With the European Union banning American tourists beginning this summer and other factors as the COVID-19 pandemic worsens, study abroad programs have been postponed indefinitely.

“This tough decision was a collaborative agreement between our Office of Global Learning, Risk
Management, and upper administration,” said Rebecca Zanolini, director of Global Learning, citing information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the State Department as source material in this decision.

“Given the current information we have and due to a number of factors out of our control, such
as many countries either limiting entrance or imposing a 14-day quarantine on those entering, it
is the decision of the university to cancel our fall 2020 study abroad programs,” said Provost W. Craig Bledsoe.

The EU has said that American tourists will be banned from entering the continent because the virus is raging uncontrolled here.  It is similar to the winter’s ban on most European visitors to the U.S., issued when COVID-19 was reaching its peak in several countries.

The university is now making accommodations for all students who planned to study abroad this
semester to help them transition into a semester on-campus, including classes and housing
registration assistance.

“Even with this temporary situation regarding fall 2020 programs, we are moving ahead with our
investment in Lipscomb’s global learning program and on-campus activities for students
interested in future international travel opportunities,” said Bledsoe.

“In the next few weeks the university plans to purchase the Florence villa that has served our
global students so well for the last few years,” Bledsoe said. “This is a significant investment in our global learning program and is made possible by a generous donation from a donor committed to the exceptional learning experience that a study abroad opportunity provides.

“Our global learning team will plan and offer chapels and other gathering opportunities on campus during the fall semester for students who plan to go on future global learning experiences,” he added.

Despite the setback, Lipscomb intends to move forward with plans, at least, for all four study abroad programs in the spring: Costa Rica, Florence, London and Vienna. Students registered for fall programs will have first priority for spring.

If you have any comments, questions, or concerns, contact the Office of Global Learning through their email at globallearning@lipscomb.edu.

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