We Understand Parents' Concerns
The Office of International Education understands that parents have many concerns when their student informs them of their intentions to study abroad. Given the events of September 11th, it is expected that safety and security concerns have increased. OIE understands these concerns and has resources available to help address issues for parents' assurance.
Despite the tragic events of September 11th, a national trend has been the increase in interest and participation in students' studying abroad. This trend has also been observed at the UTD campus and OIE recognizes the ever increasing importance for worldwide education and the need to prepare our students for global citizenship.
The University of Texas at Dallas takes every reasonable effort to assure that students are knowledgeable about potential risks while encouraging them to pursue enriching cultural and educational opportunities abroad. Following are some guidelines that can be useful for parents to understand.
The University of Texas at Dallas Office of International Education strongly discourages travel to a country that is listed on the U.S. State Department travel warning list.
The U.S. State Department travel warning list is frequently monitored.
OIE provides students with pre-departure training on "common sense do's and don'ts" during their travel.
OIE is in regular contact with students and program staff where they are studying.
The UT System requires proof of international health insurance from students participating in a study abroad experience. Insurance is offered through Academic HealthPlans. In the absence of insurance enrollment through Academic HealthPlans, students must provide evidence of alternative health insurance with a level of benefits similar to or exceeding this plan. For more information, including period of coverage, definitions, medical expense benefits, covered expenses, exclusions and limitations, please review: http://www.utdallas.edu/oie/UT_SA_Brochure_12_13.pdf.
The University requires essential release forms and documentation from students for liability and emergency contact information prior to being granted permission to study.
OIE works with multiple offices on campus to help coordinate efforts for students.
The University requires course pre-approval for transfer of international study abroad credits.
Additional Suggestions for Parents:
Encourage students to go abroad.
Discuss your concerns early.
Let your student know you support them.
Arrange for ways to contact each other (email, pre-paid international phone cards).
Obtain a passport for yourself in case of an emergency.
Discuss financial issues and emergency funds.
Be alert for unusual behaviors (emailing frequently, depression, etc).
Ask questions about their experiences. Be interested.
Obtain a map and location of where student will be.
Ask for pictures to help see where student is staying.
Sign a Parents' Certification of Dependency Form for communication with the university while your student is abroad.