Study Abroad in High Risk Locations

The quality of the educational experiences and the health, safety, and security of students, faculty, and staff are the first priorities of the University of Kansas.  Due to concerns for student and employee health and safety, the University of Kansas does not support student participation in university-affiliated international activities or the development and administration of formal education abroad programming (to include all international, for-credit and non-credit experiential learning activities) to locations categorized as Level 3: Reconsider Travel or Level 4: Do Not Travel by the U.S. Department of State or classified as Warning Level 3: Avoid Non-Essential Travel by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  Students will not receive university sponsorship —including credit for academic programs, financial aid and scholarships, funding for research, or endorsement of co-curricular and extracurricular activities — if traveling to these countries.

The classification level applied to each country can be accessed at the U.S. Department of State website.  Information on Level 3 or Level 4 regional designations within a country is available by reading the country-specific advisory.  A list of countries under a Warning Level 3 health advisory can be accessed at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.  These lists are updated regularly.

Exceptions to this policy will be considered by petition to the International Travel Review Committee (ITRC), a standing committee of faculty and administrative personnel that meets three or more times each year to consider proposals for KU-sponsorship of international activities in countries, regions, or specific locations given a Level 3 or Level 4 designation by the U.S. Department of State or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  Approval by the ITRC is contingent upon submission of a written description of the proposed international activities, a detailed risk assessment and management plan, and the finding of a compelling academic rationale for the proposed international activities to take place.   All persons who travel under an exception to this policy will be required to sign an Assumption of Risk and General Waiver and Release form, as a condition of the travel. 

Additional information on the petition process is available here.

Please note that all students interested in pursuing education abroad activities in a location where a U.S. State Department Travel Advisory Level 3 or Level 4 has been issued are required to meet with a Study Abroad Program Coordinator prior to beginning the petition process.

Visit the KU Policy Library for more information regarding the Travel to High Risk Locations Policy.


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9th among public universities in the country for high quality, low cost study abroad programs — U.S. News & World Report
Longest-running exchange program in Western Hemisphere (begun in 1958) between KU and University of Costa Rica
18th in the nation among public universities for undergraduate participation in study abroad — Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange
28.1% of KU undergraduate students study abroad prior to graduation.
KU students who study abroad graduate in four years at twice the rate of students who do not study abroad
More than 160 study abroad programs in 75 countries, with instruction in all disciplines and 20+ languages
Students can study abroad for an academic year, semester, summer, spring break, or winter break
Programs include international study, internships, service, and research opportunities
Students participating in semester, academic year, and select summer programs fulfill Goal 4.2 of the KU Core curriculum
Students can fulfill major, minor, certificate, elective, and KU Core curriculum requirements abroad
Programs are available for students in every major at KU
Financial aid is applicable to study abroad programs, and most KU scholarships and grants can be applied to study abroad
Study Abroad & Global Engagement and many academic departments offer scholarships to qualified KU students
By studying abroad, students gain a global perspective on the world and strengthen their career opportunities
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times