Information for Staff

Information for Staff Banner


Under the UTM Abroad program, UTM staff with previous travel, administrative, and crisis management experience have the opportunity to travel as the safety support person for the UTM Abroad Academic Experiences and UTM Co-Curricular Experiences. If selected, the staff would travel with a group of students and a faculty member to help support trip logistics and ensure the safety of the participants.

UTM Abroad Co-Curricular Experiences and some UTM Abroad Courses are led in partnership with Operation Groundswell (OG) and will include two OG Program Leaders that will run the program in-country. All other UTM Abroad Courses are developed independently from OG, therefore, the staff member will provide leadership on all logistics and safety responsibilities. 

The cost of participation in the international experience and required training will be covered through the UTM Abroad program. This would not include personal travel insurance or overtime, which must be approved by the staff member's supervisor. While you will be working during the experience, you will not receive additional compensation beyond the costs of travel associated with the program. Staff will need approval from their department to participate.Group photo in Bankok

Participating in the UTM Abroad experience is without a doubt my favourite opportunity I've experienced so far at UTM. Professionally, it gave me the opportunity to connect with a diverse group of students I wouldn't have normally engaged with in my everyday work. Personally, I think there's something special about travelling across the world, eating, housing, learning, and sharing such a unique experience together. UTM Abroad gave me the privilege to develop authentic and real connections with students that will last for years to come.
– Jessica Charbonneau, Student Development Officer, Student Housing and Residence Life

What to Expect

  • A unique opportunity to connect with students, support their experience, and learn together;  
  • An international professional development opportunity;
  • A grassroots way of travelling where the group will stay in hostels, guesthouses, and homestays (in Guatemala and Thailand);
  • An active travel experience that includes strenuous activities accessible to most healthy travelers. E.g. in the past groups have hiked up a volcano in Guatemala and built a road in Thailand;
  • An experience you will never forget!

Staff Expectations

  • Staff must have previous crisis management and travel experience as applicable to the experience of their choice;
  • Staff will be required to travel and remain with the group at all times, including during the flights;
  • Staff will be asked to participate 3 pre-departure workshops, training sessions (as required), and post trip assessment. Successful applicants will be made aware of all required dates well in advance;
  • Staff will be expected to take a leadership role and act as a role model for students while working collaboratively with the faculty member and/or the OG program leaders (where applicable);
  • Staff will act as the University of Toronto administrative and emergency response lead for the duration of the trip including administrative duties at the airport;  
  • Staff will be expected to understand the University of Toronto's Safety Abroad requirements and international travel guidelines (additional training and support will be provided);
  • Staff will be expected to submit a written reflection to their supervisor highlighting the value of the experience in their professional development within one month of program completion.

2019-2020 Opportunities

UTM Abroad Academic Experiences

Applications for Winter Experiences Open Now!


  • Peru - BIO210Y5: Fundamentals of Human Anatomy and Physiology
  • Dominican Republic - UTM290H5: Launching Your Research (Across the Atlantic and back: A History and Ecology of Exploration, Conquest, and Exchange from 1492 to Now.)
  • Cambodia - SOC485H5: Investigation through Study Abroad
  • London & Paris - FAH287H: European Art of the Nineteenth Century

Application Process

  • Interested staff should complete the application through the UTM Abroad Staff and Faculty Portal detailing the training and experiences that would make them a good fit for the program;
  • Applications will close on October 6, 2019;
  • Decisions will be sent out by October 21, 2019;
  • For additional information please contact us at  


My participation in the staff support role [for UTM Abroad] was the best professional development I’ve experienced in many years. Spending 10 intense days with highly engaged students was fantastic... If you have the time and energy, have flexibility and support to be away from your normal routine, and want a unique experience learning both about and with students, the role of UTM Abroad staff support is truly worthwhile.
– Mark Overton, Dean of Student Affairs

As the staff member I liaised between the students and their faculty and was fortunate to build great relationships on both sides.  The experience was fantastic!  I was able to get a cultural experience while exploring parts of the Island and I was able to get an academic experience while working with the students and while engaging with researchers at the Gerace Research Centre.  This opportunity was truly a once in a lifetime!
– Tanya Kenesky, GIS & Data Support Specialist, Library

I was initially drawn to apply for this course having studied Anthropology of Gender myself but the lessons I learned led to deeper connections than I thought. My trip was unforgettable due to hands on cultural immersion meeting local groups and NGOs who were actively making a difference in Tanzanian lives as well as the range of regions we experienced.
 Veron Fernandes

CLICK HERE TO APPLY! Applications are due on Sunday, October 6, 2019.