Academic Affairs Policy
Name of Policy: International Travel Policy
Original Author(s): Laura DeSisto, Susan Layton, Sherri Montagne, James Nash, Naomi Olson, Amy Rell in consultation with community stakeholders
Approved By RUAC (if required): n/a – Amended policy approved by Deans Council 6.13.2017
Approved By Provost: 6.13.2017
Revision Date (if applicable):
Revisions Proposed By:
Rationale For Revisions:
Revisions Approved By RUAC (if required):
Revisions Approved By Provost:
Scope of Policy
A global perspective is essential to Regis University’s Jesuit mission, and the University has long supported international travel to conduct research, study cultures and languages, promote collaboration with peer institutions, engage in service activities, promote experiential learning and for other academic, administrative, and sanctioned faculty, staff, and student activities. In pursuit of this objective, the University seeks to support and encourage international pursuits by incorporating consideration of potential risks to students, staff, and faculty when planning and conducting international travel. Finally, as a Jesuit, Catholic university, we have an obligation to the tradition that founded this institution. The Jesuits, in particular, have a deeply held commitment to explore and engage with countries far afield, and to meet those from disparate cultures where they are in the spirit of mutual engagement and understanding.
The purpose of this policy is to outline the approval process and requirements for University supported and University related international travel, thereby considering such travel within the context of associated risks. This policy governs all University Sponsored International Travel undertaken by faculty, staff and students. This policy does not pertain to international travel that has no formal affiliation with Regis University.
The Regis University International Travel Policy is intended to guide the aspects of any University sponsored international travel that relates to the travel itself, the risks entailed in travel, and compliance with the University’s required documentation and registration; therefore, it does not refer or apply to the curricular or programmatic components of any University sponsored international travel. The responsibility to vet the curricular and programmatic aspects of any trip or program falls within the purview of the sponsoring college or unit.
1) University Sponsored International Travel: All travel sponsored, organized, facilitated, supported by or related to Regis University which is approved by the University, including but not limited to international travel for research, teaching, conferences, co-curricular or administrative purposes, international study or student group travel (of any duration and whether offered for credit or not) regardless of whether the travel is organized by an administrative unit, colleges, departments, faculty, staff, student organizations, or students.
2) Non-University Sponsored International Travel: Any international travel that has no formal affiliation with and/or is not approved by Regis University. Non-University Sponsored International Travel is not covered by this policy nor is it officially sanctioned by the University or its constituents. Examples include using mission leave for a non-University approved service trip overseas or attending a conference overseas while off contract through use of one’s own funds.
3) Personal Deviation: As defined by Regis University’s international insurance policy, a personal deviation is any travel or activities that are not reasonably related to University Sponsored International Travel, such as early arrival at or late departure from a University-approved international trip. All personal deviations must be reported within a reasonable period of time prior to commencement of the personal deviation. Insurance coverage of personal deviations is not guaranteed and is subject to the provisions of the insurance policy.
4) Global Travel Advisory Council: The Global Travel Advisory Council (GTAC) evaluates the safety and security risks associated with University Sponsored International Travel. The GTAC is responsible for reviewing all conditionally approved international travel and providing recommendations to improve the safety of the travel plans. The Council may consider information from a variety of governmental sources, the University’s insurance carriers, local resources, other trips approved or disapproved within the University, and other expert sources in providing relevant operational, legal, and risk management advice to travelers and Approving Supervisors. The Council does not evaluate the programmatic or curricular dimensions of the proposed travel, but the associated risks and components of travel itself.
5) Approving Supervisor:The approving supervisor is the highest decision-making party within a particular unit.
6) Executive Leadership: Executive Leadership includes the President, Provost, or any of the Vice Presidents of the University.
7) Types of Traveler: Travelers on Regis University sponsored trips and programs fall within a number of different categories. Rules regarding risk management, insurance and liability coverage, and workers’ compensation may differ across/among categories.
These categories include:
- Regis Student: Any undergraduate or graduate student who is registered in courses associated with a degree program or credit bearing non-degree program at the University or participating in an experiential or service learning experience that is specifically approved by the University during an institutional break between classes.
- Regis Employees/Trustees: All individuals employed by the University, either on a full-time or part-time basis, including staff and currently contracted affiliate faculty.
