Here are the principles of the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa (UHM) Study Abroad Center:

  1. The UHM Study Abroad Center operates according to professional norms within the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs. The Center plays a variety of roles in creating, administering, and evaluating academic Study Abroad Programs for the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. The Center specializes in overseas academic program delivery, student health, safety, security, risk assessment and management through a variety of means including on-site inspection, and program evaluations. As part of the Center’s standard of care, it provides training to faculty members in health, safety, risk and liability.
  2. An Advisory Council Appointed by the Senate Executive Committee provides oversight and guidance with regard to key policy and governance issues.The Study Abroad Center has an Advisory Council made up of faculty members representing various colleges/departments of the University of Hawai‘i, Mānoa. Members of the Council are appointed by the Mānoa Faculty Senate Executive Committee. The Advisory Council is the Center’s policy-making body and is its curriculum committee. A key charge of the Advisory Council is to review and/or approve programs and faculty resident director appointments.
  3. The Study Abroad Center’s primary responsibility is to serve the intellectual needs of students consistent with university policy. The Study Abroad Center offers a wide range of programs, and the curriculum is designed to encourage all academically eligible students at UHM to participate in its programs. Similarly, faculty participation across the Mānoa campus as resident directors is encouraged for faculty development and enrichment opportunities. While the Study Abroad Center values the participation of individual departments it is not bound by their curriculum or policies.The Center solicits consultation from various departments during the program development phase as well as periodic reviews – it is understood that the programs belong to the University and are offered through the Center. As the Study Abroad Advisory Council by-laws indicate – any academic disputes between the departments and the Center is resolved by the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs.
  4. UHM Study Abroad Programs are established with the participation of the Advisory Council. The Center welcomes suggestions about institutional ties by individual faculty, but reserves the responsibility for establishing and maintaining institutional ties. Study Abroad programs need to function with or without UHM faculty involvement Students should be able to count on attending Study Abroad programs within their academic tenure at UHM.
  5. Official University Sponsored Study Abroad Programs are not permitted to exist outside of UHM Study Abroad Center Oversight/Purview in order to:
    • Avoid confusion for students, faculty, and university administrators
    • Avoid confusion for UHM and the host institution personnel concerning coherent/streamlined communication regarding all aspects of study abroad programming
    • Minimize university liability
    • Share liability between the host institution and UHM
    • Provide opportunity for ALL UHM faculty across the board for faculty development
    • Avoid personal liability for faculty
    • Streamline quality control, review, and assessment of all aspects of students’ study abroad experience (academic, excursions, accommodations, on-site support services, health and safety issues, pre-departure/in-country orientations)
    • Register students in UHM articulated courses which in turn guarantees full UHM financial aid and scholarships for eligible students in accordance with federal financial aid guidelines, as well as maintains continuous enrollment at UHM
    • Provide full support for students (prior to departure, during, and post) in the areas of application, advising, financial aid, comprehensive budget, collection of funds, disbursement of funds, travel arrangements, pre-departure orientations, parents’ orientation, registration of courses, grade posting, etc.
    • Provide full support for faculty who are appointed as Resident Directors of programs (prior to departure, during and post) in the areas of resident director training, accommodations, travel, remuneration for faculty, office space, related funding for selected costs, etc.
    • Provide continuous full employment benefits for the faculty in terms of continuous service, workload, insurance, etc.
  6. SAC is a self-sustaining unit of UHM under the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs.While it is not making a profit – it is important to know that programs officially sponsored by UHM under the auspices of the UHM Study Abroad Center must be financially solvent. Therefore, when the Study Abroad Advisory Council on Study Abroad approves of a new program – they take into consideration the financial viability of the new program, and whether it can be incorporated in existing study abroad programs – both in terms of finances and academics. There needs to be cost effectiveness in program offerings at all times. As a result if a department or a faculty proposes a new study abroad program, they are welcome to do so under these criteria:
    • Proposing to fulfill major requirements only – therefore are restricted to a specific major or graduate degrees (EMBA, JEMBA, CHEMBA, Field Schools, etc.)
    • Proposing departments will ensure that all aspects of the Study Abroad programming are met
    • SAC will conduct due diligence, insurance certification, registration, grade reporting, post program evaluation, and overall program oversight.
    • Approval of appointment of each faculty conducting the program by the Council on Study Abroad. SAC will not remunerate the faculty (salary, per diem, travel)
    • Evaluation of the program (quality of the experience, learning outcomes) upon completion to determine whether the program should be continued to be offered by the Department/College or whether UHM Study Abroad Center should assume full responsibility for its continued offering.
  7. Study Abroad Center will help individual students fashion independent study abroad programs as necessary. If a UHM student would like to study abroad in countries where UHM SAC does not have an official program, then the student can design his/her own program under the “self-designed study abroad program” option. Following the guidelines of the “self-designed study abroad program”, the student can study virtually anywhere in the world. Faculty can sponsor students to study abroad utilizing this option as well.
  8. The Center welcomes new program development and input within the Center’s core principles/norms.