10/1/20: In light of the significant and prolonged uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Harvard Summer School is closely monitoring the feasibility of operating our 2021 summer study abroad programs. The health and safety of our students and staff is paramount and we will continue to monitor the situation closely and provide more information as it becomes available. For further travel resources, please visit the Harvard Global Support Services website and Harvard’s coronavirus website which is frequently updated and contains the latest announcements, guidance and resources.
Congratulations on your acceptance to a Harvard Summer School study abroad program. We hope you are looking forward to a summer of focused study and invigorating exploration.
You are required to complete all the steps and tasks listed on this page before you depart for your study abroad program. Be sure to also explore the resources listed here to help you stay safe and healthy while abroad. Note that your program may consult with Harvard officials or officials at your school about your ability to meet the requirements of program participation.
Pass/fail option: Only Harvard College undergraduates may take courses on a pass/fail basis. You may change your status to pass/fail by completing a pass/fail request form and returning it to the Academic Services Office for processing by the deadline for your program.
Submit a Harvard Summer School Conditions of Participation and Assumption of Risk and General Release Form
If you are a student in any of the following programs, you must submit the program-specific version.
- Dakar, Senegal
- Madrid, Spain
- Paris, France (cultural studies)
- Seoul, Korea
- Venice, Italy
- If you are a student in any other program, submit the General Conditions of Participation and General Release Form.
- The Conditions of Participation and General Release Form is due in April (date TBA).
- If you are a student in any of the following programs, you must submit the program-specific version.
Submit a Media Release Form
- The Media Release Form is due in April (date TBA).
Submit a completed Health Clearance Packet to Harvard University Health Services or your primary care physician for review and clearance.
- The Health Clearance portion of the packet must be submitted by April (date TBA).
- When submitting the Health Clearance packet to HUHS or your physician, please include the International SOS country report for your program destination; you can access the report in the "Study Abroad" section at the bottom of the HSS Forms page.
- The Health History portion of the packet should NOT be returned to the Summer School.
- Failure to submit the Health Clearance Packet will result in your removal from the program. As part of the health clearance process, students who do not receive health clearance will not be approved, may be dismissed from, or may be otherwise told to discontinue their Harvard travel plans.
Complete a mandatory Harvard Global Support Services (GSS) online orientation. This covers important health and safety measures. Plan 45 to 60 minutes to watch in one sitting or across multiple sessions. The online orientation must be completed by April (date TBA).
- Note: This orientation requires login with a HarvardKey. Non-Harvard students will receive HarvardKey information in early April.
Update your travel record in the International SOS MyTrips system.
- In mid-April, the Harvard Summer School Study Abroad Office will enter your upcoming travel in the MyTrips system. After you receive confirmation of this via email, you are required to update your itinerary in the MyTrips system so that the University and International SOS can locate you and provide assistance in an emergency. To do this, you should create a "New Trip" in your account and enter your flight details, local phone number, and other relevant information.
- You are also required to update your registration throughout your trip if necessary (e.g., your local cell phone number, changed travel plans, any overnight travel, and changes to your contact information), so that Harvard can quickly locate and communicate with you in the event of an emergency.
- You are also encouraged to download the International SOS Assistance App. It provides helpful country-specific information and security alerts, and a view of your registered itinerary from the MyTrips system. With one tap, you can also call for help from Harvard’s 24/7 emergency medical and security hotline or chat with a case manager from within the app.
Obtain the appropriate travel documents, such as a passport and/or a visa.
- Each country's visa and passport requirements are different and depend on your citizenship, reason for travel, length of stay, and number of entries required. Be sure that you understand your destinations’ requirements and apply early to avoid delays or disruptions in your travel.
- Your program director may be able to give you general visa guidance, but you are responsible for learning the requirements of your destination based on your citizenship and for obtaining your own visa should one be required.
- Harvard Global Support Services has partnered with Travel Document Systems, Inc. (TDS), a visa and passport services vendor. For free, they’ll advise you on outbound visa requirements, and for a small fee, they’ll assist you with routine and expedited applications. Visit the TDS portal for Harvard travelers.
- If you are required to show proof of enrollment, contact email@example.com for a letter.
- Complete any program-specific requirements.
- Review Harvard Summer School Study Abroad policies and safety information.
Read the Harvard Summer School guidelines.
- All students are responsible for knowing and adhering to Harvard Summer School regulations. You should also be familiar with Harvard Summer School general policies for study abroad programs.
- In May, you will receive a link to the electronic version of the Harvard Summer School Student Handbook. Please read this document carefully. While the resources and activities will vary at each locale, the rules and policies described in the sections “Academic Policies” and “Student Conduct” apply to participants in all Harvard Summer School programs.
- Review Harvard Global Support Service's resources, including news & advice and country-specific information.
- If you are in need of accommodations, contact the Accessibility Services Office as soon as possible.
Health Insurance Coverage
All Harvard Summer School students are required to have health insurance. If you do not have health insurance, you will be required to purchase the Harvard Summer School Insurance Plan (valid for the duration of the program) as part of your registration. All students will be enrolled in the Summer School insurance plan at the time of registration, and charged the premium. If you already have health insurance that covers major illnesses and accidents in your destination country or countries, you will be able to waive the Summer School plan. Be sure that your health insurance covers you in your destination country. Harvard Students: see also the Harvard University Student Health Program website. Please note: International SOS is not health insurance.
Harvard Global Support Services
Traveling abroad can be deeply rewarding for students. It also requires careful planning, even for seasoned travelers. Harvard Global Support Services (GSS) provides resources related to safety and security, health, culture, and outbound immigration to inform your pre-departure planning and help you stay safe while abroad. Review the GSS list of important reminders and steps for before you leave and while traveling.
Harvard GSS manages the University’s International SOS membership. International SOS provides 24/7 medical, mental health, and security support and evacuation services to students enrolled in any Harvard Summer School study abroad program. To expedite access to these services, it is vital that you update your itinerary in the International SOS MyTrips system before you leave. To do this, you should create a "New Trip" in your account and enter your flight details, local phone number, and other relevant information.
While abroad, Harvard Summer School study abroad participants can contact International SOS for medical, mental health, and security assistance at +1-617-998-0000, or connect through the Assistance App. Case managers will advise you on your situation and work with the international safety & security team in Harvard GSS to connect you with appropriate resources. Review the full list of medical, security, and travel assistance services.
The International SOS member portal is a great place to learn about your destination. It provides helpful country-specific information, including city summaries, social and business etiquette, local laws and customs, required vaccines, weather patterns, and more.