UMD: A Globally Connected University
Coronavirus and Study Abroad Updates
Coronavirus and Study Abroad Updates
UMD is planning for the resumption of in-person study abroad in the Fall 2021 semester. Several factors, including the increasing accessibility to COVID-19 vaccines for UMD students, make this possible.
We are making every effort to create experiences for students that are both safe and rewarding. Sensitive to health and safety concerns, the university continues to monitor the global risk environment and will follow guidance from such authorities as the U.S. State Department, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and other public health and security experts. In addition, factors such as the health care infrastructure in host countries, the ability to continue academic programs in the event of a program disruption, the availability of U.S. citizens services at embassies and consular offices, as well as countries' entrance requirements also inform our decisions.
Study Abroad Program Status Updates
As decisions are made about the status of study abroad programs, announcements will be posted here as well as distributed through UMD channels. Please continue to check back for the latest updates.
- Winter 2022 & Spring 2022 - UMD is planning for the resumption of in-person study abroad and incoming exchange for Winter and Spring 2022. More information about program offerings and application opening dates are forthcoming.
- Fall 2021 - UMD is planning for the resumption of in-person study abroad and incoming exchange in the Fall 2021 semester. Explore Fall 2021 study abroad programs.
- Summer 2021 - In-person study abroad programs for Summer 2021 programs are canceled.
- Spring 2021 - In-person study abroad programs for Spring 2021 as well as incoming exchange programs are canceled.
- Fall 2020 - As of June 10, 2020, the UMD incoming exchange program for the Fall 2020 semester is canceled; As of May 19, 2020, ALL face-to-face study abroad programs for the Fall 2020 semester are canceled.
- Spring break & Summer 2020 - As of March 3, 2020, the University of Maryland has canceled all Education Abroad programs for Spring break 2020 and Summer session 2020.
- Spring 2020 - As of March 14, 2020, ALL spring semester 2020 study abroad programs have been suspended. This includes programs in Africa, Asia, Australia, Latin America (Central and South), the Middle East, New Zealand, as well as those programs that involve multiple countries. This does NOT apply to international exchange students studying at the University of Maryland campus in College Park. Please read below for more details. As of March 11, 2020, spring semester programs have been suspended for all countries in Europe, as well as Japan, China and South Korea. Please read below for more details.
Frequently Asked Questions: Education Abroad and COVID-19
What is the University of Maryland doing in response to the COVID-19 outbreak?
The university continues to actively monitor the novel Coronavirus (“COVID-19”) outbreak. We are staying up to date on the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and being proactive in implementing measures to keep our community safe. The university’s Incident Response Team, International Risk Management Committee, Campus Infectious Disease Management Committee, Student Affairs leadership and Council of Deans are meeting regularly to evaluate the current situation and make decisions to safeguard the health of our community.
Visit https://umd.edu/virusinfo for the most up-to-date information regarding the university’s response to COVID-19.
When and how does UMD make the decision to resume in-person programs, and what resources are informing these decisions?
Several factors, including the increasing accessibility to COVID-19 vaccines for UMD students, make this possible. The university continues to monitor the global risk environment and will follow guidance from such authorities as the U.S. State Department, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and other public health and security experts. In addition, factors such as the health care infrastructure in host countries, the ability to continue academic programs in the event of a program disruption, the availability of U.S. citizens services at embassies and consular offices, as well as countries' entrance requirements also inform our decisions.
While abroad, students should continue to practice the 4 Maryland healthy behaviors, follow the safety regulations of local public health and legal authorities, and adhere to the policies outlined by their program providers.
How do the updated U.S. State Department Travel Advisories affect Fall 2021 programs?
On April 19, the U.S. State Department updated their Travel Advisories to better reflect CDC Travel Health Notices, as well as logistics like testing availability and travel restrictions for U.S. citizens. As of April 19, approximately 80% of countries have a Travel Advisory Level 4: Do Not Travel.
We rely on State Deparment Travel Advisories, CDC Travel Health Notices and Alerts, and other public helath and secuirty experts to help us determine where we can operate study abroad programs as safely as possible. Any change in these advisory levels is taken into consideration and potentially impact study abroad options. Fall 2021 programs are subject ot change and will continue to be evaluated based upon guidance provided by these authorities.
What programs will Education Abroad offer for the Fall 2021 semester?
