Establishing an Exchange

The coordination of an exchange involves many different parties, both here at Georgia State University as well as at the institution abroad. From setting up the initial International Cooperation Agreement to working with International Student and Scholar Services to prepare to host students from abroad, to working with our office to facilitate sending Georgia State students overseas, you will find a host of offices (support units) that are prepared to assist you with this process.

For a complete overview of the exchange agreement process at GSU, visit The agreement process is coordinated by Ms. Kike Ehigiator ( Assistant Director, Program Development and Management, Office of International Initiatives.

If you are interested in establishing a student exchange, please contact Ryan Rathmann (  to discuss the topics related to sending outbound students on an exchange.

Support Units for Student Exchange Programs

Office of International Affairs

OIA serves as the secretariat and repository for International Cooperation Agreements and as such, is responsible for guiding these agreements through the approval, renewal and termination processes, and for maintaining the official searchable database. OIA also develops and maintains the policy Guidelines and Procedures for International Cooperation Agreements. This document also contains examples of the three types of agreements, based upon the extent of cooperation, recommended by OIA.

Study Abroad Programs Office

The Study Abroad Programs office serves as the focal point for all Georgia State University students who are studying overseas. This includes both faculty-led study abroad programs and student exchange programs. The Study Abroad Programs office advertises and promotes all study abroad opportunities to the student population, ensures that all faculty are trained with regard to crisis management, and assists students with their return to the university. Study Abroad Programs also keeps data on all study abroad student and program information. Students visit our office to find a study abroad program that suits their individual needs, to search for scholarships and other funding, and to ask any questions they may have regarding their study abroad experience.

International Student & Scholar Services

International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) offers immigration and support services to international students, faculty, and staff in order to support the intercultural and international dimensions of the University. ISSS handles all visa requests for international students. Each semester ISSS hosts an orientation for international students helping them to acclimate the students to GSU. This orientation also handles testing and placement, registration and the completion of necessary regulatory forms.

Legal Affairs

The Office of Legal Affairs provides legal advice to the University faculty, staff, administrators, and student leaders while they are acting on the University’s behalf. Legal Affairs ensures that international agreements do not expose the University and its faculty and students to liability beyond reasonable parameters. They assist with ensuring that agreements meet all U.S. regulations as well as standard concerns regarding international relations.

Program Director

The Program Director is the primary point of contact for a specific program. They are responsible for maintaining the relationship with their counterparts abroad, for working collaboratively within the  university to ensure their programs run smoothly, and for working with students both at Georgia State University and abroad to ensure a successful exchange experience. Program Directors market their programs, process applications, and assist students with all aspects of the program including visa issues and course registration. Program Directors must also submit annual data regarding their programs to the University and are required to attend crisis management training and other University meetings.

College or Department

The individual college or department should also be contacted to ensure the exchange fits within the academic and strategic mission of the college or department. Colleges or departments may have specific contacts appointed to help facilitate international programs. Please consult with the appropriate contacts as you set up the exchange agreement.