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Faculty-led Study Abroad Program Guidelines

This page is under construction. (12-22-19)

Faculty Leader Handbook 

The William V. Weber Program in Study Abroad (WWSA) works with faculty to establish the following information for study abroad programs:

Financial Aid 
Travel Packages 
Invoices and Billing  
Contracts and Agreements with hosts/providers
Tuition Expenses and Fees 
Faculty Director Preparation 
Health and Safety Issues 
Program Risk Management 
Pre-Departure Orientation 
Behavior and Criminal Issues 
Responsible Study Abroad Seminar 

Marketing your Faculty-Led program

Once you receive clearance from the WWSA, you can begin to market your program. The WWSA will produce promotional materials for your program such as brochures, posters, & flyers and we will maintain a web page dedicated to your program. 

Recruiting students

While you may rely on your flyers and the website to do a big portion of the recruiting, you may also present during your classes, as well as your colleagues' classes. One of the best opportunities to recruit is at the Study Abroad Fair, which occurs once every fall and spring semester. Bring various materials, such as brochures, flyers, and photos, create a poster, and decorate your display to provide students with information about your program. 

Recruitment ideas
Participate in study abroad fairs. Ask past participants to help you recruit at these events. 
Talk to your classes (frequently)
Visit your colleagues' classes
Feature your program on your department's/college's website
Use social media to promote your program
Participate in department and college events
Share information about your program with your department advisors
Hold program info sessions
Have your department admin schedule information tables in the Union or the library. Ask past participants to help you recruit. 
Use a department/college listserv to send emails out to a wide student audience

Getting students to apply

Students must apply for your program by submitting an application on the study abroad website, by the deadline posted. Late applications cannot be accommodated and should not be encouraged. The WWSA screens students for academic eligibility (minimum 2.0 GPA & appropriate class standing). All students who apply to study abroad are also screened by the Office of Student Standards for behavioral/judicial issues. The WWSA issues admissions decisions typically a few weeks after the application deadline. All students who meet eligibility requirements & course pre-requisites are admitted to study abroad without regard to race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status. Faculty leaders will be notified by the WWSA of the status of their program around the deadline and admissions decision date, but may access real-time applicant information for their program in the online application system. (Contact the WWSA to request this access). 

Getting students to commit

Programs that admit at least 8 students are considered viable and proceed to the next step: financial commitment. A few weeks after students are admitted, they must financially commit to your program. Commitment deposits are equal to 50% of the program fee and must be paid to secure a student's spot in the program. As part of their online application, students sign a Refund Policy. The WWSA works with students who cannot put the full 50% down (with limitations). 

Finalizing your roster

Programs that have at least 8 students commit are considered viable once again and proceed to the next step: course enrollments. The WWSA will work with you to finalize enrollments for your study abroad course and will submit to the Registrar for processing. No other department on campus is authorized to enroll students in study abroad course work.

If we admit at least 8 students to your program but fewer than that number commit, your program will be cancelled due to insufficient enrollment. If this occurs, all students will be refunded 100% of the deposit they paid. 

Preparing to depart

Submit a Travel Application and a Student Group Travel Advance to the WWSA.

Register with the US State Department's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). 

Hold pre-departure meetings with your students. Provide them with information on environmental, political, cultural, social, and religious conditions in your host country.

Attend the WWSA's pre-departure orientation. This orientation is mandatory for all students studying abroad. We cover general international travel information as well as safety, health, emergency, and legal topics. 

While You’re There 

Hold an on-site orientation. During the first two days of your program, help your students acclimate to their new surroundings by sharing information about navigation, transportation, housing, banking and ATM withdrawals, food and restaurants, pharmaceuticals, and other necessary information about daily living abroad.  

Set group expectations. Student behavior is typically the main reason challenges arise while abroad. Discuss student conduct and reinforce that your program is not a vacation—it is a serious academic experience. Remind students to be respectful of the new culture and location, address the danger of alcohol abuse, and encourage students to avoid forming cliques.  

Returning to the US

Submit a Travel Voucher (reimbursement for travel expenses) to the WWSA. 

Your students will need to readjust back to life in the United States and may experience reverse culture shock. Maintain contact with your students after the program concludes in order to ensure their re-adjustment as well as to maintain your mentorship and professional relationship with them.  

Fill out any necessary paperwork. You may need to submit an end-of-program report to your dean, department chairperson, or the director of the WWSA.

Submit a program renewal form to the WWSA if you plan to offer the same program the following year. 

Guest policy
Approved by International Education Council 9/6/2019

This policy supercedes any contrary terms in third party provider agreement(s) regarding guests on a study abroad program.
For students enrolled in faculty-led programs:
Students are not permitted to have guests (family, friends or others) accompany them for the duration of a program. A student may have a temporary guest visitor. Any expenses incurred by the guest visitor are the responsibility of the guest visitor. Guests may not stay in program-provided accommodations, participate in program-related activities and must not disrupt a program in any manner. Any extenuating circumstances or accommodation request to waive this policy must be approved by the William V. Weber Program in Study Abroad and Student Disability Services. Partner programs and providers may have additional restrictions and regulations that require student compliance.
For faculty in EIU faculty-led programs:
Faculty members are strongly discouraged from bringing accompanying adult guests on a Study Abroad program.   Nevertheless, a faculty’s guest(s) may not serve in any supervisory role or teaching capacity for the program and may not disrupt a program in any manner. Any guest(s) should be identified to program participants and the William V. Weber Program in Study Abroad prior to departure. Programs run through third party providers may have additional restrictions and regulations that require faculty compliance.
EIU will not provide any support – administrative, financial or otherwise – for the benefit of any guest.
Faculty members are strongly discouraged from bringing minor children as accompanying guests on a program. A faculty member who does bring a minor child on a program must sign a liability waiver and release form from the William V. Weber Program in Study Abroad. Minors must have a designated care-giver identified- other than the faculty leader- and must not disrupt a program in any way.