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University-sponsored Travel to High Risk Locations

Policy
Purpose: 

Provide information regarding the University’s support for student and employee travel to countries or specific areas within a country categorized as Level 3: Reconsider Travel or Level 4: Do Not Travel by the U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory System, or classified as Warning Level 3: Avoid Non-Essential Travel by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

Applies to: 

All University of Kansas students and employees on the Lawrence and Edwards campuses.

Campus: 
Lawrence
Edwards
Policy Statement: 

The quality of the educational experiences and the health, safety, and security of students, faculty, and staff are the first priorities of the University of Kansas. Due to concerns for student and employee health, safety, and security the University of Kansas does not support student participation in university-affiliated international activities or the development and administration of formal education abroad programming (to include all international, for-credit and non-credit experiential learning activities) to locations categorized as Level 3: Reconsider Travel or Level 4: Do Not Travel by the U.S. Department of State or classified as Warning Level 3: Avoid Non-Essential Travel by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Students will not receive university sponsorship —including credit for academic programs, financial aid and scholarships, funding for research, or endorsement of co-curricular and extracurricular activities — if traveling to these countries.

The classification level applied to each country can be accessed at the U.S. Department of State website.  Information on Level 3 or Level 4 regional designations within a country is available by reading the country-specific advisory.  A list of countries under a Warning Level 3 health advisory can be accessed at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.  These lists are updated regularly.

Exclusions or Special Circumstances: 

Undergraduate Students

Exceptions to this policy will be considered by petition to the International Travel Review Committee (ITRC), a standing committee of faculty and administrative personnel that meets three or more times each year to consider proposals for KU-sponsorship of international activities in countries, regions, or specific locations given a Level 3 or Level 4 designation by the U.S. Department of State or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although the University recommends against travel to locations given a Level 3 or Level 4 designation, the ITRC may approve an exception upon submission of a written description of the proposed international activities, a detailed risk assessment and management plan, and the finding of a compelling academic rationale for the proposed international activities to take place. Information on the petition process is available at: http://studyabroad.ku.edu/TravelAdvisories. All persons who travel under an exception to this policy will be required to sign an Assumption of Risk and General Waiver and Release form, as a condition of the travel. 

Approval by the International Travel Review Committee does not guarantee that a program will be offered by the University of Kansas or that an exception will not be revoked. In the event the U.S. Department of State modifies the Travel Advisory level for a country to which KU study abroad, research, or other international travel activities have been approved or are currently operating, KU, at the discretion of the Provost, may respond by withdrawing the exception authorizing a university-affiliated international activity, which may include cancelling a program or requiring the student(s) to leave the country of an activity already in progress. All participating parties will be notified of the change in the U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory and KU’s response. In the event programs are in-progress, copies of the notification will be sent to students’ emergency contacts and/or parents or legal guardians, as appropriate.

Graduate Students/Faculty

The University of Kansas recognizes that faculty and graduate students may wish to conduct academic research in countries or regions currently categorized as Level 3 or 4 by the U.S. State Department or the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and has made special provisions to accommodate these needs, based on level of risk.

  • Level 3: Reconsider Travel (U.S. Department of State)

Faculty and graduate students who wish to conduct University-sponsored research in a country or location categorized as Level 3 by the U.S. Department of State must complete and submit the Faculty, Staff, Post-Doctoral Fellows and Research Scientist Assumption of Risk and General Release Form or the Graduate Student Assumption of Risk and General Release Form, as appropriate, and found here. The original form will be maintained in the Office of International Programs.  A copy of the form will be forwarded to the KU Center for Research and the Office of Export Compliance. 

In addition, all graduate students must register international travel activities with the KU Office of Study Abroad.  Please refer to the University-affiliated Student International Travel Policy for details.  Graduate students must have a completed international travel registration and Graduate Student Assumption of Risk and General Release Form on file prior to departure for University sponsorship to be approved. 

  • Level 4: Do Not Travel (U.S. Department of State) or Warning Level 3: Avoid Non-Essential Travel (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Faculty who wish to conduct University-sponsored research in a country or location categorized as Level 4: Do Not Travel by the U.S. Department of State or Warning Level 3: Avoid Non-Essential Travel by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention must complete and submit the Faculty, Staff, Post-Doctoral Fellows and Research Scientist Assumption of Risk and General Release Form found here.  The original form will be maintained in the Office of International Programs.  A copy of the form will be forwarded to the KU Center for Research and the Office of Export Compliance.

Graduate students who wish to engage in University-sponsored activities in a country or location categorized as Level 4: Do Not Travel by the U.S. Department of State or Warning Level 3: Avoid Non-Essential Travel by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention must submit a written description of the proposed international activities (including flight itinerary and accommodation information) and a detailed risk assessment and management plan to the International Travel Review Committee (ITRC).  If travel approval is granted by the ITRC, completion of the Graduate Student Assumption of Risk and General Release Form as well as registration of international travel through the Student International Travel Registry will also be required as noted above.

Faculty, staff and students engaging in university-sponsored travel (including business travel) or personal travel to locations where a Center for Disease Control and Prevention Travel Warning Level 3 has been issued are required to notify the Office of International Programs before returning to campus. The University will work with the individual to implement appropriate actions to minimize any risk that might be posed to the health of other University community members by the individual’s possible exposure to infectious disease during their travel in a CDC Warning Level 3 country, including but not limited to, screening and/or monitoring before and upon return to campus.   

Any person arriving from one of the countries on the CDC Warning Level 3 List must notify the Office of International Programs prior to arriving on campus. The University will work with the individual to implement appropriate actions to minimize any risk that might be posed to the health of other University community members by the individual’s possible exposure to infectious disease during their travel in a CDC Warning Level 3 country, including but not limited to, screening and/or monitoring before and upon return to campus.  

Contact: 

Charles Bankart, Associate Vice Provost
Office of International Programs
1450 Jayhawk Blvd., Strong Hall 300
Lawrence, KS 66045
(785) 864-6161
cbankart@ku.edu

Approved by: 
Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor
Approved on: 
Monday, March 11, 2013
Effective on: 
Monday, March 11, 2013
Review Cycle: 
Annual (As Needed)
Keywords: 
Travel, international travel, study abroad, travel warnings, dangerous locations, U.S. Department of State, Center for Disease Control and Prevention
Review, Approval & Change History: 

05/15/2018: Updated to reflect changes to the U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory System.
11/22/2016: Updated link to website and form.
10/2014: Updated to include travel warnings from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

Financial Categories: 
Travel
Operational Categories: 
Health & Safety

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