The Office of International Affairs is committed to providing a safe, healthy and productive learning experience for every member of the Ohio State community pursuing an educational experience abroad, including faculty, staff and resident directors. Guidelines, resources and protocols for a safe and successful international experience have been developed to promote the well-being of every participant.
There are a number of considerations Ohio State faculty, staff and resident directors must make prior to accompanying students on international travel, whether on a program managed through the Office of International Affairs or an independent educational experience abroad.
- Global Care for faculty and staff: Ohio State faculty, staff and dependents enrolled in a university medical plan are automatically enrolled in Global Care, which provides 24-hour health care referrals and emergency assistance when you travel outside of Ohio. For further information on Global Care, please call Benefits at 614-292-1050.
- Supplemental travel insurance for faculty and staff: Ohio State's supplemental travel insurance is provided through GeoBlue. This supplemental insurance is required for all Ohio State faculty and staff accompanying students studying abroad, and includes a policy covering accident and sickness and for emergency assistance, evacuation and repatriation. Ohio State faculty and staff can enroll in supplemental travel insurance by filling out the Resident Director International Supplemental Insurance Form. This form must be submitted by the deadline provided by your study abroad coordinator.
- Health and safety orientation for faculty and staff: Ohio State faculty and staff accompanying students to international locations are required to attend this one-hour orientation, offered several times each semester. Topics discussed in the orientation include medical and non-medical emergency preparedness and procedures, health, safety and security. For dates, times and location, please contact Jeannie Simmons.
- Emergency contact form for faculty and staff leaders of independent groups: Faculty and staff leading Ohio State students to international locations on programming not managed through the Office of International Affairs are required to submit the Group International Travel Form to Dru Simmons, international risk manager, at least 90 days in advance of travel.
- 24/7 Emergency first responder and university security services: A senior member of the Office of International Affairs study abroad unit is always on-call as the emergency first responder for study abroad. This first responder is accessible 24/7 through University Security Services at 614-292-6677.
- U.S. Department of State Smart Traveler Enrollment Program: Ohio State faculty, staff and students who are U.S. citizens and are traveling to international locations are required to register their travel in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). Registration will make your presence and whereabouts known in case it is necessary to contact you in an emergency. In accordance with the Privacy Act, information on your welfare and whereabouts may not be released without your express authorization.
- Student health and safety: Faculty and staff accompanying Ohio State students to international locations and/or advising students intending to travel to international locations are required to refer these students to the Office of International Affairs at least one semester in advance of travel. This referral is required, as the Office of International Affairs implements a number of protocols to maintain the health and safety of all Ohio State students who study abroad, including requiring international supplemental insurance and travel registration with the U.S. Department of State; providing thorough health and safety pre-departure orientations; informing students of travel needs as relates to their health, such as receiving required immunizations and traveling with medications and supplying a detailed study abroad handbook.