We know students and families have questions about the implications of COVID-19 on global programs. We have compiled frequently asked questions and answers below and will be adding to this page moving forward.

In the meantime, for questions not addressed here, please feel free to contact the Global Education Center staff by chatting us from the bottom right corner of your screen (during business hours), by emailing global@elon.edu, or by calling 336-278-6700.

Programs that have been canceled by our on-site partners have an announcement posted to their brochure and application. Students approved for a program that has been canceled have been emailed information on options for next steps, such as switching into an available program, deferring to a later term, or withdrawing their application.

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Which applications can be deferred?

Students may defer from a spring or calendar year 2021 program to a fall or academic year 2021 program, or from a summer 2020 to a summer 2021 program.

Students may not defer from a Center, Affiliate or Exchange program to a short-term program. For example, a student may not defer a semester study abroad program to a May Term study abroad course.

How do I defer my application?

Email your deferral request to global@elon.edu or to your GEC program manager.

We will withdraw your current application in order for you to start your new application.

If your deferral request is for the same program (e.g. from the Center in Florence for spring 2021 to the Center in Florence for fall 2021), you are encouraged to copy and paste as much as is relevant from your previous application — no need to rewrite your essay responses from scratch.

You will also need to notify your host program or provider (e.g. CIEE, FIE, University of Haifa, etc.). If you’re not sure how to do that, ask your program manager.

If you’re deferring to a later term AND switching into a different program, it’s easiest to withdraw your current application and start an application for the new program. You are also welcome to borrow from your previous application (e.g. essay responses) where it makes sense.

If I defer my application, is my acceptance guaranteed?

Your application will be prioritized over newly submitted applications, especially in cases where there is limited program availability. Elon has temporarily suspended it’s 80-Elon-student cap on any given location, so limited program availability is only in rare cases when mandated by the host program.

However, as is the case for any global engagement application, if you do not continue to meet eligibility requirements, such as minimum GPA or student conduct requirements, your acceptance may be reversed.

Can I defer my scholarship?

You cannot defer your Elon Global Scholarship (or GEC Access Scholarship). However, given you continue to meet eligibility requirements, please apply again for scholarship consideration so the committee can evaluate your most current financial information.

If you have questions about other scholarships and grants, please contact the Office of Financial Aid.

How do I withdraw my application?

If you haven’t yet been accepted or approved, you can withdraw directly. Log into MyElonGlobal, and from your applicant homepage, click “withdraw application” from the bottom right side of the application you’d like to withdraw. If you’re not automatically routed to your applicant home when you log in, click the house icon in the top left, and select “applicant home.”

If you’ve been accepted or wait listed for COR 331 Peru: Wilderness and Adventure Therapy, submit the cancelation form.

If you’ve been accepted or wait listed for a Winter Term 2021 program, the GEC will be contacting you in October to see if you’d be interested in a May Term 2021 program. If you decline, your application will be withdrawn.

If you’ve been accepted, approved or wait listed for any other program (e.g. a semester program), email your program manager or global@elon.edu.

When is the last day to withdraw without financial consequences?

In the event that the program is cancelled either by Elon or the program provider, the University will make every reasonable effort to refund any portion paid by the student less any expenses incurred by the University up to the date of cancellation.

Spring 2021: Cancelation and refund timelines are set program by program in order to maximize a student’s opportunity to withdraw without penalty. Students were emailed their program’s dates and deadlines by their GEC program manager in October. Email your GEC program manager or global@elon.edu with questions.

May Term 2021: Feb. 5. For cancelation penalties that follow, see the May Term 2021 deadlines.

Summer 2021: Study USA: Mar. 12. Study Abroad: Apr. 16 for most — for details and exceptions, see the summer 2021 deadlines.

Fall 2021: Apr. 16 for most — for details and exceptions, see the fall 2021 deadlines.

May Term 2021

Two short-term programs are offered for a special, one-time May Term 2021. Learn more from the short-term programs status chart.

Programs will travel between May 22 and June 25 (exact dates vary by program). More detail is posted in the messages below and linked from the status chart above.

Feb. 22 message from the short-term programs team

Dear Students & Families,

You are receiving this message as you or your student are currently enrolled in an Elon May Term Global Short-Term program. We are writing with some updates about the programs with a goal of giving you as much information as possible.

