Student Travel Details

Travel requests to destinations deemed to pose high risks to travelers require risk review and authorization before departure. Risk review and authorization is done by the International Oversight Committee (IOC). In the case of Extreme Countries UT System provides an additional level of risk review and authorization. High Risk Regions include, but are not limited to all countries with a current U.S. Department of State Travel Alert / Warning.

Student travelers need to submit to the IOC at [email protected] an Explanation of Travel Letter and a Detailed Itinerary, find detailed information below. The IOC will use this information to evaluate your travel request.  See additional requirements from UT System for travel to Extreme Countries.

Research your destination

This information will help you both prepare your Explanation of Travel letter and assess your destination risk:

  1. Determine if your destination will need risk authorization (IOC, UT System)
  2. Read the Travel Alerts and Warnings and Travel Health Notices for your destination.
  3. Learn about Your Destination’s Risks and Visa, Passport and Vaccination requirements.
  4. Learn about your destination ISOS medical risk rating and travel security risk rating.
  5. Learn about road safety at your destination with the Pulitzer Center RoadsKill map interactive information.

Explanation of Travel Letter

Include your full name and UT Dallas e-mail at the top, do not exceed 1 – 2 single-spaced pages and address the following:


  1. City, Country and dates of program.
  2. Explain purpose and goals of the travel as related to UT Dallas (academic).
  3. Provide compelling reason why this travel must take place at the location, despite current risks.
  4. Address any alternative opportunities available and why they were not chosen.
  5. Describe relevant experience (academic) that has prepared you for the travel.
  6. Explain how this travel will advance: academic goals, impact coursework at UT Dallas, and aid in the pursuit of degree.
  7. Clearly state if academic credit will be awarded.

Safety preparedness

  1. Describe your level of familiarity with the proposed destination (including professional networks, family connections, language proficiency, etc.)
  2. Address the specific steps that will be taken to mitigate risk identified by the U.S. Department of State and International SOS.
  3. Describe any on-site organizational or institutional support that would mitigate the concerns identified.
  4. Describe your plans for handling an emergency or crisis.

Detailed Itinerary
Include your full name and UT Dallas e-mail at the top and attach to the Explanation of Travel Letter.

  1. List dates and physical addresses of where you will be based, including accommodations. Include the Google Map “Short URL” for each.
  2. List cell and land phone number(s) where you can be reached. For land line, include name and location.
  3. Provide all land line phone numbers as if one were dialing from the U.S.
  4. Describe what mode of day-to-day transportation you will use.
  5. List proposed flights (we recommend you do not book travel prior to approval, however please list your potential flight information).
  6. Describe field trips or excursions to other locations outside the main area(s) in #1, include transportation modes.