COVID-19 Office of International Education Updates

Office of International Education (OIE) COVID-19 resource page with important updates, we encourage you to check it frequently.
In this Section

COVID-19 has significantly disrupted inbound and outbound student, faculty, and staff mobility at the University of Wisconsin-Stout.  This page is intended to be a resource with important updates.  We encourage you to check it frequently as updates will be posted in coming weeks as information on the Fall 2020 term and beyond is released. 

Students, faculty, or staff with questions or concerns about specific past, current, or future programs, both at UW-Stout and away, are encouraged to check their official UW-Stout email account regularly for important announcements from OIE staff.  Please direct immediate questions and concerns regarding study away to studyabroad@uwstout.edu and study at UW-Stout (for international students and scholars) to globaled@uwstout.edu.

When planning international education at UW-Stout, note the following:

  • OIE is monitoring the COVID-19 impact closely and will make decisions 60 days prior to the program start date (or earlier if deemed necessary); plan on programs occurring but also consider other options if there are postponements/cancellations.
  • OIE does not recommend that airfare is purchased (or travel plans are finalized) without insurance covering a full refund for cancellation due to the pandemic.

We wish everyone in and outside the U.S. good health and look forward to your participation in our programs as soon as possible!

Newly Admitted International Students

Congratulations on your admission to UW-Stout!  We are delighted you have chosen Stout to pursue your degree and are excited to welcome you to campus.  Due to health and safety concerns around COVID-19, you likely have many questions about the Fall 2020 semester.  In the coming days, decisions will be made regarding how operations will resume, in a modified way, to protect the health and safety of our academic community in the fall semester.  We anticipate being able to welcome you in person and will continue to update this page as information becomes available.  Additionally, we encourage you to check your Stout email at least once a week to ensure you do not miss any important updates. 

Continuing International Students

When a transition was made regarding the method of delivery from in-person to alternative (on-line), many students living in on-campus housing had to move out.  Exceptions were granted to international students and several remained on campus for the duration of the term. 

International students are faced with difficult decisions as the future of international travel in the short term (between now and the start of the fall term) is unpredictable at best.  There are several travel bans, reduced flights, and suspended visa and passport services.

Given these circumstances, the OIE recommends that international students who plan to continue their education in the fall 2020 term think carefully about returning to their homes of record this summer.  Our recommendation would be, if possible, that students consider staying in the United States at this time.  

We understand that many international students are unable to work on-campus, and several summer internships and co-ops have also been cancelled because of COVID-19.  Students in financial distress should contact the OIE to learn more about applying for F-1 economic hardship through the United States Citizenship & Immigration Services.  Additionally, we strongly recommend that students experiencing hardship apply for emergency fund assistance through the UW-Stout Dean of Students Office.  

UW-Stout has announced that students will experience a combination of face to face, hybrid and online learning in the fall 2020 term.  Although an announcement has not yet been made from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, we anticipate continued flexibility regarding students' ability to take a combination of class delivery methods being compliant with the Code of Federal Regulations.  As soon as an official announcement is made, we will be providing updates on this site.  In addition to checking your Stout email at least once a week for updates, we encourage you to check this page regularly as decisions will be coming very soon. 

Study Away (Abroad and Domestic)

Due to health and safety concerns over the past four months, the OIE had to make incredibly difficult yet important decisions to recall all students and faculty participating in Spring 2020 study away programs to their homes of record and cancel all Summer & Fall 2020 study away programs.  In some instances, students planned academically and financially to engage in these life changing experiences months - even years - in advance, making this situation devastating.  UW-Stout’s OIE hopes that students who had their studies interrupted will consider taking part in future programs.  We are working hard to plan and promote faculty-led, semester and year-long opportunities for the WinTerm 2021 and beyond.  

The application and OIE service fees associated with UW-Stout study away have been refunded to all students who were recalled and unable to earn academic credit during the 2020 spring, summer and fall terms.  Students who experienced financial hardship because of COVID-19 are recommended to contact the UW-Stout Dean of Students Office to apply for emergency fund assistance.  

OIE’s policy is to continuously review and evaluate upcoming programs and make decisions on postponement or cancellation 60 - 90 days in advance of program start dates.  There are many considerations that are evaluated by UW-Stout when determining if a program can run, including but not limited to the U.S. State Department and CDC Travel Advisory Levels (below Level 3 is necessary), trend data regarding the number of active and new COVID-19 cases, and the country’s (or region’s) medical infrastructure to support infected patients.

The OIE remains hopeful that WinTerm, Spring and Summer 2021 study away programming will run.  We encourage students to identify programs of interest and submit applications.  Note that in the event a future program is cancelled due to the pandemic, associated UW-Stout application fees will be refunded.