To begin with, it may help you to know that we are moving forward with May Term programs. Two programs to Ghana and Dominican Republic were cancelled due to low enrollment, yet all others are currently scheduled to run.

We have over 50 students studying away this semester, and all those who have arrived on site are in good spirits and doing well. We have learned a tremendous amount this academic year about operating in a pandemic and are applying that knowledge to May Term programs.  At the same time, we are realistic about the challenges ahead. While the situation continues to improve in many areas where we operate programs, no one can predict with absolute certainty what May will look like.

We will be evaluating May Term programs in mid-March to determine which ones are viable based on a combination of COVID-19 risks and enrollments. Until hearing from the Global Education Center (GEC), we encourage students to hold off from purchasing tickets or making any other related purchases.

Typically, students would be assessed an incremental series of withdrawal fees starting on February 26. We do not feel that Elon students and their families should bear this burden until we have a better sense of whether May Term programs will run. Accordingly, we will waive withdrawal fees until after the program has been confirmed in mid-March. Until then, there will be no penalty for withdrawing.

Once the program is confirmed, we will send an updated schedule of withdrawal deadlines, so students and parents can discuss and make the decision that is right for them.

Students’ health is our primary concern as is the well-being of our partners and community members in our host program locations. We appreciate your understanding and flexibility as we all navigate this challenging period.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

The Global Short-Term Programs Team

Jan. 26 message from the short-term programs team

Updated Deadlines for May Term

Dear Students and Families,

The Global Education Center (GEC) staff, alongside senior leadership, faculty, and our overseas partners, have decided to extend our application and cancellation deadlines for May Term 2021. Students may apply to or withdraw from a May Term program until Feb. 25 without financial risk.  

This extension provides us all more time to consider ever evolving information about COVID-19 and entry restrictions. Among other considerations, the news of new COVID-19 strains coupled with an optimistic vaccination timeline led to our evaluating all aspects of programming and risk management. We all agreed that it would be in the best interest of students and families to extend cancellation deadlines to allow for everyone to digest new information without the weight of financial commitments.

We are aware that  currently  there are restrictions and entry requirements in place for some  countries  that are prohibitive to the entry of U.S. students. We are closely monitoring these policies and aim to make  any necessary program changes or cancellations before financial penalties are incurred. The cancellation and payment timeline has been adjusted accordingly.

We have already made changes to our program line-up for May Term 2021 for a number of reasons, and always with student safety and community responsibility at the center of what we do. Program changes or cancellations are posted to the Status Chart webpage and emailed to students directly. We aim to make decisions as proactively as possible to help students avoid financial risk, but we also hope to keep opportunities open to students for as long as possible. As such, programs may still be subject to cancellation before the scheduled departure.

Cancellation Policy

Canceling your participation in a program can be done ONLY by completing a cancellation form and submitting it to the Global Education Center. Students submitting a cancellation form for Global Short-term Programs are subject to the following payment schedule:

  • February 25: Application and withdrawal deadline. Students who withdraw before or by this date are not responsible for any program costs.
  • February 26 to March 4: Students who cancel on or within these dates are responsible for 25 percent of the program cost.
    Early March: Program cost will be billed to student after application closes
  • March 5 to 11: Students who cancel on or within these dates are responsible for 50 percent of the program cost.
  • March 12: Students who cancel on or after this date are responsible for the full program cost.
  • April 1: Full payment deadline.


  • If the GEC cancels a program before or on Feb. 25, students are not responsible for any program fees.
  • If the GEC cancels a program after Feb. 25 and before the program start date, the GEC will refund any recoverable costs.
  • If a program is canceled after the start date, no refund will be provided, nor if the University moves to recall students from abroad after the program has begun.

You are responsible for the costs noted above if you cancel regardless of whether you have paid the program fees at the time of cancellation.

See full details on the deadlines page.

Additional Reminders

  • Students, please  wait to purchase flights until  you  receive confirmation of our plans to operate the program on-site.
  • May Term students are eligible for Elon Global Scholarship consideration – students apply by selecting “yes” in an application questionnaire. Students that receive a Fellows travel grant, an Elon Engagement grant, and/or an Odyssey travel grant may apply that funding toward a May Term program if they choose.

