Risk Management - Special Risks


Field Trips

Field Trip Considerations (Things to consider when planning a Western field trip)

Field Trips and Risk (General guidance for faculty-led field trips)

Avoiding Car Prowls (Help protect your vehicle and its contents)

Individuals participating in a group or class field trip, or similar extra-curricular activity, which is sponsored and supervised by Western may register for field trip insurance.  This accident insurance program offers limited medical expense benefits and accidental death and dismemberment coverage for injuries arising out of the trip.  Registering is not mandatory, but the program provides an option for participants who may or may not have personal health insurance coverage. Note: This program is ONLY available to Western Washington University students.

Registering a Field Trip. In order to obtain coverage, departments must register before the day of the trip or activity by completing the Field Trip Insurance Registration e-sign form located at the Web Forms web page. Coverage is not available for individuals.  All eligible persons should be included in the registration, except Western employees may opt out.

Study Abroad

Study Abroad Considerations (Things to consider when planning for a study abroad program)

The University policy Traveling Outside the U.S. (POL U2105.01) applies to travel abroad for students, faculty and staff.

Western requires students to provide evidence of appropriate travel or study abroad health insurance prior to traveling outside the U.S. on University programs. A number of health plans are available as outlined at International Programs & Exchanges. Evidence of health insurance in the form of a photocopy of insurance confirmation letter or I.D. card may be needed.

Faculty or staff traveling abroad independently can find good advice on the Travel Services website.

More information: Global Learning Programs (Study Abroad) Toolkit


Internship Considerations (Things to consider when planning student internships)

Healthcare-Related Activities:

Western’s Student Medical Malpractice Insurance Program insures the professional liability (and general liability) of Western students who furnish mental and physical healthcare-related professional services during internship or field experience work as required under a related degree curriculum.  Students must be enrolled and engaged in an internship or field experience course, or any of the student’s related degree curriculum courses, at the time of internship or field experience work.* The cost for this insurance is a flat fee of $19.00 for 12 months of coverage from the date the fee is paid. It is the student’s responsibility to make sure the premium is paid and coverage is current. Note: This program is ONLY available to Western Washington University students.

Students NOT enrolled or engaged in curriculum courses at the time of internship or field experience work may be able to obtain professional liability insurance from Healthcare Provider Service Organization (HPSO). Students can view details and enroll online.

Why Obtain Student Medical Malpractice Insurance? (A brief presentation for Western healthcare student interns only)

Student Teaching Activities:

The following associations offer professional liability insurance resources to Washington state student teachers as a member benefit or for an additional fee:

Other Professional Activities:

Some professional associations offer professional liability insurance resources to student members. For example, the National Society of Accountants (NSA) offers professional liability insurance resources. Also, the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) offers resources.

Another possible resource is through a commercial insurance broker. For example, Marsh offers professional liability insurance to students through Marsh ProLiability.

Special Events/Conferences

Event Planning Considerations (Things to consider when planning a special event at Western)

Amusement Equipment Vendors (Things to consider when renting or using inflatable games and amusements, bounce houses, dunk tanks, etc. for your event)

Western Event Sponsors: Special Event Coverage

Provides liability insurance coverage for special events hosted by Western that may require coverage beyond that provided by the State Self-Insurance Liability Program (SILP). For example, additional coverage needed to satisfy contractual requirements or coverage for an off-campus venue, co-sponsors, vendors, etc. Please contact Paul Mueller at (360) 650-3065 or Paul.Mueller@wwu.edu.

Third-Party Event Sponsors: TULIP - Tenant User Liability Insurance Program

This insurance program was arranged by the University Risk Management and Insurance Association (URMIA) for higher education institutions like Western. This special event liability insurance is purchased by an outside group when the group lacks its own insurance for its rental or use Western-owned facilities (indoor or outdoor) for a specific event or activity. The coverage protects both the outside group and University from liability claims or lawsuits that may arise out of such use.

How it works:

  1. Visit TULIP Website and log in. Review information and click on “Get A Quote”
  2. Select "Washington" and then "Western Washington University"
  3. The system will take you through the process, purchase coverage and pay for your
    event by credit card
  4. Upon completion of transaction, you will receive via e-mail, a Binder/Certificate evidencing coverage
  5. Western will also receive a Certificate as part of your facility use application process
  6. If you have any questions, contact the individuals listed in the TULIP brochure

Programs for Children

Please visit the Children at Western Toolkit for information about planning and developing a University sponsored or co-sponsored program involving children.

Student Health Insurance

For those students without medical insurance, Western offers an Affordable Care Act (ACA) compliant student health insurance plan through a health insurance company. Coverage does not apply to intercollegiate sports. For more information, visit Student Health Services.

Resources for finding other individual plans are provided at the Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner.

Varsity Athletes

For information on the Athletic Department’s excess accident insurance program for varsity athletes and what to do when an injury occurs, click here. This program does not apply to Intramural Sports or Sport Club Programs.

Student Personal Property

Western assumes no responsibility for loss or damage to any university resident’s personal property from any cause. Western strongly recommends to the university resident to obtain insurance coverage by either purchasing a renter’s insurance policy, verifying that coverage is available under a parent or guardian’s homeowner’s insurance policy or by purchasing insurance such as that offered by College Student InsuranceNational Student Services Inc., or Lewermark. Failure to verify or obtain personal property insurance may result in unrecoverable financial loss.

Notary Bonds for State Employees

RCW 42.44 requires all individuals applying for a notary certificate in the State of Washington to file a $10,000 notary public bond with the Department of Licensing (DOL) prior to their appointment as a notary public. RCW 43.19.1935 places the responsibility and authority for the purchase of commercial insurance and bonds for all state agencies with the Risk Management Division (ORM). As ORM has the authority to authorize state agencies to make direct purchases, it has established procedures which allow state employees to purchase notary bonds directly from the state Broker of Record.

Using Aircraft or Watercraft

Please see Other Transportation Topics

Visiting Scholars and Research Associates (Non-Employee, US Citizens Only)

For visiting scholars and researchers who are U.S. citizens or nationals or lawfully present immigrants, and not employees of Western, the following form should be completed and signed under direction by the appointing department: Non-Employee Visiting Scholars or Research Associates Form

For international visiting scholars and research associates under a non-immigrant visa (e.g. J-1 visa), please visit International Student & Scholar Services.

Special Insurance Requests

Please contact Paul Mueller at (360) 650-3065 or Paul.Mueller@wwu.edu. Please be advised that state law (RCW 43.41.310) limits what Western can do outside the state insurance programs with respect to independently purchased commercial insurance programs.


Page Updated 01.29.2018