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The Center for Global Education promotes international education to foster cross-cultural awareness, cooperation and understanding. Living and working effectively in a global society requires learning with an international perspective.

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SAFETI Clearinghouse
Orientation Courses

University of the Pacific

Health, Safety, and Financial Issues Abroad






Semester/Year Abroad (Dates)


University or Program
(i.e., LSE, IES, USAC, etc.)


Study Abroad Site – City and Country


Study Abroad Site -- City and Country WORKBOOK

This Workbook was developed to be used as a component of the Cross-Cultural Training I course in which you are enrolled.

The questions in this Workbook will help you prepare for your time abroad, regardless of your destination. Answers to the questions can be found in a wide variety of places including your specific program information, the handouts you will receive on the first night of class, at the web sites listed, the web-based Student Guide, or readily available publications online. Please follow the format of the Workbook when answering the questions (i.e., I. A. 1., etc.) and TYPE YOUR ANSWERS.

PLEASE NOTE: While it is possible to cut and paste information from websites, this alone will not fulfill the requirements of the course.  Additionally, the University’s policy for plagiarism is:

Plagiarism involves presenting as one’s own, the work, or the opinions of someone else without proper acknowledgement. Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to:
a) Failing to give credit for ideas, statements of facts, or conclusions derived by another author; Failure to use quotation marks when quoting directly from another, whether it is a paragraph, a sentence, or part thereof; Failure to properly cite other’s work.
b) Submitting a paper purchased or obtained from a “research” or term paper service.
c) Submitting a paper obtained from an internet resource.
d) Giving a speech or oral presentation written by another and claiming it as one’s own work.

All of the workbooks for each semester will be read by one individual.  Identical answers for anyone enrolled in CCTI with the same program or same host country will be treated as plagiarism.

You must attach the following:
A copy of web information pertaining to your host country where indicated (*);

If you cannot locate the above, please give an explanation in your answers. Additionally, if you feel that any of the questions in this Workbook do not apply to your program, please give an explanation at the appropriate place (i.e., I. A. 1., etc.).


A. Center for Disease Control (CDC) Health Recommendations*
1. List the CDC's health recommendations for your host country.
2. List any specific immunizations you must have.
3. List any specific health warnings or health issues regarding your host country..

B. Health Insurance: NOTE: University of the Pacific requires that all study abroad participants maintain adequate health insurance coverage.

1. What type of policy do you have? Does this policy cover you during your time abroad? Are there deductibles, limits or exemptions? Do you need to carry forms with you for reimbursement or will the insurance carrier be billed directly?

C. Other
1. What medical facilities are available in your host country?*
2. What are the health risks associated with sexual activity while abroad?
3. If you have pre-existing health conditions, or you need to carry special medications overseas, Specific steps should you take before you go abroad to ensure that you have an adequate supply while abroad?
4. What are some of the local food staples of your host country? Do you have any dietary restrictions? If so, how do you intend to compensate for this problem?
5. Do you have any food or substance allergies?


A. Consular Information Sheet*
1. Print out any current travel advisories or warnings for the country.
2. Are there any current conditions, eg, transportation strikes, protests, etc., that will affect travel in your host country or region?  If so, what might be required to respond to this situation?
3. What types of crime incidents seem common?
4. Are the drug and alcohol laws similar to US laws? What are the penalties for breaking drug and alcohol laws?
5. Has there been any terrorist activity in this country?

B. US Embassies and Consulates
1. Where is the nearest US Embassy/Consulate in your host country?
2. What types of emergency services are provided by consular officers abroad?
3. Will the US Embassy loan you money in an emergency?

C. Crisis Management
1. In addition to your program director and the IPS staff at Pacific, who should you contact in an emergency?
2. Should you register with the US Embassy? If so, when?

D. Other

1. Does the US Constitution apply to you in your host country?
2. Do you need a financial power of attorney while you are overseas? Why or Why not? [A financial power of attorney is a legal document you sign giving someone else permission to deal with your personal affairs while you are abroad (i.e., file tax returns, take money out of your bank account, etc.).]
3. Will you need to file an income tax return while overseas?


A. Passports
To obtain a passport:
1. Who should have photocopies of your passport?
2. What should you do if you lose your passport while abroad?
(Note: You should take at least two replacement photos with you.)
3. Should you ever surrender your passport?

B. Visas -
1. Do you need a student visa to study in your host country?
2. How do you obtain a student visa to study in your host country?
3. How much does a student visa cost?


A. General -

  1. What language(s) is/are spoken in the host country?
  2. What are the major religions in the host country?
  3. What are the major holidays?

B. Daily Living
1. What information is available about your host country?
      (Print out the first page of web information about your host country.)
2. What information is available about your host city?
      (Print out the first page of web information about your host city.)
3. What are the telephone codes for your host country and city?

  1. Do you know how to use a phone in your destination country?
  2. How do you dial the police or emergency phone numbers in your host country?
  3. Is there an equivalent of 911 in your country or city?
  4. Where is the best place to make a long distance call?
  5. Will your cell phone work overseas under your current plan?
  6. At 09:00 AM Pacific time, what time is it in your host country?
  7. What is the custom for tipping?

C. Academic System
1. What type of academic calendar will you be following?
2. What is the method of assessment/grading on your program?
3. How does the academic system differ from that in the United States?


A. Host Country*
1. Describe the political system of your host country.
2. Has there been any political unrest recently that might affect your time in the host country?
3. Who is the current Head of State/Government?

B. United States
1. Describe the political relationship between the US and your host country?
2. Are you prepared to answer questions about US politics and foreign policy?  (Remember: Most Pacific students that return from abroad comment that people abroad are better informed politically than most people in the US.)
3. Are you prepared to ask intelligent questions about your host county’s politics and foreign policy?  If not, are you prepared to remedy this?


A. Cost of Living
1. What currency is used in your host country?
2. What is the exchange rate with the US Dollar?

  1. Speak with either an international student at Pacific or someone who has returned from studying in your host country. Ask about the cost living (eg: What is the cost of the "average" mid-day meal? What is the cost of course books and supplies?) or see the US Stae Department’s website.

B. Budget
1. Develop a budget for the semester/year including initial expenses, living expenses, travel during breaks, health insurance, books, etc.
2. How much money will you need to take with you to cover all initial costs?
3. What is the best way to access money while abroad?


A. Housing
1. Is housing included in your program fee?
    a. If YES: What type of housing is provided?
    b. If NO: What are your housing options? How much will it cost? Is there a deposit or lease?
2. Will you need to bring linens, utensils, etc.

B. Meals
1. Are meals included in your program fee?
     a. If YES: What type of meal plan is provided?
     b. If NO: Will you use a meal plan, self-catered facilities or another option? How much will food cost per week?


1. What are the seasonal temperatures during your semester(s)?

  1. What type of clothing is appropriate given the climate in your host country?
  2.   What type of clothing is appropriate in the culture of your host country (for students, internships, etc. as applicable)
2. What types of voltage converter/plug adapters will you need for electrical appliances?

3. Have you purchased or viewed a travel guide such as: (you can customize your own guide)

If you have not done so already, please do so! You will be glad you did.


Revised April 2006