COVID Considerations

COVID Considerations

Announcement

Student international travel for university-related purposes remains restricted in response to the pandemic. As conditions change, the University will continue to review the current University Restriction on All Student International Travel due to COVID19. 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 travel for University-related purposes is regulated by the University Policy on Student International Travel. We expect all students to understand and abide by the policies and guidelines presented on this page; please read them carefully. Updates are made frequently and supersede previously presented information; page content is current as of the date listed at the bottom of this page.

Information by Type of Travel

Education Abroad Programs

What to Know

Students considering available study abroad programs should: 

Prepare for both their planned term abroad and for the possibility that academic plans will have to be revised if operating conditions in the destination country or region are deemed unsafe or their program is cancelled. This includes course planning, housing arrangements, and delaying the payment of non-refundable costs for expenses like airfare. Per the University Policy on Student International Travel, travel may be restricted past the current date and acceptance/approval could be rescinded.

Understand that:

  • Applicants assume risk for lost deposits/travel expenses/academic credit in the event participation is not approved, approval is rescinded, the program is canceled, or the program or host country restricts entry. The ISO recommends that travelers consider trip insurance that can be tapped in the event that travel to or from the education abroad destination is interrupted or in the event that a change in itinerary is required.

  • Students will not be permitted to request retroactive transfer credit for coursework completed internationally while the University Travel Restriction (or other location-specific advisories as outlined in the Policy) is in place.  

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

  • 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.

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 complete both pre-existing and COVID-specific requirements. These include: 

  • The 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."

  • Pre-departure modules: In addition to reading and completing assessments for existing pre-departure modules covering health & safety, culture & identity, daily life, and more, students must complete a COVID pre-departure module. Divided into three sections: Predeparture Preparations, While Abroad, and Preparing to Return, this module addresses COVID-specific considerations, including: pre-departure testing, special travel considerations, the potential for academic disruptions, the possible need to quarantine or isolate in-country, and suggested resources. Approval to study abroad will be rescinded for students who do not complete the module and corresponding assessment.

Spring 2022

UVA Programs: UVA expects to offer a number of Spring programs in 2022; see UVA Programs for details. Students will be required to complete additional COVID-related requirements as part of the application and pre-departure process. Program operation will be contingent on a favorable review of local health, safety, and security conditions and operational viability, and individual student plans. 

Outside & Exchange Programs: Approval/nomination for outside and exchange programs for Spring 2022 is being issued on a conditional basis only. Students should complete applications by the stated deadline for their program of interest.  Decisions on a student’s study and travel plans will be issued at most four weeks before the start date of the student’s program, based on current travel conditions and in adherence to the University Policy on Student International Travel. Students will be required to submit a High Risk Education Abroad Programs Petition and meet with their Education Abroad Advisor to be considered for approval; instructions will be provided by their Advisor. Select outside and exchange programs on the UVA Approved Programs List will open for Spring 2022. 

Fall 2021 & Academic Year 2021-2022

The University is allowing students to pursue their studies outside the U.S. through a number of education abroad programs and exchanges. All student international travel, including travel by graduate students and GME residents and fellows, is subject to the University Policy on Student International Travel and requires a favorable review of local health, safety, and security conditions and individual student plans. Decisions on a student’s study and travel plans will be issued at most four weeks before the start date of the student’s program.    

January 2022

January Term programs are not being offered in 2022.

 

Hoos Abroad & Darden Travel Registries

For essential international travel for University-related purposes, advanced Graduate Students and GME Trainees may request an exemption to the University Travel Restriction; email [email protected] for further details if you intend to submit a request. Exemption requests for graduate student travel abroad will be reviewed on a rolling basis, though decisions will not be made until at most four weeks before the scheduled departure date. The ISO recommends that travelers consider trip insurance that can be tapped in the event that travel to or from the education abroad destination is interrupted or in the event that a change in itinerary is required

Student Projects Abroad

The Student Projects Abroad Travel Registry is not accepting registrations for January 2022. Registrations are open for Summer 2022. For international travel funded by University grants or awards for research projects at other times, contact [email protected] for further information. 

All student international travel remains subject to the University Travel Restriction due to COVID19. Students may request an exemption to the University Travel Restriction; email [email protected] for further details if you intend to submit a request. Exemption requests for student travel abroad will be reviewed on a rolling basis, though decisions will not be made until at most four weeks before the scheduled departure date. 

The ISO recommends that travelers consider trip insurance that can be tapped in the event that travel to or from the education abroad destination is interrupted or in the event that a change in itinerary is required. 

Vaccination Requirements & Records: All Travelers

All students who live, learn, or work in person at the University of Virginia during the 2021-2022 academic year must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2). Students and GME Trainees who plan to travel abroad for University-related purposes are subject to the University’s vaccination requirement.

Approved format(s) for proof of vaccination for entry into a given country may vary. Therefore, we recommend that travelers take steps now to obtain their state-held electronic record while safeguarding their white CDC vaccine card provided on vaccination.

Students granted an exception to the vaccination requirement on medical or religious grounds for study on-Grounds in Charlottesville should understand that it is unlikely that exceptions can be accommodated in an overseas program.

Electronic Records

The CDC maintains a list of state immunization record services, including the Virginia Department of Health’s Division of Immunization, which houses the Virginia Immunization Information System (VIIS).

Any student who is vaccinated in Virginia will, regardless of residency (Virginian or non-Virginian), have a record of the vaccination with VIIS. Click the link on the Division of Immunization page to complete the record request. Non-Virginians who did not receive their vaccines in Virginia should follow the instructions for their state’s record service to request their records. Most doctors are able (and expected to) enter immunization records in their state database.  Any student who has trouble with their records can try contacting their primary care provider for help in getting a vaccination recorded in their state’s system. 

Paper Card

Treat your COVID vaccination card with care, as you would a driver’s license, passport, or credit card. 

Take a picture of your vaccination card and store it on your phone. Make paper copies just like for your passport: leave one copy at home, and keep one with you in a secure place away from the original while you travel. Here are some additional tips on keeping your vaccine card safe.

If you lose your COVID vaccination card, the CDC provides instructions for who to contact to try to secure a replacement (scroll down to, “If you have lost your vaccination card…”). If you were vaccinated by UVA, you can use this form to request a replacement

Changes in Guidance

Guidance continues to change rapidly, so continue to refer back to this page, and to guidance from your program provider, host country, airline, the CDC, and other resources


Students with questions, please contact your Education Abroad Advisor (education abroad programs) or [email protected] (research or other non-program activity).
 

Last edited Monday, August 2, 2021. Updates are made frequently and supersede previously presented information; page content is current as of the date listed here.