- Other Parties:
o Parents/ Student Family Members
o Community Members/Volunteers
o Independent Contractors
8) Types of Travel:The University sponsors different types of travel. Each category of travel is distinct in terms of the Types of Traveler, scope/purpose of travel, and duration of travel.
- Category 1: Faculty/Staff Traveling on University Business
o Conferences and Workshops
- Category 2: Faculty/Staff Led Student Programs
o Student Activity Trips
o Academic Programs (including experiential/service learning)
o Alumni Trips
- Category 3: University Approved Student Travel
o Study Abroad (8 weeks or longer)
• 3rd party study abroad programs
• Direct Enrollment
o Short-Term Immersion programs (shorter than 8 weeks)
• 3rd party programs
• Immersion rotations abroad
o Students representing Regis at conferences, trainings, or workshops abroad
9) Travel Warnings:The U.S. Department of State (https://www.state.gov/travel) issues Travel Warnings to encourage prospective travelers to know the risks of traveling to a particular country and to strongly consider not traveling to the country at all. Travel Warnings are issued due to reasons such as unstable government, civil war, ongoing intense crime or violence, or frequent terrorist attacks, and the Warnings remain in place until the situation changes.
a. Non-Travel Warning Country means a country that is not subject to a current Travel Warning issued by the U.S. Department of State.
b. Travel Warning Country means a country subject to a current Travel Warning issued by the U.S. Department of State.
10) Travel Alerts: The U.S. Department of State (https://www.state.gov/travel) issues Travel Alerts for short-term events that the Department believes travelers should know about when planning travel to a country. Examples of reasons for issuing a Travel Alert might include an election season that is bound to result in many strikes, demonstrations, or disturbances; a health alert, such as an outbreak of H1N1; or evidence of an elevated risk of terrorist attacks. When these short-term events are over, the Department of State cancels the Travel Alert.
11) States of Emergency: Individual governments may declare a state of emergency due to natural or human-caused disaster, political or civil unrest, or following a declaration of war or situation involving armed conflict. Under international law, governments may temporarily suspend certain rights and freedoms of individuals during a state of emergency to include detention without trial. However, rights including the right to life, the rights to freedom from arbitrary deprivation of liberty, freedom of slavery and to freedom from torture and/or ill-treatment may not be suspended during a state of emergency.
12) Insurance Travel Advisory: Regis University’s international travel insurance provider provides travel advisories for countries or regions that warrant further consideration and care prior to planning travel to or through that area. This may relate to issues including: inclement weather, civil unrest, or disease. These advisories may or may not coincide, predate, or follow from U.S. Department of State Travel Warnings or Alerts.
All employees participating in University Sponsored International Travel are held to the regulations and standards set forth in the Employee Handbook and other official University policies while traveling as a part of University Sponsored International Travel. Student travelers are held to the regulations and standards set forth in the Student Code of Conduct and other official University policies while traveling as a part of a University Sponsored International Travel, regardless of local customs. The Disclaimers section of this policy highlights some of the most relevant University policies beyond the handbooks.
Any University Sponsored International Travel must comply with the University’s insurance coverage and policies. The University’s international insurance policy may cover unforeseen circumstances such as trip cancelations, delays, repatriations, and so on; however, depending on the type of travel, such as personal deviations, participants might want to consider purchasing additional insurance coverage. Individuals who choose to participate in University Sponsored Travel must acknowledge that there is a degree of risk involved in all forms of travel. For this reason, all travelers will be required to sign an Assumption of Risk Waiver as a component of the travel registration system.
Approval Process and Requirements
When a representative of the University plans a trip or program that will involve University sponsored international travel, the trip or program must first be presented to the highest approving supervisor within that particular unit. Upon approval of proposed international travel by the Approving Supervisor s/he will forward details of the proposal to be reviewed by the Global Travel Advisory Council (GTAC). GTAC will provide consultative recommendations regarding the risk and safety of the prospective travel to the Approving Supervisor for review and discussion. The approving supervisor will determine whether the travel request must be modified to address GTAC’s recommendations. If GTAC has substantial concerns, the recommendations will also be shared with the appropriate Executive Leadership member who may override the existing travel approval. Executive Leadership of the University, in its sole discretion, may override approval for international travel at any time. For a visual representation of this process, please see Diagram A.
