ISA Worldwide Alerts

The following alerts are to the best of ISA's knowledge gathered from direct observation, U.S. Department of State recommendations, Overseas Security Advisory Council reports, CDC and WHO guidance, and expert consultation. Information is subject to change.

  • March 11, 2020

    On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) designated COVID-19 as a pandemic as the virus has spread to over 100 countries around the world. Additionally, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a "Warning - Level 3" Travel Notice for countries in Europe’s Schengen area, encouraging travelers to avoid nonessential travel to member nations due to COVID-19. Additionally, the CDC issued a global "Alert - Level 2" notice, encouraging enhanced precautions for travelers. U.S. President Trump also announced today that all travel from the Schengen countries for non-U.S. citizens would be suspended for 30 days starting at midnight (EST) Friday, March 13. According to the President's proclamation, the travel suspension does not apply to lawful permanent residents and certain other non-U.S. citizens. 

    In light of these developments, ISA has made the difficult decision to cancel all ISA Spring 2020 programs in Schengen member countries. This includes ISA programs in Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Spain, and the Netherlands.  The ISA resident staff have communicated with all ISA students and will assist them in returning to the U.S. ISA is in contact with all host institutions to discuss the academic options available for students to complete their coursework from a distance. We will continue to communicate with students and our university partners regarding these options.

    At this time, all other ISA Spring 2020 programs are continuing as scheduled, including those in the United Kingdom and Ireland. ISA is continuing to closely follow developments related to COVID-19 and communicate best practices for staying healthy with students. 



  • March 10, 2020


    ISA continues to closely follow developments related to COVID-19. At this time, only ISA Spring programs in Italy, China, and South Korea have been suspended. Additionally, ISA's Summer 2020 program in Shanghai has been canceled. ISA Resident Staff continue to communicate with ISA students worldwide to update them on the situation in their program location, remind them of standard health practices, and inform them of ISA’s travel restrictions for independent student travel to China, Korea, and Italy until further notice.


    The following ISA program updates have recently been shared with applicable students, their emergency contacts, and home universities in more detail:





    As a precaution and per instructions from local authorities, all ISA host institutions in Madrid will suspend classes for a period of 15 days beginning on Wednesday, March 11th. The Universidad de Nebrija will move to online learning beginning Monday, March 16. They expect to resume in-person classes after spring break on April 14. Nebrija has confirmed that they are prepared to show flexibility with their attendance policy and allow students to complete their courses online in the event that they choose to depart the program early due to health concerns or home university travel policies.



    The Universidad Autonoma de Barcelona will move all classes online effective April 2nd. Students wishing to depart prior to this time will have the option to do so. At this time, no other ISA Barcelona host universities have changed their academic calendar.


    ISA Spain programs in Bilbao, Granada, Salamanca, Seville, and Valencia, all continue to run as planned. There have been no changes to the US Department of State Travel Advisory for Spain nor has the CDC changed its advice on travel to Spain at this time. 




    As a precaution and per instructions from local authorities, the American College of Greece (ACG) will close for 14 days effective March 11th. Students will be expected to continue with studies online and communicate with their professors regarding assignments. The ACG plans to reopen on March 26th.


    There have been no changes to the US Department of State Travel Advisory for Greece nor has the CDC changed its advice on travel to Greece at this time. 


    Czech Republic


    As a precaution and per instructions from local authorities, all ISA host institutions in Prague will indefinitely suspend classes effective March 11th. ISA is working with local host universities to understand academic contingency plans during this period and will communicate those expectations to students.  


    There have been no changes to the US Department of State Travel Advisory for the Czech Republic nor has the CDC changed its advice on travel to Czech Republic at this time. 



    On Monday, March 9th, the American Business School (ABS) shared that, after Friday, March 13th, all courses at the university will go to an online format. Students and professors should be in communication with regards to how course content will be delivered. The ABS campus will remain open though no courses will be held in-person.


    There have been no changes to the US Department of State Travel Advisory for France nor has the CDC changed its advice on travel to France at this time. 


    Local ISA offices in each program location remain open and staff available to support students. ISA continues to work with all our host institutions across all program locations to confirm contingency plans related to student academics and will communicate with stakeholders once that information is available.


    Though ISA programs (outside of Italy, China, South Korea) will continue, ISA recognizes that partner institutions in the U.S. may determine to recall their students currently abroad. In those cases, ISA will work with our partner university to communicate with students and provide assistance in their return home. 


    ISA will continue to closely monitor the situation and will update this Worldwide alert as necessary.

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For further information, please refer to ISA’s Health and Safety section, particularly the information regarding the monitoring of world-wide security levels.


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