Faculty Travel Policies & Procedures | Kent State Stark | Kent State University

Faculty Travel Policies & Procedures

The faculty travel fund covers travel to professional conferences, exhibitions and performances and is overseen by the Professional Activities Advisory Committee (PAAC).

PAAC makes recommendations to the Office of Academic Affairs, which must approve and sign all requests for travel funds prior to the planned travel. The guidelines below apply to all full-time faculty, both TT (tenure-track or tenured) and FTNTT (non-tenure-track). Due to budgetary constraints adjunct faculty are currently not eligible for funding. 

A full-time faculty member may be allocated up to $1,200 during the fiscal year (July 1 - June 30), depending on funding constraints. This maximum can be reimbursed for a single conference, performance or exhibition or for several smaller ones.  

Workshops for continuing education credits and certifications, and other sorts of training workshops will be considered on a case-by-case basis, but should be directly related to teaching or research responsibilities. Travel funds for these sorts of activities will be taken out of your allocated yearly amount.

Travel approval requests are submitted electronically. We do not accept requests in any other format. 

Read Kent State's Travel Policy  (7-02.8)


Submit a Travel Approval Request

Application deadline: 15th of the month prior to departure date.

For travel approval + PAAC funding, visit: 

Travel Approval & PAAC Funding Request Form

For travel approval only, visit: 

Faculty Travel Approval Request Form

Fill out the form(s) completely, following the instructions given in the form itself. If a field does not apply to your situation, please type in “NA.” All fields should be filled out. All allowable expenses should be included, even if they exceed the maximum amount that can ultimately be reimbursed.

The information you have provided on the form will be sent simultaneously to all members of PAAC.

Remember to submit documentation as requested on the respective forms. If you only have a hard copy of your acceptance letter, you will need to scan it to create a digital copy. If there is a website that indicates that your scheduled conference presentation, exhibition or performance is on the program, you can submit the URL of the site in lieu of an acceptance letter. If your PDF or the website link submitted is extensive, please note in your final comments where your documentation can be found (i.e., date or page).


Travel Restrictions

  • During final exams week: As long as travel does not interfere with scheduled exams, it will be considered. If there is a conflict, travel will be approved only under unusual circumstances.
  • During any semester: Travel should be limited so that no more than one week's total of any course is missed.
  • During the summer: Summer courses often meet on a compressed timeline compared to regular semesters, which should be taken into account. During a summer term, travel should be limited so that no more than the equivalent of one semester week’s total of any course is missed.

When to Apply for Travel Approval

Requests must be submitted by the 15th day of the month preceding that in which the travel departure date will occur. For example, requests for travel beginning any time during the month of October should be submitted by September 15. You may apply for funding for a conference, performance or exhibition before you have received acceptance in order to meet the deadline. The final approval will be granted upon receipt of your acceptance. Requests submitted after the deadline will not be funded. Early requests are ALWAYS welcome.


Allowable and Unallowable expenseS

The table below gives some examples of expenses that are and are not permitted for travel reimbursement. Although this table may not be comprehensive, it outlines the most common requests. Consult PAAC at starktravel@kent.edu if you have any questions.

 

ALLOWABLE EXPENSES UNALLOWABLE EXPENSES
Airfare, mileage for personal vehicle, or rental car and gas for rental car. (Note: University will pay for least expensive mode of transportation only.) Mileage for rental car.
Hotel stay for conference/exhibition/performance dates and day of travel to/from event. Lodging funds for staying with family/friends/colleagues.
Airport and/or hotel parking for conference/exhibition/performance dates and day of travel to/from travel event. Airport and/or hotel parking for extended days.
Taxi or shuttle for professional activities. Taxi or shuttle for personal activities, entertainment or sightseeing.
Meal per diem for conference/exhibition/performance dates and day of travel to/from travel event provided meals are not included in registration fee. Meal per diem for extended days, meals covered by registration, or per diem for in-state travel without an overnight stay (IRS rules).
Registration costs. Membership dues or costs for proceedings/publication inclusions.
Shipping costs for materials or artwork. Printing costs for posters.

 

The information below provides guidelines for several of these expenses.


Mileage, Meal Per Diems

View mileage rates and meal per diems from Accounts Payable's Travel & Expense website.


Driving vs. Flying

Travelers are encouraged to compare all the costs associated with each mode of transportation and select the one that is the most cost effective. The reimbursement for use of a privately-owned vehicle will be paid at the lower of a mileage allowance or accumulated airfare by coach for all individuals on approved travel status traveling in a privately-owned vehicle.

When comparing costs, the Dean's Office will take into consideration the additional expenses flying would entail (car rental or public transportation, baggage fee, parking, etc.)  

Applicants may only apply for reimbursement of travel expenses incurred during the event timeline and for travel time to and from the event. If traveling by plane, the price of a round-trip ticket can be reimbursed even if it falls outside the aforementioned timespan. For example, a person traveling to a conference October 3-6 who books a flight out on October 2 and back October 10 may apply for reimbursement for the total plane ticket cost, but per diem and airport parking (if needed) October 2-7. 


Membership or Submission Fees Reimbursement

Faculty travel funds do not cover membership or submission fees. Membership and submission fees cannot be included in the registration fee amount on a travel request.


Poster Printing Reimbursement

Faculty travel funds do not cover the costs associated with printing a poster. Faculty can use the large format printer in the Learning Resource Center for a low fee. Visit http://libguides.stark.kent.edu/posterprinter for guidelines and to request its use.


Reimbursement for Travel Expenses upon Completion of Travel

Due to budget limits and processing procedures, it is recommended that expense reimbursement requests be filed as soon as possible after the traveler’s return. Because the fiscal year at Kent State University ends on June 30, expense reimbursements for travel during a given fiscal year must be filed by June 15 of that year. Consult the instructional materials in the Blackboard course “Stark Business Office Information” as well as a faculty mentor for assistance.

  • Complete the reimbursement workflow in FlashLine > Employee > Workflows > HR & Employee Workflows > Expense Reimbursement Workflow 
  • Submit a PRINTOUT of the form and original receipts for air fare, hotels, parking, taxis, conference registration, etc., to the Office of Academic Affairs. Do not submit meal receipts; per diem rates will be used. If you share lodging with another person, ensure that your name appears on the bill; if it does not, you may not be reimbursed that expense.
  • If you travel by car, please also submit printed driving directions of the travel route, including mileage.

How Rates of Reimbursement for Total Expenses are Determined

  • Travel within Ohio (one day only): For a one-day event with no lodging expenses in the state of Ohio, 50% of allowable expenses are reimbursed. This rate applies regardless of the extent of your participation, that is, attendance, office holder or presenter. Per diem (meals or lodging) is not provided when there is no overnight stay due to IRS regulations.
  • Travel within Ohio (more than one day) AND travel out-of-state or country: For more than one day within Ohio with lodging expenses, and for all travel out-of-state or country, the following guidelines apply:
  • Attendance only = up to 45%
  • Office holder, convener, representative = up to 45%
  • Presentation of scholarly paper or poster, performance, exhibition = up to 90%

The campus cannot provide funding for canceled trips or reimburse you before your trip has been completed. If a faculty member must cancel a trip for which a request has been made, it is the responsibility of the faculty member to seek refunds directly from the appropriate providers (e.g., conference organizers, airlines, hotels). Most providers have clear cancellation policies. If you travel in Ohio and stay at a hotel, you don't have to pay state taxes. Request a tax exemption certificate and give it to the hotel so they don't charge you state tax. This works for other purchases that would have state tax also. Other non-state sales taxes will be charged and reimbursed if appropriate.