Duty of Care Solutions
Duty of Care Solutions
Colleges and universities around the world are increasingly engaged internationally. The mobility of students, faculty and staff is an important aspect of that engagement, though it poses unique risks to the travelers and the institution itself. Perhaps more than any other event, the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the crucial need for well-developed institutional plans to mitigate risk, manage crises abroad and support travelers’ health, safety and security. In addition to having real implications for the travelers themselves, gaps in planning and preparation in this area can expose institutions to legal liability, financial losses and significant reputational risk.
Many higher education institutions do not have adequate staffing necessary to monitor these complicated issues, which can lead to fragmented and siloed approaches to managing the institution’s duty of care. Offices typically involved in managing risk and responding to crises that impact the well-being of the campus community (e.g., Risk Management, Police Department, Legal Counsel, Student Affairs, etc.) may have limited expertise on the nuances of international programming or with navigating cultural norms, geographic logistics and best practices in international crisis management.
Gateway International Group is distinguished by its expertise in international higher education, including its understanding of best practices in international health, safety, security and risk management issues. Through our team of experienced professionals, Gateway can bring to your institution comprehensive expertise in international risk management. We understand what is needed, how to audit existing systems, troubleshoot areas of potential duty of care liability, how to frame new risk management structures, and how to secure buy-in for those systems and structures across the institutional enterprise. The international education space is complex, made only more challenging by the pandemic, the panoply of country-specific regulations, and the array of health, safety, and risk concerns abroad. Let Gateway be your partner in navigating the complexity of risk inherent in international mobility.
Gateway provides services that span a wide range of international health, safety, security and risk management concerns.
Do you know where your students and employees are located around the world on any given day and how to contact them should emergencies arise? Gateway will assign a team of experienced and knowledgeable professionals to review your institutional travel policies and tracking systems or, if you are in the beginning stages of creating those structures, to provide guidance on industry best practices.
Ensuring that your travelers are adequately insured for medical claims and evacuation services is critical in avoiding financial losses and mitigating institutional liability and enacting your institutional duty of care. Let Gateway help you determine what changes you may need to make to your current insurance policies and related procedures to provide more complete coverage or let us guide you through the process of procuring a new or enhanced policy for your travelers. Additionally, in these pandemic times, we are able to help with the evaluation of new and effective insurance products designed to mitigate risk to travelers and program participants due to COVID-19.
Faculty-directed education abroad programs are increasingly popular among students and yet represent significant risk exposure to institutions. While your institution may partner with service providers to deliver such programs, your institution bears the primary responsibility for managing risk and responding to crises impacting your travelers on these programs. Gateway will assign a team of education abroad risk professionals to guide you through best industry practices in the development of this program type. We can also offer ad-hoc programmatic risk assessment on your behalf, with recommendations for mitigating risk and enhancing overall health, safety and risk mitigation programming.
What are the institution’s benchmarks for determining where risk is mitigated to operate education abroad programming or allow institution-sponsored or -approved travel? How do you identify activities that may be too risky to allow? Gateway will strive to understand your institutional risk tolerance, establishing an acceptable risk threshold and recommend resources to help you identify, assess, and mitigate risks inherent in the locations and activities where your students or employees travel.
Preparing your travelers and setting parameters for a safe and healthy experience is critical to their ability to make informed decisions before and during international travel. This applies not only to your education abroad student participants and program leaders, but also for all institution-sponsored travelers. Gateway will assign a team of experienced and knowledgeable professionals who will guide you through best practices for traveler pre-departure preparation, including a suite of resources designed to support responsible travel planning.
Having a well-tested and agreed-upon crisis management and communication plan is critical for every institution. Without one, crises may quickly spiral out of control and fear-based responses may take over – leading to ineffective crisis management. When things go sideways, you need a reliable guide to direct who and how to respond to issues at hand. Gateway can assist in reviewing and revising your existing policies and procedures, or in developing new procedures that mitigate risk in a crisis.
As your institution considers when and how to resume international travel, let Gateway provide expert guidance on prevailing best practices in the field, including factors you should consider when determining how to responsibly resume education abroad programs and business travel outside the country.
How does your institution manage the health, safety and risk mitigation of its faculty and staff travelers? What resources are available for these individuals before and during their international travel? What is the institution’s risk management protocol for employee travel? What are the insurance policies (e.g., medical, repatriation, etc) in place for employee travel? Gateway will partner with you to review policies and protocols to ensure risk mitigation for employee travelers.
Let Gateway be your partner in navigating international risk.
