Oregon university students in Mexico amongst swine flu outbreak

Oregon university students in Mexico amongst swine flu outbreak »Play Video
Yesenia Valdez, a 23-year-old student at OSU, is from a town just outside Guadalajara in Jalisco, Mexico. Her grandparents, three sisters and other family are still there amongst the swine flu outbreak.

CORVALLIS and EUGENE, Ore. --- There are no reported cases of swine flu in Oregon, but the flu is still affecting some Oregonians.

The University of Oregon and Oregon State University combined have about 25 students currently studying abroad in Mexico. Right now, all of those students have been accounted for and are healthy.

Both Universities also have a number of students who are from Mexico or have family there. Yesenia Valdez, a 23-year-old student at OSU, is from a town just outside Guadalajara in Jalisco, Mexico. Her grandparents, three sisters and other family are still there amongst the swine flu outbreak.

"You worry about it," she said. "It's like being there actually because your mind is there. Your thinking about it, it's hard."

Her family said the town has cancelled its annual fair and closed all schools until May 6, 2009. She said her family is scared to go outside and doing all they can to stay healthy. "They are wearing their masks, everywhere they go," she said.

Valdez is worried about the health of her family but has high hopes. "I have faith," she said. "I do believe that this whole problem is going to be resolved somehow."

Both schools are offering counseling services to students like Valdez with family in Mexico.

Todd Simmons at OSU said they are remaining in ongoing direct communication with the students currently abroad.

"Were trying to keep a good account of where they are and do whatever we might need to do as a university to support them," Simmons said. So far those students have not decided to return home just becuase of the flu outbreak.