Michigan State University officials decided Sunday to bring students studying abroad in Israel back early.
Eight students and one faculty member will return Thursday, one week ahead of schedule, because of the escalating violence in the Middle East. One student has already returned.
This was the first trip to Israel sponsored by MSU since it suspended study abroad programs there in 2000 because of the conflict. Kathleen Fairfax, Director of the MSU Study Abroad program, says it doesn't mean MSU won't sponsor more trips there it just means they will have to reevaluate future programs.
News Ten spoke, via phone, with one of the students studying abroad at the Rothberg International School at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Jennifer Bloom says the group is safe and secure and it's hard for them to leave because the fighting is so far from them. The group is located about four hours south of the intense fighting.
MSU will pay for the trip back and arrange for classes to be made up on campus so the students can complete the eight credits they paid for.