Dean of Students

Student Handbook and Policies

11/28/2016 11:19 am

COMPLAINT/APPEAL PROCESS FOR ESTABLISHED UNIVERSITY POLICIES

Complaint/Appeal Process for Established University Policies
The University has processes in place for students who wish to file a grade appeal, a financial aid suspension appeal, a late registration appeal, a refund policy appeal, or a student conduct appeal.  The University also has processes in place for students who wish to file a sexual harassment or sexual misconduct complaint.  The list below outlines University processes for grade appeals, financial aid suspension, late registration appeals, refund policy appeals, and student conduct appeals.

  1. Grade Appeals:
    A student who questions the justice of a final grade must first seek an explanation from the course instructor. If the student feels the grade was arbitrarily assigned the student may start a formal appeal of the grade. Grade appeal forms are available from the Office of Academic Affairs in Colman or in the Forms section of the portal. The formal grade appeal is initially directed to the course instructor, then reviewed by department chair, college dean, and Provost. Only if the department chair, college dean and Provost agree that a grade was arbitrary, will an advisory recommendation concerning a grade be made to an instructor. If the advisory recommendation is not accepted by the instructor, then a faculty ad hoc committee is formed to review the appeal and to issue a binding decision concerning the grade.
  2. Financial Aid Suspension Appeal: 
    To appeal the financial aid suspension, a student must, within 15 calendar days of notification, submit to the Financial Aid Office (1st floor Nelson Hall) a signed and dated letter of appeal explaining why he/she should not be suspended. A student may appeal for emergency condition (i.e. health, family, catastrophe, etc.) Documentation verifying the situation may be requested. The Financial Aid committee will consider the appeal and render a decision, which the Director of Financial Aid will convey in writing to the student.
  3. Late Registration Appeal:
    Students are expected to register at the times and places announced by the registrar. Registration is not considered complete until students’ accounts show all charges have been paid or arrangements for payment have been made.Students who have not paid or not made satisfactory arrangements for payment may be dropped from classes by the SAS office (1st floor Nelson Hall), and the student will remain responsible for any amount outstanding. Students may appeal any outstanding balance to the Assistant Vice President for Student Administrative Services (SAS). Students who register after the scheduled registration period may be required to pay a $100 fee for the registration process.
  4. Refund Policies Appeal:
    Students can receive full refunds of prepaid tuition, fees, and room-and-board costs (less the non-refundable deposits) if they present written notice of withdrawal at the SAS office before the last drop date. Refer to academic calendars (http://www.rockford.edu/academics/resources/schedules/). Students who withdraw after classes begin receive refunds based on a refund schedule found in the Academic Catalog.Important: Students receiving financial aid should confer with the SAS office to determine how their aid packages will be affected before they change their status. Students who withdraw from all classes after the last day to withdraw with a refund will be subject to removal of Title IV aid based on results from the U.S. Department of Education.Students may appeal any refund policy decision to the Assistant Vice President for Student Administrative Services (1st floor Nelson Hall).
  5. Student Conduct Appeals:
    A student may appeal a decision concerning the finding of a violation or the sanction(s) imposed. Appeals are to be submitted within five (5) business days of notification of a decision. To submit an appeal, the student must submit a typed explanation of the grounds upon which the appeal is made to the appropriate University official. This explanation should clearly and completely set forth the grounds for appeal. Specific appeal information is included in the sanction/outcome letter.
  6. Sexual Misconduct (Filing a complaint)
    Information on filing a sexual misconduct incident can be found on the University’s Office of Compliance and Title IX page.

DEPARTMENT INFORMATION

Dean of Students
Burpee 1st Floor, Student Life Suite 125
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-3398
815-394-5068
Lisa Hetzel, Ph.D.
LHetzel@rockford.edu

STUDENT COMPLAINT/GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES

Student Complaint/Grievance Procedures

It is the policy of Rockford University that students should have an accessible process to bring problems or complaints to the attention of the University for review and resolution. To that end, the University has established a process for students, without fear of reprisal, to raise concerns about a program, their learning experience or the services received in situations where a University policy or procedure specific to their concerns is not already in place.

Students are encouraged to discuss their concerns directly with the person(s) and/or office(s) involved to informally resolve the issue. If the issue is not informally resolved, the student should meet with the supervisor of the person(s) and/or office(s) involved. Most issues are resolved when one makes an appointment with a faculty or staff member and calmly and honestly communicates their concerns. If the issue is not resolved, there is a formal complaint process.

Before initiating the formal complaint process, three points must be made about the process.

  1. The complaint process is not applicable to complaints covered by other already-existing University policies and/or actions.  These include, but are not limited to: grade appeals, sexual misconduct, student conduct action, etc. When necessary and appropriate, the Dean of Students will assist students in identifying the applicable University policies and procedures for reporting and resolving such matters.
  2. At any point in the process, a student filing a complaint will always have the option to withdraw the complaint.
  3. The University strictly prohibits any member of the University community from harassing or retaliating against any student who files a complaint under this policy.

If any student wishes to file a formal complaint, s/he must submit the complaint in writing to the Dean of Students. The complaint must contain the following information:

  • Name, phone number, and e-mail address of the person filing the complaint. (Complaints can be submitted anonymously, however, unless you include your contact information, the University will be unable to investigate your complaint or follow up with you regarding the subject matter).
  • The name(s) of the individual(s) or office against which the grievance is being alleged.
  • A detailed description of the action warranting the grievance (to include how the student has been harmed or treated unfairly) and what the student believes would be a fair and equitable resolution.
  • The date or period of time that the action occurred.
  • A list of any other people who were either involved or witnessed the action.
  • A description of what steps have been taken up to now to resolve the issue.
  • Sign and date the complaint.

