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Oakland University is constantly working to provide a healthy and safe environment for all students, faculty, staff and visitors. We are committed to educate and train individuals in the prevention and control of infectious diseases as well as the potential for widespread health emergencies.

PREVENTION IS PRIMARY College students should pack more than their iPad and mini-fridge. Health authorities say that they should also pack an ounce of prevention against communicable diseases.  Living in residence halls, apartments, and off-campus housing can be a great experience, but know that everything which you own will probably be used by one person or another at some time.  If you have roommates and visitors, be aware that items such as phones, computer keyboards, TV remote controls, and even towels are all carriers of infectious disease.

Summer break means an escape from the daily grind and possibly some traveling. Similar to last year and since 2012 (record number of OU students venture abroad), OU travelers will have a safe and enjoyable adventure.  For some though, the trip can become unpleasant due to a whole host of possible diseases, tainted food and drink, and health risks.  Be Prepared.  This is your time.  It is all about you, and YOU are in charge of your health, safety, and well-being.  Students planning travel should check out the Health section at the website Students Abroad.

It is also a good idea to plan and prepare a Travel Health Kit. The purpose of packing a travel health kit is to ensure travelers have supplies they need to:

  • manage pre-existing medical conditions
  • prevent illness related to traveling, and
  • take care of minor health problems as they occur

For a more comprehensive list of supplies, click on: Travel Health Kit


  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If you don't have soap, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes.
  • Protect yourself from the sun. Use sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher, a hat or head covering, sun glasses.
  • Drink and eat regularly to stay hydrated.
  • Practice healthy behaviors. If you drink alcohol, drink in moderation. Do not drive if you have been drinking. Use latex condoms if you have sex. Make sure equipment used for tattoos and piercings is clean and sterile.
  • Stay alert, especially in crowds. Choose a place to meet if you get separated from your group. Travel with a friend or group rather than going out alone.
  • Exercise caution when traveling. Wear a helmet when you ride a bike or motorcycle and be careful crossing the street; make sure you look for oncoming traffic from both directions. If traveling by car, use seatbelts and  be familiar with traffic in countries that travel on the left side of the road.
  • Follow local laws and customs.
  • Make a photocopy of your passport to carry with you at all times.


Relax!  Hopefully your trip included fun and excitement, but if illness and injury were also a part of your trip, make sure you follow up with a health care provider.  Be sure to share the details of your itinerary and activities with your provider.