Students will not be allowed to study abroad in the spring due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Under normal circumstances, students would be preparing to study abroad. However, the unpredictability of entry and exit requirements for foreign countries made it unfeasible amid the pandemic, according to an email sent to students Wednesday from Sheila Williams on behalf of the Center for International Studies.
“Country-specific entry and exit requirements have been unpredictable,” said Dr. Sandra Callaghan, the Director of the Center for International Studies. “We believe that suspending programs is in the best interest of our students both for health and safety reasons but also to allow our students to have certainty as they plan for the spring semester.”
TCU offers over 250 programs in 54 countries around the world, giving students a vast selection of unique international opportunities.
The decision to suspend study abroad activities came based on advice from TCU’s security analysis team at On Call International. The information and guidelines provided by organizations such as the WHO, the CDC, the U.S. State Department and the Overseas Security Advisory Council were factored in.
While there is hope that TCU will be able to begin offering abroad programs for the summer 2021 semester, leaders of the abroad program suggest it is a cautious optimism.
Students who were planning on being able to study abroad were saddened by the change of plans.
Junior finance major Freddie Gibbs had planned on studying abroad in the spring semester before the announcement was made.
“I was planning on studying in Europe for my spring semester and the news is definitely disappointing,” said Gibbs. “Hopefully, they can organize a plan to make sure it is an option after next May.”
Callaghan said scholarships will still be available for future study abroad opportunities.
“TCU has a long history of strong financial support for Study Abroad,” Callaghan szid. “TCU will continue to support both need-based and non-need-based study abroad scholarships. More details will be available as we develop a unique portfolio for Maymester and Summer.”
Students can stay up to date for more details on scholarship opportunities by checking the Center for International Studies website beginning in late October.