Program Agreement and Participation Policies

Program Agreement

All EI program participants agree to: 

  • Comply with the Eisenhower Institute’s participation policies and travel policy.
  • Adhere to all Gettysburg College policies, including the Honor Code, the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and any other applicable laws.
  • Maintain good academic and disciplinary standing at Gettysburg College.
  • Demonstrate the highest levels of respect and integrity.
  • Participating actively in all scheduled program meetings, experiential learning, and independent work.
  • NEW: Attend at least one public Eisenhower Institute event while participating in a program.
  • Treat all conversations with program leaders and guest speakers as off-the-record unless otherwise agreed upon by the speaker. This discretion ensures a space of open and candid dialogue. Recording conversations or unauthorized sharing of details with third-parties is prohibited. 
  • Acknowledge that failure to comply with these expectations will result in dismissal from this program. 
  • • Reimburse the Institute for the full cost of travel, accommodations, meals and other expense incurred on the student’s behalf, or a minimum $150 penalty if the student is dismissed or voluntarily withdraws after the grace period. 
  • • Allow the Institute to bill the student’s tuition account for any unreimbursed expenses or penalty not directly paid to the Institute by the student. 

Participation Policies (NEW)

Attendance: Each student is allowed one (1) excused absence. Advance notice is preferred, but students must provide a reason in writing no later than three (3) days after the absence occurs. Further absences are grounds for dismissal from the program. Programs with limited meeting times (such as Foundations) may require students to attend all sessions. Unexcused absences are not permitted and are grounds for dismissal (see below).

Voluntary Withdrawal: A grace period will be permitted for students to withdraw from a program within 7 days of their first session. After the grace period, students are responsible for reimbursing the Institute for the full cost of travel, accommodations, meals and other expenses incurred on the student’s behalf, or a minimum $150 penalty. An itemized list of expenses will be provided to the student. The student may pay the Institute directly via check made payable to “Gettysburg College.” If the student does not repay these expenses, the total amount of the charges will be billed to their student tuition account and must be paid by the end of the semester. Withdrawal will be considered in future applications to EI programs.

Dismissal: Students who do not fulfill their commitment to EI programs will be issued a written warning by EI staff (with the program leader and executive director copied). If behavior continues, students will receive a Notice of Pending Dismissal from EI staff, followed by a case review by the executive director prior to formal dismissal. During that review, students may request a meeting with the executive director within seven (7) days of the notice date. Dismissed students are responsible for reimbursing the Institute for the full cost of travel, accommodations, meals and other expenses incurred on the student’s behalf, or a minimum $150 penalty. An itemized list of expenses will be provided to the student. The student may pay the Institute directly via check made payable to “Gettysburg College". If the student does not repay these expenses, the total amount of the charges will be billed to their student tuition account and must be paid by the end of the semester.

Travel policy

The Eisenhower Institute has established the following policy and procedures to ensure that trips organized by the Institute are taken in the most effective, safe and cost-conscious manner, in full compliance with local, state, federal and/or national and international laws; applicable health regulations/guidance; and Gettysburg College policies. This policy applies to all travelers.

In this section:

International travel health and safety

International SOS

The well-being of campus community members is Gettysburg’s top priority. To help prepare and support campus members who travel internationally, Gettysburg College works with International SOS (ISOS). ISOS provides health and safety information, emergency assistance, and other services for all students, staff, and faculty traveling internationally on college business who are covered by Gettysburg's Global Insurance.

Global Medical Insurance

Gettysburg College requires all campus community members traveling abroad for college business to have medical evacuation and repatriation insurance coverage. Gettysburg offers a Global Medical Insurance policy that has medical evacuation and repatriation and international health insurance through CHUBB, International SOS, and additional benefits that are essential to international travelers. This insurance does not replace the student's primary insurance policy, but will cover certain emergency services when traveling, such as the need for evacuation.

Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)

The Eisenhower Institute will register each student traveling internationally through the State Department's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). This program is a free service provided by the U.S. government to U.S. citizens who are traveling to, or living in, a foreign country. STEP provides users with travel warnings and alerts, and allows users to receive routine information from the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

International phone plan

The Eisenhower Institute requires trip participants to have an international phone plan while traveling abroad. Participants must confirm their international phone number prior to travel. 

