- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 28, 2014

AMHERST, Mass. (AP) - A university study abroad agency that focuses on environmental issues will no longer offer programs after the University of Massachusetts at Amherst pulled funding.

UMass suspended its partnership with Living Routes on Dec. 27 after what the university said was a potentially life-threatening, health and safety issue involving a student in its fall program in Costa Rica.

The school said it was notified 20 days after the incident. It did not provide details.

Neither UMass nor Living Routes would comment Tuesday.

The 13-year-old nonprofit organization has offered programs in Brazil, India, Israel, Scotland and the U.S. teaching students about environmental issues.

The office in Amherst will close this week. Living Routes said in a statement that spring refunds and lack of funding from a major partner left it no choice but to close its doors.

“These actions are being taken at the direction of our board after thorough consultations with staff and outside advisers and after exploring all possible alternatives,” Living Routes said on its Facebook page.

The 28 students enrolled for the spring programs will be refunded in full, totaling more than $200,000.


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