Jul 20, 2024  
2022 Siena Heights University Catalog 
2022 Siena Heights University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

University Policies - All Campuses

Academic Dishonesty Policy

Academic dishonesty is unethical behavior, which in any way violates the standards of scholarly conduct. It includes such behaviors as cheating on assignments or examinations, plagiarizing, submitting the same or essentially the same papers for more than one course without the consent of all instructors concerned, misappropriating library materials, or the destroying of or tampering with computer files. Also included in academic dishonesty is knowingly or intentionally helping another student violate any part of this policy.

Plagiarism is the failure to give credit for the use of any material from outside sources, including the Internet. It includes, but is not limited to: verbatim use of a quote without quotation marks and adequate documentation; submission of a paper, prepared by another person, as one’s own work; using the ideas, facts, words, photographs, pictures, graphics, or data of someone else and claiming them as your own; or not documenting ideas, facts, words or data gathered during research.

Faculty Responsibilities and Penalties

Faculty must explain dishonesty and plagiarism at the start of each session and/or state in the syllabus the policies, procedures, and penalties for such behavior. Since academic dishonesty is often more difficult to prove than prevent, each faculty member is encouraged to take every reasonable measure to prevent academic dishonesty from occurring. Faculty are encouraged to explain why academic dishonesty is critical to scholarly endeavor and to provide examples of academic dishonesty that are germane to their classes.

Faculty members who suspect a student of academic dishonesty may settle the case directly with the student. In cases where guilt is substantial or admitted, the instructor may penalize the student in any way deemed appropriate, including the failure of the course. When a student is penalized, the faculty member reports the incident in writing to his/her department chair. A copy of the report will be sent to the appropriate Academic Dean and to the Chief Judicial Officer for undergraduate students. If the Dean receives more than one report of academic dishonesty about a specific student, the Dean will review the reports, and in cases of serious offenses, could take steps to suspend the student from the University.

Student Responsibility

Students should familiarize themselves with the Siena Heights University Academic Dishonesty Policy, which can be obtained from the instructors. Students are not excused from adherence to the policy even if they have not read it (Instructors may include this policy in their syllabi).

Graduate students are also expected to be familiar with the policies and practices governing the use of resources and references as set forth by the American Psychological Association in its Publication Manual. Graduate students are expected to purchase the latest edition of the Publication Manual prior to their first course and use it throughout their program.

The course instructor who has documentation of academic dishonesty by a graduate student is required to assign a failing grade for the assignment in question. All such incidences must be reported to the program director. In consultation with the program director, the course instructor may also decide to assign a failing grade for the course, which will result in automatic suspension of the student from the Graduate College. When this occurs, the Dean of the Graduate College is notified in writing.

The Dean of the Graduate College, in collaboration with the faculty, will review all such reports. In extreme cases, or when multiple offenses of academic dishonesty (i.e., plagiarism) by the student have been documented, the Dean is authorized to dismiss the student from the University.

Appeal Procedures

  1. For failure of an assignment or a course, as levied by an instructor. Any appeal by a student must be made in writing to the instructor within five (5) University working days from the time the student is notified that a penalty has been levied against him/her. If the appeal is denied, the student may submit a written petition to the department chair or site director with his/her concerns. The department chair or site director should then consult the faculty member involved before rendering a decision. If the student wishes, he/she may make a final appeal to the appropriate Dean.
  2. For suspension from the University. A student who is suspended from the University for plagiarism or academic dishonesty may make a written appeal of the suspension to the Academic Review Board within five (5) business days of notification of suspension. The decision of this board regarding the appeal will be final.

Acceptable Use Policy

(Network facilities and Services)

The Acceptable Use Policy is a guide to the acceptable use of Siena Heights University Network facilities and services. Any Partner or Vendor organization or individual connected to Siena Heights University’s network in order to use it directly, or to connect to any other network(s), must comply with this policy and the stated purposes and Acceptable Use Policies of any other network(s), or host(s) use. To view the Acceptable Use Policy in its entirety click here.

Students with Disabilities and Accommodations Policy

Siena Heights University welcomes students with disabilities who meet academic admission requirements, and will work toward meeting their needs by providing reasonable and appropriate accommodations to those students with documented disabilities.

