Loyola’s Vietnam Center will remain closed to students for the spring 2022 semester, while the university’s Rome campus will remain open, the university announced in an email Sept. 21.
The Vietnam Center has been closed since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. The university said it’s continued suspension of operations at it’s Vietnam campus is due to the ongoing COVID-19 spread and low vaccination rates in the country.
“Our concern rests with the safety of Loyola and visiting students, with staff and faculty members of the LVC, as well as with our Vietnamese partners; we maintain hope that we will be able to continue offering academic programs in Vietnam when health conditions permit,” the email read.
Vietnam has vaccinated 17.4% of its population and has an average of 10,340 daily new COVID-19 infections, according to Reuters.
Loyola’s other abroad campus, the John Felice Rome Center (JFRC), was reopened to students this fall and will remain open for the spring 2022 semester, the university said in the email. The university said it’s planning on increasing the number of students in Italy this spring.
In a pre-COVID year, about 250 students studied abroad each semester across both campuses, The Phoenix reported. This fall, there are currently only 84 students enrolled at the JFRC, the email said.
Italy currently has a daily average of 4,096 new COVID-19 cases reported daily and about 68.8% of the country is vaccinated, according to Reuters.
The JFRC is also celebrating its 60th anniversary in 2022 after its founding in 1962.
“Generations of students have benefited from study abroad in Italy, and we are very happy that in this anniversary year faculty and staff in Rome will be able to welcome students and continue to offer this transformational experience that is so much a part of Loyola’s tradition in meaningful global engagement,” the email said.