A new policy at Iowa State requires faculty, staff and students to preregister all Iowa State-sponsored trips they take outside the U.S. to ensure security and safety.

Registering international travel and enrolling in centrally funded medical and emergency insurance had been encouraged, but the new policy developed by the university's risk management office in consultation with academic leaders makes it mandatory, says a press release.

The policy, effective Jan. 1, includes trips for study abroad classes as well as faculty trips being funded by Iowa State.

Shaun Jamieson, international risk analyst, said in the press release the registration does not work to forbid travel abroad but provide travelers with resources to reduce travel risk.
Trips that require pre registration include anything partially or entirely funded by Iowa State, anything providing students academic credit, any trip involving a student organization or club, faculty member is engaging in education or research abroad.

The policy is meant to ensure travelers are insured and connected with resources before departing for the trip. According to the press release, the pre-registration system works to automatically enroll travelers in insurance covering the cost of emergency medical care if needed due to natural disasters or political instability. Registration also signs up the travelers for a travel system on their email or smartphone, which provides safety and security alerts to travelers.

Information used from the system considers health and security concerns, and then destinations are assessed by risk level, according to the press release. Areas are then classified based on their risk level. Travelers to moderate-risk areas are encouraged to review their itinerary with the Office of Risk Management, and review of the itinerary is required for trips to high-risk areas.

For trips to severe-risk destinations, a required itinerary review is shared with unit-level leadership and the respective senior vice president.