“Disability” under the ADA is a very broad term that encompasses visible and invisible disabilities—everything from mobility differences to mental health to dorm needs to modified testing spaces.  There are even provisions for temporary disabilities, such as broken bones, surgeries, mental health, chronic illness flare-ups, and longer lasting acute illnesses like mono, or influenza.

The process at Siena is an interactive process that is designed to tailor your accommodations to your needs, not a cookie cutter blueprint.  With this in mind, the following is required to complete the process:

  • Verification/Documentation of disability*
  • Any relevant information, that is not in the documentation, that you think I need to make accommodation decisions
  • Schedule a meeting  with the ADA/Accessibility Coordinator (face-to-face is the preference, but can begin with a phone/zoom meeting)


These documents can be emailed, faxed, or delivered, but should be given only to the Office of Accessibility and not another person on campus.

Please see the Office of Accessibility website for more information and resources: http://accessibility.sienaheights.edu.

*Documentation should be signed by a licensed physician, psychologist, or other mental health or medical professional with experience in diagnosing the disability for which the student is requesting accommodations. A complete Individualized Education Plan (IEP) signed by the student’s school psychologist may also be considered documentation of a disability.  Documentation provided by the student’s physician, psychologist, or school psychologist should include information regarding the onset, longevity and severity of symptoms, as well as the specifics describing how it has interfered with educational achievement.  Please refer to the Medical or Mental Health Provider Forms found online at http://accessibility.sienaheights.edu/the-first-step.html

Students with disabilities that are eligible for assistance and/or services from a social service agency such as Michigan Rehabilitation, and Michigan Commission for the Blind are encouraged to apply for those services.

The following accommodations are some of the accommodations available to Siena students with documented needs:

  1. Special testing conditions such as extended time for exams, distraction-free exam locations, a scribe or reader
  2. Permission to record lectures and discussions (audio only).
  3. Permission to use a calculator on math tests.
  4. Peer Note-takers.
  5. Peer tutoring.
  6. Study skills classes and workshops.
  7. Class substitution for degree completion, as long as the substitution does not substantially alter the requirements of the student’s degree program, as determined by the program coordinator.

Letters of Verification describing accommodations are provided for each student, via email, within two weeks after the Office of Accessibility receives proper documentation and a completed Accommodations Request Form signed by the student.  It is the student’s responsibility to deliver the Letters of Verification to each instructor of a class for which accommodations have been requested (either through email, or by printing and hand delivering a copy).  Accommodations are not retroactive and will not be honored until a Letter of Accommodation has been given to the instructor.  The Office of Accessibility encourages submitting via email to ensure receipt and start date of accommodations.

Bad Weather Class Cancellation Policy

Decisions to cancel evening classes for the Graduate College, due to inclement weather are usually made by 2:00 p.m. Decisions to cancel weekend classes are made by 6:00 a.m. The Adrian campus and the off-campus centers make independent decisions to cancel classes. Due to variation in local weather conditions, it is not uncommon for one site to close while the others remain open. Students should consult their local campus for radio and TV stations that will be broadcasting cancellations. It is recommended that students sign up to receive free electronic alerts from Siena Heights University (SHU Alerts), about potential, developing, or existing emergencies at the following website. Information on receiving text alerts can be found by going to MySiena, click on the tab “Departments and Offices” and click on “Campus Safety.” Click on the link for “SHU Alerts.”

Course Cancellation Because of Low Enrollment and Closed Classes

If enrollment is insufficient to hold a class, Siena Heights University reserves the right to cancel any course. Siena Heights also reserves the right to cap enrollment in classes.

Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual Harassment and Related Inappropriate Conduct Policy

Siena Heights University is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability, marital status in the institution’s programs or activities or any other occupationally irrelevant criteria. The University promotes affirmative action for minorities, women, disabled persons and veterans. Siena Heights University’s Title IX Coordinator is the Chief Public Safety Officer, Cindy Birdwell. She can be contacted at 517-264-7194 or cbirdwel@sienaheights.edu, or in person in Ledwidge Hall on the Adrian campus. For 24/7 availability, call 517-264-7799.

