The Student Policy Handbook is a valuable resource for students as they become oriented to the college community. It contains important policies that are not found in other sections of the catalog or in other locations on the Website. It is the student’s responsibility to become familiar with and adhere to these policies. Please review all policies and procedures listed below, as well as throughout the entire Website, to ensure a successful educational experience at Nashville State.
Cell Phone/Pager Policy
The use of cellular telephones and pagers in the classroom is prohibited at Nashville State. The faculty has determined that these wireless communication systems disrupt the academic process. Students who are required to carry pagers and/or have cell phones for employment and/or family responsibilities must inform the instructor at the beginning of the semester concerning the necessity for pager/cell phones. The instructor and student will discuss the need(s) for the pager/cell phone and a decision will be made by the instructor concerning the use of the pager/cell phone. In cases where pagers/cell phones are required and allowed by the instructor, the pager/cell phone must not disrupt the classroom.
Students who violate the terms of agreement on the use of pagers/cell phones will forfeit the use of the privilege. Students will be responsible for any work that is missed. Students will not be excused to make telephone calls during examination periods. In all cases relating to the use of cellular telephones and pagers in the classrooms, the instructor will determine disruptive behavior.
Children On Campus Policy
These policies and procedures concern children brought on campus and/or left unattended by students. Students may not bring children into instructional settings, such as classrooms, labs, the Testing Center, or the Learning Center. In some instances, children may be allowed to accompany their parents when the parents are on-campus to conduct school business, but in no instance will children be allowed to be disruptive.
No child under 12 years of age may be left unattended in any part of the college. Anyone observing an unattended child should report the matter to Security who will attempt to locate the parent. No child under 12 years of age will be left unattended in automobiles anywhere on-campus. Anyone observing an unattended child in an automobile should report the matter to Security. If conditions justify, unattended children will be taken to a safe facility and/or Metro police will be notified.
Classroom Misconduct and Procedures
Nashville State Community College has a zero tolerance policy for disruptive conduct in the classroom. Students whose behavior disrupts the classroom will be subject to disciplinary sanctions.
The instructor has primary responsibility for control over classroom behavior and maintenance of academic integrity. He/she can order temporary removal or exclusion from the classroom of any student engaged in disruptive conduct, which violates the general rules and regulations of the College. Disruptive behavior in the classroom may be defined as, but is not limited to, behavior that obstructs or disrupts the learning environment (offensive language, harassment of students or professors, repeated outbursts from a student which disrupt the flow of instruction or prevent concentration on the subject taught, failure to cooperate in maintaining classroom decorum, etc.), or the continued use of any electronic or other noise or light emitting device which disturbs others (disturbing noises from beepers, cell phones, palm pilots, lap-top computers, games, etc.).
Any form of academic dishonesty, cheating, plagiarizing, or other academic misconduct is prohibited.
Plagiarism may result from: (1) failing to cite quotations and borrowed ideas, (2) failing to enclose borrowed language in quotation marks, and (3) failing to put summaries and paraphrases in your works (A Writer’s Reference, 331).
Academic dishonesty may be defined as, but is not limited to, intentionally trying to deceive by claiming credit for the work of another person, using information from a web page or source without citing the reference, fraudulently using someone else’s work on an exam, paper, or assignment, recycling your own work from another course, purchasing papers or materials from another source and presenting them as your own, attempting to obtain exams/materials/assignments in advance of the date of administration by the instructor, impersonating someone else in a testing situation, providing confidential test information to someone else, submitting the same assignment in two different classes without requesting both instructors’ permission, allowing someone else to copy or use your work, using someone else’s work to complete your own, altering documents, transcripts or grades, and forging a faculty/staff member’s signature.
In addition to other possible disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed through regular college procedures as a result of academic dishonesty, the instructor has the authority to assign an “F” or a “Zero” for the exercise, paper or examination, or to assign an “F” for the course. If a student believes that he/she has been erroneously accused of academic dishonesty and if his/her final grade has been lowered as a result, the student may appeal the case through the appropriate college grade appeal procedures.
Procedures for Disruptive Classroom Behavior
If a student disrupts classroom activities, the instructor should:
- Ask the student to leave the classroom and meet with the instructor after class to discuss the incident. If the incident is resolved, the instructor should email the Dean for Student Services or Campus Director concerning the incident and how the matter was resolved.
- Should the student refuse to leave, the Office of Security should be called to remove the student from the classroom.
- After class, the instructor should email the Dean for Student Services concerning the incident with a recommendation of the desired outcome if the incident occurs at an off-campus site, the instructor should email the Campus Director rather than the Dean for Student Services.
- Prior to the next class meeting, the student must meet with the Dean for Student Services (or Campus Director). The student may not attend class until the disruptive incident has been resolved to the satisfaction of the instructor and Dean for Student Services (or Campus Director).
- The student and instructor will receive written notification of any disciplinary sanctions imposed. Documentation of sanctions imposed at any campus will be forwarded and/or kept in the office of the Dean for Student Services.
- If a student denies guilt, he/she will be advised of the opportunity to elect the procedure they wish to pursue toward the disposition of proposed action against them through the Dean for Student Services.
Confidentiality of Student Records
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as Amended (FERPA), affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. They are:
- The right to inspect and review information contained in the student’s education records.
