Greetings from the Office of Study Abroad!
We hope this finds you well and enjoying your experience abroad so far. We have provided some information below that we hope will help you during your experience abroad. As always, feel free to contact our office with any questions and/or concerns as we will be glad to help.
The Office of Study Abroad is here to help you! Should you need to contact us from abroad, the phone number is 1-757-683-5378. Our office hours are Monday - Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm EST. If you reach us after hours and need to leave a message, make sure your message indicates clearly the nature of the problem, a telephone number where you may be reached, and a fixed time when you will be available to receive a return call (if possible).
If you need immediate assistance and it is after our normal business hours, call the ODU Campus Police (1-757-683-4000) and they will get in contact with a member of our staff (24 hours a day, 7 days a week).
In case of an emergency while abroad, it is important to contact your program coordinator or staff member on the ground first. That person will be able to assist you quickly and should be able to point you to nearby resources.
Old Dominion University policy #5101 requires that all students, faculty, administrators and staff participating in international education abroad initiatives -- whether of a credit or non-credit nature -- carry complete international health insurance coverage for the duration of their program.
Most students participating in an ODU study abroad program will be required to purchase a group policy from Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI). This insurance includes emergency assistance and you should contact them immediately in case of any type of medical or travel emergency. CISI's emergency contact information can be found on the insurance card that was either uploaded to your StudioAbroad account or given to you at your pre-departure meeting. Be sure to carry your insurance card with you at all times while you are abroad.
Culture Shock and Adjustment
Most people who move between cultures experience a period of adjustment as they establish themselves in their new environment. We highly recommend reviewing our cultural adjustment packet and the Online Cultural Training Resource for study abroad as these are two excellent resources to help you adjust to your new culture. If you would like to speak with somebody from the Office of Study Abroad about your adjustment, feel free to contact our office and we will be glad to assist you.
Before You Return
Returning home after a significant overseas experience is not without its stresses. Before you return to the U.S. it is important to prepare for "re-entry," say your goodbyes in a culturally appropriate manner, and reflect a bit on your experiences abroad. We highly recommend using the following resources help you as you prepare for this new transition.
- Online Cultural Training Resource for Study Abroad (Module 2 - Welcome Back! Now What?)
- Preparing to Return Home (pdf) by Bruce LaBrack
- Top 10 Immediate Reentry Challenges (pdf) by Bruce LaBrack