A12: Study Abroad

Responsibility for Maintenance:  Academic Affairs

Date of most recent changes: June 26, 2023

I. Policy Statement

Study abroad experiences offer opportunities to enrich student learning and must be planned, implemented, and assessed to ensure academic alignment; support orderly program implementation; limit foreseeable risks; comply with applicable laws, regulations, and policies; and, foster community-building among participants.

II.  Reason for Policy

All programs and courses offered by Onondaga Community College, including those occurring in foreign countries, are subject to College oversight.  Study abroad carries inherent risks that must be managed by all involved to ensure effective delivery, including appropriate response to any emergencies that may occur.

III.  Applicability of Policy

All faculty and other college employees involved in the development, management, coordination, or oversight of study abroad programs, and students participating in study abroad opportunities, are subject to this this policy.

IV.  Related Documents

Onondaga Community College Annual Security Report

Title IX Web Site

V.  Contacts

Subject Office Name Title or Position Telephone Number Email/URL
Business Issues Management Services Assistant Vice President (315) 498-2566 mcmullem@sunyocc.edu

Study Abroad Program

Curriculum Issues

Academic Affairs   (315) 498-2594 provost@sunyocc.edu


VI.  Procedures

  1. All study abroad experiences are subject to approval by the College’s Executive Council upon the recommendation of the Provost & Senior Vice President following curriculum development and program planning consistent with this policy.
  2. Except in extraordinary circumstances approved in advance by the Executive Council (see 5(d) below), study abroad trips will be facilitated by an approved tour operator.  A list of approved tour operators is maintained by Management Services, which is the sole entity authorized to negotiate final contract language and enter into an agreement with the selected tour operator on behalf of the College.
  3. Travel is prohibited to any destination listed with a Level 3 warning on the U.S. State Department Travel Advisory List.
  4. Co-leaders are required to participate in study abroad co-leader orientation with the Provost & Senior Vice President, in advance of preparing their study abroad plan to review specific policies and procedures applicable to study abroad. 
  5. Following completion of the required orientation and in advance of listing a course as a study abroad opportunity, prospective faculty leaders are required to plan and document the following information for review and approval by the Executive Council:
    • Provide an itemized list of the specific travel itinerary and costs, including group departure and return travel plans, specific accommodations, activities on each day of the trip and related admission fees, meals, international health insurance fees, tour operator fees, and any other expenses, including a reasonable estimate for gratuities (if tipping is expected at the destination site) as cash advances are prohibited. A detailed budget for meal arrangements must be provided, to include out-of-pocket estimates for students and any benefits provided to trip leaders by the travel company or other entities, and costs per meal will not exceed the College’s approved per diem rates for employees. All travel will occur as a group.  Except in extraordinary circumstances approved in advance by the College President, neither the co-leaders nor students will travel separately from the group. 
    • Identify full-time faculty or administrator co-leaders who will travel as part of the trip and otherwise act as jointly responsible for implementation of all trip requirements.  Trips must not be led my just one faculty member or employee. Trips must not be led by someone who is not an employee of Onondaga Community College.
    • Identify any other individual(s) proposed to accompany either trip co-leader (at the co-leader’s sole expense and responsibility) and/or any other activities in which either co-leader proposes to engage (e.g., scholarly research, presentations, collaborations) during the authorized period of the trip.  Faculty and administrators are cautioned that their first priority is the trip and its College participants.  Consequently, the College discourages and reserves the right to prohibit any proposed activity that may divert the co-leaders from their responsibilities, including any third-party work for hire, and will take appropriate action should it become apparent that a co-leader has engaged in non-aligned activities during a trip without prior authorization. 
    • Co-leaders seeking to lead a trip without the facilitation of an approved tour operator must provide a written risk management plan for the trip identifying the content of student orientation materials and plans for medical, criminal, student conduct, civil disturbance, and other emergencies that may occur.  This plan is to include appropriate on-site resources to address the situation and the steps that will be followed if an emergency requires the group to become separated or to evacuate from the destination site.
  6. Co-leaders are responsible for conducting a reconciliation of trip expenses within 15 days after the trip return date so that the College may refund students a pro-rata share of any excess monies collected in advance of the trip.  This reconciliation will be submitted to and approved by Academic Affairs prior to submission to Financial Services.
  7. Co-leaders seeking reimbursement of additional expenses incurred in addition to those approved in advance may do so in accordance with Policy G7 Travel Authorization and Reimbursement, including applicable receipts.
  8. Consistent with SUNY guidelines, all incentives, rebates, or other benefits associated with College travel are the property of the College and not individual faculty co-leaders.
  9. Students participating in study abroad are required to comply with all College policies, as well as the following additional requirements:
  • For students under the age of 18, provide a permission form signed by the parent or legal guardian.
  • Submit in advance to a student conduct review by Student Engagement & Learning Support, which will make the final decision on whether a student’s conduct history should preclude study abroad travel.
  • Participate in the SUNY-wide International Student/Scholar Health Insurance Plan.
  • Participate in required orientation both prior to travel and upon arrival at the trip destination.
  • Demonstrate proof of valid passport or pending passport application at time of course registration.
  • Travel with and remain with the group at all times.
  • Make payment in full by the published deadline to avoid cancellation of the student’s enrollment in the trip and forfeiture of any deposits previously made.  Students eligible and approved for financial aid will be deemed to have satisfied the payment requirement, provided that the available aid is sufficient to cover the balance due.
  • Study abroad courses are offered subject to the same course registration and cancellation timelines, policies, and procedures that apply to all other courses of the College. Should enrollment in the study abroad course and any associated payments not meet expected minimums, the course and the trip may be cancelled by Academic Affairs. In this situation, all deposits made by students will be refunded to them.

VII.  Forms/Processes

Faculty Leader - Study Abroad Forms and Procedures

Student Participant - Study Abroad Forms and Procedures     


Approved by OCC Board of Trustees June 19, 2018

Approved and Updated by the President June 26, 2023