All faculty, employees and professional staff are Mandated Reporters and are therefore expected to report acts of sex and/or gender discrimination—including sexual violence involving any member(s) of the campus community,
guests or visitors to the Title IX Coordinator or a Deputy Coordinator without delay. The only No Reporting Responsibility employees are Sandy Morley, Director of Counseling or Fr. John Grace, University Chaplin and only these two employees may maintain confidentiality based on the victim’s wishes. Sandy Morley can be contacted at 517-264-7193 or smorley@sienaheights.edu, or in person in Ledwidge Hall 197 on the Adrian campus. Fr. John Grace can be contacted at 517-264-7198 or jgrace@sienaheights.edu, or in person in Ledwidge Hall 211 on the Adrian campus.


Central to the mission of Siena Heights University is providing a healthy environment for all its members, which includes maintaining a climate conducive to learning, a positive work environment, and an environment free of harassment for its students, faculty, staff, and visitors. Students and employees have a responsibility to treat each other with appropriate respect and deference to personal dignity. Therefore, this policy applies to all administrators, faculty, staff, agents and students at all time and places in any connection with the University. This policy applies for and to those who conduct business here. We are committed to take all reasonable steps to prevent sexual harassment and to discipline those who do harass. This is a policy and procedure summary. The full text can be obtained from the Office of Human Resources or the Office of the Dean for Students.

Types of harassment include, but are not limited to, the following: 1) spoken, written, and symbolic harassment, 2) physical harassment, 3) sexual misconduct, including sexual assault, and 4) sexual harassment. Sexual misconduct includes non-consensual sexual intercourse, nonconsensual sexual contact, sexual exploitation, interpersonal relationship violence, sex/ gender-based stalking and sexual harassment. While Siena Heights University utilizes different standards and definition that the State of Michigan, sexual misconduct often overlaps with crimes of rape, sexual assault, sexual harassment, dating violence and domestic violence. Non-sexual harassment may be considered a Level II violation. Depending upon the nature of the harassment, the adjudication can be handled through mediation, the Dean for Students, the Siena Heights University Conduct Board, or the immediate supervisor. However, due to the sensitivity of sexual harassment and sexual assault, formal and informal procedures have also been established and may be chosen for resolution. If appropriate, other members of the University may be asked to assist with the resolution of the situation. Mediation will never be used as a method of addressing sexual harassment or sexual misconduct.



Behavior consisting of physical or verbal conduct that substantially interferes with an individual’s employment, education or access to University programs, activities or opportunities. Harassment may include, but is not limited to, verbal or physical attacks, graphic or written statements, threats, or slurs. Whether the alleged conduct constitutes prohibited harassment depends on the totality of the particular circumstances, including the nature, frequency and duration of the conduct in question, the location and context in which it occurs and the status of the individuals involved.

Any type of harassment is prohibited at the University. To constitute prohibited harassment, which can lead to discipline under this Policy, the conduct must be such that it detrimentally affects the individual in question and would detrimentally affect a reasonable person under the same circumstances.

Sexual Harassment

Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that is unwanted, inappropriate, or without consent. Any and all types of sexual harassment are prohibited at the University.

Sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to:

  • Requests for dates with a student by faculty or staff;
  • Persistent unwanted or unwelcome requests for a date;
  • Unwelcome requests for sexual favors or acts;
  • Continued expression of sexual interest after being informed that the interest is unwelcome;
  • Unconsented or unwelcome physical contact;
  • Nude or seminude posters, photos, cartoons, or graffiti in the workplace or public place that are demeaning or offensive;
  • Unwelcome sexual contact, such as leering or staring at another person; comments or statements that are demeaning, humiliating, suggestive, insulting, vulgar or lewd;
  • Harassment by nonemployees, such as visitors or vendors or contractors; and
  • Failure to provide assistance that is usual under same or similar circumstances.

This list is not intended to be nor should be construed as all-inclusive of prohibited acts under this policy. Any of the prohibited conduct described here is sexual harassment of anyone at whom it is directed or who is otherwise subjected to it.

Sexual harassment when committed by a student can lead to discipline under the Student Code of Conduct. The precise definitions of the Student Code of Conduct should be reviewed and applied when a student is accused of or commits harassment. (See Student Code of Conduct ).

Sexual Harassment committed by an employee or third party can lead to discipline or corrective action when:

  1. Submission to such conduct is made implicitly or explicitly a condition for employment, promotion, grades, academic status, or participation in the University’s activities;
  2. Submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for employment or academic or other decisions affecting an individual; or
  3. Such conduct is sufficiently severe or pervasive so as to substantially interfere with the harassed individual’s employment, education or access to University programs, activities and opportunities, or creates a hostile or offensive environment for that individual or others.

