blog posts Spring 2022 Study Abroad Update (December 8, 2021) Dec 8, 2021 2:00 pmAs you prepare for study abroad in Spring 2022, International Safety and Security wants to share some important reminders. Please read this entire email carefully. Topics include COVID vaccinations, study abroad considerations, remaining informed, and more. Read expanded detail on all these topics on the Study Abroad webpage and review Frequently Asked Questions. We encourage you to share this information with family and friends if they are interested in planning and preparations for study abroad. Vaccination and Booster Shots.In addition to complying with the university’s policy on vaccination, you are strongly encouraged to receive a booster vaccination before departure. This potentially mitigates concerns with the evolving definition of “fully vaccinated,” access abroad, and potential cost. The CDC has amended its guidance to encourage vaccine boosters before travel. Read more information about COVID-19 vaccination and boosters. Resuming Study Abroad.The decision to resume study abroad is not made lightly. While the university values the experience for students, your well-being remains our foremost concern. Factors Mitigating COVID-19 Risk. Risk associated with COVID-19 will remain but progress in many areas mitigates some risk. Progress and university efforts include the availability and impact of vaccinations and boosters, reviewing programs, acclimation to protective measures (masks, social distancing, etc.), and improved insurance benefits. Impact of University Suspension. The university retains the right to suspend study abroad programs at any time for student well-being. If factors discussed below require the difficult but necessary decision to suspend study abroad programs, the university will do so. In this event, staff will diligently work with study abroad partners to recoup all possible costs, but you are responsible for program costs that cannot be recovered and personal costs, such as airfare and lodging. This applies to program suspension before and/or during program dates. Factors for University Suspension. Vaccination, planning, and healthy habits can mitigate some risk, yet residual risk can be significant. The university may suspend study abroad at any point after evaluating critical factors including local health care capacity, severe and extended travel disruptions, and remote instruction for an extended period. Find more information about planning and preparations for Spring 2022 study abroad in Frequently Asked Questions. Continue Checking Travel Requirements.These reminders are a baseline understanding of the realities of study abroad in Spring of 2022. Entry requirements and precautionary measures are constantly changing as the pandemic evolves. It is vital to continue checking the U.S. State Department’s COVID-19 Country Specific Information and CDC COVID-19 pages and be alert for updates from your program staff and college study abroad offices. You should also check for updates from your airline, as testing and mask mandates may change. International Safety and Security will send a brief update around December 20 if warranted by changing conditions and will follow-up as necessary. Student Insurance Guide.The university’s international insurance is a critical resource. It provides coverage related to COVID-19 and general medical care, including tele-health and tele-counseling, hospital care, and testing and quarantine benefits in specific conditions. Read the full Student Insurance Guide here and download a mobile version here. If you have questions, you can contact your sponsoring study abroad office or International Safety and Security. You can read more on all these topics at the Study Abroad webpage.