COVID-19 & Education Abroad
Education Abroad and international travel are high impact experiences that contribute to students’ academic, career and life success. Like many opportunities for growth and development, international travel is not without certain risks. To support maximum exposure to international experiences while minimizing risks, UNH instituted the University's International Travel Policy to promote students’ health and safety abroad and provide resources to help international travelers.
The UNH International Travel Policy has three core components:
All students participating on UNH activities abroad must register their international trip and provide emergency contacts. This facilitates emergency communication and support and provides extensive travel information and tools. The registry is integrated with UNH’s international travel assistance provider and will email and text students when a Security Special Advisory alert is issued.
The Assistance App is an essential tool of the system. It makes it easier to plan for safer travel, see relevant alerts, and connect with a 24/7 Assistance Center.
Provides emergency travel assistance services and travelers health insurance. If students experience a medical emergency or security/natural disaster crisis, need a medical referral, lose medication, or want to consult experts for pre-travel advice, UNH has a fully integrated program in place to ensure students receive expert care that is insured by a comprehensive travelers health program.
UNH policy prohibits student travel and activities in countries and areas that the U.S. Department of State rates as Level 3: Reconsider Travel or Level 4: Do Not Travel. The International Travel Risk Review Committee evaluates education abroad activities, reviews petitions for prior approval, and decides whether to suspend international activities.
Study abroad students on UNH Managed, Exchange and Approved Programs—programs that have been reviewed and vetted—participate in pre-departure orientation meetings that includes detailed health and safety information. Furthermore, all UNH students traveling abroad on University-related activities (study abroad as well as work and research experiences) must complete a series of professionally developed, student-specific, health, safety, and security eLearning modules. This Training Hub has a variety of other topical modules that students may access and review.
Students’ health and safety is multifaceted and a shared responsibility among students, their families, the program provider, UNH, and in-country service providers. UNH, for its part, has a provided an array of services and tools to support student safety. Ultimately, though, students are the chief executives of their own lives and their own health and safety. With the agency that comes with travel, students are responsible for making good decisions—day, night, weekends and breaks—and utilizing the tools and technology at their fingertips.
Families and loved ones can review information on the Parents Page to learn more about how to support their students’ wellness abroad. We encourage you to read the Parent’s Guidebook there that contains information on everything from money matters to health and safety while abroad.
Below is a list of additional health and safety resources to help in planning an experience abroad.
- UNH Travel Clinic for travel health advice and reduced rates on many immunizations.
- Sexual Harassment and Rape Prevention Program (SHARPP)
- UNH Information Technology Security & Preparedness
- Department of State international travel information
- Department of State Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)
- U.S. State Department’s role in a crisis
- Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Travelers’ Health
- The Travel Safety Reference Guide published by the U.S State Department Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) provides comprehensive and easy checklists and information about a variety of travelers issues.
- FBI Safety and Security for U.S. Students Traveling Abroad brochure
- Safety Abroad First Educational Travel Information (SAFETI)
- World Health Organization (WHO) is the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations system and provides country-specific health information and resources for international travel and health.