- The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records to ensure that they are not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy or other rights.
- 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.
- The right to file with the U.S. Department of Education a complaint concerning alleged failures by Nashville State to comply with the requirements of FERPA.
Procedures to Inspect and Review Records
Students wishing to review their educational records should submit to the Director of Records and Registration a written request, which identifies as precisely as possible the record or records he or she wishes to inspect.
The Director of Records and Registration will make the needed arrangements for access as promptly as possible and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. Access must be given in 30 days or less from the receipt of the request.
When a record contains information about more than one student, the student may inspect and review only the records that relate to him.
Procedures for Requesting Amendment to Education Records
Students who believe that their educational records contain information that is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of their privacy or other rights may discuss their problems informally with the Dean for Student Services. If he/she is in agreement with the student’s request, the appropriate records will be amended. If not, the student will be notified within a reasonable period of time that the records will not be amended. The student will be informed by the Dean for Student Services of his/her right to a formal hearing.
Student requests for a formal hearing must be made in writing to the Dean for Student Services who, within a reasonable period of time after receiving such requests, will inform students of the date, place, and time of the hearing. The hearing panel, which will adjudicate such challenges, will be the individuals who have been designated by the President’s office to conduct hearings involving students’ petitions. Decisions of the hearing panel will be final, be based solely on the evidence presented at the hearing, consist of written statements summarizing the evidence and stating the reasons for the decisions, and be delivered to all parties concerned.
Disclosure of Student Record Information
Nashville State will disclose information from a student’s education record only with the written consent of the student except when release is authorized by law and by NSCC. Personally identifiable information from the student’s record may be released without consent to school officials who have a legitimate educational interest in the student’s education records.
School Officials are those individuals who: Are employed by the institution in an administrative, supervisory, academic, or support staff position are designated to administer federal, state, and locally approved education assistance programs for specific NSCC students in coordination and cooperation with the College (access by designated individuals is limited to the student record information of program participants only).
Legitimate Educational Interest is determined by the “need to know” of the school officials who are acting in the student’s educational interest. It will include any authorized interest or activity undertaken in the name of the College for which access to an education record is necessary or appropriate to the proper performance of the undertaking. It is the responsibility of the designated Records Custodian to assess the legitimate education interest or “need to know” of the requesting individual(s).
Student Alcohol or drug possession or use. Public institutions of higher education are required to notify the parent or legal guardian of a student under 21 years old if the student commits a disciplinary violation with respect to use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance.
Directory information concerning students is treated as public information and is released to the public unless otherwise requested by the student.
Directory information includes the following:
Student Name, Address, Date and Place of Birth, Major Fields of Study, Dates of Attendance, Full-Time/Part-Time Status, Degrees and Awards Received, Most Recent Educational Institution Attended, and Participation in Recognized Activities.
Students who desire that any or all of the listed Directory information not be released may complete the appropriate form in the Records Office. This request will remain in effect unless or until revoked by the student.
Dress Code Policy
Students are expected to use good taste in considering appropriate dress on-campus. They should dress in a manner appropriate to their position as college students preparing for professional and career employment. Faculty has the authority to outline and enforce student dress expectations in their classrooms.
Drug/Alcohol Free Communities Statement
This statement is being distributed to all Nashville State employees, including faculty, staff, and students, in compliance with the provisions of the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 (41 U.S.C. 701, et seq.) and the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 (20 U.S.C. 3171, et seq.).
It is the policy of Nashville State to prohibit the illegal use, abuse, manufacturing, possession, sale, or distribution of alcoholic beverages or any controlled substance, including any stimulant, depressant, narcotic, hallucinogenic drug or substance, or marijuana on college-owned, controlled, or temporarily leased property. Such use, sale, or distribution is prohibited also during any college-related activity, including off-campus trips. All employees and students are subject to applicable federal, state, and local laws related to this matter. Additionally, any violation of this policy will result in disciplinary actions as set forth in the General Regulations on Student Conduct and Disciplinary Sanctions section of the Nashville State Student Handbook and the Nashville State Policy and Procedures Manual.
Various federal, state, and local statutes make it unlawful to manufacture, distribute, dispense, deliver, sell, or possess with intent to manufacture, distribute, dispense, deliver, or sell controlled substances. The penalty imposed depends upon many factors, which include the type and amount of controlled substance involved, the number of prior offenses, if any, whether death or serious bodily injury results from the use of such substances, and whether any other crimes were committed in connection with the use of such substance. Possible maximum penalties for a first-time violation include imprisonment for any period of time, up to a term of life imprisonment, a fine of up to $4 million, supervised release, or any combination of the above.
These sanctions are doubled when the offense involves either of the following:
- Distribution or possession at or near a school or college campus.
- Distribution to persons under 21 years of age. (Repeat offenders may be punished to a greater extent as provided by statutes.)
Further, a civil penalty of up to $10,000 may be assessed for simple possession of “personal use amounts” of certain specified substances under federal law. Under state law, the offense of possession or casual exchange is punishable as a Class A misdemeanor. If there is an exchange between a minor and an adult at least two years the minor’s senior and the adult knows that the person is a minor, the offense is classified as a felony, as provided in T.C.A. §39-17-417 (21 U.S.C. 801, et seq.; T.C.A. §39-17-417).