Upon receipt of a written formal complaint by a student, the Dean of Students shall refer the complaint for investigation and resolution to the appropriate academic or administrative official (typically, a Dean, Director, or Associate Vice President, or another designated appropriate administrator). Within 5 business days of receiving the formal complaint, the Dean of Students will provide the student with a status report in which the student is informed who the complaint has been referred to for investigation or why the complaint was dismissed and not referred for investigation. Formal complaints will be investigated and resolved in 20 business days from the date of referral. If the investigation exceeds 20 business days, the student will be notified in writing of the delay and informed of the anticipated completion date. The designated investigator will provide both the student and the Dean of Students with written notice of the final disposition.

A copy of the complaint and a summary of the process and resolution of the complaint will be kept in the Dean of Students Office for a period of eight (8) years from the date of the final resolution of the complaint.

If the complaint cannot be resolved after exhausting the student complaint/grievance process, the student may file a complaint with the Illinois Board of Higher Education using their institutional Complaint System located at http://complaints.ibhe.org/

If the complaint concerns the institution’s compliance with academic programs, academic quality and/or accrediting standards, students may submit a complaint to the Higher Learning Commission, Rockford University’s accrediting agency, at https://hlcommission.org/HLC-Institutions/complaints.html

DEPARTMENT INFORMATION

Dean of Students
Burpee 1st Floor, Student Life Suite 125
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-3398
815-394-5068
Lisa Hetzel, Ph.D.
LHetzel@rockford.edu

STUDENT GRIEVANCE PROCESS

Student Complaint Policies and Procedures

Rockford University is dedicated to treating all students fairly and respectfully. The University’s policies that apply to students are published in the Rockford University Academic Catalog and Rockford University Student Handbook, available on the Rockford University website.

Student Complaint/Grievance Process

Students are encouraged to discuss their concerns directly with the person or office involved to resolve the issue. If the issue is not resolved informally, the student may file a formal complaint in writing.  The process for filing a student complaint/grievance can be found on the Rockford University website.  Students who wish to file a formal complaint or have questions on the complaint process should contact the Compliance and Title IX Coordinator, LaShun McGhee (815-226-2842 or LMcGhee@rockford.edu).  Her office is located in the Student Life Suite on the 1st floor of Burpee.

 

For information about other complaint processes:

Type of Complaint

Reason to file

Method

Submission Office & Location

Sexual Misconduct

Sexual misconduct incident

Contact:  815-226-2842
LMcGhee@rockford.edu

Student Life Suite Burpee – 1st Floor

Grade Appeal

After speaking with instructor, the student feels grade was arbitrarily assigned

See Forms section of Portal

Instructor and Office of Academic Affairs – Library
Electronic Submission Only

Financial Aid Suspension Appeal

Emergency Condition
(health, family, catastrophe, etc.)

Letter of appeal with date & signature

Financial Aid Office
Nelson Hall – 1st Floor

Late Registration Appeal

Outstanding payments on student account

Letter of appeal with date & signature

Asst. VP of Student Administrative Services (SAS)
Nelson Hall – 1st Floor

Refund Policies Appeal

Withdrawal from courses after Add/Drop Date

Letter of appeal with date & signature

Asst. VP of Student Administrative Services (SAS)
Nelson Hall – 1st Floor

Student Conduct Appeals

Procedures were not properly followed, new information is introduced that may change the outcome, or the finding is against the substantial weight of evidence or the severity of the sanction

Letter of appeal with date & signature

Stated in letter

For questions:
Dean of Students
Student Life Suite Burpee – 1st Floor

DEPARTMENT INFORMATION

Dean of Students
Burpee 1st Floor, Student Life Suite 125
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-3398
815-394-5068
Lisa Hetzel, Ph.D.
LHetzel@rockford.edu

Dean of Students

07/26/2016 10:35 pm

DEAN OF STUDENTS

Message from the Dean of Students

Welcome to Rockford University— a community of rich tradition, where our students have many opportunities to make a difference, not only in our campus community but in the world! Like Jane Addams, one of our famous graduates, our students are asked to think critically, act compassionately and embrace the ideals of citizenship. In addition, our students have many opportunities to make connections with their professors as well as many staff members across the campus.

As the Dean of Students, I oversee a number of the departments outside of academics. One of our goals in Student Life is to provide students with programs and services for their growth and development that complement what they learn in the classroom. We feel it is just as important to be successful outside the classroom as it is to be successful inside the classroom. Here, at Rockford University we challenge students to become the best they can be as well as care for them and their personal development.

Student Life is made up of the following departments:

Career Development
Jane Addams Center for Civic Engagement
Lang Center for Health, Wellness, Counseling & Disability Services
Residence Life
Student Activities

I invite our students to stop by the new Student Life Suite 125, located on the first floor of Burpee. Offices include: Student Activities – 125 J; Jane Addams Center for Civic Engagement – 125 H; Career Development – 125 G; Director of Security – 125 F; and Dean of Students – 125 E.

Lisa Hetzel, Ph.D.
Dean of Students

DEPARTMENT INFORMATION

Dean of Students
Burpee 1st Floor, Student Life Suite 125
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-3398
815-394-5068
Lisa Hetzel, Ph.D.
LHetzel@rockford.edu