Syracuse University study abroad program in Istanbul ends early amid protests

Syracuse University concluded its spring study abroad program in Istanbul early as unrest and protests continue in the region.

Margaret Himley, Associate Provost for International Education and Engagement, says the decision to conclude the program at Bahcesehir University early was a precautionary move. She says the summer program, scheduled to begin later this month, will continue as planned.

The spring program was scheduled to conclude on June 9 and students were very close to end of the semester. Himley says SU made alternative arrangements to help students finish their exams and return to the United States a week ahead of schedule. Himley says SU was in contact with the program director in Istanbul and students as they made decision.

In a statement posted to SU Abroad's website, Himey said, "This is a decision based on an abundance of caution, knowing that arrangements can be made now to get students on flights home as soon as possible and that SU Abroad can arrange alternate ways for students to complete the academic portion of the program."

Approximately 20 students were enrolled in the spring program. Ten boarded flights home on Wednesday and others are flying out later in the week. A few students are staying in the region for internships. While the internships are independent of SUâ??s study abroad program, Himley says SU will do what they can to support the students who stay in the region.

Himley says the movement in Istanbul had spread to the area near Bahcesehir University, which is located in the Besiktas District.

SU plans to continue its summer and fall semester programs in Istanbul, and future semesters, as planned. Himley says SU plans to remain at Bahcesehir University in Istanbul.