Spain Student Information

March 11, 2020

Dear Students in Spain,

The safety of our students is our highest priority. Given the evolving situation with the global pandemic of COVID-19, Spanish Studies Abroad, the provider of our programs in Spain, is creating an option for students to complete their academic program online from the United States. Saint Mary’s College strongly recommends that you make your way back to your permanent residence as soon as possible. While we understand this is very disappointing, the safety of our students is our top priority.  

Returning Home

We are asking you to begin making arrangements to travel home NOW. Most major airlines have waived fees to change roundtrip tickets. Please make arrangements to return to your permanent residence as soon as possible. If you have trouble rebooking your flights and need to book a new ticket, please contact Marcia Fewell, Anthony Travel at, or (574) 631-8521.

Saint Mary's is providing reimbursement for up to $500 in travel-related expenditures for non-waiver international study abroad students, for travel involving return home from the host country. Please submit receipts and explanation of relevant charges to Alice Yang in the Study Abroad office:

Once your travel arrangements are finalized please share your plans with Dr. Mana Derakhshani, director of CWIL, by text at 847-744-8209 or email at Make sure to include your name in these communications.


You will not lose any academic credits because of this development. Spanish Study Abroad is setting up a process to facilitate remote learning so that you can complete your semester from your permanent residence. They will provide more information on how to check out and online access in the coming days.  

Campus Return

Earlier today, Interim President Nancy Nekvasil made the decision to extend Spring Break and move all campus classes to an online format, beginning March 23. All students who reside on campus have been advised to return to their permanent home for the time being and complete their coursework online. As students returning from Spain, you should also return to your permanent home to complete the final weeks of your international academic program through Spanish Studies Abroad.

Please know that we are here to support you in whatever way we can. If you have additional questions please contact Dr. Mana Derakhshani, director of CWIL at , Dr. Alice Yang, associate director of international education at or Dr. Jennifer Zachman at

Opt-Out Waiver 

If students choose to remain in Spain despite the danger posed, an official Saint Mary’s College opt-out waiver must be signed and returned to the College by March 13 at 5 pm EST. The waiver is available on request.