Spring Term study abroad programs canceled, still open for summer and fall

A student participates in a study abroad in the Netherlands on Oct. 23, 2018. BYU recently announced spring study abroad programs were canceled. (Aislynn Edwards/BYU Photo)

BYU study abroad programs through the Kennedy Center have been canceled for spring term but are still currently open for summer and fall.

A Dec. 4 email sent to students signed up for study abroad programs said the university would be canceling the programs and refund any payments made to International Study Programs.

“We hope you consider participating in BYU’s future programs abroad this 2021 in Summer Term or Fall Semester,” the email says.

Refunds only apply to students who are currently accepted to a spring study abroad program, not to students who have canceled prior to Nov. 30, 2020, according to an email from the Kennedy Center sent to study abroad program directors.

The email also says BYU does not refund students for flights unless they were included in the study abroad program fees.

Director of International Study Programs Lynn Elliott said though spring programs are canceled, the Kennedy Center is “cautiously optimistic” about sending students abroad in the summer, depending on the number of COVID-19 cases and the development of the COVID-19 vaccination.

He encouraged students to sign up for summer programs if they are interested, because they will be refunded if the programs don’t go through. He also said that because of experiential learning grants approved by BYU President Kevin J Worthen, there is more money available for students to go abroad than in previous years.

For fall study abroad programs, Elliott said the prospects look even better, even if some activities abroad are limited.

“We may not have as much freedom as we had before the pandemic, but I feel really good that by fall, things will be such that it will be worth students’ time and money to actually go on programs,” he said.

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