SLU Students Petition to Go Abroad

If you wanted to study anywhere besides SLU Madrid, expect a lot of extra work coming your way.

On Oct. 16, SLU students were told, via email, that SLU Madrid will be available to attend for next semester. 

With this announcement, students planning on attending programs other than SLU Madrid were left wondering what would happen. Normally, students that do not wish to attend SLU Madrid have several other options; they can choose from a variety of countries and schools to study at, including Italy, Germany, South Africa. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has introduced further concerns about the possibility of study abroad taking place at non-SLU Madrid campuses. 

SLU sophomore, Katie Fowler, had applied to study abroad at the Sant’Anna Institute in Sorrento, Italy for the Spring 2021 semester. She said that “the SLU study abroad program emailed saying that we had to petition to go to another school since they couldn’t control our actions like they can at SLU Madrid.”

This year, students who wish to study abroad in a country and school other than SLU Madrid must fill out a three page application that will then be submitted and reviewed by the SLU study abroad office.

One of the requirements for the application is an itinerary of the student’s plan when abroad. Students who apply must include “each trip objective, all travel destinations and related departure/arrival dates, all modes of transportation, and any other information that may assist the Committee with their review.”

Another question within the application regards the purpose of travel. Students who apply must “provide compelling reasons for the proposed travel to the region and, in particular, how it will impact the overall study or research plan of the program participants.”

Students must also research the region that they wish to travel to and learn about their protocols with regards to COVID-19. They must clearly “identify specific steps you will take to mitigate these risks, demonstrating that all known risks have been considered in a thoughtful and deliberate manner.”

The last part of the application looks at the communication going forward. Students who study abroad are encouraged to remain informed about current events, as well as, updates on COVID-19 in their intended region. Students are specifically required to communicate both back to the university and those back home. They also must provide contact information for the university to be able to reach out with any concerns about the state of the region, wherever that may be.

Students are to submit this application a minimum of six weeks before the intended travel, to “permit effective consultation with the International Travel Advisory Committee” and in order to be approved by SLU’s study abroad office. More information is available on The Office of International Services’ website or by contacting them directly at [email protected]