School Policies

Privacy of Records

NWSC complies with the Family Educational Rights in Privacy Act (FERPA). The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) afford students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:

  • The right to inspect and review the student’s educational records within 45 days of the day the College receives a request for access. Students should submit to the Registration and Records Rep., Dean, or other appropriate official written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The NWSC official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the College official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom it should be addressed.
  • The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes is inaccurate. Students may ask the College to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate. They should write the College official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate. If the College decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the College will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
  • The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the College in an administrative, supervisory, academic research, or support position; a trustee or outside contractor such as an attorney or auditor acting as an agent for the College; a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks, volunteers and other non-employees performing institutional services and functions as school officials with legitimate education interests. A school official has a legitimate education interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. Upon request, the College discloses education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll; to accrediting agencies; to comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena; in connection with financial aid for which a student has applied; in connection with a health and safety emergency; to military recruiters. The Privacy Act specifically states that parents and other third parties may not have access to a student’s educational records, unless the student gives written permission. The College reserves the right to make certain exceptions to the above for federal and state agencies that are gathering information for statistical purposes.
  • The Dean of Academic and Student Affairs may contact parents, legal guardians, or law enforcement as deemed necessary where there is a danger to a student or to others, or when a student is involved in alcohol and/or drug violations on campus.
  • The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Northwest Suburban College to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-4065

Anti-Harassment Policy

Collectively, we are all responsible for creating an environment where we are treated with respect and dignity. Sometimes behavior that seems acceptable to you may be offensive to others. Any harassment or false accusations of harassment of or by employees or students is not acceptable. Northwest Suburban College prohibits harassment on the basis of sex, race, religion, age, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or membership in any other group protected by law, including the following behaviors:

  • Unsolicited remarks, gestures, or physical contact; display or circulation of written material or pictures that are negative or offensive to gender or to racial, ethnic, religious, or other groups protected by law;
  • Unwelcome sexual advances, request for sexual favors, and all other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual or otherwise offensive nature, especially where submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment or academic advancement or status, or the basis for employment-related decisions affecting the employee or decisions affecting the individual’s academic advancement or status; or
  • Conduct that has the purpose or effect of interfering with an employee’s work or academic performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working or learning environment.

Sexual Misconduct & Sexual Assault

One of NWSC’s goals is to maintain an environment that is healthy and safe. Acts of sexual misconduct and assault will not be tolerated. For purposes of this policy, “sexual misconduct” is defined as any attempted or actual act of non-consensual or forcible sexual touching. This would include, but is not limited to, fondling, kissing, groping, attempted intercourse (whether oral, anal, or genital), penetration or attempted penetration with a digit or any other object.

“Consent” requires speech or conduct indicating a freely given, uncoerced agreement to engage in sexual contact. Consent may not be inferred from silence or passivity alone and a current or previous relationship is not sufficient to constitute consent. Consent may be withdrawn at any time prior to a specific sexual act by either person. To be valid, the person giving consent must be physically and mentally able to:

  • understand the circumstances and implication of the sexual act;
  • able to make a reasoned decision concerning the sexual act; and
  • able to communicate that decision in an unambiguous manner.

Persons accused of sexual misconduct will be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with Northwest Suburban College’s policies and procedures for student conduct. At the discretion of the College, persons accused of sexual misconduct may be immediately suspended or restricted from campus pending final disposition of any disciplinary proceedings. Individuals found to have committed sexual misconduct will be subject to sanctions, up to and including dismissal from the College.

In addition to student disciplinary action, persons accused of sexual misconduct may be subject to criminal prosecution by the law enforcement agency with appropriate jurisdiction in that case. In the course of a criminal investigation or prosecution, NWSC may choose or may be required to provide information and records related to its disciplinary proceedings involving the same act. However, NWSC’s student disciplinary process is independent of and not dependent upon any criminal process. The decision to prosecute or not prosecute and the ultimate outcome of any criminal proceedings do not affect or influence the College’s student conduct proceedings.

