Student Conduct and Safety Abroad
Code of Conduct
You are required to read and to understand the following Code of Conduct.It is your responsibility to notify our office if you are currently on disciplinary probation. If you are placed on disciplinary action before your study abroad program begins, you need to contact our office to discuss how this will affect your study abroad plans.
You are required to be familiar with and to adhere to the UR "Standards of Conduct." These Standards are outlined in the UR Full Student Conduct Guide. The same behavior expectations exist overseas, in matters relating to student-to-student relationships, class attendance, and academic honesty.
Additionally, students on study abroad programs should be awar of two general guidelines:
-In terms of academic policy, the general regulations of the University of Rochester override those of the program. An example: the program may indicate that students have the option of taking less than a full load of courses. However, since we do not permit overloads or underloads on study abroad programs, you will be held to the UR policy.
-In terms of any program policies concerning health and safety, the general regulations of the University of Rochester override those of the study abroad program. For example, some programs may permit students to rent or operate motorized vehicles, and we do not. However, in some cases, the judgements of local area experts may be based on more current and accurate information than is availabe to us. In such cases, we will rely on the recommendations of local security consultants and site directors.
The following are examples of behaviors on study abroad programs which will subject the participant to discipline and penalties. Discipline may include, and is not limited to: loss of privileges, community service projects, fines, and/or dismissal from the program, in the sole discretion of University of Rochester administration. The University of Rochester may, at any time, contact your parents (and your home school, if you are not a matriculated UR student) if program officers believe that your behavior is inconsistent with the terms of this agreement.
- The use, distribution, or possession of any quantity of illegal drugs, including marijuana. Prescription drugs with a valid prescription will be allowed and then only for use by the individual for whom it was prescribed.
- The use or possession of firearms, ammunition, explosives, fireworks, and other weapons, including, but not limited to pistols, rifles, shotguns, handguns, BB guns, paint guns, swords, knives, spears, and dangerous chemicals.
- Physical violence, including sexual assault.
- The theft or damage of personal property of another individual or company, or University of Rochester equipment; jeopardizing the safety and the property of others by neglecting to secure common spaces (e.g. failure to observe directions for locking doors, windows, shutters; loss of keys).
- Public conduct (in host countries and in the program location) deemed offensive by ordinary standards of courtesy (e.g., indecent exposure, drunkenness or abuse of alcohol, personal injury, property damage), or any other behavior, which directly impinges on the rights of others.
- Unwillingness to participate fully in the academic program, such as refusal to attend classes or to turn in assignments.
- Failure to read and to comply with written directions and pre-arrival materials provided by the University of Rochester and your study abroad program concerning your safety, adjustment and academic success.
- Failure to respond in a timely fashion to any communication received from the University of Rochester, and from your program, prior to and during your time abroad. This includes failure to monitor and to keep in working order your UR email account. This also includes failure to provide your overseas mailing address to the College Center for Study Abroad at the beginning of your program.
- Harassment directed toward individuals or groups. Harassment may include, but is not limited to threat of physical violence, coercion, intimidation, or persistent verbal or written statements (beyond a reasonable expression of opinion), which are likely to cause another person humiliation, stress, or psychological harm.
- Returning to the program late, intentionally missing the train, bus, or other type of transportation, or traveling to a prohibited area during elective travel. Failure to inform the local site director, to the best of your ability, of your whereabouts during elective travel
- Knowingly furnishing false or misleading information to a representative of the University of Rochester, and the falsification, alteration, duplication, or misuse of the official identification card, passport, and/or other documents issued to participants.
- Creating excessive noise resulting in the disruption of others' rights to a peaceful environment, privacy and rest in the living areas during quiet hours and failure to respect the rights of others during the remaining time periods.
- Assisting with or bringing unauthorized visitor(s) or substances in program housing or premises. Animals, including dogs, cats, reptiles etc. are prohibited in housing on study abroad programs.
- Unauthorized use of University of Rochester property and/or unauthorized entrance into offices, and common spaces during office hours.
- Creating a fire, safety or health hazard; tampering with fire safety equipment of any kind, including sprinklers, smoke detectors, and/or operating a fire alarm or emergency signal without the existence of a fire or a similar emergency situation.
- Failure to comply with the terms of any disciplinary sanctions.
- Operating motor vehicles of any type (automobiles, moped, motorcycles, etc.), or engaging in other dangerous travel behavior such as hitchhiking.
- Failure to abide by smoking, drug, and alcohol policies established by the program.
- Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty or facilitating any such act inconsistent with the standards of academic integrity established by the University of Rochester.
- Unauthorized use of computers, or use that is inconsistent with the local computer use policies. This can include downloading any files to public machines in cases where students have been forbidden to do so, violating time limits set by the program, or using applications not permitted on program computers, which might include Instant Messenger or music download software.
- Failure to promptly meet financial responsibilities to the University of Rochester, including, but not limited to, knowingly passing a worthless check, money order, credit card, or other methods of payment to the University of Rochester or a member of the University of Rochester Study Abroad community acting in official capacity.
