International Engagements


KU dig site with red Kansas Jayhawk flag

KU is a major research university with global reach.

The University of Kansas encourages faculty, staff, and students to travel internationally on behalf of their position, and their research and educational goals.  KU has many helpful resources to facilitate this travel. The Office of Global Operations & Security (GOS) helps to provide safety and security related assistance to reduce and/or mitigate risks to the traveler.

Most travel conducted is incident-free, however, due to increased violence, crime, and government regulatory requirements, KU must make travelers aware of various risks that may impact them personally and KU.


International Engagement FAQ

All foreign travel involves risk. GOS works with individuals and departments to identify risk and provides countermeasures that can reduce that risk.  International Affairs (KU Lawrence) and the International Programs Office (KUMC) can further assist you with submitting appropriate paperwork for U.S. Department of State high-risk countries. 

“High-risk” locations are countries assessed by the U.S. Department of State as Level 3: Reconsider Travel or Level 4: Do Not Travel and/or by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as Warning Level 3: Avoid Non-Essential Travel, please see KUIA’s Travel to High-Risk Locations for more information and guidance.

KU follows recommendations by the U.S. State Department and the CDC. The State Department links can be found on their travel site, here. The CDC advisories can be found on their travel site, here. Additional safety and security information will be provided to you after you register your travel. You may also reach out to GOS (gos@ku.edu) to create a traveler security assessment.

Leaving your laptop and electronic devices behind that are not needed is an easy way to reduce and eliminate some risks. However, these devices are sometimes needed for successfully completing your goals and objectives for the trip. If a laptop is needed, it is recommended to borrow a temporary laptop that contains no information outside of the information needed for travel. If unable to do so, you should limit the amount of information on your laptop – this includes research, student records, personal health information (PHI), personal identifiable information (PII), and any sensitive or proprietary data.

If you have export controlled data on your laptop (i.e. proprietary data which is not the result of fundamental research), this would require a license, depending on its EAR or ITAR classification. In addition, the U.S. Government’s OFAC restrictions prohibit the export by any means of any article (including laptops or handheld electronic devices) to Cuba, Iran, Syria or Sudan without specific license authorization.

Additionally, you should check to ensure there are no restrictions with encrypting your device before you travel because some nations do not allow such devices and is a violation of their laws. If it is lawful to bring encrypted devices, you should encrypt it and any associated media. 

If in doubt, do not hesitate to reach out to GOS or IT Security. 

GOS reviews travel as a service to identify individuals risks to violating export and sanction laws, and more importantly the safety of our employees and students. Individuals are subject to U.S. export and sanctions laws regardless of if you are in the United States or abroad.

Export controls are U.S. laws and regulations that regulate and restrict the release of critical technologies, information, and services to foreign nationals, within and outside of the United States, and foreign countries. U.S. export controls exist to protect the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States.  Faculty, staff and students may intersect with federal regulations that impose access, dissemination or participation restrictions on the transfer of items and information regulated for reasons of national security, foreign policy, anti-terrorism or non-proliferation.

Yes. International travel by employees or students is still subject to export control regulations. When traveling, be aware that taking information, technology, equipment or laptops out of the country because they may require an export license.

If you are traveling to a sanctioned or embargoed country to conduct university activities, or you are taking any of the following: encrypted software, export controlled items/information, unpublished research data or data not in the public domain – you must ensure you discuss your activities in advance of travel with the KU Export Compliance Officer or another GOS employee. Depending on the type of activity, it may be prohibited, or require licenses be obtained before being allowable.

A Foreign National is any person who is NOT:

  • A U.S. citizen 
  • Permanent resident alien (Green Card Holders)
  • Asylee 
  • Refugee
  • Temporary resident under amnesty provisions

The following are considered foreign nationals or foreign persons:

  • Foreign corporation, business association, partnership entity or group not incorporated in the U.S.
  • Person in the U.S. in non-immigrant status (such as international students or F1 visas, visiting scholars or any person in the U.S. on a visa to include employees on J1 or H1B visas.)

Please visit KU’s Conflicts of Interest Program website for instructions how to disclose outside activities to KU.

Please visit KU’s Conflicts of Interest Program website for instructions how to disclose outside activities to KU.