Study/Travel Abroad Policy
USI's student study and travel abroad policy is based on the U.S. Department of State (USDOS) Travel Advisory System and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) Travel Notice Definitions. The USI Center for International Programs and other responsible departments also monitor information from the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC), NAFSA: Association of International Educators, and other resources. Program approval may change based on recommendations of these regulatory bodies.
This supplemental policy will serve as an addendum to the USI Study/Travel Abroad Policy regarding U.S. Department of State Travel Advisories. Current USI Study/Travel Abroad Policy states that programs in countries currently rated a level 3 or 4 advisory by the U.S. Department of State or a level 3 by the CDC are not approved for student participation. The supplemental policy allows for the review of a program in a country rated as a level 3 or 4, as a result of COVID-19. These programs would be considered on a case-by-case basis by the Study Abroad Risk Management Task Force (SARMTF) with a final decision by the Provost.
The process follows these steps.
- At least two months prior to the anticipated departure date, the student will notify the Center for International Programs (CIP) of their serious intent to study abroad in a particular program. CIP staff will review student’s eligibility for the program and discuss budget and course availability with student. To start this process, the student should schedule a study abroad advising appointment online.
- If it looks like a good fit for the student, then CIP staff will send the Program Site COVID-19 Plan form via Qualtrics to the site program coordinator or study abroad partner university relationship manager.
- The SARMTF will review requests on a regular basis.
- The SARMTF will forward the Qualtrics form plus reasons for support or denial to Provost for review and approval to participate.
- The Provost will notify the SARMTF of decision and the CIP will relay the decision to the student.
All approvals are subject to change based on updated guidelines.
The University of Southern Indiana (USI) is dedicated to offering a wide variety of study abroad opportunities to meet the needs of a diverse student population. The University has recognized the importance of establishing policies and procedures to protect the safety and well-being of study abroad participants. Therefore, the following policy regarding study/travel abroad and U.S. State Department Travel Advisories has been adopted by the Study Abroad Risk Management Task Force.
This policy is based on the U.S. Department of State (USDOS) Travel Advisory System and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) Travel Notice Definitions. The USI Center for International Programs and other responsible departments also monitor information from the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC), NAFSA: Association of International Educators, and other resources.
Scope of Policy
This policy applies to all University of Southern Indiana students who travel internationally as part of USI education, case competition, service, research or internship/employment. International travel applicable to this policy includes, but is not limited to, travel that is eligible for USI-approved course credit as well as travel under USI auspices for noncredit experiences; travel within the scope of a USI-sponsored research grant or contract; and student travel under the direction or supervision of USI faculty or staff. Students who take a leave of absence from USI enrollment to travel either on their own or through non-USI study abroad programs are not subject to this policy.
- USI students are eligible to participate in a USI approved credit-bearing study abroad program, international internship, or USI sponsored international travel or research in a country with an overall Travel Advisory Level 1 (Exercise Normal Precautions) or Level 2 (Exercise Increased Caution).
- USI students will not be allowed to travel to areas within these countries which have been designated as either Level 3 (Reconsider Travel) or Level 4 (Do Not Travel) locations.
- USI WILL NOT provide any support to students who wish to participate in non-USI study abroad programs located in countries with Level 3 or Level 4 Travel Advisories (CDC Level 3). Should a student wish to participate in study/intern/travel in a non-USI program in a country with a Level 3 or Level 4 Travel Advisory, USI will not process or transfer financial aid, scholarships or insurance coverage, and will not maintain the student's enrollment at USI. Students traveling to countries with a Level 3 or Level 4 Travel Advisory in effect are ineligible for USI travel grants or other financial support.
Automatic Program Suspension for USI Student Participants Prior to Departure from US
- When the U.S. Department of State issues a Level 3 or a Level 4 Travel Advisory for a country in which USI has approved study/internship/travel programs, all programs whose participants have yet to depart for travel to the country which is subject to the Travel Advisory are automatically suspended.
- Programs that entail travel to multiple countries can still go forward after removing from the itinerary the country or region within a country that is subject to the Level 3 or Level 4 Travel Advisory.
When a USI approved study/internship/travel program is underway in a country where a Level 3 or Level 4 Travel Advisory is announced for the first time
- In the case of an immediate threat to student health, safety or welfare, the Provost has authority to immediately cancel or alter a program. If immediate action is not required, the process for regular review will be applied immediately and the Study Abroad Risk Management Task Force will meet as soon as possible to determine whether the program should be suspended, and whether current student program participants should be asked to return home.
- If a Level 3 Travel Advisory is announced for a limited time period (for circumstances such as hurricanes or elections), the Study Abroad Risk Management Task Force will convene to assess its impact on the program and to determine whether the program should be suspended, and whether current participants should be asked to return home.