- Unauthorized distribution of flyers, advertisements, informational materials, etc. The University of Rochester does not permit any type of unauthorized sales and solicitations for individual or company for private gain.
- Failure to comply with the directives of University of Rochester staff or faculty acting in the performance of their duties.
- Disruption or obstruction of teaching, administration, disciplinary proceedings, other study abroad activities.
- Failure to follow the standards of conduct and behavior as established for all students while in the host country and on field trips, including failure to learn and to obey local laws as outlined by your program director.
Steps Involved in Progressive Discipline
If you engage in any of the prohibited behavior mentioned above, you will be subject to disciplinary action. The disciplinary process through which sanctions may be imposed will vary from location to location, however administrators in each location will generally consider the following:
- Seriousness of the conduct
- Student's academic and behavioral record
- The student's ability to correct conduct
- Surrounding circumstances
- Should the individual have been aware of the rule or behavioral violations
- Is there a reasonable excuse for the infraction?
If a student is deemed responsible for engaging in prohibited behavior the program administrator will determine appropriate sanctions for the student. Typical sanctions include verbal warnings, written warnings, community service, revocation of privileges, and dismissal from the program. Some behaviors, including, but not limited to the use and/or possession of drugs, firearms, and physical assault, may result in immediate dismissal. Any case may involve the entire range of sanctions, however in general, University of Rochester administrators will use progressive discipline when addressing issues of student misconduct.
University Security wants your study abroad experience to be a rewarding and safe one. Please review the information contained in the two U.S. State Department publications, as well as these common sense guidelines.
- Remember, you are an ambassador for the University of Rochester, and of the United States. Bad impressions are lasting impressions.
- Learn about the country, and its customs, in which you will be studying.
- Learn about local laws and the consequences for their violations. What appears to be a minor infraction in the U.S. can have major repercussions in your host country.
- Stay aware of your surroundings, no matter where you are.
- Learn how to summon help in any emergency, either for you or someone else. Know how to use a pay phone and have the correct change or token on hand.
- Inform yourself about the safety of areas that you will commonly frequent. Consult with your program director.
- Ask about, and learn, the emergency exit routes in your residence and school buildings.
- Have a safe place to store valuables at your residence.
- Carry only the cash or credit cards that you'll need. Use travelers checks in place of cash.
- When traveling, carry cash and credit cards in a money belt.
- Whenever possible, travel with another person or in groups.
- Keep your host program informed of your whereabouts. When traveling, let someone know with whom you'll be, along with the date/time of departure and return.
- Keep a low profile in demeanor and dress. Conceal jewelry, or don't wear it at all.
- Don't shout in public.
- Do not hitchhike, even though local citizens may.
- Exchange currency only at authorized agencies or reputable establishments.
- Before you go, make a copy of the identification page of your passport. Take the copy with you, but keep it separate from your passport.
- Keep a record of your passport number, and the date and place of issuance.
- Know the location of, and register at, the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
- Keep up on current events, in the U.S., and, as they relate to U.S. citizens in your host country.
- Review on a regular basis all U.S. State Department Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts & Country Specific Information pages for the areas and regions you'll be residing in and visiting.
- If taking a cell phone, make sure you have an appropriate calling plan.
Clothing that immediately identifies you as a U.S. college student, such as fraternity/sorority logos, or baseball caps worn backwards, may hamper your efforts to blend in to your new surroundings and peers. More seriously, criminals often are able to seek out tourists or international students, simply because of their appearance. Many returnees recommend wearing black clothing, especially in Europe. If the locals don't wear white athletic shoes unless they are engaged in sports, don't use them for streetwear!
Be especially careful to be polite and to observe signs and regulations in public places.
Whenever possible, travel with another person. Leave the following with your program director: name of travelers, dates of departure and return.
Inform yourself about the safety of areas you commonly frequent.
If you are staying with a host family, bring gifts from the U.S.—inexpensive, lightweight and representative of our culture, UR, or your hometown.
Don't be insulted or make a judgment until you have had time to think it over and discuss it with someone.
Make an effort to immerse yourself in your new culture. Become more than a guest. You will be a resident...act like one. Adapt to their way of life; don't try to change it. (That doesn't mean you need to compromise your own moral standards.)
Keep a journal, or a log while you are abroad. Journals provide a wonderful opportunity to record all of your adventures overseas. This will be one of the most valuable pieces of memorabilia to look back at after you return to the United States.
Expect the unexpected. So you get off the plane and your luggage isn't there! Have those few necessities in your carry-on bag. Counteract something you don't believe is affecting you. But once you do recognize what is happening, there are a number of things you can do.
Flexibility, a sense of humor, patience, and counting to ten before you speak are all keys to a successful international experience!
Recommended Web Sites
- University of Rochester Center for Study Abroad
- U.S. State Department information on Travel Warnings
- Current Travel Warnings
- Current Travel Alerts
- Country Specific Information
- U.S. State Department:
- Assistance for Victims of Crime
- Overseas Road Safety
- Background Notes on Foreign Countries
- U.S. Education Department:
- Network for Education Information