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General GO and COVID-19 FAQ

GO Information Regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19)

How is Susquehanna monitoring the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) situation worldwide?
A team of university officials, including members of the GO office, is meeting regularly to discuss the outbreak of the respiratory illness COVID-19. To assess risks related to study abroad travel, the university uses a number of resources, including governmental agencies, news reports, reports from international security provider, professional health and security organizations, and more. 
 
How does Susquehanna make decisions about its study abroad programs? 
As part of normal protocol, we continuously review information from the U.S. State Department, Center for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), Risk Management and Security Advisors, news accounts, and our local partners in all countries where our students travel. GO staff receives real-time updates regarding health and safety within the countries where we send students. We also are in at least weekly contact with our in-country partners.
 
What are “advisory levels”? (include list of current)
The US State Department issues international travel advisories. Travel Advisories apply up to four standard levels of advice, describe the risks, and provide clear actions U.S. citizens should take to help ensure their safety.
Level 1 - Exercise Normal Precautions: This is the lowest advisory level for safety and security risk.
Level 2 - Exercise Increased Caution: Be aware of heightened risks to safety and security.
Level 3 - Reconsider Travel: Avoid travel due to serious risks to safety and security.
Level 4 – Do Not Travel: This is the highest advisory level due to greater likelihood of life-threatening risks.

Consistent with University policy, regardless of the basis for the restriction, university-related travel is not permitted to areas with U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs Level 3 or 4 Travel Advisories.

To see a complete list of Travel Advisories for every country in the world, see Travel Advisories.  

What changes has Susquehanna made to GO programs due to COVID-19? 
On March 2, 2020, SU had suspended all university-related student travel to China, South Korea, and Italy until further notice, as have most US higher education institutions. These three countries are listed at a Travel Advisory Level 3 or 4 from both the State Department and CDC due to COVID-19.

On March 12, 2020, SU made the recommendation to all students to return home due to the increased Travel Advisory globally. 
 
How can I stay healthy while I travel home? 
Everyone should take the following routine precautions, as outlined by the CDC:
  • Avoid contact with sick people.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Clean your hands often by washing them with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially if visibly dirty, or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60%–95% alcohol.
  • It is especially important to clean hands after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose. 
What would happen if a GO program was suspended? 
For current GO Long:
We work closely with our academic partners who provide study abroad programs with the goal of mitigating potential impacts on students’ academic progress. For information on a specific program, email the GO Office at goprogram@susqu.edu.
 
Will I get a refund for my Spring 2020 GO Long program?
 
We do not anticipate any refunds for GO Long tuition, since students will be given the opportunity to complete courses remotely. For instructions on your remote course completion, please contact your host university.
 
Many of the GO Long providers we work with have stated that they are unable to refund their room fees for the semester.  Because the GO experience is such an important part of the Susquehanna education, we have decided to step in and refund, on a prorated basis, room fees already paid for the unused portion of the semester.  These refunds will be posted as a credit on student Susquehanna accounts as soon as possible. 
 
Many airlines waived change fees for new return dates, but still charged a higher airfare.  If your airline charged for flight changes Susquehanna will reimburse you up to $500 for higher airfares not already covered by providers, with a receipt. Please submit the receipt to goprogram@susqu.edu
 
For upcoming travel (Summer 2020 and Fall 2020): 
Check out our FAQ specific for Summer GO Short 2020, Summer GO Your Way 2020, and Fall 2020

If a student chooses to leave a GO Long program that has not been suspended, could academic credit be affected? 
SU understands that personal tolerance for risk may vary, and that final decisions will be made between a student and their family. If students choose to leave a program and return home, we respect that decision. Students should contact the GO Office for coordination assistance as soon as a decision has been made, and we would recommend they notify their academic adviser of their choice as well. We will work with our partners to try to support the student’s completion of their work with that program, but awarding of academic credit will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis and is not guaranteed.
 
Does Susquehanna have any recommendations for students traveling independently while on a GO Long program? 
We strongly recommend that everyone reconsider even personal travel to any country with an advisory Level 3 or 4. Students should register their travel with the State Department which would enroll them in updates to the advisory levels in addition to visiting the State Department and CDC websites.

Students who are traveling home should, in addition to taking recommended measures to prevent illness, take basic precautions to prepare for potential travel disruptions

Who will GO contact with updates? 
The GO office will directly contact students with updates. This includes students who are currently abroad this spring 2020; students who are committed to a GO Short or GO Your Way summer 2020 program; and students who are committed to a GO Long fall 2020 program. 
 
Who can I contact about GO and the coronavirus situation? 
Please contact the GO office at goprogram@susqu.edu with questions.

Return to the main GO Response to COVID-19 page

Last updated: 3/13/2020