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Field Trips & Fieldwork

Doing a Fieldtrip?

 Please read the U of U's Policy 10-003: Field Trips

There are two key U of U policy points that should be noted in regards to Liabilty Waivers:

  • "No person shall be permitted to participate on a field trip unless a "Statement of Understanding," properly completed and signed pursuant to Section IV.B. (U of U's Fieldtrip Waivers), is on file for that person in the office of the responsible department head or director before the field trip commences."
  • "Each person participating on a field trip in any capacity (e.g., faculty, staff, or student) should be covered by insurance for medical and hospital costs arising from any accident occurring while on the field trip. Enrollment in the university's hospital/medical student health insurance program for university employees, or in the student health insurance program, will satisfy this requirement. Persons not included in these insurance programs and who do not already carry equivalent private hospital/medical insurance should obtain appropriate short-term insurance." 

Please familiarize yourself with the U of U's Risk Management Fieldtrip Guidelines & Waivers and have your students fill out the age-appropriate waiver. (We recommend having everyone also complete the Talent Release at the same time; see below.) Then, scan and upload them to the GG Fieldtrip Waiver Ubox. Next, secure the originals in a sealed (for privacy reasons) manilla envelope, which should accompany the trip leaders on the trip. After the trip, shred the originals (there is a box for shredding under the fax machine in 383 FASB). The scanned copies will be kept for 4 years (as per University policy).

 If you take photos, videos, or audio recordings of your trip, please have students who are clearly identifiable fill out a Talent Release. Then scan and upload them to the GG Talent Release Ubox. After the trip, shred the originals (there is a box for shredding under the fax machine in 383 FASB).

Often it is just similiar to have everyone on the trip complete this waiver at the same time they are signing their liabilty waiver. However, please note that this waiver is OPTIONAL and if you have a student who does not fill one out, you should refrain from including them in photos, videos, and audio recordings.

Then after your trip, please email a select few photo or video highlights of your trips to Faith Chand. Provide details on when and where the trip took place, the purpose, and who participated (the first and last names of people featured in the photos is a plus!). The Department will use this photos in social media and marketing materials. 

There are two key U of U policy points that should be noted in regards to fieldtrip transportation, either by university-owned vehicles or personal vehicles:

  • "The trip director is responsible for the prudent care and operation of university-owned vehicles used on field trips from the time at which possession of the vehicle is taken until it has been returned to university control."
  • "Only a duly licensed adult (i.e., age 18 years or older) who has been authorized by the trip director may operate a motor vehicle, whether or not the vehicle is owned by the university, to transport persons on a field trip."

Please refer to the information below about the related SOP and forms needed to do a fieldtrip:

  • GG Fleet Vehicle Rental: Use for renting Department vehicles (suburbans or truck). Note that all drivers of university-owned vehicles must complete the required Driver's Training. Instructions and forms can be found on the GG Fleet Vehicle Rental page. 
  • Commerical Rental Bus: Please email Alan Rigby.
    • Note: If you are doing this trip via Concur, commercial bus rental is considered "car rental" when "Reserving a Trip". However, when doing the "Expense Report", it is considered "ground transportation.
  • Personal Vehicle: Use the Personal Vehicle Mileage Log. Find the Standard Mileage Rates for  reimbursement.
    • U of U policy states: "The trip director must obtain assurance, prior to the commencement of the field trip, that any vehicle not owned by the university and used on the field trip will be covered throughout the period of the trip by a motor vehicle liability insurance Policy, currently in effect, with limits of coverage and liability that satisfy the requirements of the Utah Motor Vehicle Safety Responsibility Act, 1953 Utah Code Ann. Section 41-12-1 et seq."
    • If mileage reimbursement will be your only expense, email the mileage reimbursement form to Thea Hatfield along with the account to be charged AND a Google map showing the route taken (must show the same number of miles as listed on the mileage log).
    • If you ARE going to reimburse drivers who are using their personal vehicles, you must obtain proof of insurance.
    • If you are NOT going to reimburse mileage for personal vehicle use, at the top of the Liability Waiver note that the fieldtrip will start at the time and location where the fieldtrip will take place, not at the University of Utah. Additionally, course instructors and TAs are not allowed to coordinate carpools; students may do this on their own.
      • Due to the paperwork burden and the insurance liability placed on the U of U, it is not advised to reimburse group members for personal vehicle mileage for trips that take place within the Salt Lake Valley. 
  • Vehicle Accidents: Trip leaders /supervisors should inform drivers (of university-owned or personal vehicles) that in the case of an accident, the U of U Vehicle Accident Form should be completed. Trip leaders/supervisors should also ensure that a blank copy of this form, with vehicle insurance cards be attached to a copy of this Accident form and placed in the glove compartment of each University vehicle. GG Fleet Vehicles should already have the accident form and U of U insurance card.
  • Domestic Travel Insurance (Optional): Travel protection is available for purchase to students, faculty/staff and chaperones participating in University of Utah sponsored and supervised field trips within the U.S, its territories and possessions. This Domestic Travel Accident Insurance policy provides assistance and medical coverage if you become injured while traveling.


Last Updated: 9/29/22