Covid-19 Updates

COVID-19 Updates

Q: What information sources does CGE use to inform program decisions?

Student safety and well-being are the primary concerns of the Center for Global Education (CGE) and our international education partners. CGE continually monitors updates from the U.S. State Department, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, Zurich Insurance/Crisis24 intelligence reports, host country governmental health ministries, and our international education partners.  CGE complies with the best practices in the field of education abroad including those endorsed by NAFSA: Association of International Educators and the Forum on Education Abroad.

Q: What criteria does CGE use to evaluate global education programs?

  • What are the on-site COVID-19 protocols of our international partner sites? Do they meet or exceed CSB+SJU on-campus COVID-19 protocols?
  • Is there on-site 24/7 emergency support available to CSB+SJU students and faculty?
  • Is CGE able to obtain student visas (where required) for on-site programs?
  • Is there continued availability of international flights between the U.S. and the international host country?
  • Are any entry quarantines required by the host country managed at our international partner site or are the quarantines managed by a local health ministry?
  • Is local medical infrastructure able to support COVID-19 cases as well as other potential health hospitalizations?
  • What is the local housing capacity for the students? Is there designated isolation and quarantine space managed by our international partners?
  • What is the on-site academic support? Is there the ability for in-person, hybrid, or online learning modalities?
  • Is there housing and logistics support available to a student if they test positive for COVID-19 before return to the U.S. and must isolate for an additional 7-10 days?

Q: How do U.S. Department of State Travel Advisories impact study abroad programs?

CGE does not rely solely on U.S. State Department Travel Advisories for the evaluation of COVID-related risks, and we ask students to acknowledge that elevated risks remain associated with travel and COVID-19.  CGE continues to rely on U.S. State Department Travel Advisories for the evaluation of non-COVID-related risks. We do not operate programs in countries under a State Department Level 4 advisory for risks related to violence, crime, political or civil unrest, terrorism, and recent natural disasters.

Q: Who determines whether a study abroad program is approved on canceled?

The CSB+SJU International Travel Risk Assessment Committee (ITRAC) reviews all study abroad programs under a U.S. State Department “Level 3” or “Level 4” advisory.  Final approval decisions are made by the CSB/SJU Presidents after review and recommendations by ITRAC.

Q: What are the Study Abroad Community Standards?

As a student on an upcoming study abroad program, you will be studying abroad at a time when your host country is navigating the COVID-19 pandemic.  Study abroad during COVID will require a high degree of flexibility as well as respect for your local host community and your CSB+SJU study abroad community.

  As a student on a CSB+SJU sponsored study abroad program or international experience, I must adhere to one of the following community standards:

All students will be required to agree to these community standards on a form available in the Global Portal. 

Q: What is the Study Abroad COVID-19 Acknowledgement Form?

While CSB+SJU strive to make your study abroad programs as safe as possible, all risks cannot be eliminated or anticipated on your program.  So that you can make an informed decision about your participation in your program, we ask you to acknowledge your understanding of the enhanced COVID-19 risks associated with study abroad as stated on the COVID-19 Acknowledgement Form.  

Q: Why is CSB/SJU requiring the COVID-19 vaccine on study abroad?

A growing body of evidence suggests that fully vaccinated people are less likely to be infected without showing symptoms and thus potentially less likely to spread the virus that causes COVID-19 to others.  In addition, many study abroad programs now require proof of COVID-19 vaccination for entry into the country and the vaccination may enable students to reduce or avoid a period of quarantine. Moreover, in many countries proof of vaccination is required to enter many venues including classrooms, student housing, museums, theaters, and restaurants.

Q: Will COVID-19 vaccine exemptions be allowed on study abroad?

CSB+SJU have determined that there will be no COVID-19 exemptions allowed for participants on global education programs through Summer 2023 programs.  The COVID-19 vaccine requirement is based on the following factors:

  • A growing body of evidence suggests that COVID-19 vaccines are the most effective way to prevent hospitalization due to COVID-19 and minimize the spread of the virus among students and our host communities. This aligns with recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, which includes this statement: “Do not travel internationally until you are fully vaccinated.”
  • Most countries now require proof of COVID-19 vaccination for entry into the country.  COVID-19 vaccination enables participants to reduce or avoid a period of quarantine and allows them to participate fully in the global education programming.
  • In many countries proof of vaccination is required to enter many venues including classrooms, student housing, museums, theaters, and restaurants.  Unvaccinated participants will be unable to participate fully in the global education programming.
  • Global education programming is an optional choice and not a CSB+SJU graduation requirement.

Q: How are on-site academics impacted by COVID-19?

 All classroom spaces at international program sites will be COVID-compliant according to local heath authority requirements.  In the event there is a surge in COVID (or a student needs to quarantine/isolate due to COVID) hybrid and or remote learning options will be available at each program site.

Q: How are study abroad program finances impacted by COVID-19?

If a program is cancelled by CGE prior to the program start date, students will receive a full refund of their application fee and will not be charged any additional cancellation fees.  (All other semester cancellation policies will continue to apply). Any violation of the Community Standards could result in disciplinary action being taken, including dismissal from the program.