It is unlawful for any person under the age of twenty-one (21) to buy, possess, transport (unless in the course of employment), or consume alcoholic beverages, wine, or beer. Such offenses are classified as Class A misdemeanors punishable by imprisonment for not more than 11 months and 29 days, or a fine of not more than $2,500, or both (T.C.A. §1-3-113,57-5-301). It further is an offense to provide alcoholic beverages to any person under the age of twenty-one (21). Such an offense is classified as a Class A misdemeanor (T.C.A. §39-15-404). The offense of public intoxication is a Class C misdemeanor and is punishable by imprisonment of not more than 30 days or a fine of not more than $50.00, or both (T.C.A. §9-17-310).
Nashville State will impose the appropriate sanctions on any employee or student who fails to comply with the terms of this policy.
As a condition of employment, all employees, including student employees, must abide by the terms of this policy and must notify their department head/ supervisor of any criminal drug statutes conviction for a violation occurring in the workplace no later than five (5) days after a conviction. A conviction includes a finding of guilt, a plea of nolo contendere, or imposition of a sentence by any state or federal judicial body.
Possible disciplinary sanctions for failure to comply with policy, including failure to notify of conviction, may include one or more of the following:
- Mandatory participation in and satisfactory completion of a drug/alcohol abuse program or rehabilitation program
- Recommendation for professional counseling
- Referral for prosecution
- Letter of warning
Possible disciplinary sanctions for failure to comply with the terms of this policy may include one or more of the following:
- Mandatory participation in and satisfactory completion of a drug/alcohol abuse program or rehabilitation program
- Referral for prosecution
Health Risks Associated With Illicit Drugs and Alcohol Abuse
A cursory description of the health risks associated with the use of alcohol and illicit drugs are as follows:
Alcoholism is the most neglected health problem in the United States today. It is a complex, progressive disease that interferes with health and social and economic functioning. Untreated, alcoholism results in physical incapacity, permanent mental impairment, and/or premature death.
Alcohol is involved in one-third of all suicides, one-half of all murders, one-half of all traffic deaths, and one-fourth of all other accidents; and it is involved in over 50 percent of all arrests. Alcohol is the third leading cause of birth defects involving mental retardation. Use during pregnancy may cause spontaneous abortion, various birth defects, or fetal alcohol syndrome.
Drinking is implicated in cancer, heart disease, liver disease, gastrointestinal disease, and other illnesses. Alcoholism reduces life expectancy by twelve years. Regular use of alcohol can damage all body organs, leading to liver, heart, and digestive problems, circulatory system interference, personality disorders, reproductive problems, and such central nervous system disorders as poor vision, loss of coordination, memory loss, loss of sensation, mental/physical disturbances, and permanent brain damage. The physical and psychological changes that occur as a result of addiction to alcohol can pave the way for addiction to mood altering drugs.
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act allows Nashville State to disclose to parents of students under 21 years of age (at the time of disclosure) disciplinary violations concerning drug or alcohol use or possession.
Drugs are natural and synthetic chemical substances used to affect body processes, the mind, nervous system, behavior, and feelings. Drugs used without medical supervision lead to many of the same health risks associated with alcohol abuse. Specifically, however, the illicit use of drugs increases the risk of mental deterioration; death from overdose; physical and mental dependence or addiction; hepatitis and skin infections from needle use; psychotic reactions; inducement to take stronger drugs; brain damage; hallucinations; unconsciousness; deep depression; distortion of time and space; permanent damage to lungs, brain, kidneys, and liver; death from suffocation or choking; anemia, amnesia, AIDS, and other infections. If used excessively, alcohol and drugs may cause death.
The Biennial Review is a required summary of policies, programs, and assessments concerning the issues of alcohol and other drugs at NSCC. A copy of the Biennial Review is available from the Dean for Student Services.
Information Sources for Treatment and/or Rehabilitation
The Information Desk located in the Student Services Center provides information related to treatment and/or rehabilitation as a service to all employees and students. The purposes of referral are as follows:
- To encourage the individual with a problem to seek the assistance of a qualified drug/alcohol therapist or seek treatment from a drug treatment center or mental health center.
- To provide information to individuals regarding treatment resources in the surrounding area and how to secure their services. Descriptive materials are provided when available detailing the facility, length of stay, cost, etc.
- To assist the employee/student in making the initial contact with an outside agency.
Due Process Procedures
These rules constitute rules and regulations of disciplinary procedure at Nashville State. Any student facing expulsion, suspension or other disciplinary action at the college shall be afforded due process.
Tennessee Uniform Administrative Procedures Act
Procedures conforming to the Tennessee Uniform Administrative Procedures Act. All cases which result in
- Suspension or expulsion of a student from the institution, a program, or a course for disciplinary reasons,
- Assignment of a grade which results in the grade of “F” in the course for academic misconduct, or
- Revocation of registration of a student organization during the term of the registration are subject to the contested case provisions of the Tennessee Uniform Administrative Procedures Act and shall be processed in accordance with the uniform contested case procedures adopted by the Board of Regents unless the student waives those procedures in writing and elects to have his or her case disposed of in accordance with the institutional hearing procedure.
