Study Abroad Program still to set sail


Members of the Study Abroad program prepare to enjoy Costa Rican cuisine.

The International Initiatives Office has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, undergoing new safety measures in order to provide overseas education. 

Despite new limitations, International Initiatives managed to plan 12 Study Abroad programs for the summer of 2022.  

According to Dr. Lucia Harrison, professor of Spanish and Italian and the director of International Initiatives, making the transition has not been easy. 

“For two years, we were not able to go anywhere, and we had to cancel the programs. Our programs for 2020 were canceled, and we tried to plan for 2021, but those were canceled as well. Now, we’re planning for 2022, and for the very first time we are offering a January program in Costa Rica,” Harrison said. 

The Business in Costa Rica program for the winter ran from Jan. 3-13, while the summer program will run from May 14-24.  

Programs include Business in Panama, Communication and Theater in London, Environmental Sociology in Yosemite National Park, French Language and Culture in France, Healthcare Issues in London, History and Political Science in Rome, History in Peru, Spanish Language and Culture in Spain, Technology in the United Kingdom and Tropical Ecology in Costa Rica.  

Limitations on the current programs include mandatory vaccinations for participants, as well as a consolation fee in case a student tests positive. Individual countries also have their own requirements regarding international travel.  

“Some countries require testing before going on a flight, as well as testing before you come back. Each country has different fees for testing; it goes from $15 to $75; it all depends on the country,” Harrison stated. 

The previous scholarships associated with the Study Abroad program are still available for students.  

“We hope to be keeping all of the scholarships that we used to have. Unfortunately, however, we used to have a lot of scholarship funds from SGA and this time, it has reduced immensely,” Harrison explained.  

Regarding the omicron variant, the department plans on following the guidelines laid out by the campus, as well as the country’s guidelines. The department also works with partners from other countries to keep updated on changes.  

The trip schedule for 2022 is as follows:

Business in Panama is scheduled for May 14-24; Communication and Theatre in London is scheduled for July 13-27; Environmental Sociology in Yosemite National Park is scheduled for May 30-June 15; French Language and Culture in France is scheduled for July 9-26; Healthcare Issues in London is scheduled for May 20-26; History and Political Science in Rome is scheduled for Jun 8-23; History in Peru is scheduled for May 17-June 12; Spanish Language and Culture in Spain is scheduled for July 2-30; Technology in the United Kingdom is scheduled for May 23-June 1; Tropical Ecology in Costa Rica is scheduled for May 18-24. 

Any additional information involving program dates, scholarship opportunities, faculty members and costs can be found at the International Initiatives Office website