Due to concerns about severe acute respiratory syndrome, the University of California has suspended education abroad programs to Beijing, China, and ordered students already there to return home immediately.
Professor John Marcum, director for of the UC's EAP programs announced Thursday the temporary halt to foreign exchange studies at Peking University and Beijing Normal University.
To date, SARS has claimed more than 100 lives, and UC officials said there are confirmed cases at Peking University and in the surrounding neighborhoods.
UC officials are expected to issue a decision by May 10 as to whether study abroad programs to Beijing can resume for the upcoming summer session.
“UC is monitoring events closely and is in constant contact with EAP staff abroad as well as with the U.S. State Department, local U.S. embassies and host institutions abroad. UC will continue to provide regular updates and recommendations about specific regional safety concerns,” Marcum said.
Health conditions in other Asian countries are being closely monitored, but Marcum said UC programs in Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and Vietnam remain open at this time.
—Bay City News Service