Information for Study Tour Leaders
Study Tours—short term overseas experiences—may be organized by Lander faculty members who wish to enhance a course with an international component or introduce students to another culture.
Gaining Authorization for a Study Tour
Any faculty member who wishes to lead a group of students abroad must obtain University approval via the following procedure:
- Discuss your ideas with your department chair.
Complete the Faculty Travel Proposal Form by the published deadline and submit it to the Director of Study Abroad.
Complete the Faculty Course Proposal Form well in advance of the published deadline, and have it signed by your chair. After receiving the approval of your department chair, submit the form to your dean. The dean may take up to two weeks to review the proposed activity, and may wish to discuss it with you and/or your chair. Upon approval, the dean will submit the form to the Director of Study Abroad, who will review it and submit your request to the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Please do not advertise or announce your study tour until you have received university approval.
A Study Tour to a country or an area upon which the US Department of State has imposed a travel restriction may not be approved. A Study Tour to a country where English is not widely spoken (eg. Russia or China.) must involve the use of an experienced multi-lingual travel guide so that any emergency situation can be successfully resolved.
If two faculty members are involved in planning and leading a study tour, they each must proceed through the approval process described above with their respective chair and dean.
Preparing a Detailed Plan and Handling Money
The Director of Study Abroad will assist the faculty member(s) in developing a detailed travel plan. The Director of Study Abroad must be involved in setting the final tour price and the payment deadlines. Faculty members may build the cost of their own travel into the fee charged to each student, or they may pay for some or all of their travel from their grant (see below) or from other personal resources. Faculty members are not authorized to make any salary or stipend payments to themselves from the study tour funds paid by participants.
The Director of Study Abroad will advise the faculty leader(s) regarding administrative procedures. All travel funds paid by students, faculty members and other participants must be deposited to the individual study tour account administered by the Lander Foundation. A $100 fee will be assessed from each student's study tour payment. This will purchase the required CISI insurance for each student. The remaining amount will be used to reimburse the Lander Foundation for the administration of funds, and to build the study abroad account
Accompanying adults not employed by Lander University should pay $100 more for the Study Tour than is charged to Lander students. This $100 will be used to build the study abroad account.
Approximately two weeks before the study tour departs, the funds remaining in the study tour account (after all travel deposits and payments have been made) will be disbursed to the lead faculty member(s) for use during the study tour. The lead faculty member(s) should keep receipts for all travel expenditures incurred during the tour.
Upon return to campus, the lead faculty member will return any remaining funds to the Lander Foundation account for distribution back to the study tour participants.
Grants to Faculty for Summer Study Tours
A number of Study Tour grants are made each year to faculty members who are planning study tours. A study tour proposal which is approved by the VP for Academic Affairs will also be considered as a proposal for a grant. Awards will be made by the Director of Study Abroad after consultation with the VP for Academic Affairs. In recent years, all faculty leaders of Study Tours have received at least a partial grant.
Faculty recipients of Study Tour grants may choose from two formats for disbursement of the grant:
Format 1: Funds are disbursed as a salary stipend. Under this format, taxes are withheld and benefits are deducted from the amount of the award. The grant will be awarded in full as long as the trip goes.
Format 2: Funds are disbursed as a travel grant to defray the costs of travel. Under this format, the faculty leader will receive the entire amount of the grant, free of tax withholding or other deductions. The grant will be awarded in full as long as the trip goes.
The anticipated maximum awards per faculty leader for 2015-16 grants are the following:
New study tour, with at least six students per faculty leader:
Airfare and other travel expenses up to a total of $1500 disbursed as a travel grant, or $1200 disbursed as a salary stipend.
Repeat study tour, with at least six students per faculty leader:
Travel Grant of $1200 disbursed as a travel advance, or $950 as a salary stipend.
New Community Tour with at least ten participants, with one faculty leader:
Travel Grant of $1200 disbursed as a travel advance, or $950 as a salary stipend.
