Application Process

Who can participate in the Bible Lands program?

Learners of any age—students and non-students—can participate in the Bible Lands program. Certain eligibility requirements apply for college students, and for young people not accompanied by an adult.


When is the program offered?

The 2015 - 2016 program will take place December 28, 2015 through January 8, 2015. December 28 and January 8 are travel days to and from the Eastern Mediterranean.


How do I apply?

View and print the Bible Lands application online and submit it to the FHU Abroad Office. Acrobat Reader is required to view the application. The application deadline for the 2015 - 2016 program has been extended to Monday, September 14, 2015.

Applicants are required to submit a $400 deposit to reserve a spot on the trip. The program can accommodate a limited number of participants. Once the program is full, later applicants will be placed on a waiting list after they pay the $400 deposit. All applicants who are placed on the waiting list and do not make the program will have their deposits refunded.


Where do I send my deposit and application?

Deposits may be mailed to FHU Abroad:

FHU Abroad (Box 139)
Freed-Hardeman University
158 E Main St.
Henderson, TN 38340

Make checks payable to FHU, and specify in the memo line that the deposit is for the “Bible Lands program.” If the name of the participant is not the same as the name on the check, please also note for whom the deposit is being made.

To pay by credit card, contact the Office of Business Services at 731-989-6357.

Applications may be submitted to FHU Abroad by mail to the address above, by email to fhuabroad@fhu.edu, or by fax to 731-989-6115. Please include a cover sheet when submitting an application via fax.


Are there any other materials I need to submit?

In order to participate in the program, applicants must complete and submit all forms, including the Release and Indemnification Agreement, the Payment and Withdrawal Policy, and the Emergency Information Form and Waiver (if applicable). All of the forms are available online. Participants will also be required to submit all relevant pre-departure orientation forms; contact FHU Abroad for more information.



How much does the program cost?

The all-inclusive program charge for 2015 - 2016 is $3,600 and includes round-trip airfare from Nashville, all accommodations (double occupancy in 3- to 4-star hotels), airport taxes, three meals each day (except lunch for two days in Rome), ground transportation, tour guides, tips, and travel insurance. The cost of the program is based on the cost of group airfare as quoted by the airlines and cannot be guaranteed until tickets are purchased. Any increase in the cost of the program will only reflect an increase in the cost of airfare.


Will there be any other expenses?

The all-inclusive program fee covers all travel expenses, except for lunch in Rome on January 7. Participants are responsible for the expense of obtaining a passport (if applicable) and incidental personal expenses such as souvenirs. In addition, if a single room is requested (rather than a standard double room), there is an additional $500 charge.


When will I make payments for the program?

Payments should be made toward the cost of the 2015-16 Bible Lands program according to the following payment schedule:

  • $400 deposit - upon application (deadline August 31, 2015)
  • $1,600 - September 1, 2015
  • $1,600 - October 1, 2015

An additional $500 is due by September 28 if a single-occupancy room is requested.

The cancellation and refund policy applies to all deposits and payments. Reference the Payment and Withdrawal Policy for more information.


How can I make payments?

Payments may be made to the FHU Office of Business Services in the same way as the $400 deposit. Checks may be mailed to:

FHU Abroad (Box 139)
Freed-Hardeman University
158 E Main St.
Henderson, TN 38340

Make checks payable to FHU, and specify in the memo line that the payment is for the “Bible Lands program.” If the name of the participant is not the same as the name on the check, please also note for whom the payment is being made.

To pay by credit card, contact the Office of Business Services at 731-989-6357.


Student Information

What are the student eligibility requirements?

All college students, whether enrolled in classes at FHU or elsewhere, must have completed two semesters of college coursework and achieved sophomore classification with a minimum GPA of 2.5. Students whose GPA falls below 2.5 or who are on any kind of probation—academic, disciplinary, or otherwise—may not participate. Students will also be required to participate in pre-departure orientation during the semester before they participate in the program.


Will I receive course credit for the program?

Students may enroll in three hours of academic credit associated with the program through the course BIB299A/399A Middle Eastern Cultures. Class participants will attend meetings and complete assignments during the spring semester after returning from the Middle East.


Will I pay tuition?

Full-time students who enroll in BIB299A/399A Middle Eastern Cultures will not be charged any additional cost for taking the course, as the hours will be included in the spring semester's comprehensive charge. Students who are enrolled less than full-time will pay the part-time comprehensive charge (see Tuition Details).


Can I use financial aid?

Students may receive financial aid such as scholarships, grants, and loans for their participation in the program if they are enrolled in BIB299A/399A Middle Eastern Cultures. However, financial aid will not be made available until the beginning of the spring semester, so it cannot be used toward the payments due in the fall. Contact the Office of Student Financial Services regarding questions or information about financial aid.


Preparing for the Program


What is pre-departure orientation?

All participants in the Bible Lands program are required to complete mandatory pre-departure orientation sessions before participating in the tour. The orientation sessions will be completed either on campus or online via video podcasts. The sessions will cover topics like safety and appropriate conduct, history and culture, packing tips, and general program information. FHU Abroad will contact participants with information about pre-departure orientation after the application deadline, and any questions about orientation should be directed to the FHU Abroad Office.


When do I need to apply for a passport?

Applicants who do not already have a passport should begin the passport application process immediately. Valid passports are required in advance for all participants in order to make travel arrangements. For information about how to apply for a passport, reference the State Department website.


Will I need a visa?

U.S. citizens will not need to obtain a visa prior to traveling to Israel, Palestine, or Italy. Non-U.S. citizens are responsible for obtaining any visas or re-entry permits necessary for visiting Israel and Italy; check the foreign entry requirements for Israel and Italy. Tourist visas often require more time to process than passports, so apply early.


How does the FHU Abroad office address safety concerns?

The health and safety of our program participants is always very important to Freed-Hardeman University. Every effort is made to keep our students and participants safe and secure. Safety will be thoroughly discussed during pre-departure orientation to educate participants about safety concerns, appropriate conduct while traveling abroad, and what to do in the event of an emergency. In the event of an emergency, the FHU Abroad Office will be in close contact with the tour hosts in Israel as well as the students, participants, and family members involved.

The U.S. State Department works to alert U.S. citizens of any international travel risks, and all of our international program participants are urged to register their travels with the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). STEP is a free program provided by the State Department that allows international travelers to receive the latest travel updates and information about their location.