Online Resource Provides Latest Updates on Student Travel Impacted by Coronavirus

The University of Arkansas is now providing an online resource to help students and their parents stay updated with the latest impacts to international travel as the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) continues worldwide. The Coronavirus Updates webpage, hosted by the Office of Study Abroad, will be updated in order to provide current, relevant information and resources for students currently traveling abroad or considering future international travel.

"The health and well-being of our students traveling abroad is always a concern particularly as the COVID-19 virus continues to spread,” said Chancellor Joe Steinmetz. “The escalating situation is concerning as we have more than 150 students around the globe, with 100 students studying at the Rome Center. We are closely monitoring the situation everywhere we have students currently studying abroad or planning to do so in the near future. We have contingency plans for what could come next, including the potential of suspending some of our programs."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that Italy is experiencing “sustained community spread” of the disease, with the highest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases among the European nations.

While the University of Arkansas Rome Center remains fully functioning, the administration on site has postponed school travel and local excursions through March 1 at the recommendation of the Italian Foreign Ministry. All other aspects of the Rome Center are currently operating as usual. The Rome Center’s faculty and staff are providing resources to support student health and safety.

The U.S. State Department updated the travel advisory for Italy on Wednesday, Feb. 26, stating, “At this time, CDC does not recommend canceling or postponing travel to Italy.

University officials continue to monitor the CDC and U.S. State Department travel advisory levels and other factors in the university’s contingency plans to ensure the safety of our students.

Each academic year, more than one thousand University of Arkansas students participate in Study Abroad or International Exchange through the Graduate School and International Education. Students are located in more than 50 countries, some of which are experiencing outbreaks of COVID-19, the disease associated with novel coronavirus.

In addition to the Coronavirus Updates online resource focused on international travel, the Pat Walker Health Center is providing important information about the virus itself including how it’s transmitted, symptoms and guidance regarding prevention.

Contacts

Amy Unruh, director of communications
Graduate School and International Education
479-575-5809, unruh@uark.edu

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