On March 11, the Danish Prime Minister announced sweeping measures to mitigate the impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic in Denmark. These include closing all schools and universities in Denmark, and asking employees to work from home. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) also raised all of Europe to a Level 3.
It is with heavy hearts that, given these new restrictions, we were compelled to suspend all in-person activities at DIS Copenhagen effective March 12th. Remote learning will begin again on March 30th.
During this time of transition, you likely have many questions – below are answers to many of these and we will continue to update these FAQs as we know more.
Q / When do I need to leave by?
A / You should have left the country no later than March 19th. Be aware that after this date, your residency status will have changed which means you will no longer have access to healthcare and insurance in Denmark. The DIS Copenhagen Office is now closed and staff and faculty are working remotely.
A few students have been delayed for various reasons and are in individual contact with DIS.
Q / Do I need to self-quarantine once I arrive home?
A / Be aware of entrance requirements and processes at your final destination. The U.S. State Department has announced that all travelers entering the U.S. from (most of) Europe will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days. Please follow airline and TSA instructions upon your arrival. If you are not traveling back to the U.S., please check your destination country’s recommendations in regard to self-quarantine after returning.
Q / Can I still complete my coursework for the semester?
A / Yes! 99%* of DIS courses will continue via remote learning, so that nearly all students can earn full credit for the semester. Remote learning will commence on March 30th, and faculty will be in contact by March 25th with more information on how to prepare for this new platform. Please visit the spring 2020 calendar for the full timeline of the semester.
However, it is imperative that you discuss remote learning with your home university, as it is ultimately their decision whether and how to accept the credit you earn at DIS. If you have any questions, please contact Academic Support at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Unfortunately, there are three courses that can offer only partial credit for the semester, as these courses cannot be completed via remote learning. They are:
- Geographic Information Systems: Applied Climate Change Cases
- Positive Psychology Practicum: Methods and Practice
- Pregnancy, Birth, and Infancy in Denmark
Faculty are contacting their students in these courses, and DIS has informed relevant home universities so they can work with students on any implications related to credit transfer, financial aid, and/or academic degree progress.
Q / What is the policy on course drop and pass/fail requests?
A / We have updated our course enrollment and grading policy for spring 2020 students. The course drop and pass/fail deadline is extended until Friday, April 10th. Please visit our Course Enrollment and Grading page for specific details and information.
Q / Will DIS reimburse me for any portion of my overall DIS fees?
A / DIS will be refunding a total of $2,000 as a portion of your Housing and Student Affairs fee. We will be in touch with you directly, or your home institution (if they paid your fees to DIS on your behalf), and we expect to process refunds within three weeks after we have received all necessary information.
Please look out for an email from the DIS Finance Team if you paid your fees directly to us.
If your home institution paid your Housing & Student Affairs fee on your behalf, contact your Study Abroad Office to learn how the refund will be handled.
Q / Can I get financial support for my rebooked flight home?
If your airline did not allow you to change your flight at no cost, DIS will cover up to $300 in fees related to flight change and newly booked fights. To request this refund, please send an email to email@example.com with your student ID number and name in the subject line.
The email must include your bank information:
- Beneficiary Name:
- Account Number:
- Bank Routing Number or SWIFT Code:
Please attach receipt documentation for the change fee or new booking fare claimed.
We expect to refund the amount to you within three weeks after we have received all the necessary information from you. If you have already sent DIS an email about your flight change fees, we have forwarded this to our Finance Team already and they should have been in touch with you to continue the correspondence and refund process.
Q / Will DIS reimburse me for the independent travels I had to cancel?
A / No, unfortunately, we cannot reimburse you for any independent/personal travel costs. We recommend checking with your airline regarding refunds or credits they are offering in light of the COVID-19 situation; it may also be possible to change your destination, and given the circumstances, some airlines are waiving change fees to do so. You could also check with the credit card you used to book your trip, in case they offer travel insurance.
Q / Other than keeping up with my remote learning courses, is there anything I still need to do?
A / Here is what you may still need to do, related to your departure:
- If you have a Commuter Card, please take the time to go into the DSB app and refund your Commuter Card via the ‘refund’ button in the app
- Cancel your automatic renewal phone plan with Lebara and remove your SIM card
Q / How do I turn off my cell phone plan?
A / Go into your MyLebara account under “My Products” to turn off auto-renewal. Find more information on the Lebara website.
Q / How do I turn off my Commuter Card in the DSB app?
A / Please go into the DSB app and swipe ‘refund’ to your current pass. If you set up future passes, please refund these as well.
Q / Can I still file an insurance claim?
A / You can still make an insurance claim as long as it is related to an occurrence that was before March 19th. We strongly encourage you to file as soon as possible. Follow our instructions on how to file an insurance claim.
Q / Will DIS fine me for missing keys and lack of cleaning in my housing site?
A / We know many of you had to leave your housing sites in a rush, and have therefore decided to waive fees for missing keys and lack of cleaning.
Q / What happens to items left behind in my housing site?
A / We have been busy emptying housing sites. We cannot return any items accidentally left behind.
However, know that most of your left items have gone to some great causes! Clothing and shoes have been donated to the Syrian Refugee NGO ‘Viomis‘ along with all bedding. We’ve also been able to donate much of the food left behind to local families through Food Sharing Copenhagen.
Q / What about library books that were left behind?
A / Books have been picked up and delivered back to the DIS Library. We will waive any fines associated with DIS library books. Books belonging to libraries other than DIS will be returned on your behalf. But DIS is not liable for any fees incurred.
Q / What is the policy on left packages or mail?
A / All names were removed from mailboxes on Friday, March 20. Any package that is attempted to be delivered from now on will be returned to sender. Any packages that have already been delivered will be sent to you by DIS once the self-quarantine time in Denmark is over and staff are back in the office. Please note that DIS is unable to assist in receiving packages.
Q / What do I do with my food stipend purchase card?
A / If you had a purchase card and took it home with you, don’t worry – you do not need to mail it back to us. All cards have now been canceled.
Q / What mental health resources are available to me?
A / If you have been receiving on-going therapy while in Scandinavia, your continuation of care is important. Here are some suggestions that might be available to you once you return home:
- Contact your home school’s health center to see what support is available
- Your parent(s) may have an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) through their employer that offers mental health therapy to dependents
- If you are privately insured, go to the health plan’s website or call the number on your insurance card for information on coverage and in-network providers
- For those who can no longer receive support services at their school and are not independently insured, you can search for options in your community that offer free and/or a sliding-fee (income-based) scale for services, such as local social service agencies or community-based healthcare centers. Psychology Today is also a great resource to locate a therapist by zip code or city; many providers (including private practice) offer a sliding-fee scale to those who qualify, just call and ask!
For international students who are back in their home country: You can check with your university health services office to see what supports are available, find a therapist by country on International Therapist Directory, or find support for emotional distress at Befrienders Worldwide.
We also suggest the following crisis resources:
- National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI): Free 24/7 Crisis help. Text NAMI to 741741
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA’s) Disaster Distress Helpline: 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746
- Befrienders Worldwide (international students)