Institutional Hearing Procedures
Cases that are not subject to the contested case procedures under the Tennessee Uniform Administrative Procedures Act and cases in which a student has waived the contested case procedures in writing shall be processed in accordance with institutional hearing procedures. Any student facing expulsion, suspension, or other disciplinary action may choose an institutional hearing process, which affords the student the following due process.
- Both the accuser and the accused are entitled to the same opportunity to have others present during a disciplinary proceeding;
- Both the accuser and the accused shall be informed of the outcome of any disciplinary proceeding involving allegations of sexual assault.
Notice of Hearing
- Students accused of misconduct shall be informed in writing of the charges.
- Written charges of alleged violations shall include: the alleged rule violation, a statement of the facts to be presented, and a statement that a hearing will be had before the hearing board on the charges, together with notice of the date, time and place of hearing.
- Written charges shall be served by handing a copy to the person or by mailing via certified mail a copy to the person at his residence or last known residence.
- After receiving notification of the charges, a hearing date will be scheduled within 10 days.
- Individuals accused of misconduct shall be given an explanation of the evidence against them.
- Students accused of misconduct shall be given a copy of the institutional rules and regulations concerning due process procedures.
- The accused student shall have an opportunity to present their side of the case.
- The hearing board shall be charged to hear evidence, to make findings of fact, and to make decisions based on those facts.
- Any individual of the hearing committee who has an interest in the case shall not sit in judgment.
- The hearing shall be scheduled at the date, time, and place specified, unless postponed for good cause.
- The accused has a right to have an advisor present at the hearing, but the hearing board may restrict the advisor’s right to speak at the hearing. The advisor can be an attorney if the Institution is equally represented.
- All material evidence may be presented, subject to the right of cross-examination of witnesses.
- There shall be a verbatim record of the hearing. The accused shall be entitled to be present throughout the presentation of evidence; to know the identity of witnesses against him; to present evidence; and to receive a case summary after the hearing.
- The student shall receive a written copy of the decision of the hearing board with any sanctions.
- The student has the right to appeal to the President of the College within five days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and state holidays) after receiving the hearing board’s decision.
- A student found guilty of violating any institutional rule or regulation has the right to appeal to the Institution’s Board of Trustees, and then to an appropriate court of law.
Cases of Alleged Sexual Assault
In cases involving alleged sexual assault, both the accuser and the accused shall be informed of the following:
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act Regulations provide that disclosures of the final results of disciplinary proceedings conducted by the institution may be made:
- To a victim of an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or non-forcible sex offense regardless of the outcome of the disciplinary proceeding.
- To the public, but only if the student is determined to be an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or non-forcible sex offense, and has committed a violation of the institution’s rules or policies.
- To parents of students under 21 years of age (at the time of disclosure) disciplinary violations concerning drug or alcohol use or possession.
Upon determination that a student or organization has violated any of the rules, regulations, or disciplinary offenses set forth in the Code of Student Conduct, the following disciplinary sanctions may be imposed:
- Restitution. A student having committed an offense against property may be required to reimburse the college or other owner for damage to or misappropriation of such property. Any such payment in restitution shall be limited to actual cost of repair or replacement.
- Warning. The appropriate college official may notify the student that continuation or repetition of specified conduct may be cause for other disciplinary action.
- Reprimand. A written reprimand, or censure, may be given to any student or organization whose conduct violates any part of the college Code of Conduct. Such a reprimand does not restrict students in any way, but does have important consequences. It signifies to students that they are, in effect, being given another opportunity to conduct themselves as proper members of the college community, but that any further violation may result in more serious penalties.
- Restriction. Restrictions of privileges may be placed upon a student or organization for a specified period of time. These restrictions may include, for example, denial of the right to represent the college in any way, denial of the use of facilities, limitations of parking privileges, restrictions on participation in extracurricular activities, or restrictions of organizational privileges.
- Probation. Continued enrollment of a student on probation may be conditioned upon adherence to Rules of Conduct. Any student placed on probation will be notified in writing, which will include the terms and length of the probation. Probation may include restrictions upon the extracurricular activities of a student. Any conduct in violation of the Rules of Conduct while on probationary status may result in the imposition of a more serious disciplinary sanction.
- Suspension. Should students be suspended, they are separated from the college for a stated period of time with conditions of readmission stated in the Notice of Suspension.
- Expulsion. Expulsion entails a permanent separation from the college. The imposition of this sanction is a permanent bar to the student’s readmission to the college.
- Interim suspension. As a general rule, the status of students accused of violations of the college Code of Student Conduct should not be altered until a final determination has been made in regard to the charges against them, and interim suspension may be imposed by the Dean for Student Services. Such a ruling would be enforced if it is the opinion of the Dean for Student Services that the continued presence of the accused on-campus constitutes an immediate threat to the physical safety and well being of the accused, any other member of the college community or its guests, the destruction of property, or substantial disruption of classroom or other campus activities. In any case of immediate suspension, the student shall be given an opportunity at the time of the decision or immediately thereafter, to contest the suspension. If it appears that disputed facts or cause and effect exist, the student shall be provided a hearing on the suspension as soon as possible.
- Therapeutic Intervention. Mandatory participation and satisfactory completion of drug or alcohol abuse program, or rehabilitation program.
