School Policies

Student policies are described or restated here for clarity and emphasis. The current policy manual
(including all associated procedures and forms) is available at https://nwsc.edu/policies/.

Code of Conduct

The purpose of the Northwest Suburban College Code of Conduct is to provide equitable rules and
procedures to promote a safe and orderly educational environment. The 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.

Misconduct is defined as any activity contrary to the general and educational interests of the College
and its members. Allegations of misconduct will be reviewed against this standard.
College jurisdiction is applicable to all conduct while on College premises and other sites at which
instruction or College-related activities are being conducted. The College may also review criminal or
otherwise egregious conduct as a violation of the Code of Conduct, regardless of where it was
committed.

Presumed misconduct includes violation of College policies that create responsibilities or expectations
for students and acts contrary to the Code of Conduct, which has been established to clarify those
behaviors that implicitly contradict the general and educational interests of the College. Specific types
of misconduct include, but are not limited to, the following:

Misrepresentation

  • Providing false information to any College official.
  • Forgery, alteration, or misuse of any College documents and resources.

Academic Dishonesty

  • Cheating is the misuse of material including, but 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 fabricating
    references or incorrectly using references.
  • All work turned in by a student is to be of his or her 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 incident of plagiarism will be considered and the
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    appropriate consequence(s) determined. Consequences may range from a zero for the
    assignment up to and including expulsion, depending on 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.
  • Disruption or obstruction of teaching, research, administration, or any other college activities.

Violence and Harassment

  • Physical abuse, verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, harassment, coercion, assault, sexual
    misconduct, and/or any other conduct that threatens or endangers the health or safety of any
    person.
  • Use, possession, or distribution of controlled and illegal substances and weapons.
  • Use, possession, or distribution of narcotic or other controlled substances.
  • Use, possession, or distribution of alcoholic beverages on campus or by underage students.
  • 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

Northwest Suburban College works to ensure that any violation of College policy is reviewed and
resolved in a manner that guarantees the College applies standards of fairness and due process in its
decision-making. The College has established a uniform process for the review of violations of College
policy. The process is applicable to the review of policy violations by students, as defined in the Code
of Conduct.

Code of Conduct Violation Reporting Procedure

Any faculty member or other employee of the College who becomes aware of a student’s probable
violation of the Code of Conduct must report that information to the Dean of Academic & Student
Affairs. All other members of the College community are likewise encouraged to report. The identity
of the person reporting a violation will be kept confidential, but that person may be contacted by the
College as part of the investigation of a complaint. A faculty member or other employee reporting a
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violation may be required to answer questions or provide a statement that will identify them by name,
and other members of the College community reporting a violation may be requested to do so.

Initial Assessment

Any allegation of a policy violation must be immediately reported to the College Compliance Division.
The Compliance Division will conduct an investigation, identifying potential evidence and witnesses.
Investigations include interviews and the review of evidence, such as electronic and written material, if
any exists. The Compliance Division will prepare a summary of its investigative findings, assessment
of the policy requirements in question, and interpretation of the implications to the policy of the
allegations.

Review Procedure

Review of grievances against employees or faculty will be presided on by the College President (or if
against the President, by the Chair of the Board of Regents). Review of violations of the Student Code
of Conduct will be presided over by the Dean of Academic & Student Affairs.

The presiding officer will meet with the respondent of the violation or grievance, giving that person an
opportunity to acquiesce to or contest the allegations, and providing him/her with the opportunity to
request review by a committee. If a committee review is requested, or determined to be in the interest
of the College or the process, the presiding officer shall, with the advice of the Compliance Division,
appoint an appropriate committee (examined to ensure his/her impartiality). The committee should
include at least one faculty member and at least one current student.

Either independently or with an appointed committee, the presiding officer will conduct a conference
with the respondent, and any complaining parties or witnesses. The presiding officer or committee will
then make a determination regarding the alleged violation and any applicable sanctions in private
deliberation. Committee decisions shall be by majority vote.

