By subsidizing some of the expenses for the semester, the program aims to make the costs of a semester in Paris equivalent to those of a semester on campus. Students should remember, however, that the cost of living abroad is affected by fluctuations in the value of the American dollar. All participants are sent a bill for the program fee, which covers tuition, round-trip transportation on the group flight (students who choose to make their own travel arrangements are not charged for the group flight), housing and a meal allowance in Bordeaux for the fall semester, room and partial board in Paris, and numerous social and cultural activities. The fees for 2017–2018 have not been set.
Students from institutions other than Vassar or Wesleyan submit a nonrefundable application fee of $25 with their application. They also pay a $500 nonrefundable registration fee to confirm their place on the program.
Once they have moved into their long-term housing, which includes three dinners and all breakfasts per week provided by their hosts, students are provided by the program with a meal stipend to cover meals not included in the partial board plan. Students pay for their own travel within the city, course books and materials, vacation trips, and daily expenditures. As mentioned above, the program provides each student with a stipend to defray the costs of participating in extracurricular activities like athletic teams, clubs, extra-curricular classes, and cultural activities in French. The program also provides each student with a Carte Jeune 18-27 rail card for use on discounted travel in France, and reimburses travel costs in France upon acceptance of a project submitted to the director and the completion of a post for the VWPP blog (in French) on their experience. Each semester, the program surveys students to determine their average expenses beyond the program fee. This summary is included in the orientation materials and also will be sent to financial aid offices upon request.
Students receiving financial aid from Vassar or Wesleyan will continue to do so. They must sign all appropriate documents and arrange for all other loans and grants for the semester or year before leaving for Paris. Work-study students may have the opportunity to earn part of their work-study allocation while in Paris. Outside students should consult their office of financial aid before applying to the program. Scholarships are not always transferable and the VWPP cannot offer financial aid to students from institutions other than Vassar and Wesleyan. Student loans must be processed at the home institution.
Tuition refunds are calculated based on the date of the student’s withdrawal from the program.