Thank you for your continued patience and flexibility as we work to find a way to provide global short-term programs this year while also prioritizing student and community health and safety.  Please don’t hesitate to reach out with questions.

-Global Education Center staff

Sept. 23 message from the short-term programs team

Dear Students,

The Global Education Center is happy to announce that we’ll be offering the following programs for May Term 2021.

  • GBL 204: Arizona US/Mexico Borderlands: Culture, Environment and Immigration
  • COR 446: Austria & Germany: Lives of the Great Composers (now going to Austria & Germany)
  • FIN/BUS 277: Business in the Pacific Rim
  • GBL 298: Dominican Republic: Baseball & Tourism
  • GBL 290: Ghana: Performing Arts in Cultural Context
  • ENG 257: England: Literary Landscapes
  • GBL 296: Great Structures of Europe: Technology & History (now going to Italy & Spain)
  • GBL 233: Mediterranean: East Meets West (now going to Southern Italy and Greece)
  • COR 331: Tanzania: Wilderness & Adventure Therapy
  • MUS X: Italy: Special Topics in Music in Florence

Over the next few weeks, GEC Program Managers, Faculty Leaders and our partners will be confirming itineraries and pricing for the programs. When details have been solidified (as solid as you can be during a global pandemic), a survey will be sent to previously accepted and wait listed students for those specific programs. The purpose of the survey is for students to let the GEC know whether they are interested in keeping their position in the program or on the wait list for May Term 2021. Surveys will be unique to each program and offer important details that will aid in the decision making. GEC Program Managers will connect with students directly throughout this process.

Overview of Application Process for the new May Term 2021

  1. Accepted/Waitlisted students for programs offered in May Term – Students under these statuses will have first priority to participate in the May Term program
  2. Accepted/Waitlisted students from other programs – Students will have a designated period of time to submit a CHANGE FORM to switch into an ope program
  3. All students – If there are available spots in May Term 2021 programs, applications will open for all students to apply

Overview of Timeline for May Term 2021

  • Sept. 22 – Oct. 6: Surveys distributed to students previously accepted/waitlisted to programs moved to May Term.
  • Oct. 20: Deadline for students to complete surveys. If surveys are not completed, student’s application status will default to “pending” so they can be completed at a later date.
  • Oct. 23: Students previously accepted/waitlisted to other programs will be able to complete a CHANGE FORM if they want to switch to an open program. Change forms will be processed according to timestamp.
  • Oct. 27: Applications for open programs are made available to all students.
  • Feb. 5: Applications for May Term programs close.

Thank you for your continued patience as we work through the details of this new and unique May Term. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the Global Education Center via global@elon.edu, or by using our quick chat feature on our website (lower right corner when you go to our website).

Best wishes,

Janelle Papay Decato & The Global Short-Term Programs Team

Sept. 7 message from the short-term programs team

Dear Students,
As Jon Dooley’s weekly update mentions, the Global Education Center (GEC) is exploring the possibility of offering a selection of modified global short-term programs for a 2021 May Term. Thank you for your patience as Elon leadership evaluated the academic calendar and the viability of this special, one-time adjustment.
While we are excited for this opportunity, please note that a May Term is still tentative – we will be in touch in the coming weeks with further detail. The below is an overview so you can start to consider whether a May Term might work for you.
Term Details
Program dates are not set yet, but programs will range from 18 to 21 days in duration between May 22 and June 25. These dates are after Commencement and overlap with Summer Session I as well as additional summer global engagement programs.
Program Details
We are currently working with faculty leaders and partners to determine which programs can be offered in order to have a range of courses that satisfy a variety of requirements. We expect to have courses determined and posted by the end of September.
Due to the change in dates, the program cost posted for Winter Term 2021 will likely change. We will post prices as they are determined. If the program price is not yet determined at the time of application, students will be offered three business days in which to withdraw without financial consequence once the price is posted. There will be an updated individual budget sheet for each program that outlines details on what’s included in the program fee. There will be no additional tuition cost for this new MayTerm — only the costs listed on that budget sheet
Elon Global Scholarships will be available for May Term 2021 programs. Students can apply for an Elon Global Scholarship at the time of application.
Once programs are confirmed, we will open applications in the following order:
  1. Students previously accepted to the program (students have two weeks to confirm)
  1. Students previously wait listed to the program (students have two weeks to confirm)
  1. Students previously accepted or wait listed to any Winter Term 2021 program
  1. As space allows, open application to all students
More detail will be provided once programs are confirmed.
Seniors graduating in May 2021 are eligible to participate in these May Term 2021 programs AND can participate in Commencement ceremonies. The course will be recorded on their transcript. If seniors “graduate” in May, the course grade will not have an impact on the graduation GPA, which includes Latin Honors. However, the grade earned will affect the cumulative average that continues to calculate after graduation.
COVID-19 Statement
The GEC is closely evaluating risks associated with COVID-19 and travel, both in determining which programs are viable and how best to operate programs safely. We will provide further detail when we post which programs are available.
Thank you for your flexibility and time,
 The Global Short-Term Programs Team

