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All overseas field trips cancelled for Sussex geography students

Trips to Sri Lanka, LA, Mojave and Greece have all been cancelled.

In the midst of the coronavirus outbreak, the PHE has been advising universities across the UK on how to handle the situation on their campuses.

The University of Sussex, has since received criticism online for how they are responding to the outbreak. However, today they have just emailed students at the university who study geography that all field trips taking place overseas have been cancelled.

The email stated: “In light of the COVID-19 situation, all Geography overseas fieldtrips have been cancelled. This is due to the range of risks presented and the clear need to ensure we protect our students, our staff, and their families – especially where they may be at elevated risk from the virus.

“Our priority has to always be the welfare of staff and students and a further consideration is ensuring that we make decisions early enough and introduce alternative assessment in good time.”

The email also stated that the university understand this is upsetting news for many students who looked forward to the trip abroad. They said: “Students will be offered a full refund on any monies paid to the department for these trips, as well as for costs incurred for flights (if these have not already been cancelled by your providers) and we will be in touch about the process to do this.”

One second year geography student told The Sussex Tab: “Obviously I am very disappointed with my trip being cancelled, however I also understand this had to be done. I respect the universities decision to not go forward with the trips.”

The head of the geography department, Professor David Ockwell, ended the email saying: “I regret enormously the impact that this will have but I hope that you will all understand that we are in an exceptional situation and we have to prioritise staff and student wellbeing.”