International study abroad programs at BYU are now canceled for the upcoming Summer Term because of COVID-19 travel restrictions.
International Study Programs director Lynn Elliott said while U.S. government travel limitations have some effect on the decision to cancel, “the bigger challenge is many of the places we send our study abroads to aren’t keen on having large groups of Americans come in right now.”
Elliott said they decided to cancel the summer programs because it is unknown when these travel restrictions in different countries will be lifted. “We felt like now was a better time to cancel. We couldn’t see how it could get better enough, soon enough that it would justify waiting.”
However, Elliott said they are “really optimistic” Fall Semester programs will be able to continue as planned.
Students currently enrolled in summer study abroad programs will receive an email on or after Feb. 23 detailing the cancellation of their programs. Because the university decided to cancel, Elliott said students enrolled will be refunded all payments they have made for their study abroad programs.
The Kennedy Center has already started working on refunding students, but Elliott said it could take up to a month for all refunds to be completed.
An official university announcement is pending.