A person who has been a victim of sexual assault may report the crime to the Northwest Suburban College Student Advisor, the Dean of Academic & Student Affairs, or an outside community agency (See resources chart below.). NWSC staff will serve in an advocacy role and help refer individuals for appropriate medical, law enforcement, judicial and counseling assistance. Upon request, assistance will be provided in changing academic schedules and living arrangements.

Even if a victim decides not to file criminal charges with the police, it is recommended that the individual contact a College or community resource for support. Victims are entitled to confidential services either on or off campus, whether or not charges are pressed. Resources both on campus and in the community are:

On-Campus Resources Contact Information
NWSC Student Advisor 847-290-6425, ex. 110
NWSC Dean of Academic & Student Affairs 847-290-6425, ex. 104
Off-Campus Resources Contact Information
Northwest Center Against Sexual Assault (CASA) 24-Hour Confidential
Hotline: 888.802.8890
Phone: 847.806.6526
http://www.nwcasa.org/
Address: 415 West Golf Road, Suite 47 Arlington Heights, IL 60005
Life Span 24-Hour Crisis Line: 847.532.9540
URL: http://life-span.org/

The Bill of Rights for Victims and Witnesses of Violent Crime is an Illinois law that ensures fair and compassionate treatment for victims and witnesses of violent crime. The law guarantees two basic rights to crime victims and witnesses—the right to obtain information from the criminal justice system, and the right to be treated in a humane way by the system.

Illinois Domestic Violence Act: Rights of Victims

The following excerpt is from the Illinois Domestic Violence Act webpage by the Illinois Attorney General. For more information, visit http://www.illinoisattorneygeneral.gov/women/idva.html.
Domestic violence is a crime. Any person who hits, chokes, kicks, threatens, harasses, or interferes with the personal liberty of another family or household member has broken the Illinois Domestic Violence law. Under Illinois law, family or household members are defined as:

  • family members related by blood;
  • people who are married or used to be married;
  • people who share or used to share a home, apartment or other common dwelling;
  • people who have or allegedly have a child in common or a blood relationship through a child in common;
  • people who are dating, engaged or used to date, including same sex couples; people with disabilities and their personal assistants

Domestic violence consists of physical assault, sexual abuse, and stalking. The violence takes many forms and can happen all the time or once in a while. If you are in an abusive situation, you are urged to seek help. Resources both on campus and in the community are:

On-Campus Resources Contact Information
NWSC Student Advisor 847-290-6425, ex.110
NWSC Dean of Academic & Student Affairs/ Compliance Coordinator 847-290-6425, ex. 104
Off-Campus Resources Contact Information
State of Illinois Domestic Violence Help Line 24-Hour Confidential Hotline: 877.863.6338
URL: http://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=31886

Harassment Reporting Procedure

Harassment of any sort is a serious breach of NWSC policy. The College will take prompt and appropriate corrective action, up to and including termination of employment, expulsion, and/or other sanctions against anyone who engages in harassment. If you believe you have been the subject of harassment, report the alleged conduct immediately to the Compliance Coordinator, or another senior College official. NWSC prohibits any form of retaliation against any employee or student for filing a complaint or for assisting in a complaint investigation.

Students are encouraged to report all incidents of harassment. The College will conduct an appropriate and discreet investigation of all reports of sexual harassment. The details of the investigation will be kept as confidential as feasible, consistent with policies and applicable federal, state, and local laws.

  • Complaints of sexual harassment by a College executive, faculty member, staff member, or teaching assistant are reported to and investigated by the employee’s immediate supervisor, or the Compliance Coordinator or any other senior College official. (If any person to whom the report would be directed is involved in or is associated with the alleged conduct, the report must be directed to another senior official who is not involved.)
  • Complaints of sexual harassment by a student are reported to and investigated by the Assistant Dean of Student Affairs. (If any person to whom the report would be directed is involved in or is associated with the alleged conduct, the report must be directed to another senior official who is not involved.)
  • An appropriate and timely response to each complaint will be provided.
  • No individual who makes a good faith report shall be subjected to retaliation, including harassment or any adverse employment, academic, or educational consequence, as a result of making a report.