Sexual Misconduct

Siena Heights University recognizes that sexual misconduct, including sexual assault, is a serious social problem and criminal offense that occurs among college students as well as within other segments of our society. The University makes a strong commitment to work toward preventing sexual misconduct within our community, to provide support and assistance to sexual misconduct victims, and to impose sanctions on those who have been found responsible for a sexual misconduct. Our goal is to foster and protect an environment of mutual respect and concern and a safe community in which learning and growth can occur.

Sexual misconduct is a form of sexual harassment and refers to sexual offenses including but not limited to rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual exploitation, sexual coercion and any other forms of nonconsensual sexual activity. Sexual misconduct can be committed by strangers, acquaintances and family members, as well as casual and long-term dating partners.

Sexual misconduct includes, but is not limited to, attempted or unwanted sexual activity, such as sexual touching and fondling. This includes the touching of an unwilling person’s intimate parts (defined as genitalia, groin, breast or buttock, or clothing covering them), or forcing an unwilling person to touch another’s intimate parts.

Sexual exploitation includes, but is not limited to, prostituting another person, non-consensual visual or audio recording of sexual activity, non-consensual distribution of photos, images or information of an individual’s sexual activity or intimate body parts, non-consensual voyeurism, coercing someone against their will to engage in sexual activity, or knowingly transmitting sexually transmitted disease (STD) without disclosing STD status.

Consent must be informed, freely given and mutual. If coercion, intimidation, threats or physical force are used there is no consent. If a person is mentally or physically incapacitated or impaired so that such person cannot understand the fact, nature or extent of the sexual situation, there is no consent: this includes impairment or incapacitation due to alcohol or drug consumption, or being asleep or unconscious. Inducement of incapacitation of another with the intent to affect the ability of an individual to consent or refuse to consent to sexual contact almost always, if not always, negates consent. Silence does not necessarily constitute consent. Whether a person has taken advantage of a position of influence over an alleged victim may be a factor in determining consent.


A course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to fear for his/her safety or the safety of others, or to suffer emotional distress. Stalking may include repeatedly following, harassing, threatening, or intimidating another by telephone, mail, electronic communication, social media, or any other action, device or method.

Dating Violence

Violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim. The existence of such a relationship will be based on the length and type of relationship and the frequency of interaction with the persons involved in the relationship. It is important to recognize that emotional, verbal, and economic abuse are part of the web of dating violence and can exist without the presence of physical abuse.

Domestic Violence

Includes crimes of violence committed against a victim by: (i) a current or former spouse; (ii) a person with whom the victim shares a child; (iii) a person who is or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse; (iv) a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim; or (v) any other person against whom the victim is protected under federal or state violence laws. It is important to recognize that emotional, verbal, and economic abuse are part of the web of domestic violence and can exist without the presence of physical abuse.


As defined in the University’s Non-Retaliation Policy, retaliation is also prohibited by this policy and may subject the individual who retaliates in violation of this or other University policy discipline or sanctions.

Prevention Efforts

In an effort to reduce the risk of sexual misconduct as well as the crimes of rape, sexual assault, sexual harassment, stalking, dating violence and domestic violence occurring among its students, the University utilizes a range of campaigns, strategies and initiatives to provide awareness, educational, risk reduction and prevention programming.

It is the policy of the University to offer programming to prevent domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault (including stranger and known offender assaults) and stalking each year. Educational programs are offered to raise awareness for all incoming students and employees, and are often conducted during new student and new employee orientation and throughout an incoming student’s first session. These programs and others offered throughout the year include strong messages regarding not just awareness, but also primary prevention (including normative messaging, environmental management and bystander intervention). And discuss institutional policies on sexual misconduct as well as the State of Michigan definition of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, stalking and consent in reference to sexual activity. Bystander engagement is encouraged through safe and positive intervention techniques and by empowering third-party intervention and prevention such as calling for help, using intervention-based apps, identifying allies and/or creating distractions.