Before departing, all students, faculty, and staff are required to register their travel plans with the University and complete all required documentation. Information entered into the travel registration software data system will be available to University officials and will provide the University with the information officials need to locate travelers in the event of a crisis or emergency. University funds may not be used for international travel that has not been registered in the travel registration system. Any related fees associated with registration of travel will be the responsibility of the individual traveling and/or the individual’s academic unit, if applicable.
Approval Process Timeline
- For Category 1 Travel: All conditionally approved proposals must be submitted to GTAC at least 30 days prior to travel departure. Exceptions will be considered due to extraordinary circumstances on a case by case basis. To give GTAC adequate time to provide thorough feedback and recommendations, GTAC highly encourages submissions as soon as possible.
- For Category 2 and 3 Travel: All conditionally approved proposals must be submitted to GTAC at least 90 days prior to travel departure. Exceptions will be considered due to extraordinary circumstances on a case by case basis. To give GTAC adequate time to provide thorough feedback and recommendations, GTAC highly encourages submissions earlier than 90 days prior to departure when possible.
The University supports travel to countries for which there is no obvious risk to a participant's health, safety, or to the likelihood of being able to successfully carry out the goals of the program or trip. Prior approval of University sponsored travel may be rescinded at any time if travel involves countries in which:
• Current health and safety conditions pose unusual or significant risks to students; or
• The U.S. Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs issues a Travel Warning: http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/english/alertswarnings.html; or
• The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/ or World Health Organization (WHO) http://www.who.int/ith/en/ issues a travel advisory; or
• The U.S. Department of Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC): http://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/sanctions/Pages/default.aspx imposes travel restrictions; or
• The University's Travel Accident/Security Insurance policy through ACE Travel (www.ace-travel.com) excludes coverage.
• Other reasons at the discretion of Executive Leadership.
In evaluating recommendations from GTAC relating to countries with Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, or Travel Advisories, the Approving Supervisor and Executive Leadership will consider a number of factors, including, but not limited to, the academic necessity and/or appropriateness of the proposed travel, the travelers’ personal preparedness, external partners and in-country support, and whether the proposed trip complies with the applicable warnings and restrictions.
The University will not authorize international travel to any country for which the State Department has issued a mandatory evacuation order. Any international traveler who is notified or otherwise becomes aware that the State Department has issued a mandatory evacuation order for the country the individual is visiting should contact the University and the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate, and should leave the country by the most expeditious and secure means available. International travelers in this situation should also contact the University at the earliest opportunity with information about their whereabouts, well-being, and plans.
The Regis University sponsored international travel policy is a complement to and consistent with all other university policies. Related policies include, but are not limited to, the General Policy Manual and the Fiscal Policy Manual. It is incumbent upon travelers to familiarize themselves with these and other Regis University policies. Additionally, travelers are responsible for understanding the types of insurance coverage applicable to their particular travel. In some cases, travelers may be required to purchase additional coverage.
In planning international travel experiences, it is important to keep in mind that persons with disabilities are encouraged to participate. Regis University makes reasonable accommodations for participants with disabilities who are otherwise qualified to participate in its programs and activities. The Americans with Disabilities Act does not govern accessibility standards in other countries, however, and the University is not responsible for ensuring accessibility in those locations. While the University will try to accommodate special needs, participants with disabilities must know that some travel experiences may not be acceptably accessible for them.
Faculty and staff members who participate in University sponsored international travel and perform tasks or services in off-campus workplaces are insured either by the Regis University Workers’ Compensation Program or by the Regis University’s general liability insurance policy. Depending on a faculty/staff member’s role in a given international location either general liability or workers compensation may apply.
Addendum A: minimum requirements for travel registration
• Emergency Contact Information
• Health Insurance Coverage Information Form
• Medical Release Form
• Assumption of Risk Waiver
• Enrollment in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)
• Flight Itinerary
• Travel Itinerary
• Copy of Passport
• Copy of Medical Insurance Card
• Copy of Visa (if applicable)
• Copy of Health Services Appointment Report (if applicable)
• Personal Image and Expression Release (if applicable)
• International Travel Insurance Information (if applicable)
• Student Participation Agreement (if applicable)
The signature of the Regis University Provost is required on all official policies arising out of or directly affecting the Academic Affairs. Any delegations of this authority must be in writing and signed by the Provost. No sub-delegations shall be permitted.
Janet Houser, PhD, Provost Date