COVID-19 policies

  • All travelers must be fully vaccinated.
  • Follow local laws and public health guidance.
  • Wear N95 masks while traveling in airplanes and other crowded spaces.
  • The Eisenhower Institute will provide testing in accordance with travel requirements. Travelers may be required to seek additional testing at their own cost if they are informed of close contact exposure or are symptomatic.

Best practices

  • Travel with a photocopy of your passport and vaccine card.
  • Download WhatsApp and confirm you have been added to the trip group.
  • Download the Google Translateapp and the language pack for your destination.
  • Use the buddy system if you split off from the group at any point.
  • Stay where you are if you are unintentionally separated from the group.

Packing information

  • Medications: Please pack any required medication. Make sure your medication is legal in the countries you are visiting.
  • Passports & Vaccine Cards: Travel with additional hardcopies and an electronic copy of your passport and vaccination record.*
  • Thermometer: Bring a thermometer to monitor your symptoms while traveling.*
  • Money: Check with your bank to determine whether bank cards or credit cards are the best way for you to make payments or withdraw foreign currency.
  • Luggage: Pack light—you are responsible for carrying your bags.
  • Attire: Bring climate appropriate clothing for the duration of travel, including professional attire.

Cultural resources

Prepare for your time abroad with CultureGrams and CIA World Factbook. International SOS also includes best practices for local customs. 

Contact us

If you have any questions about the Institute's travel policy or health and safety practices, please contact us at 717-337-6685.

Terms

  • College—Gettysburg College
  • EI—Eisenhower Institute at Gettysburg College
  • EI Staff—Employees assigned to EI (not faculty or students)
  • College Staff—College employees outside EI (not faculty or students)
  • Faculty—Professors, instructors, lecturers and other academic staff
  • Guest—An approved traveler who is not a student, trip leader or travel facilitator.
  • Program leader—Anyone leading an EI program.
  • Student—A Gettysburg College student involved in EI programs
  • Traveler—Any program leader, staff, student or others on trips organized by EI.
  • Trip Coordinator—EI staff assigned to coordinate travel details.
  • Trip Leader—Program leader or staff primarily responsible for students during travel.
  • Travel Facilitator—An additional responsible adult (EI staff or expert, College staff or faculty) traveling with students to assist the trip leader. Required for domestic trips with more than 10 students or international trips with more than six.

Travel Planning & Approval

Program leaders, faculty or staff developing an experiential learning trip or planning other travel on behalf of the Institute must use this form to submit a written proposal to the Executive Director outlining the educational/professional purpose, dates, transportation and lodging requests and planned activities.

EI staff will not make any arrangements for travel that has not been approved by the Executive Director. Proposals will be reviewed within 10 days of submission. 

Proposal Due Dates

Type of Trip Proposal Due Date
 1-Day Domestic Trips (ground transportation only; no overnight)  2 weeks prior to travel
 Overnight Domestic Trips (ground transportation only)  4 weeks prior to travel
 Domestic Trips (air travel)  6 weeks prior to travel
 International Trips  6 months prior to travel

Trip Coordinator

Once travel is approved, an EI staff member will be assigned as Trip Coordinator to assist with logistical details. The Trip Coordinator will:

  • Verify traveler flight information
  • Book and pay for all transportation and lodging
  • Assist with scheduling and activities
  • Register travel with college, insurance and federal authorities as required
  • Refer any questions or concerns about the travel plan to the Executive Director

Trip Leaders should communicate with their assigned EI Trip Coordinator regularly and frequently. Trip Leaders must meet with the Trip Coordinator no later than two weeks prior to travel to review final details. Any concerns about itinerary or arrangements should be discussed at that time. Last-minute changes will not be honored.

  • Forms: Trip Leaders and Travel Facilitators must complete medical forms, transportation forms, security waivers and other forms as required, and provide emergency contact information as soon as travel is approved, but no later than one week prior to departure.
  • Training: All Trip Leaders and Travel Facilitators must submit a signed acknowledgement that they have completed Campus Security Authority (CSA) training and reviewed College travel and emergency procedures. This acknowledgement is due no later than 1 month prior to travel. EI staff can assist any Program leader arrange this training with the Department of Public Safety.
  • Accessibility: Trip Leaders should plan activities in which all travelers can participate. EI will make every effort to accommodate travelers of all abilities.
  • Timing: Trip Leaders are encouraged to avoid scheduling travel during instructional days.

