Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Community Update – February 26

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The University continues to work closely with international and domestic officials to monitor Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Yesterday, the CDC issued an update about the coronavirus, which highlighted the effectiveness of the United States’ aggressive travel precautions. As of this morning, more than 81,100 cases worldwide have been confirmed in 37 countries.

Seaver International Programs Update

The safety and well-being of our students remains paramount. In light of recent developments in Italy, and in line with other American universities in Florence, Pepperdine and Seaver College officials have made the decision to suspend the Florence international program for the remainder of the spring 2020 term. The University is currently aiding Florence program participants in returning to their homes. 

As University officials considered all options for students to complete their current coursework while remaining connected to the Florence program and faculty, a decision was also made that students will not return to the Malibu campus to complete their coursework. Instead, students will remain at their primary residence for the remainder of the spring semester and all classes will be taught via remote/online learning by Florence program professors. 

In the coming weeks, the University will evaluate whether to resume operations for the Florence program in summer and/or fall 2020. Presently, students in the London, Heidelberg, and Lausanne programs will remain in their host cities, limiting personal weekend travel and travel during any upcoming travel breaks until further notice. There are no changes to the summer/fall 2020 programs in Florence, London, Lausanne, and Heidelberg at this time.

Due to the elevated CDC travel notices and State Department travel advisories, all other upcoming University-related travel to Italy continues to be under review on a case-by-case basis in accordance with the University’s International Travel Policy.

Spring Break and Other Travel Notices

Pepperdine community members should be aware that the CDC has issued six Travel Health Notices to various countries, including Level 3 Travel Warnings (the CDC’s highest warning level) to avoid non-essential travel to China and South Korea, and continues to update its warnings as conditions change. Travelers should also be aware that many countries have implemented strict screening procedures to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 and that upon re-entry to the US after travel, they may be placed under a 14-day quarantine. 

Due to the highly restrictive conditions currently in place, Pepperdine is prohibiting University travel and strongly discouraging personal travel to countries with a current CDC Level 3 Travel warning. In the event of personal travel to these countries, the University will not provide assistance to community members trying to reenter the US and will restrict returning travelers from coming to campus for 14 days. Exceptions to the restriction will not be granted. Please contact the Office of Emergency Services at 310.506.4996 for questions or assistance.

More information and regular updates about the coronavirus can be found on the World Health Organization, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and L.A. County Public Health websites.