Programs also offer information on risk reduction that strives to empower victims, how to recognize warning signals and how to avoid potential attacks, and do so without victim-blaming approaches. Throughout the year, ongoing awareness and prevention campaigns are directed to students and employees, including faculty, often taking the form of campaigns, emails, guest speakers and events such as “No More Together We Can End Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault”.

Campus Procedures for Addressing Sexual Misconduct, Dating Violence, Domestic Violence, Stalking, Sexual Harassment, and Other Acts of Sex and Gender Discrimination

For offenses including sexual misconduct or other gender based violence, which typically includes the crimes of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual harassment, sexual misconduct and stalking, sanctions range from warnings through expulsion. Serious and violent incidents and acts of non-consensual sexual intercourse (the policy equivalent to the crime of rape) usually result in suspension, expulsion or termination of employment.

Procedurally, when the University receives a report of sexual misconduct, gender-based violence, or other sex or gender discrimination the campus Title IX Coordinator is notified. If the victim wishes to access local community agencies and/or law enforcement for support, the University will assist the victim in making these contacts.

The Title IX Coordinator will offer assistance to victims in the form of interim or long-term measures such as opportunities for academic accommodations, changes in housing for the victim or responding student, visa and immigration assistance, changes in working situations and other assistance as may be appropriate and available on campus or in the community (such as no contact orders, campus escorts, transportation assistance, targeted interventions, etc.) If the victim so desires, they will be connected with a counselor on-or off-campus, as well as an on-or or-campus victim’s advocate. No victim is required to take advantage of these services and resources, but the University provides them in hopes of offering help and support without condition or qualification. A summary of rights, options, supports and procedures, in the form of this document, is provided to all victims, whether they are student, employee, guest or visitor. When appropriate upon receipt of notice, the Title IX Coordinator will cause a prompt, fair and impartial process to be initiated, commencing with an investigation which may lead to the impositions of sanctions, based upon a preponderance of evidence (what is more likely than not), upon a responding student or other accused individual. Procedures detailing the investigation and resolution processes of the University can be found online here: http://reslife.sienaheights.edu/student-conduct.html

The Coordinator is ultimately responsible to assure in all cases that the behavior is brought to an end, the University acts to reasonable prevent its recurrence and the effects on the victim and the community are remedied. The Coordinator is also responsible to assure that training is conducted annually for all advocates, investigators, hearing officers, panelists and appeals officers that encompasses a hearing process that protects the safety of victims and promotes accountability. Training will focus on sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, stalking, sexual harassment, retaliation and other behaviors that can be forms of sex or gender discrimination covered by Title IX and Clery Act. Training will help those decision makers in the process to protect the safety of victims and to promote accountability for those who commit offenses.

The investigation and records of the resolution conducted by the University are maintained confidentially. Information is shared internally between administrators who need to know, but a tight circle is kept. Where information must be shared to permit the investigation to move forward, the person brining the accusation will be informed. Privacy of the records specific to the investigation are maintained in accordance with the State of Michigan law and the federal FERPA statute. Any public release of information to comply with the open crime logs or timely warning provisions of the Clery Act will not release the names of the victims or information that could easily lead to a victim’s identification. Additionally, the University maintains privacy in relation to any accommodations or protective measures afforded to a victim, except to the extent necessary to provide the accommodations and/or protective measures.

In any complaint of sexual misconduct, sexual assault, stalking, dating violence, domestic violence or other sex or gender-based discrimination covered under the federal law, Title IX, the person brining the accusation and the responding party are entitled to the same opportunities for a support person or advisor of their choice throughout the process, including any meeting, conference, hearing or other procedural action. Once complete, the parties will be informed, in writing, of their rights to exercise a request for appeal. Should any change in outcome occur prior to finalization, all parties will be timely informed in writing, and will be notified when the results of the resolution process become final.

Sexual assault victims are assured the following rights within the University conduct process:

  1. The right to be present during the entire proceeding.
  2. The right to have a person from the University present throughout the process to provide support.
  3. The right to not have their sexual history discussed during the proceedings, except as it relates to the specific incident in question.
  4. The right to relate their account of the incident.
  5. The right to be informed of the results of the conduct proceeding.
  6. The right to have their name and any identifying information kept confidential, except as otherwise required by law, court order, or University policies or needs.
  7. The right to a speedy hearing and decision.
  8. The right to appeal a decision made by the University Conduct Board or the Student Conduct Administrator.

