Semester at Sea has been closely monitoring the current Ebola outbreak in areas of West Africa and staying in contact with the U.S. State Department, World Health Organization (WHO), and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for the latest updates on the situation.
On Friday, August 29, the Ministry of Health in Senegal reported the nation‚Äôs first confirmed case of the deadly virus. Furthermore, the WHO has warned that the outbreak could infect more than 20,000 people before it ends.
As the health and safety of our participants remains the top priority of Semester at Sea, the Fall 2014, Spring 2015, and Fall 2015¬†voyages will not visit Senegal or Ghana as originally planned. Though Ghana has not reported a confirmed case of Ebola, the rapid spread of the virus and state of affairs in West Africa raises concerns about a potential future risk in Ghana, as well as our ability to easily vacate the area in a potential emergency situation.
In lieu of Senegal and Ghana, the Fall 2014 voyage will now visit the ports of Civitavecchia, Italy and Barcelona, Spain. The ship will dock in Civitavecchia from October 15 ‚Äì 18, and in Barcelona from October 20 ‚Äì 23. We will arrive in Civitavecchia at 0800 on October 15 and depart at 2000 on October 18. We will arrive in Barcelona at 0800 on October 20 and depart at 2000 on October 23.
In lieu of Senegal and Ghana, the Spring 2015 voyage will now visit the ports of Walvis Bay, Namibia and Casablanca, Morocco. The ship will dock in Walvis Bay from April 2 – 6, and in Casablanca from April 18 ‚Äì 22. We will arrive in Walvis Bay at 0800 on April 2 and depart at 0800 on April 6. We will arrive in Casablanca at 0800 on April 18 and depart at 2000 on April 22.
In lieu of Senegal and Ghana, the Fall 2015 voyage will now visit the ports of¬†Piraeus, Greece, and Casablanca, Morocco. We have also adjusted our stay in the Port of Spain, Trinidad to two days in order to capture needed academic sea days.
All¬†ports were selected based on safety and security, minimal disruption to the academic program, and operational feasibility.
Fall 2014 participants who have purchased field programs in Senegal or Ghana will be reimbursed to their shipboard accounts.
In the meantime, please let us know if you have any urgent questions. We appreciate your cooperation and understanding.