The presiding officer or committee shall then prepare a written explanation of its finding and the
reasons thereof, which shall be delivered to the respondent within ten days of the hearing.

Within ten days of the conference, the Dean of Academic & 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.

Appeals

A decision reached or a sanction imposed by the presiding officer or review committee may be
appealed by the respondent to the President within ten days of receipt of the decision. Failure to
respond within ten 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.

Code of Conduct – Sanctions

The following sanctions may be imposed upon any student found to have violated the Code of
Conduct. The Dean of Academic & 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 & Student Affairs.

  • Warning: Notice that the student violated the Code and that any repetition may result in more
    severe sanctions.
  • Discretionary Sanctions: Work 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

Student Grievances

Grievances are defined as allegations by students of the violation by College faculty or employees of
College policies that implicate their interests (and may include, but are not limited to, discrimination,
harassment, capricious grading, or determinations made in the application of other College policies),
and are handled through the same adjudicative process as described for code of conduct violations.

A student who has been unable to resolve a problem with a faculty or staff member should contact
his/her advisor for the NWSC Grievance Form. The form should be completed and submitted to the

Compliance Division within ten 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 attempts; and a suggested remedy.

External Complaints

Complaints against this school may be registered with:

Private Business and Vocational Schools Division
Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE)
1 N. Old State Capitol Plaza
Suite 333
Springfield, Illinois 62701-1377
217.557.7359
http://complaints.ibhe.org/

Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Policy

Northwest Suburban College believes we are all responsible for creating an environment where we are
treated with respect and dignity. Sometimes behavior that seems acceptable to one may be offensive to
others. Any harassment or false accusations of harassment of or by employees or students is not
acceptable. The 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.

Harassment

Harassment is verbal or physical conduct or conduct using technology that is so severe or pervasive
that it has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or
educational program participation, or that creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or
educational environment. A person’s subjective belief that behavior is offensive, intimidating, or hostile
does not make that behavior harassment. The behavior must be objectively unreasonable. Expression
occurring in an academic, educational, or research context is considered as a special case and is
broadly protected by academic freedom. Such expression will not constitute harassment unless (in
addition to satisfying the above definition) it is targeted at a specific person or persons, is abusive, and
serves no bona fide academic purpose. Harassment includes, but is not limited to, 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;
  • 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 harassment also encompasses unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other
verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

  • Submission to or rejection of such conduct is made, explicitly or implicitly, a basis for an
    academic or employment decision, or a term or condition of either; or
  • Such conduct directed against an individual persists despite its rejection.

Sexual Misconduct

One of the College’s goals is to maintain an environment that is healthy and safe. Acts of sexual
misconduct and assault will not be tolerated. Sexual misconduct includes sexual assault and abuse
(criminal acts that the U.S. Department of Education defines as sexual harassment), non-consensual
sexual activity, and sexual harassment. 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 or sexual misconduct.

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.

The College considers sexual violence and sexual harassment, whether verbal, physical, or visual, to be
a form of sexual discrimination, prohibited by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. 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.
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.

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.

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; and
  • 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 Dean of Academic & Student Affairs 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 Dean of Academic & Student Affairs 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 Dean of
    Academic & 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.

Drug-Free Campus

Northwest Suburban College of Basic and 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.

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.

Counseling 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

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/.

Dangerous Objects

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.

Dress Code

A clean, neat appearance will help students develop appropriate dress habits for new careers. While
NWSC appreciates the individuality of each student, students are asked to dress in proper attire for all
educational activities, including but not limited to, lectures, labs, externships, and community service
events. Students in the School of Allied Health Sciences are required to wear the provided uniforms to
each course session. All students are required to follow lab dress codes, including coats, protective
wear (i.e., goggles), and full-toed shoes. Information about lab precautions will be provided by the
instructor.