A student charged with committing sexual assault is assured of the same rights. A student found responsible for a sexual assault or other sexual misconduct through the conduct process will be given a sanction appropriate to the offense. Possible sanctions range from a warning to expulsion from the University.

If you have questions or if this has happened to you or a friend, please talk to someone you trust. There are several resource individuals on campus to help you deal with concerns. For information and/or to report an assault, contact the Title IX Coordinator, a member of Student Life, such as your RA, SRA, GA, a member of the Wellness Team (Campus Ministry, Nurse, or Counselor), or a member of Public Safety for guidance and support.

Sexual Harassment Policy Summary

This is a summary. The complete policy is found in the Employee Handbook.

Siena Heights is a Catholic University committed to providing a climate conducive to learning for its students and a positive work environment for its employees. Students and employees have a responsibility to treat each other with respect and dignity. The University is committed to taking all reasonable steps to prevent sexual harassment and to discipline those who do harass.

The policy prohibiting sexual harassment applies to all employees, including administrators, fulltime and adjunct faculty, staff, students and third party vendors. It applies at all times and places in any connection with the University. It covers the harassment of students by faculty or staff as well as by other students.

Sexual harassment is illegal. It is a form of sex discrimination and a violation of these federal and state laws:

  • Title VII – Civil Rights Act (1964)
  • Title IX-Elementary/Secondary Education Act (1972)
  • Michigan Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (1967)

As a member of the University community, your behavior is an important model of our mission. If you see these behaviors, you have a responsibility to act. Speak with the person. Refer them to the Saints Guide and Code of Conduct. Notify one of the University representatives listed below. Siena Heights University will not tolerate sexual harassment at any time on any of its campuses.

Any act of retaliation against a student or an employee for using this policy and its procedures violates the sexual harassment policy and will result in appropriate and prompt disciplinary action.


  • Individuals violating the Siena Heights University Sexual Harassment Policy are subject to sanctions.
  • Student conduct sanctions may range from reprimand to dismissal from resident, co-curricular and/or academic participation at the University.
  • Employee discipline may include, but is not limited to, any of the following: oral reprimand, written reprimand, suspension with or without pay and termination of employment.
  • Siena may also insist, as a condition of continued attendance or employment, that the respondent participate in counseling, professional therapy or related educational or employment assistance.

Complaint Process

This policy encourages students, staff and faculty to express freely, responsibly and in an orderly way, their opinion and feelings about any problem or complaint of sexual harassment. The complainant should begin the complaint process by contacting the Director of Public Safety, Title IX Coordinator, and the Director of Human Resources. He/she may be accompanied by a supportive student or employee from the Siena Heights community.

Individuals who are approached by a co-worker or student alleging sexual harassment, and who are not administrators or supervisors, are strongly urged to refer the concern to an appropriate administrator for investigation.

Frivolous Charges

This policy shall not be used to bring frivolous charges against students or employees. Any person who files a complaint, whether informal or formal, which is found to be frivolous, malicious or made in bad faith, shall be subject to the same discipline as outlined in the Sanction section above.

Please refer to the link provided for the policy in its entirety.


E-Communications Policy

Electronic Communications (e-communications) include but are not limited to the Internet, e-mail, newsgroups, social networking and computer facilities of Siena Heights University combine to form an online extension of Siena Heights University. As such, the purpose of e-communication is to support and promote the mission of Siena Heights University. The procedures and guidelines are designed to help faculty, staff, and students adhere to Siena’s moral/ethical standards and mission while using e-communications. To view the E-Communications Policy in its entirety visit Siena Heights University at: http://informationtechnology.sienaheights.edu/uploads/6/5/6/7/6567343/ecommunications_policy_feb_16_2015_-_title_revisions.pdf

Equal Opportunity Employer

Siena Heights University is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability, marital status in the institutions’s programs or activities or any other occupationally irrelevant criteria. The University promotes affirmative action for minorities, women, disabled persons and veterans. Siena Heights University’s Title IX Coordinator is the Chief Public Safety Officer, Cindy Birdwell. Please contact 517-264-7194 or cbirdwel@sienaheights.edu, or visit Ledwidge Hall on the Adrian campus. For 24/7 availability, call 517-264-7799. 