In the event of a medical emergency, the Security Office, (615) 353-3273, should be notified first. The Dean for Student Services, (615) 353-3268, should then be notified. If the emergency is acute (stopped breathing, heart attack, stroke, heavy bleeding, poisoning, or shock) an ambulance should be called immediately. If the patient is unable to make a request, the patient will be transported to the nearest hospital, which is St. Thomas Hospital, 4220 Harding Road, (615) 386-6736 or (615) 366-6733. All expenses incurred for ambulance transportation and subsequent treatment will be the responsibility of the individual. All employee and student accidents are to be reported promptly to the Office of Security, located in the A Building, Office A-70A.
Grade Appeal Policy and Procedures
A student who believes that an error has been made in the grade assigned for a course may appeal his/her grade. The appeal must be initiated during the semester immediately following the semester in which the grade was posted (summer semester will be considered in determining the following semester). Grade appeals are allowed only when 1) the instructor has not used criteria stated in the course syllabus, 2) has applied criteria inequitably, or 3) has made errors in the calculation or recording of a grade. In all cases, the student will assume the burden of proof with respect to these issues.
Steps for an Appeal
- The student must try to consult with the instructor to provide a satisfactory resolution to the appeal. The student must also document his/her contact, or attempts to contact, the instructor. The Student Grade Appeal Form for documenting this step may be obtained from the division Dean or the Dean for Student Services. The only exception to this step in the process is in the case that the instructor is no longer employed at the college or is unavailable so that it is impossible to contact the instructor. In the event the student cannot contact the instructor, the student may contact the instructor’s division Dean who will attempt to contact the instructor. If both the student and Dean are unable to contact the instructor, the Dean may act on the instructor’s behalf in reviewing the grade appeal.
- If the appeal cannot be resolved between the student and the instructor, the student may appeal to the division Dean. To continue the appeal, the student must present the completed Student Grade Appeal Form to the division Dean. The division Dean will attempt to resolve the appeal in consultation with the instructor and/or the student. This step must be completed during the semester following the semester in which the grade was earned and must be documented using the Student Grade Appeal Form.
- If the appeal cannot be resolved in step 2, the student has 15 calendar days from the division Dean’s response to further appeal. To continue the appeal, the student must present a copy of the completed Student Grade Appeal Form which clearly explains the basis of the appeal, the evidence of the appeal, supporting documentation, and the signatures of the instructor and division Dean to the Dean for Student Services, who serves as the designee of the Vice President for Academic Affairs. The Dean for Student Services will utilize any resources available to resolve the grade conflict within 21 calendar days from the date submitted to the office of the Dean for Student Services. If the Dean finds that the appeal does not have merit, the Dean will notify the student, the instructor and the division Dean. If the Dean for Student Services determines that the student’s request has merit, the student will be referred to the Academic Appeals Committee.
- The written request for a hearing before the Academic Appeals Committee shall state the factual basis for the grade appeal. The committee shall notify the student, the instructor, and the Vice President for Academic Affairs of the time and location of the hearing. The Academic Appeals Committee shall function as a review board. Acting on behalf of the President, and after thorough review of the case, the committee shall make the final decision. The committee shall have the power to allow the assigned grade to stand or to be changed. Its decision must be formally announced to all parties. The time schedule allowed for completion of the action of the Committee shall be 21 calendar days. The hearing is a closed hearing, but the committee will have the right to call and interview all parties involved in the appeal. Pending resolution of the appeal, consequences of the contested grade will stand. Revised June 2007
The Tennessee Board of Regents policy 5:01:06:00 on Intellectual Property applies to students and employees. It provides that works created in the course of a project sponsored by Nashville State or with the significant use of NSCC facilities or equipment are the property of Nashville State Community College.
International (F-1) Student Insurance
Students must purchase this insurance or show proof of having equal or better coverage. Students who are in this category should speak with Adriane Johnson, Admissions Supervisor, Student Services Center, (615) 353-3219, for information and to pick up a brochure.
Internet Usage Policy
The advent of the Internet presents unprecedented opportunities to obtain, exchange, and manipulate data across national borders. Students using Nashville State’s computing facilities are responsible for using them in an ethical, legal, efficient, and effective manner consistent with the mission of the college.
Nashville State will not read or edit the content of your homepage before posting on the Web. However, in posting an electronic publication from college computing facilities on the Web, you are explicitly agreeing to conform to the policies governing student conduct already in place in the college and the Tennessee Board of Regents System. Violations of these policies will be handled in a way consistent with comparable college policy violations that may require disciplinary action. Disciplinary offenses are outlined in this Student Policy Handbook.
Students should at all times follow these guidelines:
- Electronic communication programs (such as electronic mail) are for college-related communications only. Chain letters are strictly forbidden.
- Fraudulent, harassing, threatening or obscene messages and/or materials are not to be sent, stored, posted, or downloaded.
Tennessee laws require that all state colleges actively engage in protecting against electronic piracy. The following is the NSCC policy with regard to downloading music or videos.
- No student, employee or visitor of NSCC is permitted use of its computers or network for the purpose of making illegal downloads.
- Visiting any web sites [i.e. file share, peer to peer (P2P, torrent] in order to make illegal downloads will not be tolerated on any NSCC campus.
- Individuals found to be in violation of this policy will face disciplinary and/or possible legal action.
- No one should make unauthorized copies of copyrighted software.
