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Updates Regarding Fall 2020 Study Abroad

Information from Education Abroad

April 6, 2020 11:16 AM

We're glad that you have expressed an interest in or have already started the process to study abroad. Given the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, we anticipate that you may have questions about upcoming study abroad experiences and want to give you as much information as possible so you can plan accordingly. Currently, review of study abroad applications for Fall 2020 is on hold as we continue to assess the situation caused by COVID-19.We plan to  make a decision in the next few weeks. In the meantime, we are happy to answer any questions to the best of our ability but we encourage you to weigh your options and make the best decision you can for yourself given the information you have now. We have attempted to answer some of the commonly raised questions below:


Can I defer my study abroad to a future term?
Yes. If you would like to defer your study abroad to a future term, please send an email to educationabroad@umbc.edu so we can update your information in our application portal. Don't forget to tell us which term you would like to go. Starting in August, we intend to start accepting applications for Winter 2021 and Spring 2021.

I no longer want to study abroad during my time at UMBC. How do I withdraw my application?
If you are no longer interested in studying abroad, please let us know by sending an email to educationabroad@umbc.edu so we can update your information in the application portal. If you have applied to an affiliated partner, please be sure to notify them as well and follow their processes for withdrawing your application.

Can I start a new application for Fall 2020 study abroad?
Given the global pandemic, we have temporarily suspended new applications and payment of application fees related to Fall 2020 study abroad.

If I have already started an application for study abroad in the fall or my application is pending review, will my application be processed?
Application processing for Fall 2020 is currently on hold. If you have already applied to an affiliated partner program, you can contact the provider to check on the status of your application. Please be sure to ask about their refund policy should your program not be able to proceed.

If my application has already been approved in the application portal should I move forward with the next steps in the process?
We recommend holding off on the next steps in the process for now. Given that many of our partner institutions and affiliate providers are still assisting spring students at this time, consulates around the world are suspending visa services, and travel restrictions are preventing free movement globally, we feel this is the appropriate approach.  

What if the deadlines for next steps are coming up?

Since Fall 2020 study abroad is currently on hold, UMBC is unable to make nominations for student placements at this time. All applicants will be notified when and if this situation changes. Unfortunately, some partners and affiliates may not accept late nominations. Students should consider backup options in case their first choice is no longer available.

What if my study abroad program is suspended for the fall?
If your Fall 2020 study abroad program is suspended, you will receive a refund of your UMBC application fee (if already paid). If you have applied to an affiliated partner program, we recommend checking with the provider now to find out what their refund policies are in case of program cancellation or the suspension of study abroad by UMBC for the fall. UMBC is not able to refund fees paid to affiliated partner organizations.

Please be advised that UMBC has an international travel policy that prohibits student travel to any location that has a Department of State Travel Advisory of 3 or 4 or a CDC Travel Advisory of 3. At this time, these advisories apply to every country.

What if my program requires a deposit? 

We do not recommend that you move forward with a program deposit unless it is refundable. Be sure to check with your program to determine if and under which conditions it is refundable.

Should I register for UMBC courses for the fall semester?
Yes. We recommend all students enroll in regular courses through UMBC for Fall 2020 just in case. Your UMBC courses can be dropped from your schedule later if you are able to proceed with your study abroad plans.

Should I register for housing for the fall?
Yes, if you are eligible for UMBC housing. You can be released from University housing later if you are able to move forward with your study abroad plans.

Where can I find more information?
Our office will email you if anything changes pertaining to study abroad for the Fall 2020 semester. Continue to check your email regularly for communication from the University and visit UMBC's dedicated webpage for COVID-19 for the most up-to-date information at https://covid19.umbc.edu/

We thank you for your patience and understanding during this unprecedented time. Please keep in mind that decisions are being made with the safety of our students as our top priority and with the best information available at the time.

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