1. COVID 19 – Frequently Asked Questions

last updated: June 22, 2020

1. How did Colby advise and respond to the needs of students studying abroad in spring 2020?
Colby  suspended its program in Salamanca  and students  completed their courses remotely to insure they received full credit.  For non-Colby programs, the Off-Campus Study Office (OCS) relied on our program providers and host universities abroad to work with local authorities and governments to determine emergency crisis plans.  OCS was in daily contact with providers and program participants to share updates specific to their program and region.

2. What did  Colby do in cases when programs were suspended?  
Colby supported students to the best of our ability to insure that they remained on track academically. Many students were offered a provision for completing credits remotely, and Colby  has accepted those credits.
3. If a student chose to leave a program that had not been suspended, how were credits be affected? 
In cases where the program offered  a provision for completion of academic work online, Colby accepted those credits. In cases and for courses where online options weren’t possible, Colby accepted online credits from elsewhere and some students completed via the transfer of credit form on the registrar’s page, http://www.colby.edu/registraroffice/.  In seeking approval, students should contact their academic advisors and the registrar. While credit must be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, we have been working with students to the best of our ability to insure they remain on track for graduation.
Students were able to take their online courses S/U (or P/F if that is the terminology of your provider). They have had the choice to receive letter grades if preferred, but were also able to opt for S/U if offered that by the provider.
4. Since Colby recalled students worldwide, what were the implications for students who chose to remain?
In this case, Colby recommended  that decisions be made with students’ families and students obtained a Release of Liability waiver from OCS.

5. What recommendations did Colby have for students traveling independently? 
Colby recommended limiting and reconsidering personal travel. As the situation escalated, there were more and more CDC level 3 countries and travel restrictions being implemented as well as quarantines.  OCS recommended monitoring  the situation closely through the U.S. Department of State, https://www.state.gov/, and CDC, https://www.cdc.gov/, websites.  Travelers should continue to exercise preventions against illness recommended on our COVID-19 webpage as well as take basic precautions to prepare for travel disruptions such as registering independent travel with program staff,  keeping cellphones charged and operational and checking their email daily.

6. Did students get a refund for housing payments if the program suspended its operations?

Students  were advised to contact their program provider re: housing refunds. For Colby in Salamanca, Colby contacted our students re: prorated housing refunds.

7. What are the best public sources of information?
8. What should students planning to study away in 20/21 do?

Since many programs are canceling fall study abroad, we are recommending students defer to spring or fall of senior year. Students are advised to notify OCS by July 1 of their plans in order to secure housing on campus. If notified after July 1, the college can not guarantee housing. If students proceed with plans for fall 2020 off campus, Colby will only approve and transfer credit if the current CDC level 3 and US State department level 4 travel warnings are lowered. Many providers have informed us that they will refund deposits should they cancel. Domestic off campus experiences are currently approved to move forward.

Please book remote advising appointments from our website the night before in order to allow time for a google meet invitation to be sent. We are still working remotely, but you can phone our office anytime or email us and we will respond promptly.

Colby’s COVID-19 web page is updated several times a day.