Skip to content
  • Print
return to Education Abroad


Education Abroad

International Programs and Services
Bechtel International Center
3601 Pacific Ave.
Stockton, CA 95211

Health and Safety

Medical Care

  • Insurance: Pacific requires you to have international health insurance while abroad.
  • Emergency Travel Assistance: In situations where an emergency evacuation is needed, all Pacific students are covered by CHUBB. Your card is always accessible in your Abroad Office application.
  • Vaccinations: Some vaccinations may be required to enter certain countries. Other vaccinations may simply be recommended. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a comprehensive website that lists required and suggested vaccinations as well as general information on health concerns in all parts of the world
  • Specific Health Concerns in your Host Country: The World Health Organization has a detailed listing of problems in specific countries. When you go in for your physical be sure to know what sorts of health concerns
  • Medications: If you are currently taking medication, be sure to take enough for the entire duration of your stay. You most likely will not be able to find the same medication overseas and it is usually ILLEGAL to have medication shipped to you from the United States or for another person to carry it across a border for you. For customs purposes, it is advisable to leave all prescriptions in their original labeled containers. Also, keep an original copy of the doctor's prescription with your passport. These measures should assist your processing through customs and ensure that you won't break any laws of the country you are entering. If the medication you are taking contains narcotic substances, you may want to consult your program manager, provider, or the consulate of the country where you will be studying to see if it's legal, i.e Adderall, Ritalin.

Mental Health

CAPS has an after-hours support line that is run by licensed clinicians throughout the country. Therefore, no matter what time it might be in a person's respective country, this line will offer support and guidance to a student, parent, faculty, staff, etc., and answer the phone as if they are Pacific CAPS. The number to call is 209.946.2315 x2, option 4.


Familiarize Yourself

  • Explore your new neighborhood and campus during the day and become familiar with areas around you.
  • Ask fellow students or staff members about areas you should avoid at night.
  • Always carry the address and telephone number of your new home with you until you have memorized them.
  • Know where the nearest police station, hospital, and embassy/consulate are, and keep emergency numbershandy.
  • Become familiar with the common laws and customs of the host country.

Be Smart

  • Exercise the same precautions you would in any U.S. city.
  • Do not walk alone at night. It is better to call a taxi or walk with a friend.
  • Never carry large amounts of cash! Use concealed money belts or a concealed purse for your passport, visa (if needed), money, credit cards and other documents.
  • Do not give out your name or address to unknown people.
  • Stay away from unsafe or unknown areas after dark.
  • Avoid demonstrations, especially in politically volatile countries. What appears to be a peaceful situation couldsuddenly become dangerous and you could become caught in the middle.

Stay Informed

  • Stay well-informed about local and regional news and conditions.
  • Read newspapers with international coverage of local issues.
  • In some countries, anti-Americanism requires that U.S. students be extra prudent and cautious.
  • Check the U.S. State Department Travel Advisories regularly:

Keep in Contact With Home

  • Your parents and friends will have concerns while you are away. Please keep in contact with them on a regularbasis and let them know how you are.
  • If you plan to travel during your stay, leave your itinerary with your on-site program coordinator and with your family.

Race and Ethnicity

No two students studying abroad ever have quite the same experience, even in the same program and country. This same variety is true for students of color and those from U.S. minority ethnic or racial backgrounds. Reports from past participants vary from those who felt exhilarated by being free of the American context of race relations, to those who experienced different degrees of 'innocent' curiosity about their ethnicity, to those who felt they met bothfamiliar and new types of ostracism and prejudice and had to learn new coping strategies. Very few minority students conclude that racial or ethnic problems which can be encountered in other countries represent sufficient reasons for not going. On the other hand, they advise knowing what you are getting into and preparing yourself for it. Try to find others on your campus who have studied abroad and who can provide you with some counsel.


Countries view gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation in many different ways. Some host cultures may be more welcoming and tolerant of LGBT identities than in the US, but others may have laws that criminalize homosexuality. Gender norms vary from country to country as well, and it is important to do research on those prior to departure. Learn the laws of your host country regarding LGBT issues, same-sex sexual behavior andexpressions of LGBT identity and community. It is important to remember that you will no longer be protected by US laws once you leave to go abroad. If same-sex acts are illegal in your host country and you are reported for engaging in them, you could be arrested and imprisoned in that country. Regardless of the laws of your host country, it is always important to research whether an environment is affirming to LGBT people.