Onward and upward! We are moving full-steam ahead with our 2021 school year plans. The current situation continues to improve here in Barcelona, Spain and Europe. We are confident that summer term 2021 and subsequent terms will go on as planned. In any case, it is fortunate that ALBA is a small program with incredibly quick and high adaptability. The ALBA Covid-19 safety and contingency plans are poised and ready to meet any challenges that could arise.
The Small Group Concept
Unlike most other Study Abroad programs, ALBA is built on the small-group principle, making it very flexible and ready for change at all times. With no more than 60 students per term, it is easy to get to know all of our students and keep track of their specific needs.
We have made the pertinent adjustments to our school in order to be prepared to comfortably receive students in person once again.
The ALBA facilities are comprised of 4,800 Sq Ft, in which we have various common areas and study rooms (), six classrooms (), four lavatories (), and two administration offices (). Even with all 60 students at the ALBA facilities at once (which never happens), just with the common areas and classrooms, we would have the currently suggested 27 Sq Ft of space per student, allowing us to maintain more than adequate social distancing from one person to the next.
Additionally, ALBA students have access to Universitat Pompeu Fabra libraries and study rooms, as well as to public libraries that follow strict health measures.
We are following the indications and protocols of the Spanish health authorities in order to maintain a healthy environment in our facilities.
We have sanitary gel and tissues at the students’ disposition in the common areas and the entrances.
We have hygiene reminder signs and distancing measure reminders distributed in key points around the facilities.
The cleaning service frequency has been increased and is using products that are proven to be effective against the virus.
We have set a limit of students for each classroom based on the amount of Sq Ft, in order to guarantee a safety distance of five feet between students. This translates into a maximum occupancy of only 30-32% of our facility’s actual capacity.
Schedules will be arranged to avoid peaks in attendance and guarantee an even flow of students during the entire day.
We will only be offering housing options within a 30 minutes walking distance to ALBA. As such, students will be able to avoid public transportation, despite public transportation now being deemed safe.
ALBA works with one of the best private hospitals in the city that ensures:
COVID-19 tests to confirm infection or antibodies
Hospitalization and treatment if necessary
24/7 emergency service
English-speaking professionals and physicians
Online doctor visits if necessary
Cooking Classes – Cooking groups will be determined based on current guidelines.
Excursions – We will be running the full-day excursions, following Spanish authorities’ recommendations regarding transportation.
Mixers, movie nights, seminars and other ALBA events – We will still be holding the regular events but following distancing and other health protection measures.
Orientation – We will hold an online Pre-Departure Orientation 7-10 days before the recommended Arrival Date.
Arrival Quarantine – There is no arrival quarantine anticipated for students arriving in late September. It might be recommended that students get tested within 48-hours of departing the U.S. and carrying the test certification on their person. If there is an arrival quarantine in place, students will stay in their accommodation the required number of days and do the first few classes online through the ALBA GLE.
What happens in the event of temporary or permanent interruption to in-person classes?
For the coming 2020-2021 school year, ALBA will be offering both in-person classes and online GLE classes for all courses. This means that, should the program be interrupted for any length of time, the GLE will be in place and classes will continue until we can return to in-person classes.
What will happen with students that become sick?
If a student should become sick, that student will self-isolate in their own, or alternative, accommodation and attend their classes online until being cleared by a physician.
ALBA has been working on a Contingency Plan that considers all kinds of scenarios in the case of an upturn of the infection at some point. This plan is coherent with the rest of the study abroad industry in Spain, the recommendations of the Spanish health authorities, and the US Embassy in Madrid.
Termspecific Status Update
Fall Term 2020
The Fall 2020 ALBA Study Abroad Program has been canceled. Students have been provided the following options: Cancel and receive a refund, defer to another term, and/or choose our online program.
Winter Term 2021
The Winter 2021 ALBA Study Abroad Program has been canceled. Students have been provided the following options: Cancel and receive a refund, defer to another term, and/or choose our online program.
Spring Term 2021
The Spring 2021 ALBA Study Abroad Program has been canceled. Students have been provided the following options: Cancel and receive a refund, defer to another term, and/or choose our online program.
Summer Term 2021 and onwards
February 25th, 2020 - Our ALBA Study Abroad Intensive Summer 2021 program is fully open and we are looking forward to receiving students in Barcelona.
✔ Safety plan
✔ Contingency plan
✔ Health insurance
✔ Small-group (max. 60 students per term)
✔ Spacious facilities
✔ Flexible refund policy
✔ Online classes ready in case necessary
We understand that you may have many questions.
In case you are missing information on a specific topic feel free to contact us.