Academic Operational Policies

Subject: International Travel and Safety – Students Number:  AOP 236
Issued by: Vice-President Academic Date Issued:  September 2016
Supersedes: N/A Page:  1 of 6
Links: International Travel and Safety for Loyalist Appendices Revision
Date:
 

International Travel and Safety – Students

Purpose

Loyalist College acknowledges that learning can be enhanced by experiences in a global environment. This policy has been developed to ensure that all reasonable precautions are taken for the safety of students who travel abroad for College-approved international activities, and to effectively manage measures intended to mitigate the risks associated with international travel.

Scope

This policy applies to all students travelling internationally on College-approved international activities.

Definitions

Student

Any person who is currently enrolled in a course or program at Loyalist College and who intends to travel internationally through a Loyalist College sponsored activity.

Approval Authority

Senior Vice-President Academic and Student Services, and/or the Dean/Director, or the designate (Chair/Manager/Placement Coordinator/Faculty), of the School or Department facilitating an international activity or overseeing the College business.

International Activities

Any student-related activity undertaken outside of Canada in connection with academic work or any other officially organized College activity. Such activities may include, but are not limited to exchange programs, research projects, placements, practicums, clinical placements, conferences, service learning activities, volunteering, organized sport competitions or other extracurricular activities.

Group Leader

The faculty member or employee who is responsible for leading and travelling with a group of students on an international activity.

DFATD

Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

DFATD Risk Rating

A risk assessment that is provided by DFATD and is considered when determining whether College activities involving travel to a particular country or region will be authorized (see below) 

Extreme Risk

DFATD advises against all travel to a country or a specified region(s).

High Risk

DFATD advises that travellers avoid all non-essential travel to a country or a specified region(s).

Moderate Risk

DFATD advises that travellers exercise a high degree of caution when travelling to a country or region.

Low Risk

DFATD advises that travellers exercise normal security precautions when travelling to a country or a region.

Policy

This policy applies to all international travel and accommodation arrangements arising out of and in the course of College activities. In all cases, the College retains the authority and responsibility for making appropriate arrangements and decisions respecting travel, accommodations and insurance requirements. This function is carried out by authorized College personnel, under this policy, unless otherwise permitted by an authorized representative of the College. While students are participating in college-approved international activities, all Loyalist College policies governing student conduct also apply.

Responsibility

  • Once students’ international travel has been approved, students are required to independently purchase travel and medical insurance and provide proof that such insurance has been obtained prior to travelling abroad for international activities.
  • In circumstances where students wish to use personal time in conjunction with College related international activities, but for purposes outside of those described in policy 4.1, students are responsible for making all necessary arrangements, including acquiring medical insurance for the full duration of their trip and for following the Student Code of Conduct and the Travel Code of Conduct Agreement.
  • The College will, to the best of its ability, assist students who are engaged in international activities that require international travel.
  • Regardless of travel warnings issues by DFATD, it is the individual traveler’s responsibility to be informed of the inherent risks of international travel and to take precautions to avoid undue risk and danger.
  • The Dean or Director overseeing the international activity will approve individual student travel for placement. Other individual travel and groups of students travelling abroad on international activities will be approved initially by the Dean or Director and then must be approved by the Senior Vice-President Academic and Student Services.  his These approvals will be based upon a review of the DFATD Risk Rating of the destination, the potential risk posed by the planned activities and any necessary consultation with the faculty member or employee.
  • The College shall not sanction travel by students participating in international activities in countries or regions deemed Extreme Risk or High Risk by DFATD. Students may appeal a decision to decline, postpone or cancel travel for international activities, as outlined in the procedures section below.
  • The final decision concerning appeals rests with the Senior Vice-President Academic and Student Services and the Senior Vice-President Corporate Services and CFO.
  • Students must adhere to all steps and measures outlined in the procedures section of this policy and are reminded that they continue to be governed by College policies while travelling internationally.
  • The administration (Senior Vice-President Academic and Student Services, Deans/Chairs and Directors) have the authority to disallow student participation or the granting of academic credit if the minimum requirements for participation in international activities are not met.

