Frequently Asked Questions

Fall 2021

Please contact if you have questions that are not addressed here.

Colgate University’s Office of Off-Campus Study is planning to operate the programs we have arranged for fall 2021. Study group pre-departure meetings and pre-departure courses are in progress. Study Group cancellation is unlikely and would occur only if external challenges like border closures or the host country deciding to refuse international students from studying in that country.


The Office of Off-Campus Study is pleased to announce that we will provide a $1,000 grant to every student participating in an Off-Campus Study (OCS) program for the fall 2021 semester. We recognize that many aspects of travel planning are complex at this time and hope that this grant will help to reduce challenges surrounding financial considerations, even as OCS staff continues to assist in whatever way we can with logistical support. Colgate is offering this grant in order to help facilitate students’ participation in OCS semester programs for fall. A few details about this program:

  • The grant will be disbursed as a credit on your student account, applying toward your fall 2021 program charges.
  • Students already receiving institutional financial aid are eligible for this additional $1000 grant, which will offset the $1500 loan that is typically part of the financial aid offered.
  • Students on any semester-long OCS program in fall 2021 will receive this grant (both Colgate study groups and Approved Programs).
  • Students must remain enrolled in a fall semester OCS program in order to be eligible. This grant is not transferable to a spring 2022 semester program, nor to a program in any future semester.

    We hope that this grant program provides additional assistance to help students participate in OCS programs this coming fall semester. Please don’t hesitate to contact the Office of Off-Campus Study ( should you have any questions about this program. Should you have questions about implications for financial aid, please contact the Office of Financial Aid (

Colgate University will not cancel participation in external, approved programs. We will rely on the approved programs to inform us of their decisions to operate or not operate programs this fall. If approved programs alter their schedules, reduce the length of time abroad, or the method of instruction, this could alter permission for academic transfer credit. Please consult the Off-Campus Study office about any change to academic programming on your programs.

These plans may or may not be decided prior to the Colgate campus class registration and housing deadlines. If you are considering withdrawing from your fall program, please make your decision to participate according to Colgate’s deadlines in order to register for classes and housing.

On June 22, 2021, Colgate University sent all off-campus study students a copy of one of the COVID-19 agreement addenda to sign - either for a study group or for an approved program. The documents can be found here.

The content of this document outlines the responsibilities of both Colgate and you with your off-campus study program, and is a special document to supplement the Off-Campus Study Acknowledgement of Risk and Responsibility that all students sign when they attend a program.  We ask you to sign the document, available in the post-commitment section of the portal:

The main points are:

  1. An overview of the potential risks of COVID-19.
  2. That exposure to this virus can vary depending on where you are and what conditions/risks of exposure exist there.
  3. That you should create a healthcare plan using the Colgate Self-Guided Healthcare Action Plan that includes COVID-19 when obtaining a physical or mental healthcare appointment before you depart for your international or domestic semester program.
  4. You agree to comply with all measures to prevent and mitigate COVID-19 and have read the section about consequences for failure to abide by those measures.
  5. You understand that there will continue to be testing and/or proof of vaccination requirements by both the host country or location government as well as departing an international location to return to the US.
  6. Personal, leisure travel outside the host country will be prohibited for study group participants at the present time, but this policy will be reviewed periodically based on the conditions on the ground. Such travel for approved program students will be based on rules defined by the individual program.
  7. Acknowledge that Colgate or my approved program (either operated by Colgate or not) may decide to suspend the off-campus study program and that I must comply with this including by returning to my home. This summary is not complete and is provided for convenience only. Please carefully read and sign the full document on the OCS student portal in order to participate in your program. Please reach out to the Office of Off-Campus Study ( should you have any questions about this agreement.


To withdraw from a fall 2021 study group, please email ( or log on to the off-campus study application portal, locate your application status under My Applications, and click "withdraw". We ask that you notify your Off-Campus Study program manager (Susan Light, Wendy Nugent, or Cas Sowa) in writing to let us know that you have decided to withdraw so that we can change your status with Colgate, freeing you to register for fall classes and to make housing arrangements. In addition, if you are enrolled in a study group, please notify your faculty director of your intent to withdraw.

No, unless Colgate University or your approved program cancels the fall 2021 program in which you are enrolled, you will be responsible for the $450 should you voluntarily withdraw from a program that is operating. Students whose deposits were waived will not be eligible for a refund. If you have decided to withdraw from a fall 2021 study group, please locate your application status under My Applications, and click “withdraw,” or contact Off-Campus Study directly ( in order to have your Colgate information updated accurately.

Students approved to study in the fall are not automatically approved to study in the spring semester. Due to the semester balancing policy, described under off-campus study admissions in the University catalog, the spots for Spring programs are already filled. If your fall 2021 program has been canceled and there is not an academically suitable replacement program for fall 2021, you may request to be placed on a waitlist for the spring 2022 semester.  Please email off-campus study and Cas Sowa to discuss this option.

Colgate study groups and approved programs have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as by local and international government regulations to preserve public health. We will continue to monitor the status of consular services (visa processing), international airline routes, and border access.

Colgate routinely consults with International SOS, the US Department of State and the Centers for Disease Control for objective information about risk. In addition, we routinely work with our overseas or domestic partners to ascertain on-site policies and procedures.

The Colgate University vaccination requirement also applies to all students enrolled in Colgate study groups. For students participating in approved programs operated by third-party providers, you only need to follow the vaccination requirements of your program, although Colgate strongly recommends that you be fully vaccinated prior to your fall  program start date and you will need to be fully vaccinated in order to return to Colgate for the spring 2022 semester. Additional details about Colgate’s vaccination requirement can be found here.

According to the CDC, you are not considered fully vaccinated until it has been at least two weeks since your second dose of a two-dose series like the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine, or two weeks after receiving a single-dose vaccine like the Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccine.

Submission of proof of COVID-19 vaccination or documentation of a medical or religious exemption must be submitted on or before July 6, 2021. If you cannot make this deadline, please contact us. As a reminder, should you receive a vaccination exemption from Colgate, your host country, host institution or other entities may nevertheless mandate proof of vaccination and are under no obligation to accept Colgate’s exemption policy. In such an event, Colgate may be unable to assist you and you will be fully responsible for any consequences that may result from an exemption to Colgate’s vaccination requirement.

Proof of vaccination or exemption documents can be submitted via the myColgateHealth Patient Portal or as detailed on the >Student Health Services website. As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the off-campus study office ( should you have any questions.

Please follow the advice of individual study groups. We suggest that you consider carefully whether to purchase your ticket early (May or June) and that you can make changes without change fees versus waiting when you can be more certain. Remember that COVID-19 continues to influence all decisions and that buying a ticket that allows for a flexible return is essential.  These tickets may cost more, but provide peace of mind in a time of uncertainty that your airline will provide you with the flexibility you may need.