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A Division of the International Studies Office

COVID Considerations

In accordance with the University Restriction on All Student International Travel due to COVID19, all student travel to/from, and activities at, international destinations for University-related purposes are restricted through May 31, 2021. This University Restriction affects all education abroad pursuits, including credit-bearing study abroad, research, internships, and student participation in non-UVA education abroad programs. 

All students considering education abroad opportunities should review the following: 

And note the following: 

  • Petitions for an exemption to the University Travel Restriction in order to participate in education abroad programs departing before May 31, 2021 are not currently being accepted. 

  • Students will not be permitted to request retroactive transfer credit for coursework completed internationally while the University Travel Restriction is in place. 

  • In light of continuing public health risks due to COVID-19, student international travel for Student Projects Abroad is on hold through summer 2021. No projects will be approved for Summer 2021.

  • For essential international travel for University-related purposes, advanced graduate students and GME trainees may request an exemption to the University Travel Restriction; email hoosabroad@virginia.edu for further details. 

Students considering education abroad in Summer (after May 31, 2021), Fall, or Academic Year 2021-22, or later, should: 

  • Prepare for both a term abroad as planned, and for the possibility that the University Travel Restriction may need to be extended. This includes course planning, housing arrangements, and delaying the payment of non-refundable costs for expenses like airfare. Remember that the University Travel Restriction applies to all education abroad pursuits, including credit-bearing study abroad, research, internships, and student participation in non-UVA education abroad programs. 

  • Read the Withdrawal & Refund Policy (students on UVA, Exchange, Partner, or Outside programs). Please note especially:

    • UVA application fees will be refunded in the event that the University Travel Restriction is extended into the student's chosen term(s) of study.

    • UVA Programs: UVA is not responsible for and will not reimburse any non-billable costs incurred if a UVA program is cancelled.

    • Exchanges, Outside, and Partner Programs: UVA is not responsible for and will not reimburse any costs incurred if the University Travel Restriction is extended and students have already made non-refundable financial commitments. Students on Outside or Partner programs or those making independent arrangements for housing, etc. should also understand the corresponding policies of their program or service provider.

  • Note that Outside and Exchange program applications, and select UVA program applications, are open for Summer, Fall, and Academic Year 2021-22. Completed applications for programs with rolling deadlines are currently being reviewed. Programs that do not review on a rolling basis will follow regularly-scheduled application timelines; see the brochure pages for specific programs for details. Acceptance/approval is being issued on a conditional basis only at this time; additional information or requirements may be needed before a decision can be made (see also timeline section below). Note that, per the University Policy on Student International Travel, travel may be restricted past the current date and acceptance/approval could be rescinded.

  • Understand critical timelines and decision points:

    • UVA programs: Students should complete applications by the stated deadline for their program of interest. Applicants for Summer UVA programs will be contacted on or after March 31 with an update about the status of their program. In most cases, students accepted to Summer UVA programs that operate will have until April 15 to commit. Dates for Fall and Year UVA programs will be provided once confirmed.

    • Outside and Exchange programs: Students should complete applications by the stated deadline for their program of interest. Final approval from UVA to participate in Summer Outside programs will not be granted until at most four weeks before the program start date, based on current travel conditions and in adherence to the University Policy on Student International Travel.  Students who apply for these programs will assume risk for lost deposits/travel expenses/academic credit in the event participation is not approved or if the sponsor cancels the program or host country or restricts entry.  Approvals may require students to meet certain conditions, and/or submit additional documentation or requirements. Timelines for Fall and Year Outside and Exchange programs will be provided once confirmed.

    • Graduate Students and GME Trainees: Exemption requests for graduate student travel abroad for Summer, Fall, or Academic Year 2021-22 will be reviewed on a rolling basis, though decisions will not be made until at most four weeks before the scheduled departure date; email hoosabroad@virginia.edu for further details if you intend to submit a request.

  • Be aware that, given the fluid nature of COVID-related conditions, additional provisions may be implemented that would be required for education abroad participation. These could include new or amended application materials, additional actions to be taken prior to departure or while in-country, and/or limitations on independent travel or other activity while in-country. Failure to adhere to regulations may result in the rescinding of approval or admission, and dismissal from the program. On approval/admission, students will be required to sign a Code of Conduct, which includes the following statement:

    • "Students traveling outside the U.S. for University related purposes are expected to behave responsibly at all times and must comply with the University of Virginia’s rules, standards, and instructions for student conduct and behavior, as well as any stated codes of conduct from the host institution/agency and local laws and are subject to U.S. law upon re-entry to the U.S. Students abroad continue to be responsible for conducting themselves consistently with the requirements of the Honor system."

Students with questions, please contact your Education Abroad Advisor (education abroad programs) or hoosabroad@virginia.edu (research or other non-program activity).

Last edited Thursday, March 4, 2021.