July 13 message from the short-term programs team

Dear Students,

First, I want to begin by thanking you all for your patience and understanding as you worked with us to navigate logistical challenges and ethical considerations involved with implementing Global Short-Term Programs this upcoming January 2021 winter term.

Second, it is with mixed emotions that the Global Education Center announces that we are cancelling our global short-term programming for January 2021. Our office believes strongly in global education as a high impact practice. These intense, mentored experiences underscore Elon’s mission and highlight our community’s commitment to being global learners. After many discussions with program leaders and providers, we believe that the best course of action at this time is to cancel our faculty-led programming for January 2021. There are many factors that went into this decision, including but not limited to:

  • Ethical concerns involving bringing COVID-19 to host communities
  • The student experience
  • Health of faculty and students
  • Financial implications for students and families
  • Challenges with forecasting the COVID virus, travel restrictions, and changing policies of other countries as well as our own country
  • Challenges to planning and delivering a travel-based program which meets the University’s standards of physical distancing and avoidance of large groups and uncontrolled public places

We are waiting to hear from university leadership about whether or not the winter term and spring term calendars will be shifted. The GEC will contact you all as soon as possible about any updates with our global short-term programs for next academic year.

Ideally, we would have all known about the potential calendar shifts before making this announcement for a smoother transition and more clarity moving forward. In a global pandemic, that is just an unreasonable ask. We understand that you may need to make plans with your family and academic advisor(s).

Next steps:

  • Another communication will go out by the beginning of August.
  • The GEC will make changes to your OnTrack registration at the beginning of August, before the August 10 reopening of course registration.
  • At the same time, your status within our application system will also be changed.

I am truly sorry about the decision, but I know it is in the best interest of everyone. Our office is looking at creative solutions to offer students opportunities for global engagement ELR this year in addition to semester programming.

Please do not hesitate to reach out with questions.

Best wishes,

Janelle and the Global Short-Term Programs Team

Spring 2021

Most spring 2021 study abroad and Study USA programs are operating.

The GEC is working closely with our on-site partners to determine each program’s viability, risks, deadlines and process.

Students were sent in October an email with as much information as we know now, including no-risk withdrawal deadlines, other important dates, insurance information, risk and travel considerations, and information about two additional statements students are to read and sign in their MyElonGlobal application. Those statements are posted here for your reference:

Healthy Commitment and Informed Consent for Global Engagement during COVID-19 – Addendum to Assumption of Risks

Healthy Commitment and Informed Consent for Global Engagement during COVID-19 – Addendum to Student Responsibilities

Students’ iNext insurance documents are also posted here for your reference:

iNext coverage FAQ, 2020-21

iNext policy details, 2020-21

iNext policy supplement, 2020-21

Summer 2021

Most summer 2021 study abroad and all Study USA programs are operating.

Fall 2021

Most fall 2021 study abroad and all Study USA programs are operating.

The withdrawal deadline for most programs is EXTENDED to June 3, 2021. See the deadlines page for more information.

Winter 2022

Winter Term 2022 programs and fall 2021 travel-embedded courses are announced and accepting applications. Learn more from the status chart.

Spring 2022

Most spring 2022 study abroad and all Study USA programs are operating and accepting applications.