The US State Department site you visited to apply for a passport is an amazing resource for health and safety information as well:
The International Travel tab links to a wealth of useful information, including:
The Safety Issues page under Tips for Traveling Abroad / A Safe Trip Abroad has great advice on everything from packing to being safe on the street. The Health Issues page under Tips for Traveling Abroad discusses Bringing Medications or Filling Prescriptions Abroad. And youâ€™ll find plenty more useful advice and answers to your questions if you look around.
GOOD ADVICE: The State Department now even has site specifically for students abroad that you should definitely check out:
It covers a lot of the same information, but you might find it less tedious and more accessible.
ALSO consider enrolling in The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), a free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. citizens who are traveling to, or living in, a foreign country. You can do that on the above website. STEP allows you to enter information about your upcoming trip abroad so that the Department of State can better assist you in an emergency. STEP also allows Americans residing abroad to get routine information from the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.