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Scope Global Assignments For Students

My great-grandmother joined the Red Cross in Victoria as a volunteer in the 1920s so I come from a line of Australian volunteers.  For me, volunteerism is an important Australia value.

I wanted to volunteer overseas because I believe in the ideas of cosmopolitanism and global citizenship. I also love the kind of travel that gives you the time to really live in new places and understand everyday life from a different point of view.

My first international volunteering experience was in 2007 in Bangladesh through an Australian government program (Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development).  I spent a year with UNICEF supporting communication efforts for the Cyclone Sidr emergency. The experience really changed my career and I have been working in communications for international development organisations ever since.

Since that time, I’ve taken on a lot of other volunteer roles, some of them online through e-volunteering. In 2014, I volunteered again in Botswana where my four-year-old daughter joined me as a dependent.

Assignment-Related Benefits:  A general term covering all elements of remuneration provided in connection with a temporary transfer across national borders.

Cost-of-Living Index:  A ratio of costs of goods and services in the home country compared to the host country (generally provided by outside vendors) used in calculating the cost-of-living allowance.  It incorporates differences among nationalities with regard to spending and purchasing patterns.

Cost-of-Living:  The aggregate of goods and services prices for a specific “market basket” of items that enables comparisons among locations.  

Cost-of-Living-Allowance (COLA):  A differential payment to the expatriate to address differences in purchasing power between home and host countries.  It is usually derived by applying a cost-of-living index to a Faculty Member or Administrator’s home country Spendable Income.

Cultural Orientation:  Education in the customs, practices and/or languages of the host country for the expatriate and/or accompanying qualifying family to familiarize them with the new environment in which they will live and work during the global assignment most often provided by a third-party vendor.

Destination Services:  Assistance provided to the expatriate and qualifying family upon arrival in the host country to help them settle into their new surroundings.  Usually includes assistance in finding a residence, arranging schooling for dependent children, and guidance regarding shopping, transportation and drivers’ licenses. Most often provided by a third-party vendor.

Home Country:  The location where the expatriate worked prior to the global assignment, and to where it is intended he/she will repatriate at the end of the assignment(s). The home country may or may not be the expatriate’s country of citizenship or residence.

Home Leave:  A benefit provided to the expatriate and qualifying family to enable them to travel to the home country in order for them to maintain ties with colleagues, friends, and family at home. 

Host Country:  Location across national borders to which the expatriate is temporarily sent to work from the home country.

Local Hire / Employee:  A person directly hired and working for the organization in their home country without any assignment-related benefits and is, therefore, not categorized as an expatriate.

Localization/Localizing:  The transitioning of an expatriate to an employment status/package in the host country equivalent to that of host country nationals. The length of transition may vary among different organizations and industries.

Long-Term Assignment:  A temporary transfer across national borders (e.g., from one portal campus to another), normally lasting between one and five years, though it may be extended.

Per Diem:  A cash payment to an employee to cover certain temporary living expenses, usually meals, hotel, and incidental expenses, expressed as a daily rate.  When delivered at a government-determined rate to cover business travel expense, can often be tax-free.

Permanent Transfer:  A one-way transfer across national borders.  The individual is normally considered to be an employee of the host country entity, severing ties with the home country entity, and is often only provided relocation and limited transition benefits

Pre-Assignment Visit/Trip:  A trip to the host country for the expatriate (and possibly other accompanying qualifying family members) prior to the start of the assignment, to make certain arrangements and view the possible new surroundings.

Pre-Assignment/Pre-Departure:  The period of time after a candidate for assignment has been identified, but prior to his/her departure from the home country. 

Miscellaneous Relocation Allowance:  A lump sum cash payment to the expatriate to cover the cost of incidental expenses not specifically covered by other aspects of the University’s global assignment policy.

Repatriation:  The return of the expatriate to the home country at the completion of the assignment.

Salary Cap:  An upper limit or ceiling, usually expressed in terms of annual base salary to be used in the determination of allowances, or a limitation on the maximum value of an allowance.

Short-Term Assignment:  A temporary transfer across national borders that generally lasts more than three months and less than a year (e.g., an academic semester). 

Spendable Income: The portion of base salary that normally is devoted to the purchase of goods and services (e.g., food, clothing, entertainment, medical care).  This amount is not a fixed percentage of base salary; rather, it varies according to nationality, income level, and qualifying family size.

Spouse / Domestic Partner Assistance: Assistance to recognize that spouses who accompany employees on global assignments may experience a disruption in their careers or self-improvement pursuits. May include job search, personal development or other assistance.

Tax Orientations:  A meeting or discussion between the expatriate and a tax service professional to discuss the income and social tax implications of the assignment for both the home county and the host country.

Tax Gross-Up:  A mathematical calculation to determine the final obligation to the taxing authorities when the company pays a tax liability on behalf of the expatriate.

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