A Message on the Novel Coronavirus Outbreak

April 28, 2020

Dear students,

GEO is committed to the health and safety of every student during their education abroad. As news updates about COVID-19 (the coronavirus) continue to arrive at an accelerated pace, we’d like to share an update and provide details about how we are actively monitoring this global health situation. Whether you’re a student with an application for a 2020-21 GEO study abroad program, a student who’s considering applying for one of our programs, or another interested party, please know that our students’ health is our topmost concern. 

On March 12, the University of Oregon canceled all spring quarter 2020 study abroad programs. Global Education Oregon advisors are following up with individual students to assist with academic planning, including registration support for spring quarter classes, housing arrangements, finances, and scholarships.

Additionally, on March 14, all students currently studying abroad on semester or academic year programs were advised to make plans to return home. Global Education Oregon advisors are individually assisting those students with return travel arrangements, enrollment in spring classes, completion of current overseas credits, and finding housing in the Eugene area.

On April 28, Dennis Galvan, dean and vice provost for the Division of Global Engagement, informed students enrolled in summer study abroad programs that ongoing travel restrictions and social distancing are forcing the cancellation of travel-based study abroad, international internships, and other global programs through August 14, 2020. GEO advisors are following up to assist students with academic planning, finances, and scholarships. Students will still have access to summer financial aid. For more information, please read the full announcement.

We value the opportunity to provide students with a positive and safe study abroad experience and are hopeful we will be able to begin offering this option again to students as early as summer term 2020. We will only do so after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), the U.S. Department of State and sources of close assessment of global health conditions determine it’s safe to resume. When conditions start to improve, we will consult closely with the University of Oregon Travel Advisory Group, University Health Center, and Incident Management Team to decide where and when to restart study abroad.    

To ease decision making for students applying for summer or fall 2020 study abroad programs, GEO is making all study abroad deposits fully refundable. Timely program updates are provided directly to students who have open applications for summer and fall study abroad programs. The application deadline for both summer and fall programs is now April 15, 2020.

We encourage you to share this message with parents, family, and/or friends that may be supporting your study abroad plans. Please also visit the UO’s coronavirus website for additional information.

Stian Eriksen 
Executive Director 
Global Education Oregon