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Study Abroad


While You Are Abroad

Give yourself time to adjust

To combat jet lag, drink plenty of non-alcoholic fluids, eat healthy foods, exercise, and get plenty of rest. Try to adjust to the local time by avoiding naps. Exhaustion can make you overly emotional. If you are feeling particularly distressed or homesick during the first few days, try to get some rest. In most cases, the anxiety will subside once your body has time to adjust physically.

Notify others if you have any serious medical conditions

If you have a medical condition, tell people in your host country that can be of assistance. This includes your program director or faculty leader, local doctor, host family, or people in your dormitory that can help in an emergency.

Practice good hygiene

Washing your hands often with soap and water removes potentially infectious material from your skin and helps prevent disease transmission. Waterless alcohol-based hand gels should be used when soap is not available.

Food safety
  • All foods from poultry, including eggs, should be cooked thoroughly. Egg yolks should not be runny or liquid. Because influenza viruses are destroyed by heat, the cooking temperature for poultry should be 74°C (165°F)
  • Wash all fruits and vegetables thoroughly. In some places, you may want to avoid eating fruit that you cannot peel.
  • Drink bottled water.
  • Use your best judgment when eating food prepared by street vendors.
Environmental factors

The sun may be stronger in some locations than at home, especially at higher elevations. Use sunscreen and consider wearing a hat when you are outside.

Mosquitoes and other insects are carriers for disease. Use bug repellent, particularly in wooded or tropical areas. Mosquito nets may be a necessity in certain locations.

If you do get sick

If you become sick with symptoms such as a fever accompanied by a cough, sore throat, or difficulty breathing or if you develop any illness that requires prompt medical attention, contact your program director or faculty leader immediately.

Do not travel while ill, unless you are seeking medical care. Limiting contact with others as much as possible can help prevent the spread of an infectious illness.