Program Administration

Airline transportation - Contact Martin Travel to make your own flight reservations.  Inform your participants of the flights that you want them to take and have them make their own reservations.  The representative from Martin Travel will contact the Comptroller's Office about payment.  NOTE:  The process that VMI Summer Session uses is for summer study abroad program directors to prepare all funding documents (receivers, travel authorizations and travel claims) and give them to the Director of International Programs.  He will review them and pass them to the Summer Session Director for signature.  The receiver will then go to the Comptroller's Office.

Tuition or fee to host institution - If your host institution requires this, prepare a separate receiver for payment. 

Lodging abroad - Make lodging arrangements for the participants and for yourself.  The host institution may take care of this or can help you make arrangements if they do not provide housing.

Ground transportation abroad - Make arrangements for all transportation needs in-country.  For example, bus/van transportation from the airport to the host institution.  All transportation companies must be registered with the local government and insured.  At no time should students be used as drivers for transporting other students.

Medical insurance -  OIP will purchase insurance for all participants and directors.  You will receive the documentation for medical coverage prior to your departure. Insurance coverage is through HTH Worldwide insurance and includes emergency evacuation for both political emergencies and natural disasters.  HTH offers "in network" care in most countries abroad.  For a complete list and more information on the coverage, go to www.hthstudents.com.  

Travel authorization - Familiarize yourself with the VMI Travel Regulations. Complete a travel authorization form.  Use it to itemize the expected costs for your travel and for the cadets.  You will want to request an advance payment on this form.  If you would like a Group Travel Card for expenses incurred while travelling with cadets, let the Director of OIP know so that it can be requested for you.

Brief your participants - Meet with your participants as a group several times prior to departure in order to keep them informed.  Make sure that they register on Post View for the coursed in your program.  Make recommendations to them about what to bring on the trip and what not to bring.  Make absolutely sure that they know when and where to meet you at the departure airport and that they must have their passport and airline ticket with them.

Maintain a budget - You will want to develop a very simple budget to keep up with the status of your funds.  Your sole source of funds is the fee paid in by your students.  Your expenses will vary from program to program, but basic categories include:  airfare, ground transportation, fees to language institute or university, lodging and board, medical insurance, and excursions.  Be sure to keep an accurate record of expenditures and save all receipts so that you can recoup your expenditures on the travel claim when you return to VMI.

Communications - During your time abroad we must have good communications capability.  In most cases, it will be necessary for you to rent an international cell phone (charged to the program) and e-mail OIP your phone number.  If a situation arises from the US side, OIP will contact you via your cell phone.  If you have any problems or questions, contact the Director of International Programs at (540) 464-7421 (work), (540) 464-1304 (home), (757) 813-6982 (cell), or via email (millerda@vmi.edu).  

Accountability - Maintain a list of your students' names, passport numbers, home addresses, home phone numbers, and the names of emergency contact for each student.  OIP will provide you copies of the emergency contact forms prior to your departure.

Grading - Submit grades for the program via Post View as soon as the program is completed.

Final accounting - When you return from the program, be sure to fill out a travel expense reimbursement voucher to recoup your expenditures for the trip that have not otherwise been paid for with receivers or with funds from the advance payment.  When you fill out the voucher, you should not exceed the amount of funds available.  If you are in doubt, please see the Director of International Programs.