16 March, 2020
In light of the evolving global pandemic, The College of Global Studies at Arcadia University is immediately suspending all on-site spring 2020 programming in Australia and New Zealand. We have arrived at this decision after careful consideration of a variety of factors, including increasing border closures and travel restrictions affecting student mobility, as well as the capacity of local healthcare systems to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak. While the situation in Australia and New Zealand is not currently dire, we have witnessed these circumstances change overnight in countries where Arcadia operates. As guests of the host country, we do not wish for our students to possibly contribute to an overburdening of those systems.
All students studying in Australia and New Zealand should immediately make arrangements to return to the U.S. or their home country. We recognize students may be concerned about the ability to book an immediate flight. Know that travel from Australia and New Zealand to the U.S. is not suspended at this time. However, we urge students to make plans to leave their host country as soon as possible and no later than March 23rd, as flights are being reduced and additional border closures may be implemented with little to no warning.
Arcadia is available to support students in making their travel arrangements as well as any students who are unable to leave in the immediate coming days. As we are suspending on-site programming, there is no ability to remain in Australia and New Zealand as a program participant. Arcadia’s on-site support, housing, and insurance will cease when the on-site program suspension is complete.
The College will work with our in-country host institution partners to advocate that all due consideration be given to study abroad students for completion of their coursework. We will be in touch as we learn more about the institutional plans of our Australia and New Zealand partners to provide study abroad students pathways for course completion. In the meantime, The College is actively posting our most up-to-date information from our partner institutions on our Coronavirus FAQ. For Sydney students pursuing an internship with The College, directions regarding the on-line resumption of INPR 310, “Work in Thought and Action,” will be communicated once Arcadia in-country staff and faculty are able to return to their normal duties.
Once students have made travel arrangements, we ask that they share flight information as they have been instructed. Flight details must be submitted no later than Thursday March 19th. Arcadia will credit student accounts with up to $500 reimbursement for the cost of changing existing return flights or booking a new flight home. More details will be shared on the process to request reimbursement. If you require any assistance in booking a flight, please contact Assistant Director of Health, Safety, and Security Hannah Leidich at email@example.com.
We are aware that this is a very significant disruption and recognize how unsettling and disappointing it is for students to have to leave their host country so abruptly during an experience for which they no doubt prepared long and hard on many fronts – personally, academically, financially, and logistically. The Arcadia staff abroad and in the U.S. remain dedicated to supporting students and their families as best we can during this challenging time. Please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions on our website for more information. We encourage students to contact resident staff in-country for questions and support.