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Approval and Registration of International Student Travel

  • Responsible Executive: Provost
  • Effective Date: June 1, 2015

I. PURPOSE

The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines and procedures with respect to the university’s efforts to support the safety and security of Drexel students who are participating in Drexel-affiliated international travel and to safeguard and regulate the use of university information and university resources.

II. SCOPE

The scope of this policy includes all student participation in Drexel-affiliated international travel, including but not limited to those programs sponsored by the Office of International Programs and the Steinbright Career Development Center (for international co-ops only).

III. APPLICABILITY

This policy applies to all Drexel University students, both undergraduate and graduate.

IV. DEFINITION

There are five categories of Drexel-affiliated international travel:

  1. Study Abroad
  2. International Co-op
  3. International Experiences
  4. International Conferences
  5. International Fellowships

Drexel-affiliated international travel is travel that is endorsed by the university and has been determined to further the University's mission. This includes travel connected to a Drexel college, school, department, administrative unit or student organization.  If the travel is related to the academic requirements of a program, even if it is not for credit, it is considered to be Drexel-affiliated.

V. Policy Implementation Procedures

1. Processes for Different Types of Student International Travel 

a. Study Abroad

The approval process for a new Study Abroad program is completed by the sponsoring school or academic department, working in conjunction with the Study Abroad Office. Completion of the Study Abroad Proposal Form is required for all new Study Abroad programs (drexel.edu/international).

Detailed information and consultation on the proposal process can be obtained from Study Abroad. Proposals must include approval from the Department and College or School in addition to the approval of Study Abroad and the Office of International Programs. For programs involving research, the approval of the Senior Vice Provost for Research must also be obtained. Critical components for approval include: appropriate academic rigor, adequate budget, attention to logistics, and health and safety considerations.

Students participating in approved Drexel Study Abroad programs complete their registration through Studio Abroad, as part of the regular Study Abroad application process, which also includes a pre-departure orientation.

Students who are participating in an Independent Study Abroad program must complete the required approval form for Study Abroad which includes approvals from the student’s academic advisor, co-op and Drexel Central. If approval for the program is granted by Study Abroad, students will complete the registration process as part of the regular application process for Study Abroad.

b. International Co-Op

The Steinbright Career Development Center manages all international co-op programs. Each student interested in participating in a co-op abroad must go through a two-part application process. This involves applying via the international website drexel.edu/internationalcoop  and attending a mandatory meeting with an International Team member to discuss locations, job opportunities, financial responsibility and student qualifications.  All job descriptions and locations for international co-op go through a thorough review process before they are approved for student participation.  Locations involving a Travel Warning go through a separate Travel Warning Committee review process (see below).

Upon being accepted to the program and prior to going abroad, students are required to attend a mandatory pre-departure orientation held by the Steinbright Career Development Center.  Critical aspects of the pre-departure orientation include health and safety awareness.  All students are provided with an International Co-op Program handbook, a resource guide that includes comprehensive information and guidelines. 

c. International Experiences

Any student who is participating in a Drexel-affiliated international experience must obtain approval of and register the experience with the Office of International Programs.  International experiences may take many forms including, but not limited to:

      1. A research project abroad
      2. An outreach project abroad
      3. An athletics event or competition abroad
      4. A project abroad that involves service or civic engagement
      5. A project abroad that involves professional enrichment
      6. A project abroad that involves cultural enrichment
      7. An international residency

Completion of the International Experience Approval Form (drexel.edu/international ) by the sponsoring faculty, program/department or student organization is required for all international experiences. Detailed information and consultation on the approval process and program requirements can be obtained from the Office of International Programs. Proposals must include approval from the Department and College or School in addition to the approval of Study Abroad and ultimately the Office of International Programs. In some cases, such as student organizations, Student Affairs may be the appropriate approval body instead of a college/school. For programs involving research, the approval of the Senior Vice Provost for Research must also be obtained. In some cases an approval by the Provost may also be required,(for example, when a travel warning is in effect; see below).

Critical components for approval include: appropriateness of the experience, adequate budget, attention to logistics, health and safety considerations

d. International Conferences

Any student who is participating in a Drexel-affiliated international conference must register their trip with the Office of International Programs.  International conference participants must complete an online registration that includes dates and location of travel, critical travel documentation and emergency contact information.  The International Experience Approval Form is not required for most international conference travel, but may be utilized in certain cases at the discretion of the Vice Provost for Global Initiatives.  Examples of when approval may be required include, but are not limited to:

  1. Conference travel to locations where there is a State Department Travel Warning
  2. Travel is being conducted as part of a Drexel organized program (i.e. a faculty-led group is attending a conference as part of a broader international experience or study abroad trip or a student organization is organizing a trip to an international meeting for its members).

e. International Fellowships

Any student who is participating in an International Fellowship during his/her period of enrollment at the University must register their international travel with the Office of International Programs. Examples of International Fellowships include, but are not limited to, the Fulbright, the Whitaker, DAAD and Critical Languages.  International fellowship recipients must complete an online registration that includes dates and location of travel, critical travel documentation and emergency contact information. The International Experience Approval form is not required for most international fellowships, but may be utilized in certain cases at the discretion of the Vice Provost for Global Initiatives.

2. Travel to Destinations with a State Department Travel Warning

Any student or student group that desires to participate in an international travel activity to a country that currently has a State Department Travel Warning must seek approval through the Travel Warning Review (TWR) Committee. This additional requirement applies to all types of Drexel-affiliated international student travel. TWR has representation from Risk Management, General Counsel, Study Abroad, SCDC and Student Affairs. Depending on the nature of the international student travel, other members of the Drexel community may also be asked to participate in the TWR analysis, including Athletics, Human Resources or the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs, when appropriate. The request for permission to travel should be advanced to the TWR by the relevant office (e.g. Study Abroad, Co-op, etc.) and include:

  1. A signed Addendum to the Terms and Conditions of Participation that acknowledges the additional risk of the travel destination (provided by OIP)
  2. A written justification of the importance/value of this particular location to the objectives of the student's academic experience at Drexel
  3. A proposed safety plan to ensure the well-being of the participants

The TWR reviews the request to travel and makes a recommendation to the Vice Provost for Global Initiatives who presents the information for a decision to the Provost.

Approved travel will have a mandatory pre-departure orientation provided by Study Abroad or Co-op. Approvals are for a particular program in a location and are valid for the academic year. Approvals for repeated programs are valid for the academic year provided that there is no significant change in the Travel Warning.  Even after approval, if the situation deteriorates or the State Department changes its recommendation for US citizens, permission to travel may be revoked at the discretion of the Provost.