Computer facilities and accounts are to be used only for the purpose for which they were authorized. Any individual who reveals his or her password to another is responsible for that other person’s use of the account. Individuals are responsible for their own password protection.
No one should deliberately attempt to degrade system performance or prevent an authorized user access to the computer systems. In addition, students must follow the Computers and Network Acceptable Use Policy that is part of the Nashville State Electronic Network. Copies of this policy may be obtained in the office of the Director of Computer Services, Clement Building C-301.
Nashville State recognizes the right of officially recognized student organizations to hear off-campus or outside speakers. However, there is no absolute right to assemble or to make a speech at any time or place regardless of the circumstances, content of speech, purpose of assembly, or probable consequences of such meeting or speech; and the issuance of invitations to off-campus or outside speakers for any meeting, activity or event on-campus shall be limited to resolutions adopted by the Tennessee State Board of Regents on September 29, 1978.
Any speaker invited to the campus by an officially recognized student club or organization shall be approved by the organization’s faculty advisor and cleared through the Dean of Students before the invitation is extended.
Sex Crimes Prevention
The federal Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act and the Tennessee College and University Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act of 2002 require that whenever a sex offender becomes employed, enrolls as a student, or volunteers at an institution of higher education in the state of Tennessee, he or she must complete or update the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) sexual offender registration/monitoring form and deliver it to TBI headquarters in Nashville. As defined in section 40-39-102 of the Tennessee Code, a “sexual offender” means a person who is, or has been, convicted in this state of committing a sexual offense or who is, or has been convicted in another state or another country, or who is or has been convicted in a federal or military court, of committing an act which would have constituted a sexual offense if it had been committed in this state. A “sexual offense” means the commission of acts including but not limited to aggravated and statutory rape, sexual battery, sexual exploitation of a minor, aggravated prostitution, and kidnapping.
Both acts designate certain information concerning a registered sexual offender as public information and therefore amend and supersede the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and other federal and state laws that previously prohibited the disclosure of such personal information. Since the laws require the publication of information pertaining to sexual offenders employed, enrolled or volunteering at an educational institution, said publication does not constitute grounds for a grievance or complaint under NSCC or Tennessee Board of Regents policies or procedures. Students may obtain Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) Sexual Offender Registration/Monitoring forms in the Office of Safety and Security, Office A-70A. Effective October 28, 2002, the registry of Sexual Offenders for Nashville State Community College will be housed in the Office of Safety and Security, Office A-70A.
Sexual and Racial Harassment Policy
Sexual and racial harassment constitute a form of discrimination prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. TBR policies 2:02:10:01 and 5:01:02:00 and Guideline P-080 provide parameters, rules, and procedures for campus personnel.
TBR guidelines define sexual harassment as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical contact of a sexual nature when one of the following criteria is met:
- Submission to such a conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of the individual’s employment or of the individual’s status in a program, course or activity;
- Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for employment decisions, a criterion for evaluation, or a basis for academic or other decisions affecting such individual; or
- Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or educational work or educational environment.
All Nashville State employees and students will be held accountable for their actions. Sexual harassment will not be tolerated on-campus. Advice in this matter is simple. Do not put yourself, your subordinates, or our students in a position where there is even a hint that an act of sexual harassment might occur. Likewise, do not tolerate unwelcome acts toward yourself, your subordinates, or students.
Generally, racial harassment is defined as any person’s conduct, which unreasonably interferes with a student’s status or performance by creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or educational environment. Harassment on the basis of race, color, or national origin includes offensive demeaning treatment of an individual, where such treatment is based typically on prejudiced stereotypes of a group to which that individual may belong. It includes, but is not limited to, objectionable epithets, threatened or actual physical harm or abuse, or other intimidating or insulting conduct directed against the individual because of his/her race, color, or national origin.
Generally, harassment on the basis or religion, disability, or other protected status includes any conduct which has the purpose or has the reasonably foreseeable effect of interfering with a student’s academic efforts, employment, or participation in institutionally sponsored activities. Such harassment also includes any activity that creates an intimidating, hostile or demeaning environment.
Any student who believes he or she has been subjected to harassment by a Nashville State student or Nashville State employee shall present the charge to the Dean of Students, Student Services Center. The charge shall include the circumstances giving rise to the allegations, the date(s) of the alleged occurrence(s) and when available, the names of any witness to the alleged occurrence(s). The student who presents the charge shall sign the charge.
The Dean of Students shall investigate and take appropriate action in compliance with Tennessee Board of Regents policies and guidelines relative to harassment and in compliance with federal and state laws that prohibit such discrimination.
Sexual Offense Policy and Procedures
Reporting a Sexual Offense
If a rape/sexual offense occurs on the Nashville State campus, the following persons should be contacted immediately: The Director of Safety and Security, the Dean for Student Services, and the Assistant to the V.P. of Academic/Student Services. The Department of Safety and Security will complete a preliminary interview and give direction on how to proceed. If a rape/sexual assault occurs off-campus, contact the site administrator and they are to call Security on the main campus for instructions on how to proceed.
A victim of any form of sexual offense is encouraged to seek appropriate medical assistance. If immediate medical attention is warranted, the victim should be transported to Nashville Metro General Emergency Room. It is important that the victim seek medical attention in order to ensure his/her well being and to ensure that any evidence is preserved as possible proof of criminal sexual assault in the event that criminal charges are pursued.
