Campus & Community / News

Campus community reacts to Japanese disasters

DU’s Study Abroad Office has been monitoring the situation in Japan during the past week. Given the ongoing nature of the crisis, the office has decided to cancel its spring semester programs in Tokyo and Osaka. DU currently has three students in Japan. 

Earlier this week, administrators in DU’s Study Abroad Office decided to cancel the spring semester program at Sophia University in Tokyo due to rising concerns associated with the aftermath of the earthquake, tsunami and a damaged nuclear power plant in Okuma.

The remainder of the semester at Kansai Gaidai University, located in Osaka about 240 miles southwest of Tokyo, also has been cancelled. DU has mandated that its students leave Japan at this time.

According to Eric Gould, vice provost for internationalization, a March 17 travel warning from the U.S. State Department urges American citizens to defer travel to Japan and says that travelers already in Japan should consider departing.

“We are following the warning issued by the State Department,” Gould says. “Our interests are in the safety of our students, and we no longer feel comfortable with the prospect of DU students remaining in Japan.”

“Our hearts are with the people in Japan who have been affected by this crisis,” Gould adds.

Mary Boevers, DU’s director of international student and scholar services, says 13 Japanese students were enrolled at DU during winter quarter. 

“We are working with these students in various ways as they cope with the tragedy back home,” Boevers says. “Since they are so far away from family and friends, we are making an extra effort to identify available resources to help them.”

Additionally, between March 21–25 students, faculty and staff can stop by Driscoll Bridge from 9 a.m.–5 p.m. to donate to the American Red Cross, fold origami cranes and sign a book of condolences that will be delivered to the Japanese Consul.

The event is co-sponsored by the office of the University Chaplain, the Office of Internationalization, the Japanese Student Association and the DU Students Learning Japanese.

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *