January 17, 2018

Learn more about the 32 NCSI self-assessment tool.
NASPA and VTV Partnership for 32 NCSI
NASPA-Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education and VTV-Family Outreach Foundation share a commitment to creating and sustaining safe and healthy college and university environments that nurture student success. Recently, these two organizations have partnered to advance the 32 National Campus Safety Initiative (32 NCSI). This self-assessment tool was developed by a team of leading experts who, after the tragic mass shooting at Virginia Tech in 2017, convened along with survivors and victims' families to identify best practices and resources. Their collaboration resulted in an online, self-paced assessment tool focusing on nine critical areas:

  • Alcohol and Other Drugs
  • Campus Public Safety
  • Emergency Management
  • Hazing
  • Mental Health
  • Missing Students
  • Physical Security
  • Sexual Violence
  • Threat Assessment
The availability of 32 NCSI through NASPA and VTV coincides with NASPA's 2018 Strategies Conferences focusing on alcohol, other drug, and campus violence prevention; mental health; sexual violence prevention and response; and well-being and health promotion leadership. These professional development events provide student affairs practitioners with knowledge and skills to get started in addressing the various campus health and safety issues as listed above through comprehensive and integrative approaches, and 32 NCSI empowers conference attendees to identify resources, gaps, and apply lessons learned from national presentations back to their campus. All nine modules of the tool are available for individuals and teams working in respective facets of these procedures.
The 32 NCSI assessment is now available for higher education administrators at both NASPA member and non-member institutions. Please contact advisory@naspa.org or call 202-903-0654 to learn more about accessing 32 NCSI.

U.S. Department of State Improves Safety and Security Messaging for U.S. Citizens
The Bureau of Consular Affairs (CA) serves as the public face of the Department of State (DOS) and is responsible for the welfare and protection of U.S. citizens abroad, the issuance of passports and other documentation to citizens and nationals, and the protection of U.S. border security and the facilitation of legitimate travel to the U.S. The CA issues travel information in the form of safety and security messaging on their website,  travel.state.gov, for U.S. citizens traveling internationally. In December 2017, the CA re-designed this website, making it more mobile-friendly and easier to navigate, and made other product improvements as well. Travel administrators, risk professionals, individual travelers and others may benefit from familiarizing themselves with this new information to help inform their travel planning and decisions.
The DOS sought to improve their communications with U.S. citizen travelers to provide clear, timely, and reliable safety and security information worldwide. To do this, the CA gathered feedback from stakeholders around the world over the past year and identified three areas for improvement: 1) improve access to information on their website, 2) provide travelers a better idea of where the U.S. stands with regard to travel to a particular country at any given time, and 3) relay relevant travel safety information to the public in a more timely and efficient fashion. The goal was for these changes to help ensure a consistent worldwide standard.
Beginning this month, the CA launched new products with travel advisories being issued for every country in the world. Travel advisories follow a consistent format and use plain language to help U.S. citizens find and use important security information. Travel advisories give a description of risks, provide clear actions U.S. citizens should take to help ensure their safety, and apply up to four standard levels of advice:
  • Level 1 ---  Exercise Normal Precautions: This is the lowest advisory level for safety and security risk. There is some risk in any international travel. Conditions in other countries may differ from those in the U.S. and may change at any time.    
  • Level 2 ---  Exercise Increased Caution: Be aware of heightened risks to safety and security.
  • Level 3 ---  Reconsider Travel: Avoid travel due to serious risks to safety and security.
  • Level 4 ---  Do Not Travel: This is the highest advisory level due to greater likelihood of life-threatening risks. During an emergency, the U.S. government may have very limited ability to provide assistance. The DOS advises that U.S. citizens not travel to the country or to leave as soon as it is safe to do so.
The CA will issue an overall travel advisory level for a country, but levels of advice may vary for specific locations or areas within a country. For example, U.S. citizens may be advised to "Exercise Increased Caution" (Level 2) in a country, but to "Reconsider Travel" (Level 3) to a particular area within the country. For more information on travel advisories and alerts, visit the  LIVE! Improved Consular Safety and Security Messaging web page . To learn more about considerations for administrators and individual travelers, read On Call International's blog .  
In November 2017, the USA Study Abroad team hosted a webinar with the CA and Diplomatic Security specifically designed for the U.S. study abroad community. The free recorded webinar offers a preview of the changes to the CA's travel advisories and alerts system, which are now active and available. In the webinar, Jennifer Zimdahl Galt, principal deputy assistant secretary for the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the DOS, highlights two important resources: USA StudyAbroad, a "one-stop-shop" for building study abroad capacity, and the Study Abroad Toolbox, online training modules for staff, faculty, and administrators.
For additional resources on this topic, visit our library and use search tag "travel and study abroad" and search our Weekly Snapshot archives for "study abroad" and "travel abroad." 

Professional Development Opportunities

Title: Trauma-Informed and Culturally-Specific Practice with Latina Survivors
Organization: Casa de Esperanza
Date: January 25, 2018 at 12:00PM ET
Location: Online
Fee: Free
Title: Government Voices Webinar: Exploring the International Student Life Cycle
Organizations: Student and Exchange Visitor Program, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and the U.S. Department of State
Date: January 31, 2018 at 2:00PM ET
Location: Online
Fee: Free
Title: Healthy Masculinity Training Institute
Organization: Men Can Stop Rape
Dates: March 5-7, 2018
Location: Washington, DC
Fee: Registration fee

For additional trainings and events, access our searchable online calendar.

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This project was supported by Grant No. 2013-MU-BX-K011 awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. The Bureau of Justice Assistance is a component of the Office of Justice Programs, which also includes the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Institute of Justice, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, the Office for Victims of Crime, and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking. Points of view or opinions in this document are those of author and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the US Department of Justice.