Study Abroad Faculty Finances

A professor holds a butterfly to show members of his study abroad program.
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Study Abroad Faculty Finances

Methods of Payment

The University pays for study travel expenses in one of four ways, listed below in order of preference:

  • Credit card;

  • Bank wire transfer;

  • Check/ACH (Domestic payments);

  • In-person while you're overseas. 


Once your program is closed, we can begin making payments. If your travel agent or partner university requires a deposit or prepayment in full, they should email you an invoice by mid-July for Spring-fill Winter Programs, mid-October for Fall-fill Winter programs or mid-January for Summer programs. Carefully review the invoice for accuracy and forward it to your coordinator electronically. The invoice should be printed on official letterhead and contain the following:

  • An invoice number; 

  • Itemized charges;

  • Total amount charged for the group;

  • Deposit amount;

  • Refund policy;

  • Payment due date;

  • Currency of the payment (USD or other);

  • Method of payment (credit card, wire or draft); and

  • Name, phone and address of your contact at the institution. 

If you are being asked to pay via bank wire transfer, the invoice should also include:

  • Account number;

  • Name on account;

  • Name of bank/branch;

  • Bank address, phone number and contact person;

  • Routing (Swift) number;

  • IBAN (International Bank Account Number); and 

  • Name and ABA# of the U.S. intermediary bank (required for transactions in USD). 

Final Balances

Balances can be paid before or after the group has arrived overseas. Final invoices are due November 1 for Winter programs or April 15 for Summer programs. The final invoice should contain the same information outlined above.

Cash Advance Information

When the time comes to finalize your cash advance, your program coordinator will contact you to set up a meeting. These meetings take about 45 to 60 minutes. At the meeting, you'll determine who is taking what money overseas, and for what purpose. Prior to the meeting, co-directors should decide between themselves how they intend to split program funds (i.e. who will be responsible for which areas of the budget) .

Come to the cash advance meeting prepared with a list of the meals for which you will need to use your per diem (i.e. those not already prepaid, included with your lodging, provided by a travel agency as part of a package or as part of a planned group meal). The list needs to include the dates and types of meals.    It is also a good idea to re-read through the Budget FAQ to remind yourself exactly what is considered an allowable expense in each category.

After the meeting with your program coordinator, you will be sent an email advising you that a web form needs your attention. Log in via the link provided and approve the cash advance by filling in your name as Traveler and selecting your supervisor (usually office coordinator or assistant to the chair) and the account administrator (Lisa Huber) from the drop down boxes. Until this web form has been approved, your cash advance request cannot be processed. 

Before departure you will receive your cash advance card, loaded with program funds, which we encourage you to test at a local ATM before departing.

Remember, upon returning to the U.S., you'll have 30 days to "reconcile" your cash advance.

Managing University Funds

When you receive a cash advance, the University is entrusting you with its funds. It is your responsibility to account for how you spent those funds within University guidelines. This means that your cash advance monies are subject to the usual rules, regulations and auditing procedures required by the University Treasurer's Office and the Internal Revenue Service.

The Golden Rule of cash advances is simple: Whenever you spend program money, get a receipt that shows the amount you spent. The only thing for which you don't need a receipt is your per diem.

The corollary to the Golden Rule is: keep up with your financial accounting! Each day, note on the back of each receipt what the expenditure was for and put it in the correct envelope. Keep track of your expenses on the budget spreadsheet or by whichever method works best for you. If you do this, the task of reconciling your cash advance should be much less daunting when you return.

You are only responsible for the money that was cash advanced to you. Therefore, faculty directors should not pool cash advance monies. Cash advances are given to individuals, not programs. Procurement Services will not accept written agreements between co-directors as receipts.

If you pay a travel agency, hotel, school or organization from your cash advance for arrangements for excursions, remember to have them itemize the expenses on their invoice.

Please note, University policy does not allow for the reimbursement of purchases of alcoholic beverages, or for any expenses of family members such as hotel, admissions to excursions, airport shuttles and meals. 


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Photo taken by Courtney Messina on the 16W Costa Rica ENWC Program.