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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.

We promote this type of learning by collaborating with colleges, universities and other organizations around the world.
SAFETI Clearinghouse: Safety Abroad First Education Travel Information
Resources for Program Administrators

About Common Health Concerns

Policy Information:

Several travel-related illnesses such as jet lag, motion sickness, diarrhea and Malaria can taint a student’s experience abroad. Program administrators should consider including information about preventative measures, symptoms, and treatments in pre-departure orientation materials to reduce the risk of these and other travel-related illnesses.

Jet lag has symptoms ranging from insomnia and fatigue to change in appetite and irritability. Although none are scientifically proven, some proposed remedies for jet lag might benefit students. “The most important principle” is for travelers to begin all activities, including eating and sleeping, upon arrival at their destination country at the same time that locals perform these activities. (International Travel Health Guide, p.41)

Motion sickness from travel by sea, air, car, or train can cause nausea, sweating, salivation, and vomiting. It occurs in women more than men, inexperienced travelers more than experienced travelers, and passengers more than drivers. (International Travel Health Guide, p.41) There are many treatments for this common travel ailment. Administrators could provide information or recommend students research the subject themselves.

"Diarrhea is among the most common of all medical problems related to travel. All travelers, and especially those visiting tropical or semitropical developing countries, need to understand how to minimize the risk of becoming ill and how to treat illness that does occur in order to minimize discomfort, disruption of travel plans and more serious complications" (Traveler’s Health: How to Stay Healthy All Over the World, p.14). Administrators should consider providing students with information on how to lower their risks of becoming ill and when to seek medical attention (See Food and Drink Safety).

Malaria is yet another common illness of concern to study abroad students. This disease remains a problem throughout much of the tropics causing illness and death for the local population as well as travelers. “The ever-changing pattern of drug resistance, along with concerns about side effects of anti-malarial drugs, result in confusion regarding the selection of anti-malarial drugs.” (Malaria: The Travelers Handbook, p. 425). Administrators should provide as much information as possible to all students who will participate in programs where malaria is a concern.

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