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Responsibilities of Participants

In study abroad, as in other settings, participants can have a major impact on their own health and safety abroad through the decisions they make before and during the program and by their day-to-day choices and behaviors.

Participants should:

  1. Participate fully in all orientations before departure and on site, and read and carefully consider all information provided by Overseas Study that relates to safety and health conditions in host countries.
  2. When applying for or accepting a place in a program, consider carefully their health and other personal circumstances, and assume responsibility for them after acceptance.
  3. Make available to Overseas Study accurate and complete physical and mental health information and any other personal data that are necessary in planning for a safe and healthy study abroad experience.
  4. Obtain and maintain supplementary health insurance coverage and liability insurance, if required, and abide by any conditions imposed by the carriers.
  5. Inform parents/guardians/families, and any others who may need to know, about their participation in the study abroad program, provide them with emergency contact information, and keep them informed on an ongoing basis.
  6. Understand and comply with the terms of participation, codes of academic and ethical conduct, and emergency procedures of the program, and obey host country laws.
  7. Once on site, be aware of local conditions and customs that may present health or safety risks when making daily choices and decisions. Promptly express any health or safety concerns to the program staff or other appropriate individuals.
  8. Become familiar with the procedures for obtaining health and law enforcement services in the host country.
  9. Avoid substance abuse of all kinds.
  10. Follow the program policies for keeping program staff informed of their whereabouts and well-being, especially when travelling away from the program site.
  11. Behave in a manner that is respectful of the rights and well-being of others, and encourage others to behave in a similar manner.
  12. Accept responsibility for their own decisions and actions.

These guidelines were adapted from the NAFSA Interorganizational Task Force on Safety and Responsibility (May 2002), as approved by Indiana University's Overseas Study Advisory Council.

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Our daily lives are so different from people across the globe. To learn about how other people live their lives, it makes you think about how you want to live your life. It’s character building.”

-Maggie Brinley, IU Overseas Study Participant, Spain