Anti-Dangerous Objects Policy

The possession, display, and/or use of dangerous objects including, but not limited to, firearms, fireworks, explosives, hunting knives, or anything that could be misrepresented as a weapon are prohibited on College property. Disciplinary action for violation of the Dangerous Objects Policy may include suspension or expulsion and referral for possible legal action.

Drug-Free Campus Policy

Northwest Suburban College’s School of Allied Health Sciences is grounded in the principles of health; hence, the College strictly enforces a drug-free campus policy. Regulations set forth below are to promote an academic environment conducive to student and career achievement and comply with the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989.

In compliance with federal, state, and local laws, NWSC prohibits the unlawful manufacture, distribution, sale, possession, or consumption of narcotics, illegal drugs, prescription drugs for which the person does not have a prescription, or alcohol by students, employees, or contractors on any College property or College-sponsored event. The Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 (Public Law 101-226) requires that the College inform all members of the NWSC community of the legal sanctions of illicit drugs and alcohol, which may include suspension/termination of employment and possible referral for criminal prosecution. Violations are recorded in the individual’s file.

Students should be aware that those found guilty of violation of the Drug-Free Campus Policy may lose financial assistance provided by the College. Furthermore, according to the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 (Section 5301), students who receive federal financial aid must certify that they will not engage in the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of a controlled substance during the period covered by the aid. If students are convicted of drug distribution or possession, the court may suspend their eligibility for Title IV financial aid.

For detailed information on the Drug-Free Campus Policy, including definitions, effects of health, and federal and state and federal sanctions, refer to the NWSC Annual Security & Fire Safety Report (beginning on page 11).

Resources

Members of NWSC and the community are available to assist students and employees experiencing problems with drugs and alcohol. Specifically, NWSC advisors are available for confidential meetings and referrals. A few external resources are listed in the chart below:

Services Name & Numbers
Support Groups Al-Anon/ Al-Ateen: .847.358.0338
Alcoholics Anonymous: 847.240.2380
Narcotics Anonymous: 708.848.4884
24-Hr Hotlines SAMHSA: .800.662.4357
Sober Nation: 866.317.7050
Wellplace: 800.821.4357
Drug Rehab: 877.882.9275
Community Resources Rolling Meadows Counseling Center: 847.991.5710
Therapeutic Interventions Inc.: 847.991.4800, ex. 27

Counseling Resources

NWSC encourages students to seek a professional for counseling services. However, in addition to the services listed above, there are numerous online resources available, including the Student Counseling Virtual Pamphlet, which can be accessed at http://www.dr-bob.org/vpc/.

Code of Conduct

Northwest Suburban College holds and abides by the highest standards of integrity and scholarship. All members of the NWSC community, including students, faculty, and staff must conduct themselves in a manner compatible with NWSC’s role as an academic institution. The purpose of the NWSC Code of Conduct is to provide equitable rules and procedures to promote a safe and orderly educational environment.

Misconduct is defined as any activity that is contrary to NWSC and its members’ general and educational interest. College jurisdiction is applicable to all conduct while on College premises and other sites at which instruction or College-related activities are being conducted. Behaviors that violate the NWSC Code of Conduct include, but are not limited to, the following list:

  • Acts of dishonesty
  • Providing false information to any College official
  • Forgery, alteration, or misuse of any College documents and resources
  • Academic Dishonesty: Cheating, plagiarism, or violation of copyright
  • Cheating is the misuse of material including, but is not limited to, using unauthorized assistance, recycling work without acknowledgement, illicit collaboration, or fabrication of information.
  • A form of cheating is plagiarism, which is using someone else’s work, in part or in whole, intentionally or unintentionally, and implying that the other person’s work is yours. Examples of plagiarism include, but are not limited to, submitting works that you have not created yourself, copying answers or text from another person and submitting it as your own, quoting or paraphrasing someone else’s idea without crediting the original author, and fabricate references or incorrectly using references.
  • All work turned in by a student is to be of their own creation or properly cited as the work of others. It is the student’s responsibility to know and understand the rules regarding avoiding plagiarizing and proper citations.
  • The degree of and circumstances around an incidence of plagiarism will be considered and the appropriate consequence(s) determined. Consequences may range from a zero for the assignment up to and including expulsion, depending in the severity of the case. Each subsequent infraction may be treated more severely than previous ones.
  • Speech and Related Behavior
  • Any verbal, written, electronic, or physical behavior that creates or is likely to provoke a violent reaction, whether or not it actually does so
  • Physical abuse, verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, harassment, coercion, assault, and/or any other conduct that threatens or endangers the health or safety of any person
  • Disruption or obstruction of teaching, research, administration, or any other college activities
  • Controlled and Illegal Substances and Weapons
  • Use, possession, or distribution or narcotic or other controlled substances
  • Use, possession, or distribution of alcoholic beverages
  • Illegal or unauthorized possession of firearms, explosives, other weapons, or dangerous chemicals
  • Theft and Damage to Property
  • Attempted or actual theft of and/or damage to property of the College or property of a member of the College community or other personal or public property.
  • Unauthorized entry or use of College facilities.
  • Violation of College policies, rules, or regulations and/or collusion in violation of College policies, rules, or regulations

Code of Conduct Proceedings

The following sanctions may be imposed upon any student found to have violated the Code of Conduct. The Dean of Academic and Student Affairs is responsible for handling all matters related to the Code of Conduct. At any time, the recommended consequence for an infraction may be increased or decreased due to existence of aggravating or mitigating circumstances of the infraction, solely at the discretion of the Dean of Academic and Student Affairs.

  • Warning: Notice that the student violated the Code and that any repetition may result in more severe sanctions.
  • Discretionary Sanctions: Works assignments, service to the College or community, or related discretionary assignments.
  • Suspension: Separation of the student from the College for a definite period of time, after which the student may be eligible to return.
  • Expulsion: Permanent separation of the student from the College.

Appeals

  • A decision reached or a sanction imposed by the Dean of Academic and Student Affairs may be appealed by accused students to the Executive Vice President or the President within 10 days of receipt of the decision. Failure to respond within 10 days of the receipt of the decision will result in implementation of the recommended sanction(s).
  • Appeals must be submitted in writing to the President clearly explaining the basis for the appeal.
  • The decision of the President will be final.

Student Grievance Policy

Northwest Suburban College works hard to ensure student satisfaction and provide students with a positive approach to resolving issues—both academic and administrative. With few exceptions, NWSC asks that students make all attempts possible to amicably resolve the issue before escalating the situation to administration. However, if the student finds that a complaint must be made, the following details the policy and procedures for grievances.

Step 1: Student attempts to resolve the problem with faculty or staff.
Step 2: If the matter is not resolved, student contacts his/her advisor for the NWSC Grievance Form, completes it, and submits it to the Dean of Academic and Student Affairs within 10 working days of the incident. The complaint must include a concise statement of the allegations that form the basis for the student’s complaint, including a careful statement of the facts, rules, regulations, policy, or practice that was violated; a summary of the attempts to resolution; and a suggested remedy.
Step 3: The Dean of Student Affairs, who will develop an appropriate committee (examined to ensure his/her impartiality) to conduct a conference & make a finding.
Step 4: Within 10 days of the conference, the Dean of Student Affairs will submit in writing the decision of the committee to the President. The grievant may seek review of an adverse decision through the College President. The decision of the College President is final and is documented on the Grievance Form.

Complaints against this school may be registered with (and/or):
Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE)
1 N. Old State Capitol Plaza,
Springfield, Illinois 62701-1377
217.557.7359
http://complaints.ibhe.org/