For Trip Leaders and Travel Facilitators

The Trip Leader proposes and plans the travel experience in conjunction with EI staff. This person may be a Program Leader, staff or faculty. The Trip Leader is primarily responsible for travelers and activities during the trip and may be supported by one or more additional Travel Facilitators.

  • Supervision: A Trip Leader or Travel Facilitator is required for every 10 students traveling on domestic overnight trips and every 6 students on international trips. The Executive Director may require additional travel facilitators based on the nature of activities involved, regardless of the number of students traveling.
  • Forms: Trip Leaders and Travel Facilitators must complete medical forms, transportation forms, security waivers and other forms as required, and provide emergency contact information as soon as travel is approved, but no later than one week prior to departure.
  • Training: All Trip Leaders and Travel Facilitators must submit a signed acknowledgement that they have completed Campus Security Authority (CSA) training and reviewed College travel and emergency procedures. This acknowledgement is due no later than 1 month prior to travel. EI staff can assist any Program leader arrange this training with the Department of Public Safety.
  • Planning: Trip Leaders should communicate with their assigned EI Trip Coordinator regularly and frequently. Leaders must meet with the Trip Coordinator no later than two weeks prior to travel to review final details. Any concerns about itinerary or arrangements should be discussed at that time. Last-minute changes will not be honored.
  • International Travel Acknowledgement: Trip Leaders traveling abroad must provide written acknowledgement no later than 1 month prior to travel confirming that they are familiar with potential problems with international students and re-entry into the United States. See International Travel below.
  • Accessibility: Trip Leaders should plan activities in which all travelers can participate. EI will make every effort to accommodate travelers of all abilities.
  • Timing: Trip Leaders are encouraged to avoid scheduling travel during instructional days.

For Students

  • Permission: Written permission from a parent/legal guardian is required to approve travel for students under age 18. Student travelers are responsible for returning the permission form no later than two weeks after trip approval, or two weeks after being accepted into the program, whichever is latest. Students under 18 who wish to travel separately from the group must also have a parent/legal guardian sign the “Decline of Transportation” waiver.
  • Forms: Students must complete all necessary College behavior, medical, transportation, and security waivers as soon as travel is approved, but no later than 1 week prior to departure.
  • International travel: Students are responsible for obtaining passports, visas, immunizations, cell phone upgrades, health insurance and other requirements to be eligible for international travel. See International Travel below.
    • Visas: Students travelling internationally are responsible for securing visas at least 2 months prior to travel. Requirements and costs vary widely by country. Check with the State Department for further details.
  • Financial assistance: Students who need financial assistance for expenses not covered by EI should contact the Trip Coordinator.
  • Missed Classes: If students must miss classes to travel, they are responsible for notifying instructors and making arrangements to make up work.
  • Cancellation penalty: Students who withdraw voluntarily or are removed from the program are responsible for reimbursing the Institute for the full cost of travel, accommodations, meals, and other expenses incurred on the student’s behalf, or a minimum $150 penalty. These charges will be billed directly to the student’s college account.

Transportation

Ground Transportation

Gettysburg College transportation is the preferred provider for day trips within the Washington – Baltimore – Harrisburg area. When College transportation is not available, or for longer trips, the Trip Coordinator will arrange the next most affordable and reliable option.

Trip Leaders and Travel Facilitators on trips involving rental vehicles with student passengers must be certified by the College’s Transportation Department no later than two months before travel occurs. Certification can be arranged by EI staff.

Air Travel

  • Air travel will only be booked by EI staff. The Trip Coordinator will seek the most affordable, efficient and reliable options given the approved itinerary.
  • Economy/main cabin seating will be booked for all flights.
  • Reservations will be confirmed by the Trip Coordinator no later than 4 weeks before domestic trips and 2 months before international travel.
  • Trip Coordinator will arrange for travelers to arrive at airports no later than 2 ½ hours before domestic departures and 3 hours before international departures (regardless of pre-check status).

