BREAKING: AU cancels all fall study abroad programs

Spring 2021 abroad plans still moving forward

BREAKING: AU cancels all fall study abroad programs

The AU Abroad office in 2017. 

All study abroad programs this fall are canceled due to the coronavirus, AU Abroad Executive Director Sara Dumont wrote in an email to students planning to study abroad on Friday.

“We understand that this news will be disappointing and that studying abroad was likely a major factor in your decision to come to AU,” Dumont wrote. “This decision was not taken lightly and was largely influenced by current travel restrictions and the uncertainty of cross-border mobility.”

Dumont said the University still intends on moving forward with abroad programs for Spring 2021. Deposits made for the fall can either be refunded or transfered to the spring semester, she added.

In an interview, Dumont said she does not think that a large number of deferments to the spring will affect the competitiveness of certain programs. She said she does not anticipate any serious capacity issues in the spring as many programs do not reach their full capacity in normal circumstances.

Students who were planning on studying abroad were instructed to also register for classes at AU for the fall due to the uncertain circumstances, Dumont said. 

AU Premier Centers in Brussels, Madrid and Nairobi will move their classes online, to be taught by on-site faculty. Students will be able to enroll in these classes and participate in virtual internships abroad. 

“If those who can’t study abroad this semester would still like some international flavor to their studies, all of those courses — and there’s quite a large number of interesting courses — are now available or will be soon in the system,” Dumont told The Eagle.

AU canceled all spring abroad programs in March as the pandemic swept across the world, forcing countries to close their borders and limiting travel back to the United States. The decision led to chaos as students struggled to get home. 

The University plans to announce more details about the fall semester sometime in mid-June. 

This is a developing story. It will be updated as more information becomes available.

kcarolan@theeagleonline.com, dpapscun@theeagleonline.com, frahman@theeagleonline.com 

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