SYA Data Privacy Policy


School Year Abroad is committed to protecting the personal information of the SYA community and is committed to being transparent about the information we maintain. Our data is collected and used for the purposes of community relations and fundraising. Our full statement is provided here.


The purpose of the Advancement Office at School Year Abroad (SYA) is to meaningfully engage the school’s worldwide community of current parents, alumni, parents of alumni, and current and former faculty and staff; to draw all constituents closer to the School and to each other; to promote the ideals of the institution; to maximize charitable contributions to the School; and to support SYA in achieving its mission to develop the intellect and character of each student by providing an outstanding education with a global perspective.

To achieve our intended purpose we gather and maintain personal data about members of our community. This statement outlines how the Advancement Office handles and uses the data it collects, and includes:

  • What personal data is collected;
  • How data is collected;
  • How data is used;
  • With whom data is shared;
  • Right to access and correct your information;
  • How long data is retained.

Members of the SYA community have the right to access their own information as maintained by the Advancement Office.

What personal data is collected?

The Advancement Office maintains the following constituent data:

  • Names and contact details;
  • Contact preferences;
  • Engagement with the School, including direct communications, events attended and volunteer service;
  • Details of SYA education, including SYA activities;
  • Undergraduate and graduate education;
  • Current interests and activities, which may include selected media coverage;
  • Philanthropy and volunteering, including gifts and service to SYA and other charitable organizations;
  • Unique personal identifiers and biographical information (e.g. date of birth);
  • Relationship to other SYA community members;
  • Employment and professional activities;
  • Career highlights and other life achievements;
  • Unique family details (e.g. marital status, the name of partner or spouse; name and ages of child(ren); relatives who attended SYA);
  • Personal data provided by you for a specific purpose (e.g. disability or dietary preferences for event management purposes);
  • Your communication preferences, to help tailor relevant communications;
  • Financial information relating to you and your family, that you have given to SYA or is publicly available including:
    • your history of donations made to SYA;
    • your ability and willingness to make donations, including particular preferences for funding;
    • your philanthropic priorities, including donations and volunteerism to other organizations.

How is data collected?

The Advancement Office collects personal data provided through the school’s admissions process, event registrations, conversations held in the course of involvement with SYA staff and volunteers, and through change-of-address and donation forms. In keeping with common practice in the education and charity sector, we also seek to update records with data collected from publicly available sources of information, which is added to constituents’ records. We also gather information from sources including:

  • the National Change of Address Service;
  • PR announcements;
  • Data enrichment services provided by carefully selected third parties;
  • Social media and professional networking tools;
  • Wealth screening and prospect research firms.

How is data used?

In order to advance the mission of School Year Abroad, the Advancement Office may use data for the following purposes:

  • Alumni activities and programs, including event invitations, newsletters, alumni profiles and networking, including online community hosted by third-party vendor;
  • Fundraising, including mail and email appeals, appeal segmentation and volunteering assignments;
  • School communications, including magazine or other printed materials, updates on school activities and correspondence promoting the ideals of the School;
  • Volunteer selection and recruitment, including leadership volunteer roles.

With whom do we share data?

In line with SYA’s Data Protection Policy, the Advancement Office does not share any information with third parties, other than those that process data on behalf of the School, for example, a mailing house, data-cleansing provider, and secure online communities. All third parties are carefully vetted for strict adherence to the GRDP regulations.

In addition, the Advancement Office shares data with connected individuals who are working on behalf of the Advancement Office or the School to assist the School in its fundraising or recruiting efforts and alumni activities. For example, leadership volunteers are provided with enough data to conduct their work. SYA volunteers agree to utilize data they receive for the strict purposes of conducting SYA business.

How do we protect data?

We ensure we have appropriate data sharing agreements in place before sharing your personal data.

We do not sell your personal data to third parties under any circumstances, or permit third parties to sell on the data we have shared with them.

We also facilitate communication between individual alumni, but in doing so we do not release personal contact details without prior permission except between classmates and/or faculty, or as included in a secure, online alumni community.

What are your rights?

School Year Abroad recognizes that individuals have the right to:

  • understand what personal data is held by SYA and the origin of that data, as well as to receive a copy of that information, if requested;
  • have the information updated, amended or erased*;
  • withdraw consent for third party services – SYA will then stop making use of your personal data for address updates, alumni online and networking communities.
  • instruct SYA to stop making use of contact information for direct marketing and email purposes.

For any questions or requests for more information on this subject, please email

*SYA will remove all data with the exception of donation history which is required to be kept for set period of time by the IRS.