COVID 19 UPDATES

Unwilling to compromise the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff, Education Abroad and Texas A&M University have had to make some tough decisions in regards to international programs. Here are the latest updates:

Risk Management COVID-19 Regulation Education Abroad Planning

In an effort to facilitate safe and rewarding international experiences, while also minimizing the risk from cancellation or delays due to COVID-19, the following protocols are effective as of October 15, 2021:

  • Anyone interested in an international experience is encouraged to be fully vaccinated prior to traveling abroad due to the range of destination-specific entry requirements and restrictions for arriving travelers.
  • All participants are required to meet all destination/program requirements by the program start date, including quarantine, testing, vaccination, etc.
    • Texas A&M University will make every effort to proactively communicate these requirements; however, participants should also continually monitor requirements as conditions are fluid and rapidly changing worldwide.
    • Each participant is responsible for meeting the destination/program COVID requirements prior to the program start date, including quarantine, testing, vaccination, etc.
    • Unless otherwise included in the program budget, any costs associated with fulfilling destination/program requirements (i.e. quarantine lodging, testing, etc.) will be the individual participant’s responsibility.
  • Multi-country/Multi-destination experiences are discouraged but will be considered on an individual basis in cooperation with the Office of Risk, Ethics and Compliance.
  • Education Abroad will collect participant health information, including vaccination status, as required by the destination/program provider to ensure each participant’s ability to fully participate in the experience.
    • Participants who fail to meet all destination/program requirements could be denied entry and forced to return to the United States.
    • All costs associated with entry denial upon arrival will be the individual participant’s responsibility.
  • Education Abroad will modify, relocate and/or cancel programs as needed based on the destination’s health and safety situation. Decisions will be made and communicated as timely as possible; however, it is important to note that the situation worldwide is fluid and changes regularly.
 

Faculty-led programs, field trips, and student group trips

Texas A&M University has approved, with some possible exceptions, faculty-led programs traveling through December 2021 that exceed four weeks in duration. Approval is contingent on COVID-19 specific mandates or restrictions in the host country, re-entry requirements, and an additional review and approval by OREC.

Due to the rapidly changing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the decision to allow travel is subject to change and currently approved programs may be canceled at a later date.  We recommend that faculty and students refrain from making financial commitments until absolutely necessary.
 

Exchange, affiliate provider, and independent programs

Students participating in individual experiences through a provider or exchange partner are permitted to go as long as the host university or partner has confirmed that it is operational, and with the understanding that they do so at their own risk. Any financial loss incurred because of travel or health issues related to COVID-19 will not be reimbursed by Education Abroad or Texas A&M University.
 
A few things students should consider include:
  • The ability to depart the U.S. and enter destination country based on current travel restrictions.
  • Vaccination requirements and the likelihood that your host destination or program provider may require the COVID-19 vaccination prior to your departure or while you are abroad.
  • That programs may be abruptly ended by the provider or host institution if conditions worsen.
  • Travel restrictions may change while abroad, prohibiting students from returning to the U.S.
  • There may be a need to self-isolate upon return to the U.S.
  • Major delays in the processing of passports may prevent students from obtaining a passport and/or visa (or residence permit) in time for travel.
  • Institutional and federal financial aid may not be awarded due to travel restrictions.
  • Remaining enrolled in Texas A&M courses in addition to 1 credit hour of the appropriate placeholder course until closer to the departure date in the event travel is not possible.

Students who are still pursuing exchange, affiliate provider, and independent programs should notify Education Abroad of their decision by emailing tcabroad@tamu.edu.
 

Voluntary withdrawal

If you choose to cancel your participation in an exchange, affiliate provider, or independent program, or defer your experience to a future term, please do the following:
  • For provider programs, inform your provider that you would like to cancel or defer your program and ask about options for reimbursement and/or future programs. Many providers have extended their deadlines and withdrawal policies given the COVID-19 pandemic. Please CC: tcabroad@tamu.edu.
  • Call and/or email your academic advisor to let him/her know your situation and to identify immediate academic needs due to no longer going abroad.
  • Reach out to your airline carrier to cancel your flight.  Please reference that it is COVID-19 related and you may be able to get a full or partial refund or a voucher for future travel.
  • Email your education abroad advisor at tcabroad@tamu.edu to let us know if you are canceling or deferring your program. If you wish to defer your provider program, let us know the new term you intend to go abroad and we’ll update your application in the portal accordingly. If you wish to defer your exchange program, let us know your desired term and we’ll help you liaise with our exchange partner to see this can be accommodated.
 

Future Education Abroad Programs

Education Abroad at Texas A&M University continues to closely monitor federal and international travel advisories and restrictions, as well as guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) the World Health Organization (WHO), and the U.S. Department of State.

For more information about Education Abroad opportunities, please visit the Education Abroad website at abroad.tamu.edu, call 979-845-0544, or email abroad@tamu.edu. Virtual appointments can also be scheduled with an Education Abroad advisor by visiting tx.ag/EducationAbroadAdvising.
 

We’re still here to serve you!

Education Abroad is open for limited, appointment-based advising and services. Our staff is here and ready to serve you, however, visitors will not be allowed to enter without a scheduled appointment. Here’s how you can schedule yours:
 

Virtual

Avoid coming in and schedule a virtual appointment that will be conducted over Zoom during normal business hours. Visit our Meet with an Advisor page to select an advisor and schedule a time.
 

In-Person

By appointment only. Face coverings are strongly encouragedfor those not vaccinated. To schedule an appointment, please call 979-845-0544 or email abroad@tamu.edu

*Not required
 

Document Drop Off

If just needing to drop off a document, a drop-off box is located outside of our office door at Pavilion 112 - no appointment required. You will receive an email confirmation that your document has been received.
 

Passports

Passport services and photo operations are open and accepting appointments. For more information, visit the Passport Services website. Appointments can be made at https://swan.tamu.edu/educationabroad. Click on a specific date to see availability.
 

Frequently Asked Questions

​Information presented in these FAQs is updated and accurate as of October 14, 2021. Because of the fluid nature of the pandemic and its effect on international travel, however, the information is subject to change.

View or print FAQs in a pdf format

Decision Making

Safety

Protocols and Guidelines

Insurance

Cancellations/Early Returns

University Information regarding Coronavirus

 

General Information regarding Coronavirus