We understand that each institution is unique and has its own needs, and that’s why Gateway’s services are customized for each of our partner institutions to accommodate differences in institutional culture, size, and scope. The process is straightforward – Gateway can consult on an hourly basis to address a specific need, conduct an external audit of your current systems and protocols, and/or assist with developing new protocols and policies based on industry best practices. Simply select one or more of Gateway’s three service options that best meet the needs of your institutional circumstances and we will propose a tailored package. Whatever your international risk profile, Gateway will be your expert partner to help develop or enhance the policies, procedures, and systems you need in order to have peace of mind vis-à-vis your international engagements.
Gateway International Group offers experienced international professionals who bring extensive knowledge of international health, safety and security matters within the higher education context. Gateway will assign a team of specialists as needed to meet the goals of your institution. Gateway operates in accordance with established best practices in international health, safety, security and risk management in higher education.
Gateway works with a diverse array of public and private colleges and universities around the United States, including academic units within institutions. Gateway supports institutions in the earliest stages of building health, safety, security and risk management protocols and those institutions that just need guidance with reframing existing policies and procedures. Our services are customized to our partner institutions’ needs and budgets. Although, Gateway’s Duty of Care Solutions are not available to institutions located outside of the United States, we can support institutions and organizations abroad with developing programming and services that align with U.S. health, safety, security and risk mitigation best practices for international programming and practice. We are here to help.
Gateway’s services should not be perceived as legal counsel or advice, but rather as a risk mitigation tool to help your institution align with best practices in the international education industry. Gateway is well-equipped to provide trusted guidance, but ultimately your institution to determines whether to implement any recommendations provided by Gateway.
We understand that effective partnerships develop from close collaboration, trust and mutual respect. We take the time to understand your institution’s priorities, level of risk tolerance and culture related to international health, safety, security and risk mitigation preparedness and response so that we can provide the best services possible. Our process generally includes these steps:
We will conduct an initial intake and needs assessment to discuss how best Gateway can support the partner institution’s needs.
Gateway and the partner institution will identify and assign primary liaisons to ensure effective and streamlined communication.
Gateway and the partner institution will negotiate a detailed services agreement in accordance with an agreed upon scope of services.
Gateway will seek an introduction and orientation to your institution’s current institutional systems, structures, and protocols vis-à-vis the scope of requested services.
For all contracted services, Gateway will prepare final written reports on services rendered and recommendations proposed.
Depending on the nature of the assignment, Gateway will conduct periodic review and assessment meetings to discuss provided services and make modifications as needed.
Gateway International Group has made the commitment to allocate 5% of all revenue to support traditionally underrepresented student participation in international learning and engagement. We have designated the Fund for Education Abroad (FEA) as a recipient of funds gathered through Gateway Education Abroad. FEA is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that provides scholarships and ongoing support to students who are underrepresented in U.S. education abroad.
Aerogami is a leading provider of risk management technology purpose-built for international education. Aerogami provides an innovative platform that any international office can use to prepare, communicate, and locate their travelers. Aerogami utilizes the messaging tools already popular with travelers, like WhatsApp and enables administrators to take action during an emergency.
OffWeGo is a student-centric risk management tool that transforms needed safety behaviors through social connection, comparison of resources, and proven gamification techniques. OffWeGo combines the fun, social elements of travel with traditional risk management resources. OffWeGo aims to provide higher-quality data and new insights into the travel habits of students and employees.
TerraDotta Travel Risk. Traveler safety demands a dynamic response. TerraDotta’s Travel Risk platform offers institutions a ground-breaking Travel Registry platform through which to monitor and track travelers. Through TerraDotta’s Alert Traveler platform, institutions can proactively alert travelers and confirm traveler safety when risk arises.
Currently based in Turkey since 2012, Ms. Pollard has developed and managed education abroad program operations across more than 35 countries through Western Europe, Asia, East Africa, Australia, and the Middle East. Prior to Turkey, her long time posts included Pune, India and London, England. She has also consulted on private sector international risk assessment projects in the aviation and pharmaceutical sectors in Turkey, Iran, and Iraq. Her numerous public-private partnerships between US-based institutions and overseas organizations have resulted in successful, sustainable outcomes in areas of student exchange, student professional development, and curriculum integration. Prior to entering the international education field in 2005, Ms. Pollard completed undergraduate work at the University of Pittsburgh and graduate work in International Affairs at Bahçeşehir Üniversitesi in Istanbul. She is also a CQ (Cultural Intelligence) trained facilitator through the Cultural Intelligence Center. She has conducted assessment research on cultural learning outcomes in US undergraduate study abroad programs, developed intervention strategies, and taught courses on Intercultural Communication and Global Leadership.
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