Director of Study Abroad

Last Updated:
September 19, 2023

Job Description Overview

As a Director of Study Abroad, you play a crucial role in the Education industry. Your job description includes managing study abroad programs for students who want to experience a different culture and education system. You work with faculty members, academic departments, and study abroad agencies to facilitate the planning, implementation, and assessment of the program. You develop budgets, coordinate logistics, and ensure the safety and well-being of students.

Your responsibilities also involve advising students about the study abroad opportunities available to them, helping them choose a program that fits their academic and personal goals. You assist them in the application process, provide pre-departure orientation, and organize cultural events to help them adjust to the new environment. You also maintain relationships with partner universities and organizations to establish and enhance study abroad programs.

In summary, as a Director of Study Abroad, you oversee and promote opportunities for students to gain valuable international experience, broaden their horizons, and develop global perspectives.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Oversees study abroad program and opportunities for students
  • Collaborates with international partners and institutions
  • Develops and implements program policies and procedures
  • Promotes study abroad to students and faculty
  • Provides guidance and support to students before, during, and after their study abroad experience
  • Manages program budget and financial aid resources
  • Ensures program compliance with regulations and standards
  • Evaluates and assesses program effectiveness and makes improvements accordingly
  • Maintains accurate and detailed program records and documentation.

Experience and Education Requirements

To work as a Director of Study Abroad, you'll typically need both education and experience. Education-wise, most employers look for candidates who have a bachelor's degree or higher in fields such as education, international studies, or a related area. But some employers may also consider candidates with relevant work experience or certificates.

Experience-wise, many employers seek candidates with previous study abroad or international education experience, as well as experience managing programs or teams. A director of Study Abroad typically leads a team of program coordinators, so strong leadership and communication skills are also critical. Some directors may also need to travel frequently, so an interest in travel and cultural experiences can be helpful.

Salary Range

The expected salary range for a Director of Study Abroad in the Education industry in the United States is between $65,000 and $100,000 per year. This range may vary depending on the location, experience, and size of the institution. For example, in New York City, the average salary for this position is around $85,000, whereas in smaller towns, it may range from $60,000 to $75,000.

According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a Director of Study Abroad in the United States is $77,000 per year. This is based on data from more than 300 individuals working in this position.

In the United Kingdom, the average salary for a similar position, International Programmes Director, is £52,000 per year, equivalent to around $67,000 USD.


  • Glassdoor:,22.htm
  • Times Higher Education:

Career Outlook

The career outlook for a Director of Study Abroad in the Education industry over the next 5 years looks promising. According to the Institute of International Education, there has been a steady increase in the number of U.S. students studying abroad, and it is projected to continue to grow. This means that there will be a greater demand for professionals who can oversee and manage study abroad programs.

Additionally, there is a growing interest in global education and cultural exchange, which creates opportunities for Directors of Study Abroad. Many colleges and universities are expanding their international programs and partnerships, which means that there will be a need for experts in the field of study abroad.

Overall, the outlook appears to be positive for those interested in pursuing a career as a Director of Study Abroad in the Education industry. The future of global education is bright, and this career has the potential for growth and expansion.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What does a Director of Study Abroad do?

A: A Director of Study Abroad is responsible for overseeing study abroad programs, developing partnerships with foreign universities, advising students on studying abroad, and managing budgets and logistics.

Q: What qualifications are required to become a Director of Study Abroad?

A: A Director of Study Abroad typically needs at least a bachelor's degree in a related field, such as education, international studies, or cultural studies. Relevant work experience in study abroad programs is also usually required.

Q: What skills and qualities are important for a Director of Study Abroad?

A: A Director of Study Abroad needs excellent communication, organizational, and leadership skills, as well as cultural awareness and sensitivity. The ability to work well under pressure and adapt to changing circumstances is also important.

Q: How does a Director of Study Abroad help students choose the right program?

A: A Director of Study Abroad advises students on their options for study abroad programs, including available destinations, academic requirements, cultural considerations, and financial aid. They also provide resources for students to research and compare programs.

Q: What challenges does a Director of Study Abroad face?

A: A Director of Study Abroad must navigate complex logistics, such as visa requirements and travel arrangements, while also managing budgets and ensuring the safety and well-being of students. They must also stay up-to-date on changing laws and regulations in different countries.

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