Student Travel Policy, Emergency Information Submission, and Funding Request
All College related student travel must be submitted to capture contact information in case of an emergency and to assure that the travel plans are safe, well planned, and meet the College’s risk management guidelines. Requests for travel funding are also evaluated to determine whether there is an educational component that aligns with Macalester's mission. Student travel is considered College travel if ANY of the following apply:
- Travel is 50 miles or more from campus
- Travel is overnight
- College or student government funds are used to support travel
- Travel is to participate in an event on behalf of or using the name of the college
If College funding is being requested, College vans are strongly recommended for ground travel due to liability and insurance concerns. Vans are required for travel that is over 50 miles from campus OR for travel that is overnight regardless of distance. For large groups over 16 chartering a bus through Minnesota Central may be more cost effective. Use of personal vehicles is a convenience and mileage will not be reimbursed. Limited to five people per vehicle. Per Minnesota law, when using a personal vehicle (not College owned, leased, or rented) the automobile insurance of the vehicle's owner is the primary (first in line) insurance should accident or injury occur. All drivers and passengers should be made aware of this.
Student Organization Travel
Student organizations can submit requests for funds to support travel related to their chartered organizational purpose. They should apply for funding support for travel through this process and not through the regular MCSG budget or additional allocations process so that the safety of the trip can also be assessed and emergency contact information is captured. Student organizations are encouraged to submit for trips far in advance (at least three weeks) so that funding decisions can be made. Student organizations must submit detailed and complete traveler information including name, cellphone, emergency contact, and emergency contact phone before the trip.
General guidelines for funding of student organization travel that the committee considers include limiting support to one trip per year, unless trips are part of the purpose of the student organization (e.g. Outing Club or Habitat for Humanity); limiting support to $50 per person; covering the cost of vans and leaving other trip expenses to the participants. There is flexibility with these guidelines given unique circumstances but limitations are in place so that support for a variety of student organization related travel is possible.
Ethical Overnight Accomodations
Macalester student organizations are committed to a high standard of ethics and social responsibility, both in our community in Minnesota and globally. Please consider checking your overnight accommodations against the list of hotels considered unethical when preparing travel plans, here. For information, please contact Macalester’s Minnesota Public Interest Research Group at MPIRG@macalester.edu.
Student Presenting At an Academic Conference
Individual students who are presenting academic work at an academic conference may also apply for funds. It is recommended that students submit this form themselves, rather than faculty or department coordinators. If more than one student is attending an academic conference, please submit a single application for the entire group. Generally, funding is limited to $350 per student unless there are unusual circumstances to justify additional funding. Funding is limited to allow support for a variety of student requests and academic engagement beyond the College. If airfare is involved, please submit your request as early as possible to avoid fare increases.
Course Field Trip or Other Course-Related Travel
Occasionally, courses arrange field trips or outings that fall under the guidelines of student travel listed above. When this is the case we ask that the travel form is submitted so the basic information and emergency contact info is gathered and shared with the campuses emergency response staff. In most cases funding is not needed and so that portion of the request form can be ignored. Faculty members or department coordinators are often able to gather and submit the trip details and student emergency contact information.
All funding for College travel must come from the Student Travel Committee. Although many academic departments and campus offices would like to support student travel, their budgets are not designed for this purpose. This is why a central funding source for College student travel has been established. The Student Travel Fund is comprised of both College funds as well as MCSG funds to support different kinds of travel. The Student Travel Committee is chaired by the Director of Campus Life and its membership includes the Director of Academic Programs, the MCSG Financial Affairs Chair, two additional staff members appointed by the Dean of Students, and two additional students appointed by the MCSG Financial Affairs Chair.
The Student Travel Committee considers each individual funding request based on its individual merits and connection to the mission of the College.
Submitting a Travel Request
Please submit as early as possible - and no later than 3 weeks before the event. A single request should be made for each trip and include information about each student traveling, rather than separate applications for each student. The Student Travel Committee reviews applications via email on a weekly basis. Requests submitted before 9am on Monday morning will be considered that week and a decision is usually made by the end of that week.
Please note that approval of travel and or funding for travel does not constitute an excused absence from class. It is each students responsibility to make specific arrangements for course attendance as needed. Please refer to the policy on excused absences in the Student Handbook.
For further information please contact Joan Maze, Director of Campus Activities and Operations at firstname.lastname@example.org.