Paying your bill and estimating expenses
Payment of Semester Bill
Paying Tuition Charges:
To become a registered student, you must first “schedule” classes after consulting with your academic department. Secondly, the registration is completed ONLY upon receipt of tuition and fee payments to the University.
Note: students must also be registered full time (12 credits for undergraduates; 9 credits for graduate students) except for those students who have prior approval to be less than full time from the Directorate of International Student Advising (DISA). DISA must also report all students who are not full time to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services within 21 days of the start of each semester.
The Bursar’s Office will e-mail a semester bill to your Penn State Access Account detailing payment methods. It is important to note that there will not be a paper bill. However, if you do not receive a bill by the end of July, please contact the Bursar’s Office at +1-570-963-2514. Or, you may email Kim Bogdan, Financial Officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org or Christy Healey, assistant to the Financial Officer, at email@example.com.
Once the tuition charges are paid or confirmed, your status in the Penn State database will move from scheduled to registered. For reporting purposes in the U.S. Government database SEVIS, students on F-1 and J-1 visas must be in registered status within 30 days of the program start date listed on their immigration document.
Methods of Payment:
Personally-funded students paying by cash, check, or money order
Students may choose to print the semester bill from eLion at https://elion.psu.edu and submit it with a check or money order directly to the Bursar’s Office, Room 8 Dawson Building. All checks and money orders must be made payable to Penn State University. The Bursar’s Office asks that you include your student ID number on the check. Students may also visit the Bursar’s Office for cash payments.
There is a 2% convenience fee for each payment processed with either a MasterCard or Discover credit cards through eLion.
Note: the Bursar will not accept credit card payments via mail, phone or in person.
eLion - Students can now pay tuition & fees by credit card using eLion. Paying by credit card on eLion allows you to e-mail a receipt directly into your own PSU e-mail account.
Students sponsored by their home government or outside agency
Students must still take action to finalize the semester bill by logging on to eLion and selecting “Confirm
Registration.” If you are unable to use this method, students should contact the Bursar’s office.
International Wire Transfers
Penn State has partnered with peerTransfer to streamline the tuition payment process for our international students. With peerTransfer, you are offered excellent foreign exchange rates, allowing you to pay in your home currency and save a significant amount of money, as compared to traditional banks. It’s fast, simple and cost effective from any country - any time.
SAVES MONEY using peerTransfer will save you hundreds of dollars on each tuition payment vs.
traditional bank wire transfers.
SIMPLE no more back-and-forth with the bank trying to get all the information you need to make a wire payment.
QUICK no more waiting and wondering if your payment has posted to your student account. peerTransfer will keep you and Penn State informed along the way.
How it works:
• peerTransfer http://psu.peertransfer.com accepts payments from any country - typically in your home
currency. They work to secure you wholesale foreign exchange rates, which are significantly lower than rates offered by traditional banks.
• Visit http://psu.peertransfer.com, enter your tuition amount, and immediately see how much money you will save. Once you initiate payment on http://psu.peertransfer.com, you will receive detailed instructions on how to transfer funds to Penn State. peerTransfer will keep you informed during every step in the process, including when funds have been delivered to Penn State.
• Payments are posted to your student account more quickly than they would be if you were using a regular bank to pay. And, you can be assured that you will never have a short-payment due to unexpected transfer fees or bank charges.
Bringing and Sending Money from Outside the U.S.
We recommend that any money you bring or send from any country outside the U.S. be in the form of travelers checks, payable in U.S. dollars. According to the U. S. Customs and Border Protection there is no limit to the amount of U.S. or foreign coins, currency, travelers checks, money orders, and negotiable instruments or investment securities in bearer forms that you can bring into or take out of the United States. However, if you do bring into the U.S. or send out of the U.S. or cause to be brought in or sent out by mail or other means, more than $10,000 on any occasion, or if you receive more than that amount, you must file a report (Customs Form 4790) with U.S. Customs (Currency & Foreign Transactions Reporting Act, 31 U.S.C. 1101, et seq.). Reporting transportation of funds above $10,000 should not incur additional tax penalties or cause other significant costs.