Victims have the option to notify or not notify proper law enforcement, including on-campus and local police. If a rape/sexual offense is reported, the College will make every effort to see that the victim is offered both medical and psychological care as well as information about prosecuting the suspect through both criminal and Nashville State disciplinary channels.
Students accused of sexual offenses will be charged with violating the Nashville State Student Code of Conduct. Special rights are given to the victim if a suspect in a sexual offense case is a student and that suspect is charged with violating the Code of Student Conduct. Both the accuser and the accused are entitled to the same opportunities to have others present during a campus disciplinary hearing. The victim, therefore, has the right to have counsel of his/her choice present during hearings. Both the accuser and the accused shall be informed of the outcome of any campus disciplinary proceeding brought as a result of these charges.
Penalties for the violation of any Code of Conduct are listed in the Student Handbook. Violation may lead to disciplinary action up to and including permanent dismissal from the College. All reasonable requests by the victim to be removed from contact with the suspect will be granted.
Signs and Poster Policy
All materials posted on bulletin boards must be approved and stamped by the Dean for Student Services Office, Student Services Division. Signs, posters, or bulletins will be removed if they are not stamped. Student Services, custodial and administrative personnel may remove signs posted on windows, doors, or in areas other than those designated.
The Office of the Dean for Student Services is the official clearinghouse for all student complaints. All complaints shall be in writing on the approved Student Complaint/Grievance Form. The Dean for Student Services will review each complaint and consult with appropriate college faculty/staff to discuss issues related to the complaint. The Dean will correspond in writing with each individual who registers a complaint with the college.
Student Code of Conduct
Nashville State students are citizens of the local, state, and national governments and of the academic community and are, therefore, expected to conduct themselves as law-abiding members of the community at all times. Admission to the institution carries with it special privileges and imposes special responsibilities apart from those rights and duties of non-students. In recognition of the special relationship that exists between the institution and the academic community which it seeks to serve, the Tennessee Board of Regents has authorized the President of Nashville State to take such action as may be necessary to maintain campus conditions and preserve the integrity of the institution and its educational environment.
Pursuant to this authorization, Nashville State has developed the following regulations, which are intended to govern student conduct on the campus. In addition, students are subject to all national, state, and local laws and ordinances. If a student’s violation of such laws or ordinances also adversely affects the institution’s pursuit of its educational objectives, the institution may enforce its own regulations regardless of any proceedings instituted by authorities. Conversely, violation of any section of these regulations may subject a student to disciplinary measures by the institution whether or not such conduct is in violation of local, state, or national laws.
The following are areas of misconduct identified to clarify the definition of unacceptable student conduct:
- Conduct dangerous to others. Any conduct which constitutes a serious danger to any person’s health, safety, or personal well being, including any physical abuse or immediate threat of abuse.
- Hazing. No student organization or individual shall engage in or condone any form of hazing as defined by state law (T.C.A. §49-8-203). Hazing means any intentional or reckless act in Tennessee on or off the property of any higher education institution by one (1) student acting alone or with others that is directed against any other student, that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of that student, or which induces or coerces a student to endanger such student’s mental or physical health or safety. Hazing does not include customary athletic events or similar contests or competitions, and is limited to those actions taken and situations created in connection with initiation into or affiliation with any organization.
- Disorderly conduct. Any individual or group behavior which is abusive, obscene, lewd, indecent, violent, excessively noisy, disorderly, or which unreasonably disturbs other groups or individuals.
- Obstruction of or interference with institutional or college activities or facilities. Any intentional interference with or obstruction of any institutional or college activity, program, event, or facilities, including the following:
- Any unauthorized occupancy of facilities owned or controlled by Nashville State or blockage to and from such facilities.
- Interference with the right of the college or an institutional member or other authorized person to gain access to any activity, program, event, or facility sponsored or controlled by the college.
- Any obstruction or delay of campus security officers, local authorities, or officials of the college in the performance of their duty.
- Misuse of or damage to property. Any act of misuse or vandalism, malicious or unwarranted damage or destruction, defacing, disfiguring, or unauthorized use of property belonging to the college, including, but not limited to, fire alarms, fire equipment, elevators, telephones, college keys, library materials, safety devices, and any such act against a member of the college community or a guest of the college.
- Theft, misappropriation, or unauthorized sale. Any act of theft, misappropriation or unauthorized possession or sale of college property, or any such act against a member of the college community or guest of the college.
- Misuse of documents or identification cards. Any forgery, alteration of, or unauthorized use of college documents, forms, records, or identification cards, including providing false information or withholding of necessary information in connection with a student’s admission, enrollment, or status in the college.
- Firearms and other dangerous weapons. Any unauthorized or illegal possession of or use of firearms or dangerous weapons of any kind.
- Explosives, fireworks, and flammable materials. The unauthorized possession, ignition, or detonation of any object or article which could cause damage by fire or other means to persons or property or the possession of any substance which could be considered to be or be used as fireworks.
- Alcoholic beverages. The use, possession, distribution, sale or manufacture of alcoholic beverages, or public intoxication on property owned or controlled by the Institution; at an institution sponsored event; on property owned or controlled by an affiliated clinical site; or in violation of any term of the State of the Nashville State Drug-Free Schools and Communities Policy Statements.
