Information for Parents
Office of the Dean of Students and Residence Life
What to Do When Your Student Is Involved In the Student Conduct Process on campus
Sending your student to an institution of higher education is as much of a transition for parents as it is for students. The relationship you have with your son or daughter will undoubtedly change. Students are expected to make decisions on their own, to learn to resolve conflict independently, and to take responsibility for their actions. At the same time they value your love, respect your opinion, and generally operate on the values you instilled in them. So what should you do when your student becomes involved in the student conduct system?
The following section provides some recommendations for parents when they discover that their student is involved in the campus conduct process.
1. While Mount St. Mary's University recognizes that your goal is to provide support for your student, staff in the Dean of Students Office and Office of Residence Life ask that you provide this support unconditionally, but not blindly. Understand that there is a process in place to hear all information regarding the incident in question and encourage your student to prepare him or herself for the process.
2. When your son or daughter receives paperwork regarding conduct procedures and has questions, direct him or her to contact a staff member in the Office of Residence Life. Staff members are not permitted to give specifics to parents and will most likely recommend that the student call anyway. This also empowers the student to solve his or her own issues and concerns.
3. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 precludes the college or university from discussing your child’s academic and disciplinary record without his/her written permission.
4. Educate yourself on Mount St. Mary's Code of Student Conduct and student conduct process by going to the following website: www.msmary.edu/studentconduct
5. Practice the “24 Hour Rule.” You may receive a phone call or email message from your student because he or she is upset about facing conduct charges. You may be tempted to try to immediately fix the problem for them. This intervention invariably fails. Try to allow 24 hours to inform, guide, teach, observe, and educate. Lessons learned through participation in a student conduct process must be experienced to have the desired effect. After all, gaining a higher education degree is about learning.
The Dean of Students and staff in the Office of Residence Life take their responsibilities as educators very seriously and do their best to provide a fair and unbiased system for all students. While these professionals understand that involvement in the conduct process may be difficult for students, they do their best to provide them support to effectively handle the situations in which they find themselves.
Office of Residence Life
McGowan Center, Suite 228
Hours: Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Phone: 301-447-5274 Fax: 301-447-5818