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Message Sent To:All Faculty, All Staff, All Students
Message From:Message from the Office of the Provost
Date Sent:Wednesday, April 14, 2021 04:05 PM CDT

Study Abroad Plans for Fall 2021

April 14, 2021

Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff,

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Office of Global and Community Engagement has carefully monitored the evolving global health situation to determine if our study abroad programs can be offered safely.

After careful deliberation and the input of Loyola University Chicago leadership and study abroad task forces, Loyola has reached three decisions on study abroad. Our plans are to:

  • Reopen the John Felice Rome Center (JFRC) for the fall 2021 semester.
  • Continue to suspend study abroad at the Loyola Vietnam Center (LVC) for the fall 2021 semester.
  • Continue to suspend Loyola student participation in all other study abroad activities and programs administered by any other university or study abroad organization through the end of the fall 2021 semester.

We know that some students will be disappointed with the decision to continue the current suspension of the study abroad programs referenced above. These decisions were based on the most recent available data, the best forecasts for the fall, and what is legally allowed and medically advisable (L.A.M.A.). For more on these decisions, please read the summaries below or see the full rationale on the Study Abroad website.

John Felice Rome Center (JFRC)
We are confident that JFRC students can have a meaningful and impactful experience in Rome this fall. To ensure the health and safety of the JFRC campus and the surrounding communities in Rome, our plans include:

  • Requiring all students to be fully vaccinated at least two weeks before arriving in Rome.
  • Requiring students, faculty, and staff to participate in weekly COVID-19 testing provided at the JFRC.
  • Providing only single-occupancy campus housing.
  • Enforcing all Italian protocols and guidelines related to international travel, quarantine, COVID-19 testing, tracing, social distancing, and the use of face coverings and masks.

The Loyola community will be informed on or before June 15, 2021, of our definitive plans for reopening the campus. Students are encouraged to plan for a fall 2021 semester abroad at the JFRC and to also make back-up plans in Chicago in case they are not permitted to travel to Italy in September.

Loyola Vietnam Center (LVC)
We have made the difficult decision to suspend study abroad at the LVC during fall 2021 due to the complexities of creating and maintaining a safe environment for students. Among our considerations: our Vietnamese partners’ concerns regarding local health conditions, the current travel restrictions in Vietnam, uncertainty over the resumption of student visa issuance, lack of official information on COVID-19 vaccination plans, and forecasted public health disparities in vaccination rates between the U.S. and Vietnam this coming fall.

Students who have been accepted into the fall 2021 LVC study abroad program will be offered priority admission into the spring 2022 or fall 2022 programs, if they wish to reapply. We expect to be able to reopen the LVC for the spring 2022 semester.

All Other Study Abroad Programs
The decision to suspend Loyola student participation in all other study abroad activities and programs administered by any other university or study abroad organization through the end of the fall 2021 semester was informed by several factors. Most important were Loyola’s heightened concern for student safety and wellbeing, government travel advisories issued by the U.S. Department of State and CDC, and health disparities in countries with limited access to the COVID-19 vaccine.

We look forward to reinstating study abroad options as soon as it is prudent to do so. We especially hope that health conditions will allow for the operation of Loyola faculty-led study abroad programs during the 2022 J–Term and spring 2022 semester.

Please send any questions to COVID-19support@LUC.edu.

Together in Loyola,

D. Scott Hendrickson, SJ, DPhil
Associate Provost for Global and Community Engagement