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UWM shuts down South Korea study abroad program amid coronavirus spread

Posted at 9:29 PM, Feb 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-26 06:28:54-05

MILWAUKEE — The spread of coronavirus touches students in Milwaukee. The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee shut down its study abroad program in South Korea.

"We've made the decision today to bring those students home," said Sharon Gosz, interim director of study abroad for UWM.

UWM has canceled the South Korean study abroad program for the rest of the semester. The decision comes after the Centers for Disease Control raised its travel advisory for South Korea to level 3, the highest level. UWM said it was forced to act for the safety of the students.

"One of our main indicators is the Centers for Disease Control. That warning level three," said Gosz.

After finding out the news, UWM study abroad student Jimmy Onela posted on Instagram, "I will be canceling my spring semester at Korea University due to the coronavirus... I'm honestly heartbroken."

He is one of two students who are currently in the country according to UWM. Neither one is sick.

UWM students Alejandra Jauregui and Kenji Her are friends with Onela. They had plans to study abroad next semester in South Korea at the same university.

"It is making really sad just because I was looking forward to studying abroad in Asia," said Jauregui.

They are being advised by the UWM to select a backup country. Advice Her is already hearing from his mom.

"Yeah, I don't think she is going to let me go. If it gets worse probably not," said Her.

UWM said that the students are scheduled to fly back to the United States on Friday.

The UWM Zilber School of Public Health will hold a panel discussion on Wednesday to talk about the novel virus. The discussion runs from 4:30-6:30 p.m. and is free to attend.

Zilber School Triplex, Room 119
1240 N. 10th Street
Milwaukee, WI 53205 United States

Click here for more information.

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