- Most student concerns can be resolved informally. Students will discuss their concerns with faculty or staff that they know well. Often this means listening to students vent about their concerns.
- After the venting has taken place, there might be an opportunity to talk about the mediation process as a way to get to a win-win solution.
- We should encourage students to resolve concerns with the person with whom they have the conflict. Discussion between both parties can often resolve the conflict. The possibility of resolving the conflict increases if the process of mediation can be used.
If the conflict is not resolved, students should be referred to the Dean of the area which the concern applies.
Assistant Dean of Students
If the issue is an infraction of the Student Code of Conduct, refer the student to the Assistant Dean of Students, Assistant Dean of Enrollment Services/Registrar to complete an Incident Report. If not, do the following:
- The Director of Academic Services will provide students with a packet of information that describes the Student Concern process and outlines steps in mediation.
- The Director of Academic Services will ask students if they had discussed this issue with the other party.
- If yes, and the issue is not resolved, students should complete the Student Concern Report
- If no, students should be encouraged to talk with the other party. If they are reluctant to do so, the Administrative Assistant will help students complete the Student Concern Report.
- The Director of Academic Services will log in the concern and refer the Student Concern Report to the Dean of Academics and Extended Learning. A copy of the Student Concern Report will be forwarded to the employee’s supervisor.
(Note: Completion of the Student Concern Report formalizes the process.)
The Dean of Academics & Extended Learning will review the Student Concern Report. Based upon the nature of the concern, the Dean of Teaching & Learning will determine how the concern should be handled.
The mediator needs to have received training in mediation. The mediator needs to be a neutral party and does not have the authority to impose a solution nor render a judgment. The mediator must use the mediation process to help both parties resolve the concern so that there is a win-win solution.
When a Student Concern is referred to mediation, the Mediation Center for St. Joseph and Cass Counties will be contacted. The Mediation Center will charge $20 per case and will find a mediator with 7-10 days. At the present time they have 14 trained volunteer mediators who are available only during the evening. One individual presently being trained will be available during the day. In addition, two to four college personnel will receive mediation training to supplement those available from the Mediation Center.
When a Student Concern Report is referred, the following role is expected of the individual doing the mediation:
- Contact both parties within a week of the filed date.
- Meet separately with each party and identify central issues.
- Schedule a meeting to initiate the mediation process. This might require more than one meeting.
- Assist both parties in identifying a win-win solution.
- If the concern is resolved, indicate the resolution on the Student Concern Report.
- If the concern is not resolved, refer the concern to the Mediation Review Committee to render judgment.
Mediation Review Committee
This committee will be comprised of three faculty or staff who are not involved with the concern. The Committee would be appointed by the Dean of Academics & Extended Learning and rotate annually. The role of the Committee would be to review the facts and render judgment about the concern.
If the student wants to appeal the decision of the Mediation Review Committee, the appeal can be brought to the Appeal Committee.
A special Appeal Committee will be formed to review the appeal and render a judgment. Possible members of this Appeal Committee include the President of the Faculty Senate, the Dean of Academics & Extended Learning, and the President of Glen Oaks.
Administrative Assistant to the Dean of Academics & Extended Learning should assist the student in completing the Student Concern Report and should provide the student with a copy of the procedures.
Maintain an annual spreadsheet with the following information:
- Date the Concern was originally submitted.
- Nature of the concern.
- Steps taken to resolve the concern.
- Final decision
- Any external actions taken.
Each Student Concern Report should be numbered.
The original Student Concern Reports should be retained in the Office and copies should be forwarded based upon the recommendation of the Dean of Academics and Extended Learning. The Student Concern Reports should be filed in alphabetical order. The resolutions should be stapled to the original report.
Unresolved concerns should be highlighted and drawn to the attention of the Dean of Academics and Extended Learning on a weekly basis.
The Administrative Assistant to the Dean of Academics & Extended Learning should send a letter to both parties describing how the concern was addressed and the final decision. A copy of this letter should be stapled with the original Student Concern Report.
The Administrative Assistant to the Dean of Academics & Extended Learning should compile the Student Concern Reports into various categories. These categories will be determined by the Dean of Academics & Extended Learning after there has been sufficient experience with the process. Some examples might be grade issues, course outlines, and consistency of treatment. The results of this summation will be used to improve procedures and policies of the College.
Adopted by Board of Trustees January 12, 2000, revised February 9, 2000, title updates made 2012, 9/17/14.