The situation and the policies outlined here are subject to change, so please return to this page for updates as we approach the start of the semester. Students will be given detailed information and instructions in their correspondence with Middlebury prior to departure and upon arrival in Japan.

Current Situation in Japan

  • CDC Level: 4
  • Department of State Advisory Level: 4
  • Entry Restrictions: Japan’s borders are closed at least through February 28, 2022 to all international travelers. People who hold Japanese citizenship may enter the country and must quarantine for 14 days. There will be different procedures to follow depending on which part of the US travelers are coming from. If they are coming from California, Illinois, Texas, New York, Hawaii, Florida, Massachusetts, they need to stay at a designated hotel by the government for 6 days and then move to another hotel or relative’s house for the next 8 days. If they are coming from other states, the stay is 3 days at a designated hotel and then they can move to another hotel from the 4th day to 14th day.

For up-to-date information, please see the U.S. Embassy site.

Program Changes

  • Students will have limited opportunities to participate in events and activities to meet local people outside the campus, or to volunteer at local organizations. We will be rethinking the way students complete their volunteering requirements for the Community Engagement course.
  • Program excursions and field trips will be cancelled if the government issues restrictions on out-of-state travel.

Program-Specific Protocols


  • Pre-arrival:
    • Daily temperature check is required for 14-days prior to the departure.

    • Students must obtain a certificate of pre-entry test result in the country/region of departure no more than 72 hours before departure (from the sampling time). The certificate form can be downloaded here

    • Students must obtain the three applications prior to the arrival, and keep the record for 14 days after their arrival: LINE, COVID-19 contact tracing and map applications.

    • Students must submit “Written Pledge (Foreign nationals/ Residence track)” (copy) and “Questionnaire” to the airport quarantine office.

      Documents and details regarding applications can be found at Ministry of foreign affairs in Japan webpage .

  • All who arrive in Japan are required to take a test, and there is no need to make prior arrangements. They will be asked to wait for a few hours in the airport until the results become available.
  • Currently, the Japanese government requires all who arrive from foreign countries to self-quarantine for two weeks. Assuming this continues to be the case, we would like all students to arrive on the same day, and stay at a hotel arranged by the program staff. A free shuttle will take students (who have tested negative) to the hotel.  Anyone who tests positive must quarantine at a hotel closer to the airport.
  • Quarantined individuals are asked to minimize contact with others, but they are allowed to go out to pick-up food and other necessary supplies.
  • We plan to start arrival orientation on-line, so students will be in touch with program staff on a daily basis, except during weekends. Following orientation, students will begin their two program courses remotely.  We will make arrangements for students to travel from the hotel to the campus as a group.

Host University

  • At ICU, spaces in the dining halls and libraries have been reconfigured with fewer chairs and tables to accommodate more personal space between students.
  • There will be some restrictions on the amount of time students may spend in common spaces. The dining facilities are open during the day but not in the evenings, for example.


  • Students are responsible for keeping their own rooms clean/disinfected, but supplies will be available in the common space of their resident halls for use.


  • International travel will not be permitted during the semester.
  • It is most likely that traveling will continue to be allowed within the country, and we will encourage students to follow both the government and university guidelines.

Frequently Asked Questions


Once students begin the program in Japan, if ICU were to pivot to remote learning, necessary arrangements would be made by each faculty member to ensure everyone is able to complete the academic work remotely with both synchronous and asynchronous assignments. This applies to both direct enrollment courses as well as courses taught by Middlebury School in Japan staff. The practicum component of the Community Engagement course will need to be modified significantly to reduce the risk of coming into physical contact with people in the city; students will have an option to write a research paper in language to replace the practicum.


Students should budget $1,400 for their share of the mandatory (Japanese government) two-week quarantine for food and a portion of their lodging expenses.


Students will work with the dormitory parents/caretakers, who are all staff members of our host university. They are designated as the first contact for those who live on campus. They will make arrangements for students to be tested and also decide whether it is necessary to move to an “isolation room.”


Students experiencing symptoms will first go to the ICU Health Clinic on campus, where they will be able to receive a referral to a general practicioner.  That doctor who may refer them to the appropriate government offices. As the below website explains, the pick-up will be arranged by the Mitaka-city officials and students will then moved to the “isolation” floor of a designated dormitory.

If a student needs to be hospitalized, they will need to follow the instructions given by the city officials. Visitors are not allowed at hospitals, but staff will arrange for delivery of necessary items, such as change of clothes, etc. Meals will be provided by the hospital.


No. As is the case in the US, not all individuals are required to be vaccinated. The host country might not be as far along in the vaccination rollout process, so it is possible that roommates, faculty, etc. will not yet have had access to a vaccine.