These policies and procedures are intended as a guide to those individuals and departments wishing to add a short term travel component to their course offerings in a given semester. While similar in nature to a full semester abroad, these short term trips have many additional issues that have to be addressed prior to departure.
These policies and procedures are necessary in order to ensure that the revenues and expenses related to the travel component are recorded correctly on the student’s account and ultimately the general ledger of the University. There are many departments affected by the implementation of a travel component to a course. Adherence to the following procedures will allow for the Faculty Sponsor of the trip to proceed with the travel component.
III. APPROVAL PROCESS
Prior to the travel component being set up on the Datatel System, the Faculty Sponsor must complete a “Study Abroad Authorization Form” SAAF, (see instructions and form). The SAAF documents that the Faculty Sponsor has gained the approval of his/her College Dean and Campus Provost to offer the program, and provides the Enrollment Services Department and Finance Office the necessary information to create the program on the Datatel System. Once the SAAF has the required signatures, the Faculty Sponsor will send a copy to Enrollment Services and to the Finance Office. It is the responsibility of the Faculty Sponsor to make sure that both of the departments have received a copy of the SAAF in a timely fashion.
B. Course Management
Once the Faculty Sponsor obtains an approved SAAF, depending upon whether it is a new course or a continuous term renewal the following steps should be taken.
· If a new course has a travel component, the completed SAAF form must be attached to the Academic Class Schedule Form when a section is created and remitted to Enrollment Services.
· If an existing course is adding a travel component, or if a course that had a travel component from a prior term will have a travel component in a subsequent term, a completed SAAF form should accompany the term galley when submitted to the scheduling officer. This is necessary to ensure that the Department Chair, Dean of the College, Provost, Enrollment Services and Finance Departments have the most current information and rates pertaining to the trip. A new SAAF must be submitted every year regardless of whether a trip to the same destination has taken place or not.
C. Account Creation
When Enrollment Services and Finance receives the required information, they will coordinate the creation of an AR code and general ledger account. As students register for the course with a travel component, their accounts are charged with the travel portion, cost of the course, and the general ledger account is credited with the same amount. The travel portion is an easily identifiable separate charge on their accounts with the travel destination in the description. At this point in time, the students have been charged, and the general ledger account that the Faculty Sponsor will access to pay for bills related to the trip has been credited. Even though the student has been billed and the general ledger account credited, the student has not “paid” for the trip.
IV. STUDENT /FACULTY SPONSOR RESPONSIBILITIES
It is the responsibility of the Faculty Sponsor to confirm with Enrollment Services that students registered for the course have satisfied the trip charge, either by making a payment or by having sufficient financial aid to cover their costs related to the trip. To do this, the Faculty Sponsor must work with Enrollment Services directly. Once the registered students have been cleared for the trip, the Enrollment Services will provide written confirmation through e-mail to the Finance Office and the Faculty Sponsor.
It is the responsibility of the student to satisfy his/her bill well in advance of scheduled departure. All payments must be received by Enrollment Services, including any deposits required by the Faculty Sponsor in advance of the trip. Under no circumstances can instructors collect money from the student or pay the charge on behalf of a student.
Individuals, other than the course instructor or students registered for the course, who are taking the trip as a cultural excursion, must make payment for their trip directly to the Enrollment Services Department. They must present their payment to an Associate Director of Enrollment Services who will ensure that their payment is applied to the proper account associated with that specific trip.
V. TRIP RELATED EXPENSES
Faculty Sponsors may begin processing payments for trip related expenditures once the Finance Office has received confirmation from Enrollment Services that all students registered for the course trip have satisfied their debt to the University. In most cases Faculty Sponsors do not have the signatory authority at high enough dollar limits to process purchase orders and check requests. That being the case, all check requests and purchase orders at a minimum must have the Dean of the College’s approval, and in his/her absence the Campus Provost’s approval.
It is preferred that the Faculty Sponsor arrange for all trip related expenditures via purchase orders, check requests or wire transfers in advance of the trip as much as is practical. This will require the Faculty Sponsor to plan accordingly. Travel Advances are an option to the Faculty Sponsor as well, and the policies and procedures related to such can be found on the University’s website. Faculty Sponsors, unless otherwise advised by the Dean or Provost, will be held responsible for any funds expended in excess of what was collected from the students.
VI. POST TRIP DOCUMENTATION
It is the responsibility of the Faculty Sponsor to account for and document all trip related revenues and expenses. The appropriate format for documentation and the policies related to such, can found on the University’s Web Site at inside.fdu.edu, on the Finance page, under the heading of Travel and Business Expense. Faculty Sponsors should familiarize themselves with these policies and procedures, as well as those related to Travel Advances, prior to departure.