The following are examples of attire considered inappropriate for the College environment:

  • Hats caps, and hoodies during instruction
  • Clothing with profanity/indecent messages
  • Any display of underwear

NWSC respects the beliefs of each student. If dress code policies are in conflict with your religious
beliefs, please speak to your advisor.

Privacy of Records

NWSC complies with the Family Educational Rights and 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 education 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 record 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 educational
    interests. A school official has a legitimate educational 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 FAFSA inquiry about students who previously
    received financial aid through NWSC; 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 & 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

Copyright and Licenses

NWSC adheres to the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (HEOA), which requires institutions
to explicitly inform students that unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials, including
unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may be subject to civil and criminal liabilities.

Summary of Civil and Criminal Penalties for Violation of Federal Copyright Laws

Copyright infringement is the act of exercising, without permission or legal authority, one or more of
the exclusive rights granted to the copyright owner under section 106 of the Copyright Act (Title 17 of
the United States Code). These rights include the right to reproduce or distribute a copyrighted work.
In the file-sharing context, downloading or uploading substantial parts of a copyrighted work without
authority constitutes an infringement.

Penalties for copyright infringement include civil and criminal penalties. In general, anyone found
liable for civil copyright infringement may be ordered to pay either actual damages or “statutory”
damages affixed at not less than $750 and not more than $30,000 per work infringed. For “willful”
infringement, a court may award up to $150,000 per work infringed. A court can, in its discretion, also
assess costs and attorneys’ fees. For details, see Title 17, United States Code, Sections 504, 505. Willful
copyright infringement can also result in criminal penalties, including imprisonment of up to five years
and fines of up to $250,000 per offense.

For more information, please see the website of the U.S. Copyright Office at www.copyright.gov,
especially their FAQ’s at www.copyright.gov/help/faq. For legal alternatives to unauthorized
downloading, visit www.educause.edu, and search “Legal Sources of Online Content” for a list of
options.

Federal Copyright Laws are included in the NWSC Code of Conduct. Hence, sanctions for violations
of the Code are listed under the Code of Conduct section of this Catalog.

Email

The email provided in the NWSC application is the official mechanism for communication for the
College and students/faculty/staff. College community members are expected to read communications
in a timely manner. Changes to email addresses should be immediately conveyed to instructors and
advisors.

Electronic Use

NWSC expects students, faculty, and staff to demonstrate responsibility, integrity, and confidentiality
when utilizing resources, including electronic devices and networks. All activity on systems and
networks, including the creation of documents, may be monitored by administrators. Unless permitted
by the owner or law, personal software may not be used, installed, or copied on College electronic
resources. NWSC reserves the right to revoke the privileges of any staff or student found to be using
College equipment and computer network inappropriately. Legal action may follow, if deemed
necessary.

Vaccinations

In accordance with the College Student Immunization Act, each enrolled student is required to submit
documentation of having received immunizations. Proof of immunity must include the following
information:

  • The month, day, and year of vaccine receipt for measles, mumps, and rubella. Whole year
    dates (e.g., 1969) are acceptable only when it is clear that the student was at least one year of
    age when the vaccine was received.
  • The month, day and year of receiving the vaccine for diphtheria and tetanus.

Proof of immunity may be provided in the following forms:

  • A copy of the immunization record from the physician
  • A copy of the student’s Illinois high school health record which complies with the
    immunization requirements
  • In lieu of proof of immunity, official evidence of birth on or before January 1, 1957

A student may be exempt from the vaccination policy if s/he provides a written and signed statement
by a physician indicating the circumstances that conflict with the immunizations. Exemptions may also
be provided if vaccinations conflict with religious beliefs. In such cases, the student must provide a
written and signed statement detailing the specific belief that conflicts with vaccinations and receive
approval from the Dean of Academic & Student Affairs.
Failure to provide proof of immunity will preclude the student from enrollment in subsequent
courses/modules until the Admissions Rep. receives appropriate documentation or the student is
granted an exemption by the Dean of Academic & Student Affairs.