UCLA Study Abroad is closely monitoring conditions around the world as they relate to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. The health and safety of our students and the faculty leading our programs is always our top priority. Our staff is committed to your well-being and is here to support you.

Study abroad and COVID-19: FAQs

Please be aware, due to the fluid nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, information on this page may be updated or amended at any time. Answers posted below are accurate at the time of posting.

1. What does it mean when a program is suspended?

In the current COVID-19 timeframe, program suspension is our way of saying that the program has been temporarily cancelled for that term only.

For instance, if you have been notified that your specific Fall 2020 program has been suspended, this means that it will not be running for Fall 2020. Unfortunately, there is no chance that it will be reinstated at a later time for the same term.

2. Are Fall 2020 or Year 2020-21 UCEAP programs still running?

As of May 26th, 2020, all UCEAP Fall 2020 programs and the Fall portion of Year 2020-21 programs have been suspended. Impacted students have already been emailed by the UCEAP Systemwide Office and the UCLA IEO about this news.

3. Are Winter/Spring 2021 UCEAP programs still running?

At this time, Winter/Spring 2021 programs are still scheduled to run. Decisions on term-wide suspension of Winter/Spring 2021 programs would likely come sometime in late Summer or early Fall Quarter, when we have more up to date information about the COVID-19 situation. However, due to the unprecedented and fluid nature of the COVID-19 crisis, programs could be suspended at any time to keep our students safe. In the meantime, the IEO recommends Winter/Spring 2021 applicants consider back-up options both for study abroad plans and for Winter/Spring 2021 classes at UCLA. We also recommend students wait to purchase plane tickets until they have more program information. When a student does decide to purchase their airfare, we strongly urge them to purchase fully refundable airfare as it may offer some protection in the case of unexpected program changes or cancellations. UCEAP and the IEO will email all Winter/Spring 2021 applicants with any updates to their program as they become available.

4. Should I still apply to a Winter/Spring 2021 UCEAP program given all the uncertainty in the world?

This is a very personal decision and every student will have their own answer, however, we would encourage students to apply. There is little downside to applying if you’re at all interested in pursuing a study abroad opportunity in Winter/Spring 2021: there is no application fee, applications typically only take about 45 minutes to complete, and students typically can withdraw for any reason without charge up until November 1st, 2020, (at the earliest). As application deadlines are 6-9 months before programs begin, students may need to apply as early as May 2020. Planning ahead is necessary, however, the final decision to attend the program can be made many months later. UCEAP will continue to monitor the safety of our programs and if needed, programs may be suspended. This decision would likely come in late summer or early Fall Quarter. For this reason, we encourage students to consider a plan B to their Winter/Spring plans.

5. I’m concerned my study abroad program may be cancelled – can I submit a backup application?

Unfortunately, due to the fluid nature of which programs may or may not be suspended/cancelled, we cannot allow backup applications for COVID-19 reasons. If students are concerned about a certain location, we recommend they thoughtfully consider which one program to move forward with. If a program deadline has not passed, students may always request to cancel their first application in order to submit a replacement.  Please contact our office at info@ieo.ucla.edu if you have another reason you hoped to submit a backup application and we can address your individual situation.

6. I was accepted to a study abroad program that was suspended because of COVID-19 – will I be given priority to study abroad in the future?

Unfortunately, we cannot give priority to previously registered or accepted students. Students who wish to apply future study abroad programs will need to reapply and meet all eligibility requirements at that time.

7. Due to COVID-19 my study abroad plans have changed – can I study abroad after graduation?

This is a very common question, even unrelated to program cancellations! We understand your study abroad plans may have unexpectedly changed and you are considering other ways to experience study abroad during your time at UCLA. Students should discuss these academic plans with their academic advising unit (CAC, AAP, Honors, TFT, Engineering, etc.) as it is ultimately the College or School’s decision whether a student can extend their time at UCLA. While it’s not an uncommon plan for many UCLA students, whether or not it is possible will depend on the individual student’s situation. A few things to consider:

  1. While you can walk at commencement ceremonies and participate in the fun aspects of the celebration, you must remain a currently enrolled UCLA student to attend most study abroad programs. To do this, your expected graduation term should align with the end of your study abroad program, which your academic advising unit can explain in more detail.
  2. Students interested in using financial aid on a program following commencement should contact the UCLA Financial Aid Office to see what type of aid would be available to them and what action they need to take. Typically, these students will need to file FAFSA one more time.
8. I was registered for a Travel Study or Global Internship program when it was cancelled – when will I received a refund of my $300 deposit?

