St. Mary's University students studying abroad undergo terrorism safety training

Students advised to avoid large groups of people

SAN ANTONIO – As terror attacks continue around the world, at least one San Antonio university is making efforts to better prepare students studying abroad to be safe.

St. Mary's University officials said they've always offered training sessions before sending kids to their flagship London and Spain programs. But the focus these days centers on terrorism safety, which includes informing students to avoid large crowds of people and places where Americans tend to hang out.

"Always be aware of their surroundings, know where they are, what they're doing," Center For International Programs Executive Director Alfredo Varela said.

St. Mary's has study programs all over the world. Students are required to always have a cellphone and a travel itinerary. If there is an international incident, the school asks them to check in. When socializing, students are asked not to drink in excess and to have a buddy.

MBA student Jennifer Lloyd just returned from studying in India. She said she learned of the terrorist attacks in Brussels on the plane ride home. She said she feels for the people involved.

"I was in Germany when 9/11 happened, and so I had an odd experience there as an American abroad when our homeland was subject to attack," Lloyd said.

Despite the attacks, Lloyd plans to study in South Korea in May.

"I don't feel like limiting my experience of the world, based on the actions of other people who would like us to be afraid," Lloyd said.