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National Student Exchange

As a current and founding member of NSE, UNC has sent and welcomed hundreds of students from across the United States, Canada, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Now, it's your turn to take advantage of this incredible opportunity to study away through NSE.

There are over 170 different NSE colleges and universities to choose from in 48 states, 7 Canadian provinces, Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and Guam.

For more information, attend one of our NSE information sessions throughout the year or contact NSE@unco.edu

Why choose NSE?

Students choose NSE for many different reasons, but regardless of their initial reasons, NSE participants have found their exchanges culturally enriching, academically rewarding, and one of the most significant experiences of their undergraduate education. Some benefits and opportunities of studying through NSE include:

  • Broaden your perspective: attend a school with a strong academic department in your major.
  • Live in a new environment and culture: from cold to warm, plains to mountains, and concrete to beach, we are sure that you can find a campus with the right combination of academics, extracurricular activities, facilities, and environment to meet your needs and interests.
  • Study French or Spanish: study in Quebec or Puerto Rico to immerse yourself in a foreign language.
  • More affordable than study abroad: pay your regular UNC tuition to attend one of over 170 colleges and universities. You can still work and go to school with most NSE exchanges.
  • Find an internship not in Colorado, but stay enrolled in school.
  • Check out a potential graduate school: before applying to potential graduate school and moving across the country, study there for a semester as an undergraduate and meet your future professors and get an overall impression of the school.
  • Attend a specific out-of-state school that you've always wanted to attend, but couldn't afford.
  • Attend a specific type of institution: member institutions include:
    • Historically Black Colleges & Universities 
    • Hispanic Serving Universities
    • Public Liberal Arts Colleges
    • Spanish-Speaking Universities
    • French-Speaking Universities
    • Polytechnic Universities
    • Land-Grant Universities
    • Sea-Grant Universities
    • Space-Grant Universities
    • Sun-Grant Universities
    • Urban Universities
    • Large Universities
    • Small Colleges


Participation is a privilege, not a right. As an NSE participant, you are an UNC ambassador at your host institution. We want you to show your Bear pride and make us proud! All of the following requirements must be met to be considered eligible for NSE:

  • Full-time student
  • Minimum GPA: 2.5 (some schools require higher)
  • Good academic standing (no academic holds or probation)
  • 24 UNC credits by the time of exchange (can't go during freshman year)
  • Willingness to explore the US and/or Canada
  • Desire to have a great time!

error_outline These requirements must be met at the time of application and exchange. If your GPA for the term preceding exchange falls below a 2.5, your exchange may be cancelled by UNC even though your overall GPA remains at a cumulative 2.5 or greater.


An NSE exchange is an extremely affordable study away option for UNC students. UNC is a "Plan B" school only, which means that you pay UNC tuition and fees and room & board to your host campus. While on exchange, you remain eligible for most forms of financial aid, just as if you were still at UNC. In some cases, an NSE exchange can be cheaper than UNC!

The application fee is $300, which covers all administrative aspects of your exchange, including aiding with the course transfer process upon return.

NSE Application Fee


Tuition & Fees (you will be billed for 12 credit hours)

Additional fees assessed by host campus

Varies, see NSE member campuses for information about required and optional fees.

Housing & meals

Varies, paid to host university

Airfare/Travel Expenses


Personal Expenses