Coronavirus (COVID 19) Updates
Impact on U of A Student Travel
The Office of Study Abroad & International Exchange has been conducting all business in a hybrid format since early-August.
To reach a study abroad staff member, you can call 479-575-7582 during normal business hours or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each member of our study abroad office staff shares your disappointment in this continued global disruption to travel, including education abroad. At this time, our priority is to continue to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our entire University community. The information here can be shared with U of A students, faculty, staff, and family members. Please note that there is different information for each group.
Spring 2021 Study Abroad Students
The University of Arkansas will maintain its current international travel restrictions for the Spring 2021 term, which restrict all non-essential university-sanctioned and coordinated out-of-state travel, both domestic and international. This decision impacts 2021 semester study abroad students, including Rome Center, faculty-led programs (including January Intersession and Spring Break), exchange programs, and external or third-party programs; as well as credit-bearing internships, service-learning, research or independent study programs, including Sturgis Fellowships. Programs with departure dates after April 2021 will be re-evaluated at a later date.
Students may choose to appeal this university directive with a formal Petition for Exception. A student's petition should include a written justification articulating the academic necessity of travel, the status of lawful entry for travelers to the chosen destination, personal risk factors and steps taken to mitigate personal risk, mitigation plan by the receiving university or academic partner abroad, and any other relevant travel information for the students' destination from CDC, US Department of State, OSAC, or other reputable source. The appeals process follows the Academic Policy Series 1835.00.
We recognize that there are limitations to answering specific students' questions here, but we encourage you to contact the study abroad office directly to arrange an advising appointment via phone, video conference, or in-person.
Resilient International Learning
Virtual Faculty-Led Programs
Virtual cross-cultural programs offer international experience with no passport required! These programs offer the additional bonus of being very affordable and available immediately to globalize your education.
Explore Panamanian agriculture and farming industry, work on a service project with a Belizean community impacted by a recent hurricane, and tour New Zealand's North & South islands through Maori culture, Kiwi conservation, and sustainable agricultural technology. Apply now for these virtual faculty-led programs, featuring January Intersession and Spring offerings.
The Study Abroad Office is also available to advise students on a growing list of virtual international academic opportunities through external or third-party affiliate programs.
Virtual International Internships
Work with an international organization to differentiate your resume, build essential skills that employers value, and grow your professional network. Participants build their digital literacy and intercultural communication skills through project-based learning, preparing themselves to adapt to a 21st century workforce.
While completing a professional project with an international business, NGO, health, or education organization, you have the option to earn U of A credit and access financial aid and scholarships. Virtual internships are open to students from all majors and can be conducted during the summer or semester in addition to your U of A course load. For example, a student may register for 12 semester hours, plus 3 virtual internship hours, for a total of 15 credit hours that are eligible for U of A scholarships and financial aid.
Future Student Travel
The Study Abroad office continues to make every effort to reduce the impact on students as they plan for future programs. Programs scheduled to depart after May 2021 are moving forward as planned, but may be subject to postponement or cancellation as the global COVID-19 situation evolves.
The Study Abroad staff invites students to discuss future opportunities today as they plan for the long term. For example, we continue to advise on summer and fall 2021 programs, anticipating continued improvements to global travel circumstances. Some students are working even farther into the future as they map out their 4 or 5 year degree plan. Let's talk!
We can help you at any stage of the process, whether you are a prospective U of A student exploring your college choices, or a student with previous study abroad experience ready to plan your next adventure.
Check out our Explore Page to learn more about advising opportunities, including info sessions, general advising, and major-specific advising.
Information for All Travelers
Travelers must assess their health needs and make the decision to travel accordingly. Understand that some people may be at a higher risk for severe illness, such as older adults and those with chronic medical conditions. Before financially committing to international travel, travelers must realistically assess their health needs, with the guidance of their physician, and make the decision to travel accordingly.
In addition to the US Department of State’s Travel Country Information Pages, travelers may find the International Air Transport Association’s COVID-19 Travel Regulations Map a helpful planning tool because it features regular updates on entry/transit restrictions, health requirements, closed/open airports and borders, and flight suspensions. Many international airlines or ports of entry require travelers to present proof of a negative COVID-19 test result taken within the 24-72hour window prior to travel, so planning ahead is critical. Additionally, be advised that even approved travelers may face required self-quarantine upon entry (up to 14 days) to many locations internationally.
US Passport Services continue to operate at reduced capacity for travelers with a life-or-death emergency only. Passport applications are still accepted; however, at this time they are unable to offer expedited service, or make any guarantee about processing time.
In the meantime, however, we are taking great care to support our students in the planning process for future study abroad. All U of A administered programs are preparing for possible itinerary adjustments that may be necessary based on travel restrictions, quarantine requirements, and more.
Additional Resources for your Health & Wellbeing
Pat Walker Health Center | To protect our health, your health, and the health of others, PWHC will no longer be seeing walk-in patients or allowing web booking of appointments. Please call their clinics for an appointment to be seen:
- Primary Care: 479-575-4451, option 1
- Women's Health: 479-575-4451, option 2
- Allergy, Immunization and Travel Clinic: 479-575-4451, option 5
Counseling & Psychological Services | CAPS is still offering counseling services at this time (March 25, 2020), but you must call first 479-575-5276.
If You Are In Crisis
Please call CAPS at 479-575-5276, call UAPD at 479-575-2222 if you are on or near campus, call 911 anywhere in the US, or go to your local emergency room or psychiatric care facility. Suicide hotline: 1-800-273-8255 | Crisis text line: 741741 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
U of A Cares | Report a concern through U of A Cares, which links students to the appropriate resource – both personal and educational – that will allow them the opportunities to overcome barriers on their path to success. Tel.: 479-575-5004
If you are in need of finding immediate housing in Fayetteville: Contact University of Arkansas Off-Campus Housing Service at Off-Campus Housing.
Additionally, here are some helpful articles:
- COVID-19 & Your Mental Health from Newswire March 23, 2020
- Managing Anxiety & Stress from the CDC
- Dealing with Reverse Culture Shock & Mental Health During COVID-19 from USAC
- 15 Ways to Practice Self-Care in the time of Coronavirus article from Quartz
- Mythbusters About COVID-19 from the WHO