Travel Letters

Travel Letters allow staff members to manage student absences due to a particular activity. Travel Letters help you notify both students and/or professors when a student will miss Courses, Appointments, and/or Assignments as a result of traveling. Also, it lets professors know which students will miss their courses.  Common use cases for Travel Letters include sporting events, on-campus mentoring groups, and student government trips or meetings. You can navigate to your travel letter campaigns via the Quick Links on your Home Page or by clicking on the Campaigns icon on the left sidebar. Travel Letters have four tabs: students, professors, appointments missed, and absences.

Creating Travel Letters

Creating a Travel Letter can be done from the Campaigns tab or by selecting Travel Letters from the Quick Links menu on the Staff Home page.

The Create New Travel Letter page opens.

Create New Travel Letter

Now, select your students. You have the choice of finding and selecting individual students, selecting students from Categories or selecting students from Tags.

Next, fill out the Travel Letter details. The fields below explain the details.

Selecting Categories

Name of Travel Letter

Enter the name of the Travel Letter. This name only appears on the Travel Letters campaign page. It is not seen by students or instructors.

Travel Starts At/Travel Ends At

This field defines the start and end dates and times of your Travel Letter. Bulldog Connect uses these dates and times to determine which appointments, courses and assignments students will miss.

Include all registered courses for selected students

When selected, this option includes course conflicts for courses that do not have a start or end date and time in the timeframe you have chosen for the Travel Letter Campaign, but the student is registered for in the term.

Subject of Email

This is the subject line of the email sent to faculty. Use a direct, detailed subject line, such as Please excuse the track and field team for national finals from 5/15 to 5/18.


The message is where you provide details about the activity that appears in both the emails and letters sent to your instructors and students. By default, the letter contains a message along with specific merge fields to help you personalize the content the instructors see. Below is a list of merge fields to use.

  • Professor names

  • Start and end dates (and times)

  • Student names

  • Creator’s name (the person who created the travel letter)

  • Categories (this field is not currently in the letter, but is available for you to use if desired)


This option allows you to upload a file from your desktop and add it to the Current Letterhead field. Once this is done, you can print Travel Letters on school letterhead for distribution.

Note. Name of Travel Letter also shows on the Attendance Report.

After filling out these fields, click Save Travel Letter to save and create the letter. 

Student Tab

After creating a travel letter, you won’t need to do anything until just before the start date of the activity.  In the example below, student-athletes will be going on Summer Travel.  The travel letter will ask the professors to excuse the student-athletes starting on 5/9 at 12:00 pm and ending on 5/13 at 11:45 am.

At the time you create your travel letter, Bulldog Connect will look for existing events (e.g. student appointments, courses, and assignments) to determine what your students will miss.  It is important to note that Bulldog Connect will NOT look for scheduled events again until you manually run Refresh Known Conflicts.  In other words, your list of appointments, courses, and assignments students will miss will only be as current as your last known refresh. 

Other things that you can do while on the student tab include Send Message to Student and Print Student Conflicts.  You can also choose to view Conflict Details if you would rather see what a student will miss onscreen.

Both Conflict Details and Print Student Conflicts will show the user the same information but in different ways. Conflict Details will give the user a quick view of events the student will miss during the scheduled events while the Print Student Conflicts link gives the user the ability to send those missed events to the printer.

Professors Tab

Much like on the Student Tab, you have many of the same options available with the exception that this tab focuses on corresponding with professors instead of students. This is where you will keep your professors informed as to which students will miss which courses.


Reminder:  It is crucial to run Refresh Known Conflicts before you print or send travel letters to professors.

After Refresh Known Conflicts has been run, you are now ready to correspond with your professors to let them know which students are going to miss their classes.  Options available to you on this tab are:

Send Travel Letters: This will send a travel letter email, along with a list of the professor’s classes and students that will be missed during the travel letter’s time period.

Print Travel Letters: This will display an onscreen report that you may send directly to the printer. Use this for a hard copy that you can hand to your professors if the email is not your desired method of correspondence.

Send Message: Want to send an email to your professor(s)? This method is for you. This option will let you send a custom email to your selected professors.

Appointments Missed Tab 

This tab will be used to correspond with your Advisors, Tutors, or students for appointments they will miss during the scheduled activity.  Please see the screenshot below to outline what options are available to you.

Consider this tab as a means to simply contact or communicate with students, tutors, or advisors who will be affected by this travel letter.  For instance, in the screenshot above, Bulldog Connect will display all appointments that will be missed during the travel

Again, please keep in mind that if appointments have been created since the creation of this travel letter, please use the Refresh Known Conflicts link to make sure those are included on this tab.

Absences Tab

The Absences tab is especially important for those that mark attendance in Bulldog Connect. This tab will be used to create absences for students and manage those absences based on activity. To mark a student absent, simply go to the Students tab. From here, you can select the students that apply and click the Create Absences button. 

Note.  Creating absences may take a few minutes to fully complete, so do not be surprised if the Absences tab is still blank immediately after starting the process.

To delete an absence for a student, check the box associated with that student, click on Actions, then click Delete Absence.