Lexington, Ky. – University of Kentucky International Center Education Abroad officials have been in contact with all UK students studying in France, and all are safe and were not in the areas of the terrorist attacks in France on Nov. 13.
“I have been in touch with all UK students studying in France and all are safe and secure,” said Anthony Ogden, executive director of the Education Abroad program at UK. “Students have been reminded of UK emergency protocols and have been encouraged to contact me and local program staff with any concerns.”
Eight UK students have been studying in France, but not directly in Paris. One of those students was visiting Paris yesterday, and another UK student studying in Germany had also visited Paris yesterday. Both are safe and accounted for. UK Education Abroad has also contacted all UK students who are studying in Europe, asking them to confirm that they were not visiting Paris during the past two days.
The students in other areas of France report that things are calm where they are, transportation is operating normally and they feel safe in their locations. UK officials have advised all UK students currently in France to follow the directions of local authorities and stay in a safe place and they have also advised students to defer nonessential travel to Paris until the situation has returned to normal there. UK officials have also been in contact with students’ families.
One UK faculty member was also in Paris at the time of the attacks. He was not near the area of the attacks, and has also confirmed his safety.
UK routinely collects on-site contact information for all students who engage in international study under its auspices, and also family contact information, so that officials can move as quickly as possible to confirm students’ whereabouts and their safety. UK also collects information on faculty and staff who travel internationally, in order to respond in the event of an emergency.
According to Susan Carvalho, associate provost for internationalization, “In these areas UK remains closely attuned, year-round, to national best practices in managing risk as it continues to support increasing student participation in international education. Our highest priority is to do all we can to ensure the safety of the UK community around the globe, recognizing that 21st-century education does not limit itself to national borders.”
Also, eight Western Kentucky University students who are in Paris have been accounted for and are safe. Five WKU students studying at Harlaxton College in England were in Paris for a weekend trip. Three WKU students who are student teaching in Barcelona, Spain, were also in Paris.