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Maine: March 2011


The National Student Exchange (NSE) exists to provide inter-institutional exchange/study opportunities at reasonable cost among member colleges and universities in the United States and Canada whereby students may grow academically and personally as well as develop a greater appreciation for the diversity and culture of our communities. NSE also provides a network of colleges and universities whereby students may have access to resources otherwise not available, thus expanding the educational resources of any single institution.

The values that guide in meeting the diverse needs of our students, coordinators, and member institutions are:

  • excellence in our performance,
  • sensitivity,
  • respect,
  • cooperation, and
  • service.
The goal of these Principles of Professional Practice for NSE Coordinators is to ensure the fair and equitable treatment of the students we serve and to provide standards of integrity for all aspects of NSE program administration. The Principles of Professional Practice for NSE Coordinators is not meant to be an inclusive set of rules and procedures governing actions in all situations, rather it is intended as the basis for the service provided to students who participate in NSE and putting into practice the values that guide us. All members accept these Principles by virtue of their membership in the National Student Exchange.


Colleges and universities holding membership in the National Student Exchange appoint an individual, designated as the Coordinator, who is responsible for administering all aspects of NSE at the home institution and serving as the liaison with the NSE Central Office and with NSE counterparts at member colleges and universities. The NSE Coordinator is a valuable and integral part of the National Student Exchange and the key link between the purposes and functions of NSE and students who participate in the program.

It is the responsibility of the Coordinator to become familiar with how the program operates on the national level and to establish and maintain procedures on the campus level consonant with NSE policies and procedures. The NSE Handbook provides a consistent and comprehensive reference to the responsibilities and duties of each Coordinator. In addition, the NSE Central Office staff members are available to offer guidance and direction with all matters related to exchange.

Although NSE Coordinators represent a wide range of university responsibilities and levels of authority, all are expected to adhere to these Principles which define and describe the role of the coordinator and his/her responsibilities and relationships to the NSE Central Office, to colleagues at other universities, to home campus administrative offices, and, most importantly, to students.

Exchange Procedures

On the home campus, each NSE coordinator will:
  • actively promote the program to students and faculty;
  • establish workable procedures with appropriate campus entities for the successful transition of outgoing, incoming, and returning NSE students;
  • keep appropriate campus departments and individuals informed of current NSE opportunities, activities, and procedures;
  • accurately represent NSE to students, faculty, staff, and parents;
  • develop written policies and procedures for NSE;
  • keep appropriate records of exchange application and activity; and
  • develop a mechanism that can effectively evaluate the NSE experience of both outgoing and incoming students.

Outgoing Exchange Students

For home campus students seeking an NSE placement, the coordinator will:
  • provide consistently reliable and accurate published information;
  • accurately define program expectations, policies, procedures, and costs;
  • help the student to clarify personal and academic goals and objectives for participating in NSE;
  • have an application process in place that evaluates the appropriateness of the student's participation;
  • assist the student in examining financial resources available for exchange;
  • ensure that the student has met all eligibility criteria for the NSE program in general as well as additional requirements of the host university;
  • undertake sufficient investigation that permits informed judgment/decisions when approving students for a potential exchange;
  • avoid seeking placements for students who have a record of academic, disciplinary, or other concerns that would present the possibility of an unsuccessful exchange. Specific problems could include academic deficiencies and dishonesty or a record of aggressive, destructive, or uncooperative behavior that might lead to disciplinary action;
  • provide a formal or informal pre-departure orientation to outgoing students;
  • fully inform students about their status as guests at the host campus; and
  • fully inform students of the importance of meeting obligations, deadlines, and codes of conduct at their host campus.

Incoming Exchange Students

For incoming NSE students, the host NSE Coordinator will:
  • communicate with incoming students within a reasonable time following receipt of the Placement Acceptance Form;
  • provide students with class registration information, application/admissions materials, housing materials, and other appropriate forms/instructions at the earliest possible time;
  • inform students of university rules and regulations for which they will be held accountable (academic, social/behavioral, financial, etc.);
  • inform students of any rules and procedures from which they will be exempt;
  • meet with students individually, or as a group, upon their arrival to explain campus processes and procedures; and
  • plan activities for students; particularly if an activity fee is charged.

NSE Coordinator at Other Member Universities

Recognizing that the relationship between NSE coordinators is critical in the smooth operation of the consortium, individual NSE coordinators will:
  • be honest and open with all other coordinators in the placement process and will endeavor to avoid secrecy and favoritism;
  • refer general student inquiries back through the NSE coordinator on their home campus;
  • present carefully prepared placement documentation that reflects accurate information;
  • refuse to place students on one plan, hoping to request a change of plan after the student is accepted;
  • accept only students for whom a placement has been requested by the home campus coordinator;
  • provide enrollment verifications in a timely manner;
  • assist host coordinators in resolving student problems in a timely manner; and
  • assist host coordinators in resolving issues arising from students neglecting to meet obligations (financial, academic, and/or social/behavioral).

NSE Central Office

In dealing with the National Student Exchange Central Office staff and NSE Council, coordinators will:
  • meet all NSE deadlines for submission of required materials and payment of bills owed to the organization;
  • carry out responsibly the duties of Coordinator as specified in the NSE Handbook and the Terms of Participation;
  • work with the NSE Central Office staff in transitioning coordinator responsibilities; and
  • regularly up-date all campus information at this Coordinator Center.

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