Two Student Tuition Options for Summer Study Tours:
If students pay summer school tuition, then the faculty member will receive summer school pay based on Lander's summer pay rules pertaining to class size, etc.
If the faculty member wishes to allow summer study tour students to enroll for credit during the following fall semester (as a part of the student's tuition for a regular load or for an overload of 19 or more hours), then the faculty member may receive fall overload pay based upon Lander's pay rules pertaining to class size, etc. This option requires the approval of the department chair and the corresponding college dean.
All students participating in a particular study tour must be governed by the same option.
Conducting a Study Tour
At least one preliminary meeting of the group must be convened by the faculty leader(s). At this meeting the academic purposes of the study tour must be clearly explained, and advance readings (if any) assigned. At this meeting, each student must be provided with a written syllabus for each course for which credit is being offered. If the number of credits exceeds the number of weeks of travel then additional pre-travel discussion meetings and/or post-travel papers or presentations should be included.
A spring break study tour may leave up to two days before spring break begins or it may return up to two days after classes resume, provided that no student miss more that one class session of any course. In either case, faculty and students are responsible to notify other affected faculty members, the same way as coaches and student athletes notify faculty in the case of travel to athletic events.
Faculty members who lead a study tour travel in close association with students for an extended period of time. It is very important for each faculty member to maintain a proper teacher / student relationship with all students during the tour. Students should be expected to show the same respect to the faculty member(s) as if they were on the campus. Students should use the professional titles “Doctor” or “Professor” when referring to or addressing faculty member(s), rather than first names. The behavior of the group and of each member of the group reflects upon Lander University, and each faculty member should lead by example.
At least one post-trip meeting of the group should be held. Students should be asked to evaluate the study tour experience using an approved process.
Providing Appropriate Legal Information to Students
We have a legal responsibility to provide appropriate information to every Lander student who participates in a study abroad activity. This applies to all international activities led by or recommended by Lander faculty or staff members. The required procedure is outlined below. The Director of Study Abroad will assist each faculty member and student in complying with this procedure:
Give each student who will participate a copy of Some General Information Regarding Traveling and Living Abroad. Although this is written more for the student who will be spending a semester at an academic institution abroad, the travel suggestions are also useful to students participating in shorter study tours. Ask each student to read the very important warnings about drug and alcohol use in other countries which are posted on the U. S. Department of State website. They should also read any Travel Warnings or Travel Alerts which have been posted for the countries that you plan to visit.
Give each student who will participate a copy of the information about the medical and emergency insurance offered by Cultural Insurance Services International. This insurance is required by Lander University. CISI insurance is included in the cost of each Summer Study Tour, but each student who participates in any other study abroad activity must purchase this insurance. Click here for more information about this insurance.
Give each student who will participate a copy of the Lander legal form. The student should read this form and discuss it with their parents or guardians, but should NOT sign it yet. If the student is under 18 years old the parent or guardian must sign this form.
Arrange a suitable time for the Director of Study Abroad to meet with you and your students for about one hour for a pre-travel briefing. Each student should bring the Lander legal form and passport to this meeting. A notary will be present to verify signatures. Each student must attend one of the briefings held by the Director of Study Abroad or his designee—merely reading and signing these forms is not sufficient.
Regarding Personal and Professional Liability
The legal procedures outlined above are designed to remove as much of the liability from Lander University faculty and staff members as possible. These procedures are for your protection. Please give the Director of Study Abroad every assistance in carrying out these procedures.
These legal procedures are also required of each student when any study abroad activity is recommended to Lander students by staff or faculty members even if the activity is not led by Lander personnel. Examples of this include joint faculty / student participation in a summer mission program, student participation in any study abroad program that was recommended by a Lander faculty or staff member, and many other situations. If in doubt, please ask the Director of Study Abroad for clarification.
If the information given above does not answer all of your questions, please contact Dr. Carlos Mentley, Director of Study Abroad, at