Student Athletes

As a student athlete, you may be worried that you will not be able to study abroad, but with careful planning and collaboration, the Global Education Office (GEO) can help you go abroad on one of our many programs. We offer programs ranging from our Global Classroom Series courses which go abroad for a week during spring break, to summer semester courses, to full semester programs. Going abroad takes careful planning but is beneficial in the long run. You  may even get to experience your sport in a whole new light.

Below, we have answered some of the questions that may be running through your head. Feel free to schedule a meeting with any one of our advisors in the office for more information. We are happy to talk more in-depth about any questions you may have. 

When am I allowed to study abroad so it does not clash with my training? 

Every sport has different training seasons. This below will give you an idea of what semester program might work for your sport. For our Global Classroom Series which involves a week-long embedded field experience abroad during Spring Break, please talk to your coach to see how this would affect your training and if you are able to participate even if your season is in the spring.

Fall-Semester Abroad

Spring Semester Abroad

Men’s and Women’s Golf Men’s and Women’s Soccer
Men’s and Women’s Track and Field Women’s Volleyball
Baseball Men’s and Women’s Cross Country
Men’s Volleyball Women’s Triathlon
Men’s and Women’s Lacrosse
Men’s Triathlon

For basketball and swimming athletes, we recommend a summer semester abroad. 

All athletes can participate in a summer semester abroad as long as Fall-Season athletes return by mid-August.

How will going abroad affect my training? 

There are multiple ways student athletes can continue training while abroad. Some of our partners have their own sports facilities, gyms, or training areas. Students can work with their coach to come up with training exercises they can do while abroad. Some of our partners abroad also have club sports students can join during the semester. Student athletes can join these as long as they do not violate compliance requirements. 

What are things I have to do to comply with NCAA regulations while I’m abroad? Can I still play sports or practice while I’m abroad?

We have compiled the regulations you must follow while abroad if you desire to keep playing your sport while on a program.

  • If you participate with a sports team, it cannot be affiliated with any university varsity-sponsored team.  In addition, if the university has a varsity-sponsored team in your sport, you also cannot participate on their club team.  If the university ONLY has a club team, you are allowed to participate on the club team if you pay for all of your own expenses and do not accept any tournament prizes or rewards. 
  • For team sports, you may never accept any competition or rewards. Always pay your own expenses, including all actual and necessary expenses such as travel and food.
  • You may participate with a club team that is not affiliated with the university, as long as you pay all actual and necessary expenses.
  • You may use the university weight room and strength or conditioning services.
  • Never participate with a professional sports team or it’s affiliates.
  • There are exceptions to these rules and if you have any questions regarding the permissibility of your participation with an outside team while on a study abroad trip, please contact the Associate Athletic Director for Compliance for Marymount Athletics BEFORE you agree to participate at 703-284-3334.

As long as you comply with these rules, you can keep playing sports as you would on campus. 

What are some academic standards I must comply with? 

NCAA progress towards degree rules still apply because you are officially registered with both the foreign university and Marymount University. To study abroad for a semester, you must be enrolled and pass at least 12 credits to be considered a full-time student to maintain progress towards your degree and to have access to your financial aid. The minimum amount of credits you must take if you decide to go for a summer is 3 credits. Most students take 3-6 credits (1-2 courses) during a summer semester. 

Our study abroad programs have varying minimum GPAs starting at 2.5 as the minimum GPA for semester programs. Many of our Global Classroom Series courses do not have a minimum GPA requirement. We can work with you to find a program that works well with your schedule and academics. 

How can I afford study abroad?

Marymount offers a variety of programs ranging in prices. Some of our programs cost the same amount as a semester at Marymount would cost. If you are worried about financing your study abroad, check out our Financial Aid & Budgeting page. Schedule a meeting with our office to learn about our different programs and their prices. 

For any other questions about your eligibility and how it could be affected upon your return to Marymount, please contact the Athletics Department and ask to speak to the person in charge of Compliance. 

Don’t just take our word for it. Listen to your fellow athletes! 

“The atmosphere at the Atletico Madrid game was sensational. We had seats in the third row. Walking all the way down to the edge of the field was a dream come true. Everyone at the stadium was so into the game. I would compare it to going to the Theatre. The fans are very attentive and want to watch a beautiful display of football. Looking around I did not see anyone on their phones, but instead on the edge of their seats following every move of the game, whistling when there was an error and clapping when they liked what they saw.”

-Sebastian Hendi, Soccer Team

College is in a way the same as playing a sport, we learn and study in our chosen fields, developing ourselves so that when we go out into the workforce we can present superior resumes and perform at a prestigious level. Global perspective is one aspect of college that everyone should develop, including student athletes. When you travel to another country, even if just for a week, you have the opportunity to immerse yourself in another culture and country, giving you an alternate and more diverse perspective as to how the world functions. As a swimmer, who practices and competes from September until March, it would be hard for me to study abroad for an entire semester without missing some or all of my season, as is the case with most student athletes. However, Marymount offers many different affordable opportunities to study abroad, such as the Global Classroom Series. I had the opportunity to take Economics of Poverty during Spring of 2018 which traveled to Accra, Ghana for spring break. I also had the opportunity to attend the faculty led study abroad trip to Belize with Dr. Rimkus for two weeks during Summer of 2017. This class focuses on the protection of sea turtles and their nests and Belizean culture. The feeling that you are making a difference in the world, even if just for a moment, is intoxicating. Studying abroad is so much fun, it doesn’t feel like a real class, but you truly learn and grow so much from each experience you receive while abroad. 

-Jessie Bricker, Swim Team