International travel has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the Middlebury Schools Abroad have been interrupted since spring 2020. We are making decisions about reopening on a case-by-case basis, with the understanding that the number of cases, response, and infrastructure is different in each of the locations where we have programs. The Middlebury Schools Abroad staff have been monitoring the circumstances on the ground and, in many cases, redesigning program models to safely deliver academic experiences in the fall 2021 semester.
Please use this guide to view Middlebury’s policies and protocols, as well as the program-specific changes and expectations for this semester.
General Schools Abroad Policies
These apply to all of the Schools Abroad in operation. Please note that policies are subject to change.
Because of the uncertainty around COVID-19, the withdrawal fee is waived for fall 2021 semester. Students who withdraw after committing, may still be subject to non-recoverable expenses.
All of our Schools Abroad students will be required to sign a Health Pledge as a part of their participation in our programs next semester. The pledge includes provisions such as agreeing to receive the flu vaccine (unless there are documented religious or medical exemptions), complying will all local, in-country guidelines surrounding health and safety protocols, performing daily health checks and maintaining a contact tracing journal, not traveling outside of the host country for the duration of the program, and that violation of any part of the pledge may result in immediate removal from the program.
Middlebury will require students studying at a Middlebury School Abroad in the Fall of 2021 to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination to their application portal.
Testing and Contact Tracing
Middlebury will not require ongoing testing for students throughout the semester. If local authorities and/or host universities require this, students will need to abide. Students will be required to do daily health checks. This will be implemented as a “by virtue of showing up to the center/class, I have done a health check, and have no COVID symptoms.” Students will be strongly encouraged to maintain a contact journal, including timeframes, locations, and individual (if known).
Students are responsible for all expenses related to quarantine (hotel, food delivery, taxis), testing, and unplanned departure. Please see country-specific information in the links below to find estimated expenses.
Our health insurance plan (GeoBlue) will cover symptomatic testing while abroad.
Asymptomatic testing is covered when prescribed by a physician, ordered by a local authority due to contact tracing, or after coming into contact with a positive COVID-19 person or environment. Testing must be medically necessary, performed in order to diagnose, and consistent with the CDC guidance.
In most countries, a doctor’s prescription is still needed when a patient is symptomatic in order to receive the actual test and the student would need to follow any local health authority protocols. Any required COVID testing for travel to a country would not be covered under the GeoBlue plan as it is deemed preventative and not medically necessary.
The GeoBlue medical plan would also cover any medical costs associated with someone becoming ill or injured and being quarantined in a hospital/medical setting for a diagnosed illness/injury. It would not cover preventative self-quarantine in a hotel or any other location and the related expenses like meals etc.
Traveling During the Semester
International travel is strongly discouraged and may be prohibited by the local government or your program depending on the destination. In-country travel will likely be limited; see program-specific information below.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q How do we make decisions regarding suspension of in-country activities of Middlebury Schools Abroad?
International Programs at Middlebury constantly reviews safety conditions and risk levels around the world. We rely on the Center for Disease Control, the U.S. Department of State, our on-site staff abroad, partner universities, and security advisors to inform our decisions. We take into account factors such as the following when considering whether a given School Abroad is to remain open:
- U.S. Department of State advisory levels
- CDC travel notice levels
- Recommendations from the World Health Organization and local medical advice
- Local government travel restrictions
- Schools Abroad staff and faculty capacity
- The number of confirmed cases in the host country, or especially host city
- Status of university partners (are the campuses classrooms, residences, and services open)
- Medical resources in host country, and especially host cities
- Airlines limiting service to/from our host cities
- Local transportation being reduced or limited
To defer your application, work with the our program advisor to switch to the Spring 2022 application cycle. If you are a student from a college or university other than Middlebury, we will need a confirmation from your study abroad office that you are approved to study abroad with Middlebury in the spring.
We do not charge a deposit and have not processed bills for the spring semester, so no payments have been made that need to be reimbursed other than the application fee. To request reimbursement for this fee (non-Middlebury students only), please get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.