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Domestic Travel

Dean’s approval is no longer needed for domestic travel. Employees are still asked to limit travel where possible and to consider virtual options that might replace or reduce the need to travel. The University strongly encourages employees to be fully vaccinated prior to engaging in University-affiliated domestic travel and all employees engaging in University-affiliated domestic travel should:

  • Carefully review the CDC and Pennsylvania Department of Health guidance for domestic travel.
  • Research the restrictions imposed in the area(s) to which they are traveling and ensure that they can comply with the restrictions.
  • Follow all COVID recommendations and requirements of the destination.
  • Arrange any necessary air travel through Anthony Travel, Penn State’s preferred travel agency, when possible.
  • Finally, upon returning home, the CDC recommends that unvaccinated travelers get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel AND stay home and self-quarantine for 7 days after travel.

International Travel

Currently, no special COVID-related college or University permission will be needed for University-affiliated international travel. Individuals on University-affiliated international travel funded by University resources are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to departure. Separate University international travel guidelines are available for employees and students. In addition, Penn State’s standard international travel policy still needs to be followed. Furthermore, registered student organizations (RSOs) who are traveling internationally must follow travel policies and regulations from Student Affairs.

Student Domestic Travel

University-affiliated domestic travel by students no longer requires special COVID-related approvals. Penn State’s Student Group Travel policy, FN20 still must be followed.

Course-related student group travel

Course-related domestic travel no longer requires special COVID approval through the academic unit head. However,  any standing general approval processes at the school or department level should remain in place and instructors of record are expected to have plans in place should the trip be impacted by COVID.

Co-curricular student group travel

Similarly, domestic co-curricular student group travel that is organized or financially supported by an HHD academic or central unit, or individual HHD faculty or staff member, and not associated with (and restricted to) students enrolled in specific academic course(s) no longer requires special COVID approval at the academic unit level, but Penn State Policy FN20 on Student Group Travel and all standing local reviews and approvals stay in effect and COVID contingency plans must be developed by the faculty/staff trip organizer. 

Domestic student group travel solely sponsored by a registered student organization (RSO) goes through the RSO travel registration permission process outlined on the Student Affairs website and does not have to go through any department or college approval process.

Travel for individual students

Finally, dean’s approval is no longer needed for  individual students traveling domestic for the purposes of research, conferences, and/or other professional development activities, internships, or engaged learning activities supervised by a faculty member (e.g., research mentor, internship instructor, department head).

Health and safety guidance, acknowledgement of risk

As has been the case, students traveling domestically must still follow all CDC Health and Safety guidance and should be actively encouraged to do so.  Signed acknowledgements of risk are not required for students engaging in University-related domestic travel. However, students must be aware their participation is voluntary and be informed that there is risk that they may become exposed to and/or infected by COVID-19 or any of its variants while traveling. HHD recommends that faculty convey the acknowledgement of risk statement provided by the University (which can be found at the bottom of the University student domestic travel guideline document to students as part of the preparation for domestic travel.