Site Support

The Loyola Center at Newcastle offers excellent personalized support for all students. We have a team consisting of a full-time, on-site director and two part time assistants to look after all students studying at the Center.

Arrival/Communication

The group will arrive in Newcastle the day after departure from the US. After getting their bags, a bus will be there to take them to their dorms. They will check into their rooms and Loyola Center staff will take them on a walking tour of the city and the campus.

Please remember that England is currently 5 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time, and so it may be difficult for your students to contact you immediately upon arrival. You may be nervous and apprehensive, but please give the students time to get their bearings, figure out how to connect to wifi and contact home. Remember that no news is good news! The students are generally very excited and busy adjusting to a new life in their first couple of weeks so contact may be less frequent at first. It would be smart to determine a good time to talk with your student once they know their schedule so that you don’t lose contact. 

Most students will take their smart phone overseas and purchase an international sim card with a data/talk/text plan to use during their time in Newcastle. It is highly recommended to use Skype, WhatsApp, or other social media apps in order to keep in touch with friends or family back home. Alternatively, students may buy British cell phones that have a "pay-as-you-go" plan and they can top up for free texting each month. This local phone is the best way to keep in touch with British flat-mates, other Loyola students, the Loyola Center, and local people in the Newcastle community.

 

Background

Loyola established a relationship with Newcastle University in the late 1990's. We have historically sent 15-20 students each September for the full academic year. There is also a fall semester and a spring semester option to accommodate students whose major does not allow them to go abroad for a year. Newcastle University is a large research university (20,000+ students) located in northeast England in the city of Newcastle Upon Tyne.

The city is located 1.5 hours from Edinburgh, Scotland and 3.5 hours from London. The Scandinavian countries, Germany and Ireland are accessible by ferry. Continental Europe can be reached by air or rail.

Academics

Students at Newcastle take anywhere from three to five classes, depending on the credit weight of each class. These transfer back to Loyola as either 2.5 credit courses or 5 credits courses. The goal is for each student to take a combination of credits that adds up to 15. Students should have a free elective available back at Loyola as it is frequently used up in the credit transfer. Classes and timetables are not released online until after the students arrive on-site in September. Therefore, classes are registered for on-site after the students arrive. Classes are much larger than at Loyola and are taught in the style of lectures as opposed to seminars. There is more focus on independent learning and students will often take classes that only have a final exam, or sometimes also a mid-term exam for their final grade. The academic style is very different than that of the United States.

Length of Stay

This program has a full year, fall semester and a spring semester option. The fall program runs from late September through mid-December. Single semester students come home just before Christmas and take their finals before departing Newcastle. Full-year students return to Newcastle in early January and take their final exams on Newcastle’s campus. The spring program runs from late January through mid-June. Students are not allowed to leave the spring program early to return home for summer internships and jobs. Instead, they should prepare to take all exams on-site in Newcastle in mid-June.

Insurance and Health

Full year students studying in the UK are eligible for the UK National Health Service, since they are student residents of Newcastle. Students studying for less than six months will need to pay out of pocket and be reimbursed by their U.S. healthcare provider. However, this is at the discretion of the doctor. Students can visit doctors or emergency rooms when traveling around the UK, but not outside of the UK.

Loyola requires that each student submits to us a copy of the front and back of their U.S. health insurance card. We also ask for proof of international coverage from the U.S. policy (either a letter from the insurance company or you can print the international policy description from your policy manual online). We are only asking for proof of overseas coverage for Loyola’s liability purposes. Since the UK National Health Service is not worldwide, and students are technically allowed to travel outside of the area of coverage, we need to know that your policy will provide a back-up if your student goes outside of the area of coverage. However, if your policy does not have any type of overseas coverage (not even the basic emergency basis), then it will be essential to purchase supplemental insurance.

Student Visa

American students studying abroad for the year are required to apply for a Tier 4 student visa. The visa is an additional cost to the students. The students will pay for this approximately 60 days before departure.  American students studying abroad for one semester only are required to obtain a Short Term Study Visa. This is requested by the student and granted by Immigration Control when entering into the UK.

Students will fill out an application online over the summer and must also attend an appointment to have their biometric information taken.  After the biometrics appointment, the application is then mailed to the British Consulate General of either New York, Chicago, or Los Angeles, depending on where a student permanently lives.

The visa process includes several steps and is very time-sensitive. Therefore, it is imperative that students follow all instructions on applying for the student visa very carefully. If any step in the process is missed or followed incorrectly, it could result in being denied a visa to enter the country.Guidance from Newcastle University on the student visa process can be found online.

Housing

Students live on campus in Newcastle dormitories. 

  • Several apartment complexes are utilized.  They are 15-20 minutes walking distance from each other, and they are on opposite corners of the large campus.
  • All students have their own room and all flats are furnished with a shared lounge and kitchen
  • Flats are self-catered; students are responsible for cooking their own meals
  • Usually there are six to ten students per flat and are a mix of British students and other international students
  • All communal areas are cleaned, although students are responsible for cleaning their own bedrooms
  • The 24-hour University security team provides out-of-hours support for emergencies
  • Flats can be either single-sex or co-ed.

Benefits**

  • Tuition and room at Newcastle University;
  • On-site support from the Loyola Center staff;
  • Occasional group meals; and
  • Planned trips and activities throughout the UK with the Center staff.

Meals

Students are responsible for their own meals, and have access to a refrigerator and cooking facilities.Each flat has its own equipped kitchen with microwave, toaster, stovetops, oven and freezer. Students can purchase kitchen items and food quite easily from stores in downtown Newcastle, which is walking distance from all of the dorms.

Money

Bank of America is partnered with Barclays in the UK, so your student has a Bank of America account, they can use Barclays ATMs and branches without incurring any fees.  Students going for the full year also have the option to open up a UK bank account. 

Other ATM and debit cards should work in all ATM machines. It is also advised that students contact their banks and credit card companies to inform them that they will be out of the country so that their accounts aren’t frozen once international activity occurs. While doing so, they should also check to see what international fees are incurred when using each of their cards i.e. ATM withdrawal fees, currency conversion fees, etc.  Also, you should check to see if your student’s bank is partnered with any banks overseas. 

Current exchange rate.  

Expenses

Students’ expenses in the United Kingdom will vary greatly depending on how much they travel, shop and go out at night.  Newcastle is a very affordable city and the cost of living is considered low. However, most students will schedule trips over to the European continent as often as they can afford. The range for how much students spent overall recent semesters was $3,000–$6,000 USD. That is all inclusive of entertainment, traveling, food, shopping, and textbooks. It is a large range, but again, will depend on how much your student travels, drinks and eats in restaurants.

**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.