Category: Messages to the Community

Title: COVID-19 Update: Announcing Moratorium on All Student University-Sponsored International Travel

Date Published: March 4, 2020

Dear Members of the Georgetown University Community,

We are writing to provide additional guidance on university-sponsored international travel for students, and personal travel guidance for all members of our community, for the weeks ahead in response to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19). Due to the rapidly evolving nature of the outbreak, we will provide frequent and regular communication to our community as federal and local health guidance changes.

For Students

The university is now suspending ALL university-sponsored or related student international travel through May 15, 2020. This includes any new travel that is credit-bearing, including travel for students preparing to begin study abroad opportunities in the coming weeks. In addition to this suspension of university-related student international travel, the university’s previously-issued guidance remains in place, suspending all university-related travel – for faculty, staff and students – to any country designated by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as “Level 3 – Avoid Nonessential Travel” due to coronavirus.

This difficult decision was made in the interest of the health and safety of our students and the entire Georgetown community. It recognizes the dynamic nature of the situation, possible disruptions to international travel and health care and potential challenges in reentering the United States from abroad.

If you had plans to participate in a university-sponsored or related international travel program, the relevant office or department will be in touch with you to provide additional information regarding next steps. We recognize how disruptive and significant this decision is, and the university is actively working with relevant departments to help affected students continue their academic progress through instructional continuity and by other means.

Students who are already abroad on university-sponsored travel are not being asked to return at this time unless they are in countries that are designated by the CDC as “Level 3 – Avoid Nonessential Travel” due to coronavirus. Georgetown has already directed students studying in these Level 3 countries to return to their permanent addresses.

For Students, Faculty and Staff

In addition to the moratorium on all university-sponsored travel to Level 3 countries, we strongly recommend all members of our community reconsider ANY personal international travel plans over spring break, Easter break and the coming weeks. Students, faculty and staff should be aware of the associated risk of disruptions to their reentry to the United States or other countries. Based on the quickly evolving international travel guidance, your return to the United States or to campus may be interrupted by federal or state restrictions.

Any member of the university community who travels to a country designated as Level 3 or Level 2 by the CDC due to coronavirus – whether the country’s designation occurs before departure or during the trip – must contact Georgetown’s public health officer, Dr. Vince WinklerPrins, at vjw6@georgetown.edu before returning to campus for medical clearance review.

In accordance with CDC guidance for travelers returning from China, Italy, South Korea, Iran or any other country that is subsequently designated by CDC as Level 3 for coronavirus while you are traveling, please be aware that you will be required to self-quarantine – at your permanent address or away from Georgetown’s campus – for at least 14 days before returning to campus.

The university cannot reimburse you for flight change costs and additional expenses. Please be aware the CDC is making decisions rapidly, and that any country could quickly be designated Level 2 or 3 for coronavirus.

Thank you for your patience and cooperation as we work through this evolving public health emergency. You can find all university updates, answers to frequently asked questions and other resources related to coronavirus on the Georgetown University website.

Sincerely,

Robert M. Groves, Provost

Edward B. Healton, Executive Vice President for Health Sciences & Executive Dean of the School of Medicine

William M. Treanor, Executive Vice President & Dean of the Law Center

Geoffrey S. Chatas, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer