CCAS Updated Interim International Travel Policy

Effective August 1, 2021, CCAS will now allow limited international travel, prioritizing “essential” travel. All international travel requests by CCAS personnel must be submitted through CCAS Global and are subject to approval by the Dean.

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June 02, 2021

Updates from CCAS Global

Beginning August 1, 2021 until further notice, and subject to continuing review of global health conditions, CCAS will allow limited international travel, prioritizing “essential” travel, defined as international travel that is necessary and required per the specific guidance herein. This guidance applies to CCAS-related or CCAS-supported travel only.

For purposes of this policy, international travel is CCAS-related when:

  • the travel is undertaken because an individual is acting in an academic or professional capacity relevant to the person’s areas of responsibility, activities (including co-curricular and extracurricular ones), course of research, teaching, or study at GW, or

  • the travel is undertaken with or organized by any GW organization, division, department, or office, even if not for an academic or professional purpose, and/or
  •  the travel is funded to any degree by the university. 

International travel under this policy does not include personal travel or travel by GW community members returning to their home country, even if some university-related activities might be carried out while there. 

All travelers must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or have an approved GW vaccination exemption to be considered for travel. To be considered “fully vaccinated,” travelers must complete the full series of the vaccination and allow for two weeks after the last dose. GW accepts any vaccine authorized for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the World Health Organization (WHO). Individuals with approved GW vaccination exemptions may face additional travel restrictions when out of the country and should investigate rules in place for the countries they visit.

All international travel requests by CCAS faculty, staff, and students must be submitted through the CCAS Dean’s Office of Global Initiatives (CCAS Global) and are subject to approval by the Dean. This process will assist us in facilitating, tracking, and making informed decisions around travel as we continue to navigate the evolving public health situation due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you have any questions about international travel, please contact Ms. Taoran Sun, Executive Director of Global Initiatives, at [email protected] or the CCAS Global office at [email protected]. Questions about the interim policy as established for university-wide guidance can be directed to the Office of International Programs, via [email protected]. Thank you for your continued cooperation and understanding as we work together to promote the health and safety of our community.

For reference, below is the U.S. Department of State's Travel Advisory Levels

Level 1 Exercise Normal Precautions
Level 2 Exercise Increased Caution
Level 3 Reconsider Travel
Level 4 Do Not Travel

How to Apply for Essential International Travel

 

Undergraduate Academic Program Travel

International travel by and with undergraduate students will be permitted only for approved programs through the schools or the Office for Study Abroad, approved programs for Study Away, or for university sponsored research projects. Other undergraduate credit or non-credit bearing experiences and research must be approved by school deans through Fall 2021. Except for these approved programs, undergraduate travel beyond Fall 2021 will not be considered for pre-approval while this policy is in place.

Graduate Academic Program Travel

University Policy

International travel by and with graduate students is limited to essential travel and approved academic exchanges in countries with Level 3 or lower CDC COVID-19 Risk Assessment and Department of State Travel Advisory. Graduate academic international travel to Level 4 or “Unknown” CDC COVID-19 Risk Assessment or Department of State Travel Advisory destinations requires additional review in accordance with the international travel Exceptions Process.

Essential international academic travel for graduate students involves travel that:

(1) the GW school or division deems necessary to meet a requirement for graduation or travel that is an essential part of a program;

(2) travel cannot be postponed or offered through alternative means. When international travel is an optional component of an academic requirement, the international travel is considered non-essential.   

Travel for graduate students for research purposes is evaluated separately from travel for academic study.  See the “Research-Related Travel” section of this document, below.

CCAS Review & Approval Process

All graduate student travels for academic purposes to destinations of all levels of travel advisory designated by the U.S. Department of State will need to go through the college’s current. No travels should occur unless approved. Travel to destinations of Level 4 requires additional review through the Exceptions Committee. College level approval for Level 4 destinations does not represent the final approval. All graduate students on approved academic travel will be registered in GW Passport as essential travel registration.

Faculty and Staff Travel, Non-Research

University Policy

For destinations with a Level 3 or 4, CDC COVID-19 Risk Assessment or Department of State Travel Advisory, international travel for faculty and staff members should be limited to essential travel. Travel is not essential if it can be postponed or managed by alternative methods, such as online. 

International travel may be considered essential for faculty and staff:

  • when accompanying students on approved travel;
  • when avoiding or delaying travel will cause harm to the operations of the university; or
  • when avoiding or delaying travel will cause loss of existing grant funding or failure to meet contractual obligations that cannot be renegotiated or postponed.

Travel for faculty and staff for research purposes is evaluated separately from other travel. 

CCAS Review & Approval Process

Faculty or graduate students conducting research travels to destinations of Level 1 and 2 will be using the Independent International Travel Proposal in GW Passport system to register their travel requests. These will be reviewed by the college. Faculty or graduate students conducting research travels to destinations of Level 3 and 4 will need to go through the current essential travel/risk mitigation process and obtain college’s approval before taking the trips. The college’s approval for all research travel is the final approval.

University travel in this category shall not occur unless supported by a budget already approved by your department and CCAS Finance in the current fiscal year. 

 

Research-Related Travel for Faculty, Staff, and Students

University Policy

For destinations with a Level 3 or 4, CDC COVID-19 Risk Assessment or Department of State Travel Advisory, research travel should be limited to “essential” travel, defined as travel that cannot be postponed or managed by alternative methods and is required to preserve the results of an ongoing research activity.

CCAS Review & Approval Process

Faculty or graduate students conducting research travels to destinations of Level 1 and 2 will be using the Independent International Travel Proposal in GW Passport system to register their travel requests. These will be reviewed by the college. Faculty or graduate students conducting research travels to destinations of Level 3 and 4 will need to go through the current essential travel/risk mitigation process and obtain college’s approval before taking the trips. The college’s approval for all research travel is the final approval.

University travel in this category shall not occur unless supported by a budget already approved by your department and CCAS Finance in the current fiscal year. 

Conference-Related Travel

University Policy

Conference-related travel is limited by country conditions and conference requirements, including vaccination requirements for attendees. 

Faculty, staff, and students may be approved for international travel to attend professional and educational conferences if directly involved in the conference, such as a presenter, and cannot attend the conference through alternative means.

CCAS Review & Approval Process (Pending OIP confirmation)

Faculty or graduate students conducting research travels to destinations of Level 1 and 2 will be using the Independent International Travel Proposal in GW Passport system to register their travel requests. These will be reviewed by the college. Faculty or graduate students conducting research travels to destinations of Level 3 and 4 will need to go through the current essential travel/risk mitigation process and obtain college’s approval before taking the trips. The college’s approval for all research travel is the final approval.

University travel in this category shall not occur unless supported by a budget already approved by your department and CCAS Finance in the current fiscal year.