As of May 20, 2020 all refunds for Travel Study and Global Internships have been issued. If you have any questions or concerns please email info@ieo.ucla.edu.

Past COVID-19 Updates

3/20/2020 Update

All UCEAP summer 2020 programs have been suspended. For more information, visit UCEAP.

3/16/2020 Update

UCLA Study Abroad is open, but staff are working remotely until further notice. If you need assistance right away, please contact us at info@ieo.ucla.edu. We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience.

3/12/2020 Update

A number of challenges to studying abroad have emerged recently that impact our ability to guarantee a safe environment and provide a quality program. There are likely to be consequences of the yet unknown measures that may be taken globally to mitigate the impact of COVID-19.

We are also concerned for the students, staff and faculty who may be at higher risk, and the possibly significant challenges for staff responding to on-site emergencies.

Therefore, we regret to inform you that ALL 2020 summer UCLA Travel Study, UCLA Global Internships, and UCLA Summer Global Cities programs have been suspended (both domestic and international programs). 

Please note, decisions to continue or suspend UCEAP programs are made by the UCEAP systemwide office. These programs are operationally separate from UCLA Study Abroad.

This difficult decision was not taken lightly and was made with participants’ health and safety in mind. We feel the best course of action is to suspend now in hopes of reducing financial risk and to allow time to consider alternate options for summer plans.

Refund Process for Travel Study and Global Internship programs:

  • All students who were confirmed to participate on a UCLA summer study abroad program and whose program was suspended due to COVID-19 will receive a refund including your deposit.
  • Refunds will be issued in stages by program.  Thank you for your patience in advance as we take these extraordinary measures.
  • Over the next few days, program charges will be removed from your BruinBill.
  • Financial Aid has also been notified that our programs have been suspended.
  • Students are encouraged to work with airlines for refunds (many are expanding their policies related to coronavirus).

FAQ for Travel Study and Global Internship programs

  1. Will programs be reinstated if Travel Warnings and CDC alerts decrease before my program was slated to run?
    No, once we suspend your program arrangements, we will not reinstate the program.
  2. I was planning to fulfill specific degree requirements through my program.  Who do I contact about alternate arrangements?
    You are encouraged to find similar courses through UCLA Summer Sessions.  You should also contact your major department advisor/counselor for assistance with credit or graduation questions.  Contact information for advising units can also be found on the Registrar’s website.  Global Studies students who were required to study abroad should monitor their email inbox for further messages from your academic advisor.
  3. Can I enroll in Summer Sessions at UCLA instead?
    Yes, you may enroll in Summer Sessions.  Enrollment is now open for Summer Sessions! Over 600 courses are offered during Summer Sessions, including online courses, 3-week Summer Intensive Studies, and Summer Institutes.  For additional questions, you may contact info@summer.ucla.edu.
  4.  Can I switch to another type of program (i.e. UCEAP)
    At this time, many summer UCEAP program deadlines have passed, but you can check with our office about specific programs of interest.
  5. Can I defer until summer 2021?
    No, unfortunately registration occurs on a first-come, first-served basis and programs are subject to renewal on an annual basis. But we invite you to reapply next year.
  6. What happens with the scholarships for study abroad through IEO?
    Scholarships will not be awarded this year due to program suspensions (including for those students who may have already been notified of awards). If you plan to participate next summer, we encourage you to reapply.

Mental Health Resources: Counselors at UCLA Counseling Center are available: www.counseling.ucla.edu or 310-825-0768.

Other campus resources:

Coronavirus (COVID-19) information for the UCLA campus community:

Additional resources