Similar to UMD, our partner institutions around the world are working to slowly transition back to in-person programming over the next several months. Program offerings are subject to change and will continue to be evaluated based on our criteria for reopening. As other study abroad locations meet UMD's requirements for reopening, additional programs will be included in our Spring 2022 portfolio.
Education Abroad advisors are here to support students in selecting a program that meets their academic, financial, and personal needs. Make an appointment today.
What health and safety resources are available to students who study abroad?
All students who travel abroad for either credit earning or university-sponsored, non-credit programs are automatically enrolled in our risk management program. This program includes comprehensive international health insurance, access to Alert Traveler, tracking dates and location of travel in case of emergency, and more.
Explore more Health & Safety Resources.
What is Alert Traveler?
UMD students, faculty, and staff participating in study abroad programs have access and are strongly encouraged to use the AlertTraveler (AT) phone app for the duration of their study abroad experience. AT is a very important part of the health and safety network of resources in place to support the wellbeing of all participants on study abroad programs. The app is available for download to iOS or Android mobile devices. Participants are eligible to download AT 60 days from your MyEA itinerary’s start date.
The Benefits of AlertTraveler:
Safety alerts. AT keeps you informed of health, safety and security issues specific to your travel locations. AT uses your MyEA itinerary to send country and city-specific safety and security alerts and intelligence straight to your phone.
Enable location services. Enabling location services on your mobile device allows AT to send targeted alerts based on your GPS location, down to the city level. We strongly encourage travelers to enable location services. Doing so provides you with AT’s optimal service – putting timely, location-specific health, safety and security information at your fingertips immediately.
Safety check-in. Another important feature of the app is the instant check-in option. This helps Education Abroad quickly reach out to you when emergencies arise to see if you are okay or if you need assistance. You can also proactively request help in emergencies.
Other features. Other helpful features include info pages on security, local 911-equivalent numbers, travel logistics, political conditions, health advisories, and culture.
Read more about AlertTraveler on our Health & Safety page.
What insurance is available for students who study abroad Fall 2021?
All students who travel abroad for credit or for university-sponsored, non-credit programs are automatically enrolled in comprehensive international health insurance through CISI (included in each student's program fee).
We also encourage all students to purchase travel insurance through CISI to offset non-refundable costs in the event that a program is canceled or a student choose to voluntarily withdraw from their Fall 2021 program.
What if my program is canceled prior to departure?
While we hope that all of our program offerings will run as planned, Education Abroad continues to monitor the situation around the world. Programs may be canceled if they fail to meet our criteria to resume. Education Abroad encourages all students to purchase travel insurance through CISI to offset non-refundable costs in the event of program cancellation.
To safeguard yourself academically and financially in the event of program cancellation, Education Abroad advises all students applying to a Fall 2021 program to:
- Register for Fall 2021 classes at UMD in addition to study abroad courses
- Purchase refundable airline tickets and travel insurance
Education Abroad will continue to support students through program cancellation procedures. An EA advisor will notify students of any changes to program status and refund policies associated with the cancellation. Education Abroad will also coordinate with campus partners to assist transitioning students to a semester on campus, including supporting academic and financial aid advising.
Will I be refunded if I choose to voluntarily withdraw from my program?
Once you commit to a program, Education Abroad does not guarantee that any portion of the program fee will be credited to your student account should you withdraw from the program for any reason. Read more about EA's withdrawal policy on the Financial Commitment, Withdrawals & Refunds page.
EA encourages all students to purchase travel insurance through CISI to offset non-refundable costs in the event that a student chooses to voluntarily withdraw from their program.
Will a COVID-19 vaccine be required to study abroad?
Unless you qualify for exemption, UMD requires that you be vaccinated against COVID-19. Being fully vaccinated significantly reduces the risk of contracting and/or becoming seriously ill from the virus. Vaccinations are available to all Maryland residents.
Many locations require proof of a negative COVID-19 test and/or a COVID-19 vaccine (both doses) within a certain number of days or hours of your entrance into another country. You must meet these requirements to enter the country. You can find this information on the International Air Transport Association's website or the U.S. State Department's COVID-19 country specific information pages.
How can I stay informed about the latest Education Abroad program updates?
Sign up to receive updates on global opportunities at UMD curated to your interests at go.umd.edu/globalterps. When you indicate an interest in study abroad, you will receive program updates, application alerts, and other important information to help you navigate study abroad opportunities.