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Student Travel Policy for Student Organizations

Policy Statement
It is the policy of the University of Southern Indiana to promote safe travel by students to and from certain events and activities covered by this policy.

This policy applies to the travel of enrolled undergraduate or graduate students to attend activities or events that are organized and/or sponsored by the University of Southern Indiana, a registered/recognized USI student organization AND occur more than seventy (75) miles from the University campus or an event that has a duration of 24 hours or more.

In addition, event and activities that utilize any form of University funding are also subject to this policy.

The types of activities and events covered by this policy include Recreational Club Sports trips, the activities of registered/recognized student organizations, and meetings of academic organizations where a student is officially representing the University.

The policy does not apply to travel undertaken by students to attend out of town athletic events, or to engage in student-teaching, internships, practicums, observations or research, unless the research is organized by a University employee.


    1. An organized event is one that is initiated, planned, and arranged by a member of the University’s faculty or staff, or by the members of a registered/recognized student organization, and is approved by an appropriate administrator.
    2. sponsored event or activity is one that the University endorses by supporting it financially, or by sending students to participate in it as official representatives of the University.
    3. An enrolled student is one who has been admitted to and is enrolled in classes at the University.
    4. An appropriate administrator is a dean, department chair, or director of an administrative unit, or their delegate.

Travel Authorization
In order to assure that the events or activities that involve student travel are within the course and scope of the University's mission, and that student safety issues have been addressed, travel undertaken pursuant to this policy must be authorized in advance by an appropriate administrator.

    To request authorization, members of the faculty, staff or sponsored student organizations who organize activities covered by this policy must submit a completed Student Travel Request form, along with the required documents and information, to the appropriate administrator for approval. The request must be submitted at least ten (10) business days in advance of travel to the activity or event AND prior to any financial commitments.

    • The following information/documents must be submitted along with the Student Organization Travel Request form:
      • A list of the traveler names, email, USI ID number, cell phone numbers, and the name and number of an emergency contact for each participant
      • The name, phone number, and address of lodgings, if applicable.
      • The date and time of the arrival and departure from lodgings, if applicable.
      • The date and time of the departure and return to campus.
      • The name and phone number for the responsible University employee(s) who will be available to the students at all time during the travel and activity.

    • This individual and the Designated Trip Leader will be required to have possession of:
      • A list of the traveler names, email, USI ID number, cell phone numbers, and the name and number of an emergency contact for each participant
      • Email from Risk Management confirming all drivers are authorized per USI policy.
      • General Release and Waiver of Liability completed by anyone traveling in a personal vehicle.
      • Activity Waiver and Release of Liability signed by all individuals traveling, including non-USI students or personnel.
      • A schedule for the trip that includes travel, planned activities, meals, and sleep period(s).
        • One-time approval can be provided for multiple trips led by faculty or staff that involve the same locations and same participants.

        All forms listed in this policy are available from the Vice President of Student Affairs or Center for Campus Life websites.

        Travel by Motor Vehicle

           Compliance with Laws and Policies

          1. Motor vehicles used for travel covered by this policy shall have a current proof of liability insurance card and a state inspection certification.
          2. Travel undertaken by means of fifteen passenger vans must comply with the requirements of the University of Southern Indiana.

          Vehicle Operator Requirements

          All students who will operate vehicles while engaged in travel covered by this policy must have a valid operator's license and be a USI Authorized Driver to drive the vehicle that will be used. For more information on how to become a USI Authorized Driver, please visit:

              1. Operators shall comply with all laws, regulations and posted signs or directions regarding speed and traffic control.
              2. Operators shall take a mandatory 30-minute rest break every four hours.
              3. Operators shall drive no more than ten hours in any 24-hour period.
              4. Trips requiring more than 10 hours driving time to reach a point of destination shall require overnight lodging.
              5. Organizations utilizing vehicles for travel must allow for travelers to have at least 6 hours of sleep before driving.
              6. A navigator shall be assigned for all trips scheduled to take more than two hours. The navigator must stay awake while on duty.

            Safety Requirements for Both Operators and Passengers

                1. Seat Belts. Occupants of motor vehicles shall use seat belts or other approved safety restraint devices required by law or regulation at all times when the vehicle is in operation.
                2. Alcohol and Illegal Substances. Occupants of motor vehicles shall not possess, consume, or transport any alcoholic beverages or illegal substances.
                3. Passenger Capacity. The total number of passengers in any vehicle at any time it is in operation shall not exceed the manufacturer's recommended capacity, or the number specified by University policy, or federal or state law or regulations, whichever is lowest.

              Travel by Rental Vehicle
              To make reservations for a University Rental Vehicle, you will need to work with your student organization advisor. The University has negotiated favorable vehicle rental rates with Enterprise Rent Cars.

                USI carries Automobile Liability on USI rental vehicles. This coverage responds to claims brought by third parties for bodily injury or property damage that arises out of the use of these vehicles. Please note the following:

                • Decline all insurance offered by the rental car company because you are covered by USI’s insurance policy. You will not be reimbursed for the cost of any insurance coverage that you may choose to accept.
                • After signing the rental agreement, write “University of Southern Indiana” below your signature.
                • Look over the rental vehicle and notify the car rental company of all damages (scratches, stains, markings,) before leaving the rental lot.

                IMPORTANT: It is the responsibility of the Authorized Driver to print the following forms and keep them in the vehicle when driving on University Business. The Authorized Driver to report any accident, regardless of damage, that involves any USI vehicle or a personal vehicle used on USI business.

                Travel by Privately Owned Vehicles
                The use of personal vehicles by students for travel to events covered by this policy is strongly discouraged. However we understand that situations may arise where personal vehicles are necessary.

                    1. When requesting authorization for travel that involves the use of personally owned vehicles, the requestor, in addition to following all the requirements listed above, shall also submit a copy of a current liability insurance certificate for any vehicle to be used for the proposed travel.
                    2. The designated trip leader for the proposed activity and travel shall inform students who will drive their privately owned vehicles that their personal liability insurance policy will be looked to cover any liability that may result from the use of the vehicle for the proposed travel.
                    3. When an exception is requested and a student wishes to drive their own personal vehicle, a General Release and Waiver of Liability must be completed by any individuals driving and/or riding in Personal Vehicles. These forms must need to be emailed to no later than 48 hours prior to departure.

                  When driving personal vehicles, insurance coverage is as follows:

                  Personal Vehicle Automobile Liability - the Authorized Driver’s personal automobile insurance is always PRIMARY. USI’s insurance is EXCESS of the Authorized Driver’s primary limits for damages to a third party. USI’s insurance only insures the university.

                  Personal Vehicle Accident Reporting - the Authorized Driver must report all accidents to the Center for Campus Life and notify Risk Management of the accident as soon as feasible.

                  Volunteer Drivers and Passengers
                  Non-student/non-employee drivers and passengers who accompany students on travel covered by this policy must sign the Activity Waiver and Release of Liability and the Authorization for Medical Treatment forms prior to the trip.