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Personal Communication
It is important, as a study abroad participant, that you develop a plan for how you will communicate with your family and friends while you are away.

When developing this plan, keep in mind that you will be very busy abroad, and that there will most likely be a time difference. Also keep in mind that internet connections can vary depending on your host country. Together or separately, these may factors can result in you having less time to contact loved ones than either party may initially expect. Make sure your family and friends know how you plan to reach out to them and how often you are likely to do so. If you are unsure of these details, talk to your program leader. They should be able to help.

Cell phone companies will often charge for international use, so when thinking of a method of communication, you may want to consider alternative options that will be free to you. A wealth of these services exist. Examples include, but are not limited to: Emergency/Program Communication
Kirkwood has policies in place to ensure that administration, faculty leaders and study abroad staff all have emergency information accessible at all times during the study abroad travel period. Study abroad staff are on call 24/7 during programs and have access to all levels of administration regarding security, counseling, leadership and more. This includes all student information, emergency contacts, health care facilities, itinerary information, in-country contacts, and any other information pertinent to the program and safety of the group. 

Faculty leaders are required to keep an open mode of communication available at all times while leading study abroad and will provide you with their contact information.

Communication with Locals while Abroad
Every culture has different rules and etiquette associated with communication. For instance, in some countries, it is disrespectful to make eye contact when speaking. In others, nodding signifies disagreement. Keep this in mind as you enter your host country. Be polite and respectful, and be sure to learn as much about their customs as you can before you go. 

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