A number of initiatives have been implemented as a result of the unknowns related to travel and COVID-19.
Please know that Drake University continues to invest in your curricular and co-curricular experience, even if you are unable to travel in person to campus. We are committed to ensuring you will feel part of the Drake community.
Registering all international students for a remote First Year Seminar (FYS) course and a remote section of Bulldog Foundations that will be instructed by Kendra Hossain-Morehead, director of international student and scholar services. Both of these courses are required for all first-year students. These courses will be a very important way for you to connect to the institution and to receive a “proper” introduction to all that awaits you during your time at Drake!
Working with college and school deans and faculty to ensure that international students who are unable to travel to the U.S. have enriching remote course experiences. Drake is committed to providing a high-quality, remote learning environment to students who are unable to attend classes in person.
All entering international students (and global nomads) have been assigned an international mentor (called an IMAC). These mentors are here for you to ask questions that you have about life at Drake, starting your first semester, and your arrival at Drake, among other topics.
Your IMAC is typically a resource for you throughout the summer, but will now be available to answer any questions you may through the fall, as well.
On March 20, 2020, the U.S. Department of State indefinitely suspended all consular visa services at U.S. Embassies and Consulates around the globe. It is unclear when these visa services will be made available again. We encourage you to monitor your U.S. Embassy and Consulate information in your home country for updates.
In addition to the suspension of visa services, travel restrictions into the United States are still in place for non-U.S. citizens who are coming from the following countries and regions: China, Brazil, the Schengen area, the United Kingdom, and Ireland. It is unclear when these travel restrictions will be lifted. Updates from the Department of State regarding U.S. policies on visa and travel policies can be found online.
Your country may have also enacted COVID-related travel restrictions at this time. Some countries (including Malaysia and Australia) currently have “exit restrictions” for their citizens wishing to travel. We encourage you to check with your government for the most up-to-date information about exit restrictions and exceptions. Since March, our office has been tracking and monitoring travel restrictions for your home country and would be happy to provide the most current information we have.
As we get closer to the end of summer, you will need to consider your best options for beginning your semester at Drake. If travel restrictions do not lift in time, or if visa services do not resume before the semester starts, your best option may be to begin your studies from your home country. If this is the case, you will need to complete and submit this survey no later than August 14, 2020 to switch to fully-remote coursework for the fall.
International Student Orientation is also moving to a virtual format. Information about Drake, the Des Moines area, and important pieces of your experience at Drake as an international student will be given through an online pre-orientation via Blackboard. We will also host a synchronous virtual orientation on August 18–19, 2020. More information will be sent out to all new international students in the near future about this orientation.
Lastly, check your email for communication from your IMAC. They are excited to get to know you!
For answers regarding other aspects such as Immigration Status or Travel during the COVID-19 pandemic, please see the detailed FAQ. This section contains the most current information.