Failure to report funds in an amount of more than $10,000 is likely to result in the seizure of the unreported funds as well as imposition of civil and criminal penalties.
Estimated Initial Expenses
You should bring enough money with you to cover your initial expenses, which are estimated below. Tuition must be paid before late registration on September 7, 2013. You may pay your tuition using MasterCard, Discover, or American Express credit cards, but there is an additional 2% convenience fee charged for using credit cards. The following are other acceptable methods of paying: electronic check (eCheck) made payable in U.S. dollars on a student’s account in eLion; personal check or money order (made payable in U.S. dollars sent via mail or in person); or cash or travelers checks paid in person only. More information about tuition bill instructions is available at: www.bursar.psu.edu/paybill.cfm.
Any additional money for personal use included in a check to the University will be released only after 21 working days. We therefore suggest that you do not bring all of your funds in one large check made payable to Penn State. Credit cards are not accepted for most housing contracts. Full payment is due at the beginning of the semester for that semester’s tuition and fees, on-campus housing, meal cards, and the medical insurance premium.
*Tuition must be paid before classes begin unless you have a Penn State scholarship or assistantship or your tuition will be paid directly to the University by your sponsoring agency.
**Minimum number of credits an international student in F-1 or J-1 immigration status may take per semester. Tuition and Fees estimates vary depending upon level of study and on department surcharges but most will fall within the range indicated.
***Medical Insurance: All international students MUST either purchase Penn State insurance or carry an alternative policy that meets all Penn State waiver standards. You must have purchased insurance or had your policy approved by Student Health Insurance before classes begin.
Health insurance is mandatory at Penn State for international students. Information is available at: http://studentaffairs.psu.edu/health/services/insurance/international.shtml
International students will need to comply with immunization requirements. Information is available at: http://studentaffairs.psu.edu/health/services/healthRecords/immunizationINTL.shtml
Estimated Orientation Expenses
Tuition and Fees*
Medical Insurance*** $923
Incidentals $50.00 - $200.00
You will need to have a bank account in order to conduct any financial transactions while attending Penn State Worthington Scranton. Most students use a bank checking account to handle their money by writing checks against the account to pay bills, buy textbooks, withdraw cash, and send money safely in the mail. It is best to establish a new account after you arrive at Penn State. Be sure to bring sufficient cash or travelers checks to sustain yourself for at least two months. It may take two weeks to a month, sometimes longer, before you will be able to write checks.
Select a Bank
There are several banks in the Scranton area. You may want to do your own research to select a bank. The chart below shows a list of banks that have an office near the campus.
224 Dunmore Street
1230 Oneill Highway
First National Community Bank
102 East Drinker Street
Fidelity Deposit & Discount Bank
101 North Blakely Street
Bring your forms of identification
You may be asked for your Social Security Number (SSN) when opening a bank account. Local banks understand some international students do not have SSNs. You should bring other forms of identification (passport and student ID) to open your account without an SSN.
Know your address
You will be asked to provide your campus address and your permanent home address. Do not use a temporary housing address or the Office of Student Affairs address to open your account.
Checking Account It is relatively easy to open a checking account, where you can keep money to be spent by writing checks or using a debit card.
Savings Account This account also allows you to keep money, but you will have to maintain a minimum balance, and the funds are accessible only at the bank. Savings accounts earn a small amount of interest.
Debit Card This card works in conjunction with your checking account. You can use this card at ATMs to withdraw money, or at many stores to make purchases. The money is directly deducted from your checking account. There is a PNC ATM on campus.
Checks You can receive a checkbook when you open a checking account for a small fee. You may make a purchase by writing a check. Make sure to learn how to write a check to avoid fraud.
Foreign Currency Many banks exchange foreign currency, if you have an account with them. They often charge a fee. If you are exchanging U.S. dollars for other currency, it may take a few business days to receive the money.
Protect Yourself from Identity Theft
• Report lost or stolen ID cards, license, credit cards, and personal information immediately.
• Never share your personal identification number (PIN) with others.
• Use online banking when possible— the most common source of identity theft is paper documents.
• Change your online passwords regularly.
• Monitor your account information on a regular basis.