All travelers are expected to travel together, departing from and returning to the Gettysburg College campus. Travelers who wish to deviate from the group plan must request changes in writing to the Executive Director at least one month prior to departure. Students must also sign a Decline of Transportation Services waiver. (For students under 18, a parent/legal guardian must also sign this form.) If change requests are approved by the Executive Director, all additional fees and costs are the responsibility of the traveler.

Accommodations

  • Trip Leader and Trip Coordinator will work together to select appropriate accommodations.
  • Reservations will only be booked by the Trip Coordinator, no later than 3 weeks prior to arrival for domestic trips and 2 months prior for international travel. If an EI staff member is not travelling, rooms will be paid for in advance. The Trip Coordinator will coordinate early/late arrival or checkout in advance.
  • Students will be placed in double rooms (two to a room) with another student of the same gender. Each student must have their own bed. Students will not be given single rooms unless absolutely necessary. Gender identity will be considered. Address any concerns about room assignments to the Trip Coordinator or Executive Director.
  • Trip Leaders, Travel Facilitators and EI staff will be placed in single rooms.

Meals

Meal costs vary greatly by location. To prevent excessive expenses, Trip Coordinators will work with Trip Leaders in advance to identify appropriate and cost-effective dining locations. EI staff will attempt to secure lodging that provides complimentary or low-cost breakfast.

Alcohol purchases shall not be made with College funds for students, EI staff or program leaders. They will not be reimbursed. Trip Leaders and Travel Facilitators who are driving vehicles while traveling are not permitted to consume alcohol for the duration of the trip.

Sightseeing

The primary purpose of EI travel must be program-related research, meetings, or targeted excursions tied to the learning experience. Sightseeing is permissible during unscheduled time but shall not form the bulk of any full day of travel.

Sight-seeing done while on an experiential learning trip or other travel will not be coordinated by EI staff, must follow College policy and insurance provisions, and is considered “on your own and at your own expense.” EI staff and Program leaders reserve the right to impose restrictions on sight-seeing in order to prevent risks that may create or cause serious hazards.

Payments and Tips

Expenses: College credit cards (“Pcards”) should be used for all travel expenses. Trip Leaders not accompanied by an EI staff member will receive either a limited credit card from the College and/or a cash advance to pay outstanding bills, tips, and emergencies. All payments for foreign travel should be made by EI staff.

Tips: Trip Leaders and Travel Facilitators will receive “tip forms” to be signed by anyone receiving a tip using college funds (or personal funds to be reimbursed by the College). Tips should be given in accordance with local customs. Excessive tips will not be reimbursed.

Expense reports: Travelers must document in detail all payments made using College funds. Each transaction should be documented on a summary report, listing the date of transaction, name of vendor/recipient, and the business purpose.

Receipts: Original receipts for Pcard charges, reimbursements, and travel advances MUST be submitted to the EI office no later than five (5) days after return.

International Travel

International travelers (Trip Leaders, Travel Facilitators and Students) are responsible for:

  • Obtaining passports and securing visas at least 2 months prior to travel . Requirements and costs vary widely by country. Check with the State Department for further details.
  • Obtaining required immunizations – including COVID vaccinations – prior to travel. Consult the Centers for Disease Control for details. A complete physical examination is highly recommended.
  • Obtaining an international cell phone or upgrading their current phone to an international plan for the duration of the trip. WhatsApp and other internet-based applications do not cover this requirement. Trip Leaders and Travel Facilitators will be provided with temporary travel phones or reimbursed for upgrading to an international cell phone plan for the duration of the trip, as a business expense.

Trip Coordinators will:

  • Register international travel with the US State DepartmentSmart Traveler Enrollment Program no later than three weeks before departure.
  • Register international travelers through Gettysburg College, including for the college’s Global Medical Insurance policy, which includes coverage for medical evacuation and repatriation, international health insurance, support through International SOS , and other benefits.

Re-entry: Trip Leaders traveling abroad must provide written acknowledgement no later than 1 month prior to travel confirming that they are familiar with potential problems with international students and re-entry into the United States.

Risk: EI works with the Center for Global Education and the College International Travel Review Committee (ITRAC) to assess travel advisories and risk related to travel. Travelers will be required to acknowledge and accept the risks and responsibilities associated with global travel by signing an Agreement and Release prior to participating. At times of elevated risk, such as traveling during the COVID-19 pandemic, travelers will also be required to sign an Acknowledgement of Risks recognizing the unique circumstances at their destination(s) as detailed in Department of State Travel Advisories and CDC Travel Health Notices.