Freedom of Expression

The University assures its student body that the students’ viewpoint, presented through proper channels, will be listened to and given full consideration on all matters affecting the lives and welfare of students. The University respects and upholds the rights of students to criticize, object, dissent, protest, and demonstrate.

Such a policy may well invite differences of opinion and conflicts of ideas, which, in extreme cases, could result in actions that prove to be disruptive to the University or the civic community. To guard against the possibility of such disruptive activity the University may restrict the time, the location and the manner of the activity. The University insists that student dissent, in whatever form it takes, must always show respect for:

  • other people, University and public property, and private property;
  • the rights and freedoms of others, both individuals and groups;
  • the orderly functions of the University;
  • the moral and religious concepts on which the University is based.

The University will exercise its full range of student conduct sanctions and/or Adrian Police resources against demonstrators who:

  • perform willful acts of violence against persons or property;
  • abrogate or abridge the rights and freedoms of others;
  • disrupt the orderly functioning of the University;
  • act to subvert or undermine the moral or religious bases of human freedom.

Frivolous Charges Policy

This policy shall not be used to bring frivolous charges against students or employees. Any person who files a complaint, whether informal or formal, which is found to be frivolous, malicious or made in bad faith shall be subject to the same discipline as outlined in the Sanction section above.

Inclement Weather Policy

University policy is to conduct all classes in accordance with the published schedule of classes, except in the rare case of severe weather. If classes are officially canceled, notification will be via SHU Alerts. Additionally, notifications will be posted on the University website through campus email.

Leave of Absence Policy

Students must sometimes interrupt their studies for a variety of reasons (financial, academic or personal). A Leave of Absence (LOA) is a temporary interruption in a student’s program of study. LOA refers to the specific time period during a program when a student is not in attendance. Students requesting LOA should be directed to the Registrar’s Office.

An LOA must meet certain conditions to be counted as a temporary interruption in a student’s education instead of being counted as a withdrawal requiring Siena Heights University to perform a Return calculation. If the student does not meet the conditions found in 34 CFR 668.22(d) the student is considered to have ceased attendance and to have withdrawn from the school, and the school is required to perform a Return calculation.

A student granted an LOA that meets the criteria in 34 CFR 668.22(d) is not considered to have withdrawn, and no Return calculation is required. Upon the student’s return from the leave, he or she continues to earn the federal student aid previously awarded for the period.

Non-discrimination Policy

Siena Heights University is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability, marital status in the institution’s programs or activities or any other occupationally irrelevant criteria. The University promotes affirmative action for minorities, women, disabled persons and veterans. Siena Heights University’s Title IX Coordinator is the Chief Public Safety Officer, Cindy Birdwell. She can be contacted at 517-264-7194 or cbirdwel@sienaheights.edu, or in person in Ledwidge Hall on the Adrian campus. For 24/7 availability, call 517-264-7799.

Notification by Dean for Extended Leave

Students, family members, or University employees are encouraged to report a student’s extended campus absence of greater than one day to the Dean for Students office. Such past absences have been due to serious medical attention, death in the family, or similar types of crisis. This can be reported most easily by filling out a Student Care Team referral form, https://publicdocs.maxient.com/reportingform.php?SienaHeightsUniv&layout_id=5, or calling the Dean for Students office at 517-264-7600.

Once the Dean for Students office is contacted, appropriate faculty and staff will be notified at the discretion of the Dean for Students. The range of contact will vary by situation and student involvement, but may include the following faculty/staff relationships: the Director of Academic Advising, Academic Advisors, Professors, Coaches, the Student Care Team (comprised of the Assistant Dean for Students, Director of Counseling, and Director of Public Safety), Coaches, Student Support Services, the Director of First Year Experience, the President, Registrar, and work study supervisors.

Unless advised by the student directly, the Dean for Students will be sensitive in sharing only basic information to report the reason of the student’s extended absence and the anticipated return date (if known). Regardless of this notification sent, classroom attendance and participation remains the student’s responsibility at all times. Each faculty member has the sole discretion to evaluate student attendance and performance on a case-by-case basis.

Officially Excused Absences Policy

Siena Heights University instructors will support students academically when they are absent from class while representing the university in an official capacity, including, but not limited to, participating in performances, presentations, and intercollegiate competition and related travel. The University recognizes these absences as “officially excused.”

