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Student Travel Policy

Revised August 2012

Student Travel Support

A limited travel budget is available to assist students who wish to travel to attend appropriate out-of-town events (e.g., legal conferences, national organization meetings, etc.). Students planning to travel on Penn State Law-sponsored or student organization-sponsored business must receive pre-approval by the Office of Student Services. Students seeking financial support for travel must provide the following at least three weeks prior to departure:

  1. A budget of total expected costs (registration fees, travel, hotel, meals, etc.);
  2. A conference/program agenda;
  3. A statement explaining the relevancy to legal studies;
  4. Funding received from other sources (e.g., grants, fee waivers, etc.);
  5. How much funding is requested; and
  6. How your attendance will benefit you and the law school community.

Requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis after careful evaluation of the factors listed above on a first-come, first-served basis until the funds are exhausted for that academic year. Travelers are accountable for spending University monies, which requires that the traveler demonstrate integrity and expect all travel expenses to be scrutinized. The personal safety of the traveler, the wise use of traveler's time and the practical aspects of the itinerary are to be considered in determining travel plans. It is the traveler's responsibility to (1) Clearly state business purpose of trip; (2) Avoid impropriety or extravagance; (3) Understand and comply with University policies; (4) Assure that clearly documented, accurate and reasonable expenses are submitted within 60 days of trip completion, including the Travel Support Form available online; and (5) Certify that the traveler will not receive duplicate reimbursements for same travel expense (no double-dipping).

All student travelers must submit a completed “Emergency Contact Form” available online prior to departure.

Air Transportation

The Law School will consider funding up to 75 percent of air transportation to approved events. Students shall make air travel arrangements by the most direct route, by coach class and at the lowest available fare. Reasonable cost of transportation from and to the destination airport (usually by airport shuttle) is reimbursable. Transportation to and parking at the University Park Airport and Harrisburg International Airport is not reimbursable. Travel to and parking at other airports from which travel originates may be reimbursed up to 75 percent of the cost. Itemized receipts are required for all expenses.

Automobile Transportation

The cost of travel using a privately-owned vehicle may be permitted when it is the most economical means of transportation and does not exceed that of other transportation. When a privately-owned vehicle is used for law school business, reimbursement will be at the University’s standard mileage allowance. Car-pooling is required if more than one student is traveling to the same destination. Students will be reimbursed for parking and toll fees incurred in the course of the trip. The mileage reimbursement is intended to cover all other costs of vehicle operation, including gas. If using a personal vehicle for business purposes, the vehicle owner's insurance policy will act as primary insurance in the event of an accident, and the University's auto liability coverage will be secondary. Parking receipts are required for reimbursement; toll receipts are not required.

Lodging

The Law School will consider funding up to 75 percent of lodging costs based on double-room occupancy. Your choice of accommodations must be reasonable and ordinarily will be those recommended by the conference/event organizers or comparably priced lodging. Student safety is a prime concern. When making arrangements for lodging, please consider issues such as quality and location. It is expected that students of the same gender will share a room whenever possible. Students choosing to stay in their own room are required to pay the hotel room cost. Personal telephone calls, laundry, hotel movies, mini-bar items and other such expenses are not reimbursable.

Meals

The maximum daily allowance for meals, tips, and incidentals varies, depending on conference location. You will be notified of the estimated amount allowed by Student Services before you depart. The Law School will consider funding up to 75 percent of the maximum daily allowance. Your expenses need to be supported by original receipts. Expenses over the maximum will not be reimbursed. Liquor is not reimbursable.

Registration Expenses

The Law School will consider funding up to 75 percent of event registration fees.

Items That Will Not Be Funded*

  1. Purchase of or reimbursement for the purchase of alcoholic beverages.
  2. Travel costs associated with employment interviews, personal networking, and career fairs.
  3. Transportation between campuses other than arrangements for travel between UP and Carlisle for Law School events as noted under the Student Organization Transportation Policy.
  4. Entertainment.
  5. Personal transportation and travel costs in excess of the round-trip discount fare to the business destination as well as any other expenses incurred during the personal portion of the trip, if any.


 

*This list should not be considered exhaustive.