Travelers who become ill or are required to quarantine during travel acknowledge that they are individually responsible for all costs associated with additional time at the destination, including but not limited to accommodations, transportation (ground and airfare changes), food, etc. Travelers acknowledge that these unforeseen situations and requirements may delay return to the United States, including delaying a return to work and classes. Students acknowledge that Trip Leaders and Travel Assistants may not be available and are not required to remain with them during an extended stay due to illness, exposure, quarantine or other circumstances.

Behavior Expectations

When travelling on behalf of EI, you serve as an ambassador of Gettysburg College. Your actions reflect not only on yourself, but on the College. All travelers are expected to act with a high level of responsibility and maturity. All travelers must comply with all Gettysburg College policies and procedures as well as applicable local, state, federal, and/or national laws.

Before you travel

  • Trip leaders and travel Facilitators must be in good standing prior to travel, free of any current disciplinary actions.
  • Students must be in good academic and conduct standing. If students are placed on academic probation, conduct probation or obtain more than 4 points at any time between approval and participation, their right to participate will be rescinded.

During travel

  • Students must adhere to all the policies included in Gettysburg College’s Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook .
  • Trip leaders and travel Facilitators must adhere to the Gettysburg College Employee Standard of Conduct .
  • While traveling, there are certain behaviors that are considered unacceptable and could lead to possible disruption of planned activities and your dismissal from the trip. You must act in an appropriate manner that does not infringe upon the customs of the country in which the program is being conducted, nor upon the rights and safety of yourself or of other participants of the program.

Dismissal

In order to maintain an effective learning environment, represent the high standards and expectations of Gettysburg College, and to promote the health, safety, and well-being of fellow travelers and our hosts, the Eisenhower Institute reserves the right to dismiss a traveler due to disruptive behavior or conduct unbecoming the high standards of Gettysburg College.

  • Trip leaders and travel Facilitators will provide a verbal warning to a traveler who engages in repeated disruptive behavior.
  • A single instance of severely disruptive, harassing, or threatening behavior may warrant immediate removal, without warning, from the trip.
  • The use or possession of illegal drugs or being knowingly present in instances of use or possession of illegal drugs while travelling is cause for immediate dismissal.
  • The use of alcohol by students who are underage in the jurisdiction where they are traveling is cause for immediate dismissal.
  • Actions which violate student or employee policies during travel will be addressed by the Trip Leader, Travel Facilitator, or Executive Director. Student actions will also be addressed through the College's conduct system.
  • Dismissed travelers will be responsible for all expenses incurred, including all transportation costs involved in returning home.
  • Any student dismissed from an experiential learning trip (or in violation of Gettysburg College policies) will be referred to the Gettysburg College Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities.
  • Trip leaders and travel Facilitators dismissed from an experiential learning trip will be referred to appropriate College authorities and become ineligible for future travel with EI.

Incidental Costs

EI covers the cost of transportation, accommodations, approved activity fees and some meals. Travelers are responsible for passport fees, international phone upgrades, required medical tests and immunizations. Travelers may also incur incidental costs including but not limited to tips, personal expenses and some meals. Students who need financial assistance for expenses not covered by EI should contact the Trip Coordinator.

Guests

EI travel experiences are designed for students and program leaders, accompanied by EI staff and/or faculty. Guests are generally discouraged but may be approved in limited instances by the Executive Director. Approved guests will be required to submit medical, transportation and security waivers; and may be asked to complete additional training before travelling.

Cancellation

Gettysburg College, the Executive Director, and EI staff reserve the right to alter or cancel planned travel and/or activities at any time, for any reason including but not limited to the following: imminent or ongoing violence, health risks, inclement weather, or natural disasters. This will be done in consultation with the Trip Leader and based on recommendations from Gettysburg College administration and Department of Public Safety. Risk and potential cancellation of international trips will be decided in conjunction with the Center for Global Education and the College International Travel Review Committee (ITRAC).

Exceptions

The Executive Director may waive any part of this policy at his/her discretion.

Updated August 2022