Prior to the official drop/add date, students will inform the instructor, in person and in writing of the dates they will be missing class due to their participation in sanctioned events and related travel as described above. Instructors will work with students to find reasonable accommodations to make up coursework when they have been “officially excused” as defined above.

Occasionally, modifications to schedules may be necessary due to inclement weather conditions or other extenuating circumstances. It is the responsibility of the student to notify the instructor, prior to the absence, of any changes to their schedule as soon as they become aware of the changes, in person and in writing. 

Students will be responsible for submitting all assignments on time (or early) and advance arrangements will be initiated by the student for any assignments, quizzes, or exams that will be missed due to an officially excused absence.  Instructors have the prerogative of allowing the student to submit assignments, take quizzes, or complete exams after the due date. This should be negotiated between the student and instructor before the absence and the arrangements should be documented in writing.

If questions arise as to whether a specific absence should qualify as an “officially excused” absence, the case will be settled by consulting with the relevant academic Dean and when appropriate, the Dean for Students.

Rehearsals and practices are rarely cause for “officially excused” absences. Exceptions to this rule may be petitioned to the relevant academic dean. If the instructor or the student have any doubt about how to handle a particular absence, or any other questions, they should contact the relevant academic Dean.       

Students who believe that they have received a lack of reasonable accommodation of the provisions of this class policy by an instructor, only after attempting to resolve the matter directly with their instructor, should direct their concerns to the appropriate Program coordinator, Division Chair, or Program Director.  Resolution should be achieved at this level and documented in writing. If necessary, students may appeal these decisions to the relevant academic Dean within 5 business days of the original decision. The Dean shall make a decision within 5 business days of the date of appeal. When necessary, a final appeal may be made to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. This appeal must be made within 5 business days following the Dean’s decision.

Instructors who believe that the number of officially excused absences has become excessive and may jeopardize the ability of the student in question to achieve the learning objectives, the relevant academic dean will be consulted. The academic dean will convene a meeting of the relevant parties to reach agreement on attendance matters with a prioritization of student success.

Instructors who have questions about the application of these statements may contact the relevant academic Dean.

Sexual Assault and Harassment

Please refer to the following link for the entire policy that appears in the Safety Awareness Handbook.


Smoking & Tobacco Policy

Siena Heights University recognizes the negative risks associated with the use of tobacco and smoking products and will provide as close to a smoke-free environment as practicable for its community. The rights of non-smokers to maintain a healthy teaching and learning environment will take precedent over the choice of some to use tobacco and smoking products on campus. This policy applies to all areas on campus including buildings on the Adrian Campus of Siena Heights University, and student housing. This policy applies to all faculty, staff, students and guests on the Adrian Campus of Siena Heights University.

Social Security Privacy Act

Siena Heights University follows the regulations of the “Social Security Privacy Act” passed on March 1, 2005 by the State of Michigan.

Social Security numbers are confidential information and they must be protected from public access. University administration, staff, and faculty are responsible for all documents that contain Social Security numbers. Any document that contains a social security number must be stored in secure locations and shredded when no longer needed.

Social Security numbers will not be:

  1. Used as the primary account number for any individual.
  2. Printed on any piece of identification, membership cards, permits, or licenses.
  3. Included in internet or computer systems without a secure or encrypted connection.
  4. Used to gain access to an internet website or computer system network unless the connection is secure, encrypted, or a password or other authentication device is required.
  5. Printed on any third party documents without the permission of the individual.

University Liability

The University assumes no liability or responsibility for anyone’s personal property. This includes damage or loss due to fire, theft, flooding, vandalism, etc. The University recommends that you do not leave valuables.

Website Privacy & Security Policy

Siena Heights University is committed to ensuring the privacy and accuracy of your confidential information. We do not actively share personal information gathered from our Web servers. However, some information collected from our Website, including the summary server log information, e-mails sent to the Website, and information collected from Web-based forms, may be subject to review to meet Federal and State reporting requirements. To view the Website Privacy & Security Policy in its entirety visit Siena Heights University at www.sienaheights.edu/About/PrivacyPolicy.aspx.

Other Important Student Code of Conduct Policies

Other Code of Conduct University Policies are updated annually. Such policies include alcohol and drug use, on campus housing policies, and student organization policies. To review these policies in the most up-to-date state, please visit https://www.sienaheights.edu/student-life/.