Procedure

  • Students must visit the Foreign Affairs and Trade Development Canada website for information on cultural and legal factors that will impact their experiences during international travel.
  • Group Travel:
    • The Group Leader is responsible for completing the Approval and Risk Assessment Form for International Travel Involving Students (Appendix A) and submitting the documentation to their Approval Authority in order to receive trip approval.
    • The Group Leader is responsible for completing the Summary List of All Travellers (Appendix D).
    • The Approval Authority or his/her designate, will review the Approval Risk Assessment Form for International Travel Involving Students and will authorize or deny travel accordingly.
    • If the activity is classified as a field trip as per policy AOP 205 Field Trips, the Approval Authority should ensure that, in addition to meeting the guidelines of the International Travel and Safety Policy – Students, the activity also conforms to the requirements set out in AOP 205.
    • Group travel arrangements may also be informed through reference to the Travel Industry Council of Ontario (TICO).
  • Students on Placement:
    • Students who are intending to participate in international travel for placement credit must review the request with the faculty member/program coordinator and complete the Approval and Risk Assessment Form for International Travel Involving Students (Appendix A).
    • The Approval Authority or his/her designate, will review the student’s planned activities, ensure a completed International Approval and Risk Assessment Form is filled out, and will authorize or deny travel accordingly. In addition, the Approval Authority will ensure that all placement approval documents are completed in advance of the placement.
    • Accident insurance will be provided by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities to students on international placements by ACE INA Insurance (Appendix B). This accident insurance is in effect only during direct placement activities. Note that MTCU does not provide accident insurance coverage if an international student does their placement in the student’s country of primary residence. The student must assume responsibility for attaining accident insurance coverage.
    • Students will make regular contact with the faculty member overseeing the placement, as stipulated in the placement course outline, assessments and approval documents. This is consistent with the level of contact for students on in-country placements.
  • All students participating in approved international activities must:
    • Register their travel with the Dean/Chair or Director at least six (6) weeks prior to departure. (International Student Traveller Registration Form – Appendix C)
    • Register with the DFATD’s Registration of Canadians Abroad. Students, who do not hold Canadian citizenship will, when possible, register with their own Embassy or High Commission in the destination country.
    • Confirm that they possess medical insurance for the full duration of travel by completing the Pre-Departure Information Form (Appendix E).
    • Complete the Release of Liability, Waiver of Claims and Indemnity Agreement (Appendix F), and Travel Code of Conduct Agreement (Appendix G) and submit to their Dean/Chair or Director.
    • Participate in any pre-departure sessions organized by their program, school or department.
    • Provide the emergency contact information, requested upon registration for the College out-of-country medical insurance, which facilitates a single point of contact in an emergency.
    • Complete all necessary placement forms in advance of the placement.
    • Obtain any visas or associated immigration documents and meet immunization requirements necessary to enter their country(ies) of destination.
    • Promptly report accidents that occur during College-approved travel.
  • Monitoring Risk Ratings:
    • It is the student and/or group leader’s responsibility to stay informed of changing conditions by monitoring DFATD’s travel advisories.
  • International Crisis and Changes in Risk Ratings:
    • It is the student and/or group leader’s responsibility to be informed of an international crisis or change to the Risk Rating to High Risk or Extreme Risk in a country or region where he/she is in place, or has been approved to travel. Consequences may include the cancellation of travel or the recall of students. If students are advised to leave, while on travel, they must do so.
  • Appeal Process:
    • Students, group leaders who wish to appeal the denial of approval for international travel may do so, in writing or by email to the appropriate Dean/Chair or Director. The communication should include a brief description of the proposed program or activity, the number of people travelling, an outline of the extenuating circumstances and rationale for proceeding with the proposed travel despite the Risk Rating or safety concerns, and a description of specific mitigation measures that will be employed to address the associated risks.
    • The Dean/Chair or Director will forward the appeal, along with his or her comments, to the Senior Vice-President Academic and Student Services.
    • The Senior Vice-President Academic and Student Services in conjunction with the Senior Vice-President Corporate Services and CFO, will review the appeal and make the final decision.
  • Emergency Circumstances:
    • Should the Dean/Chair or Director become aware of emergency circumstances, either in Canada or in the country or region where a student is currently travelling abroad, measures may be taken, utilizing all information available, to facilitate all necessary contacts, actions on behalf of the College and actions for the return of the student, as deemed appropriate in the circumstances and respecting College policies.
    • Such actions will be taken in the context of all relevant regulations and policies of the College and all established protocols related to the travel, in the best interest of the student and the College.