It is a pleasure to work with your student in preparation for their experience abroad. No matter if this is your student's first or tenth time abroad, you may have mixed feelings; please know you are not alone. Consider the adjustment your student made when they first arrived at Baylor, and now think of all the challenges they have already overcome. Study Abroad is similar but on a greater scale. There may be moments that will feel uncomfortable for your student. (In fact, this is an expected outcome of studying abroad).
Your student has entered into a selective admissions process for study abroad. Students must demonstrate that they have pro-actively thought through the academic components and other challenges of living in a unique foreign environment.
Please be aware student health, safety, and security are our top priorities:
- In an effort to ensure that every student is prepared for their time abroad, we require that students be enrolled in our blanket international insurance policy and attend a mandatory meeting where we discuss health and safety issues before they leave the country.
- During the application process, we encourage students to self-disclose any personal, medical, physical, and mental conditions which may affect their study abroad experience. Early disclosure ensures our ability to provide the most appropriate advice and counsel regarding program choice as well as enhancing our ability to provide appropriate support overseas. All information provided remains confidential and does not affect a student’s acceptance into a program. For more information, please see our Disability Accommodations Abroad page.
- Students are provided with emergency contact cards which include an emergency number that is monitored 24 hours a day so they can reach our staff at any time during or after office hours and on weekends. We also ask students to leave contact information and intended itineraries with our staff when they travel away from their program sites. This way, in the event of an emergency, our partners or directors know where and how to reach our students.
- Students, parents/guardians, and study abroad advisors can expect announcements about safety and security from Baylor should condition warrant such information. If you are a parent, please check with your student to find out if they listed you as an emergency contact on their application. If not, please ask them to contact their program director to add you to their file; that way, we can email you in the event that there is a special alert during the program.
Baylor University Medical and Travel Security Assistance
Baylor University has partnered with On Call International to provide you with a Global Assistance and Insurance Plan. On Call International responds to critical medical or safety emergencies and can also help you resolve non-critical day-to-day travel problems any time you are traveling internationally on Baylor University academic programs or business.
When students arrive overseas, our partner providers or faculty program directors provide a thorough orientation about the local culture which includes a review of the country- and program-related safety and security guidelines. We discuss culturally appropriate behaviors and explain how to contact local emergency services and give a breakdown of 911 equivalents. We also share relevant Department of State notices, alerts, and warnings and respond to students' questions and concerns.
Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC)
As part of our regular monitoring of circumstances and events that may affect the well-being of our students, Baylor is a member of the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) of the Department of State, a federal and private sector group established to share information and promote security cooperation between the United States government and private sector interests worldwide. The analysts at OSAC provide real-time security information and analysis as well as updates and background information on issues and developments throughout the world.
Travel to Countries with a Current U.S. Department of State Travel Warning or Travel Alert
The US Department of State issues travel warnings and travel alerts to provide safety and security information to Americans traveling internationally. A travel alert is issued when a traveler should be aware of a short-term event or circumstance. A travel warning is issued for locations where the State Department believes there is a continuing or longer-term circumstance that warrants a review of travel to the country or location at all.
The Center for Global Engagement administration reviews data and information from a variety of sources before approving travel to a location or country for which a travel warning or a travel alert has been issued. Questions about Baylor's policy can be addressed to the Director of Study Abroad, Dr. Bo White, at Bo_White@baylor.edu.
Students should register their travel with the U.S. Department of State as part of their SMART Traveler Program and are given the following link to do so: https://step.state.gov/