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Student Health & Wellness

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Student Health & Wellness

CEA believes the health and wellness of students during their time abroad has a measurable impact on their cultural adaption, as well as their academic success. Students who are struggling with their health may miss class, be less involved in the local community, and miss out on having a positive cultural experience because they simply are not feeling good.

The CEA Health & Wellness Profile is a required task for students to complete through their MyCEA Account. They must also self-report their medical conditions, medications, allergies, dietary preferences, and request special accommodations for the classroom, housing, or mental health.

In recognizing the holistic nature of the student experience, CEA supports all aspects of student development through the lens of physical, emotional, spiritual, social, intellectual, and occupational wellness. CEA excursions, academic activities, student engagement events, and office hours are tools CEA onsite staff use to foster student connectivity and understanding about personal wellness.

CEA onsite staff will refer students to local caregivers according to a student’s need or preference. CEA partners with Cultural Insurance Services International, a healthcare services provider with many years of experience, to provide coverage for a student’s emerging health needs during their CEA program. This plan enables a student to seek care at any medical provider with no co-payment, or a low co-payment ($50 Barcelona), and then seek reimbursement for those out-of-pocket healthcare and pharmacy costs. In case of serious injury or illness requiring hospitalization, care is coordinated with a guarantee of payment so no out of pocket expenses are necessary for the student experiencing the healthcare emergency. CISI/CEA student health insurance covers a student from the program start date till the end date. Coverages include:

  • Medical Care: Up to $500,000 (London)/$250,000 (other CEA locations)
  • Mental Illness: $2,500 Outpatient/$25,000 In-patient
  • Dental Emergency: $500 pain relief/$250,000 max per occurrence
  • Accidental Death & Dismemberment: $10,000
  • Personal Liability: $100,000 max per occurrence
  • Medical Evacuation: $250,000 max per occurrence

A full overview of coverages, exclusions, and the claims process can be viewed here.

March 24, 2020

CEA Study Abroad Statement on COVID-19

CEA’s number one priority is the health, safety and security of its students, staff and faculty. Understandably, COVID-19 (Coronavirus) is likely causing anxiety and raising questions for students and their families, especially considering the recent pandemic announcement by the World Health Organization (WHO). CEA has and will continue to make informed decisions that prioritize the safety and health of its students and the communities in which it operates. The situation remains incredibly fluid; CEA considers a vast amount of information, including hourly monitoring information, that shapes, with cautious and measured action, decisions that prioritize safety and health.

Study abroad, the field of international education and U.S. higher education as a whole, are dealing with unprecedented issues. CEA urges calm, clear communication and thoughtful decision-making, understanding that each institution, family and student will evaluate and exercise judgment consistent with a number of factors, including their own tolerance for risk. As seen in CEA updates, we have adapted to various changing local environments and considered numerous scenarios, all while providing students with updates and options that align with local, state and official guidance during this evolving situation. This highlights CEA’s continued responsiveness and desire to provide options to students, families and university partners.

CEA’s local expertise and extensive knowledge network are at the strength and core of CEA, the vast CEA community allows for ongoing support and care of our students and community members. Staff and faculty are trained in assisting students for an incredible array of situations and emergencies. As an active member of the Forum on Education Abroad, CEA recognizes the importance of the Forum’s Standards of Good Practice, and Standard 8 that specifically guides CEA to “prioritize the health, safety, and security of its students through policies, procedures, advising, orientation, and training.” Additionally, the joint statement released by the Forum and Pulse, provides salient advice and guidance for all institutions of higher education to consider.

CEA pledges continuing close monitoring of the most up-to-date information and data including, but not limited to, health statements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, as well as consulting with a variety of other reputable sources and experts. We continually review all these resources while working with state and local public health officials to provide the most up-to-date information to the CEA community.

According to leading epidemiologists and top U.S. Federal officials, COVID-19 “is going to get worse” in the U.S. The CDC states on its website that “it’s likely that at some point, widespread transmission of COVID-19 in the United States will occur.” New and emerging statements from WHO and others regularly advise on containment measures by urging individual advice that states, “every person has the capacity to contribute, to protect themselves, to protect others, whether in the home, the community, the healthcare system, the workplace or the transport system.” What guidance do we as educators provide to our students during this time to mitigate health and safety issues of our entire CEA community? Do we as an organization want to force students to return to the U.S. where there may be more localized cases of Coronavirus than where they are currently studying abroad? CEA deals with these questions and others while it considers all available information when making informed decisions that may impact the wellbeing of our students and the communities in which they engage.

Consistent with CEA’s priority of safety and wellbeing, CEA has enacted contingency planning to allow for academic alternatives in the form of remote/distance learning using existing platforms such as Moodle and Zoom. These actions ensure academic delivery of coursework while providing options for students that minimize the potential impact and exposure of the Coronavirus to our students, staff, faculty and local communities. As a community of students, scholars and practitioners, CEA continues to consider all options for each location and specific context to offer academic contingency options for students. It is important for CEA to maintain delivery of high quality experiences for our students, so we must continue to proceed cautiously, even under pressure to move quickly in these circumstances. CEA’s academics and curricula are designed to emphasize experiential learning, and incorporate activities to help students connect their experiences outside the classroom with the content they learn in class. This cannot be fully achieved through remote/distance learning alone, however, and we recognize these are not usual circumstances.

We know and understand that students have planned for many months, sometimes years, in preparation for this spring 2020 term abroad. CEA is committed to working with each student and their home institution to offer credit for their term abroad, and ensure their academic success. CEA pledges to continue prioritizing student health, safety, and wellbeing, while never compromising academic quality of programs. We approach each situation cautiously and uniquely, to critically assess the best course of action for our students and university partners. This approach is crucial in times like these when we must balance student wellbeing with providing the academic quality students, families, and our university partners have come to expect from CEA.

Thank you for your support, patience and understanding as we navigate these challenging times together. For any questions, we urge students to reach out to their onsite CEA contacts about any questions they may have now and moving forward.


Brian Boubek
Chairman & CEO
CEA Study Abroad

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