- Drugs. The unlawful use, possession, distribution, sale or manufacture of any drug or controlled substance (including any stimulant, depressant, narcotic, or hallucinogenic drug or substance or marijuana) or the misuse of legally prescribed or “over the counter” drugs on property owned or controlled by the institution; at an institution-sponsored event; on property owned or controlled by an affiliated clinical site; or in violation of any term of the Nashville State Drug-Free Schools and communities Policy Statement.
- Unacceptable conduct hearings. Any conduct at a college hearing involving contemptuous, disrespectful, or disorderly behavior or the giving of false testimony or other evidence at any hearing.
- Failure to cooperate with college officials. Failure to comply with directions of college officials acting in the performance of their duties.
- Violation of general rules and regulations. Any violation of general rules and regulations of the college as published in an official college publication, including the intentional failure to perform any required action or the intentional performance of any prohibited action.
- Attempts and aiding and abetting the commission of offenses. Any attempt to commit any of the foregoing offenses or the aiding and abetting of the commission of any of the foregoing offenses is prohibited. (An “attempt” to commit any offense is defined as the intention to commit the offense coupled with the taking of some action toward its commission.)
- Violations of state or federal laws. Any violation of state or federal laws or regulations prescribing conduct or establishing offenses, which laws and regulations are incorporated herein by reference.
- Academic and classroom misconduct. Disruptive behavior in the classroom may be defined as, but not limited to, behavior that obstructs or disrupts the learning environment (offensive language, harassment of students and professors, repeated outbursts from a student which disrupt the flow of instruction or prevent concentration on the subject taught, failure to cooperate in maintaining classroom decorum, etc.) or the continued use of any electronic or other noise or light emitting device which disrupts others (disturbing noises from beepers, cell phones, palm pilots, laptop computers, games, etc).
- Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty. Any form of academic dishonesty is prohibited. Information about plagiarism.
- Class Attendance. Class attendance and punctuality requirements are contracted between the faculty and the students, through specific expectations for attendance and punctuality and specific consequences that are outlined by individual faculty members in the printed syllabus for each course. Students are expected to attend classes regularly and on time and are responsible for giving explanations/rationale for absences and lateness directly to the faculty member for each course in which they are enrolled. In cases where student absences are the result of emergency circumstances (e.g., death in the family, a student’s serious injury or incapacitating illness), for which students are unable to make immediate contact with faculty, the student may contact the Dean for Student Services Office for assistance in providing such immediate notification to faculty. However, the student remains responsible for verifying the emergency circumstances to faculty and for discussing arrangements with faculty for completion of course work requirements.
- Littering. Littering campus grounds and illegal dumping or disposal of waste on campus is strictly prohibited.
- Gambling. Gambling in any form (including lotteries, giveaways, and door prizes) is prohibited.
Disciplinary action may be taken against a student for violation of the foregoing regulations which occur on property owned, leased, or otherwise controlled by the college, or which occur off-campus, including study abroad, when the conduct impairs, interferes with, or obstructs any college activity or the missions, processes, and functions of the college. In addition, disciplinary action may be taken on the basis of any conduct, on or off campus, which poses a substantial threat to persons or property within the college community. For the purpose of these regulations, a student is defined as any person who is registered for study at Nashville State for any academic period.
Student Grievance/Appeal Procedure
All formal student grievances and appeals will be submitted on a Student Complaint/Grievance Form. These forms may be obtained from the Dean for Student Services in the Student Services Center. A grievance may result from any action Nashville State has taken against the student which:
- Violates Nashville State or Tennessee Board of Regents policy, or involves an inconsistent application of these same policies;
- Violates state or federal discrimination statutes in that the adverse action is based solely on race, sex, national origin, age, disability, or veteran status; or
- Violates any constitutional right.
Student Rights and Freedoms
Academic institutions exist for the transmission of knowledge, the pursuit of truth, the development of students, and the general wellbeing of society. Free inquiry and free expression are indispensable to the attainment of these goals. As members of the academic community, students should be encouraged to develop the capacity for critical judgment and to engage in a sustained and independent search for truth. Institutional procedures for achieving these purposes may vary from campus to campus, but the minimal standards of academic freedom of students outlined below are essential to any community of scholars. Freedom to teach and freedom to learn are inseparable facets of academic freedom. The freedom to learn depends upon appropriate opportunities and conditions in the classroom, on the campus, and in the larger community. Students should exercise their freedom with responsibility. The responsibility to secure and to respect general conditions conducive to the freedom to learn is shared by all members of the academic community. Tennessee Board of Regents institutions have developed policies and procedures, which provide and safeguard this freedom. The purpose of this statement is to enumerate the essential provisions for students’ freedom to learn.
Freedom of Access to Higher Education
The admissions policies of each Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR) Institution are a matter of institutional choice, provided that each institution makes clear the characteristics and expectations of students, which it considers relevant to success in the institution’s program. Under no circumstances should a student be barred from admission to a particular institution on the basis of race. Thus, within the limits of its facilities, each institution should be open to all students who are qualified according to its admissions standards. The facilities and services of a TBR institution should be open to all of its enrolled students.
The professor in the classroom and in conference should encourage free discussion, inquiry, and expression. Student performance should be evaluated solely on an academic basis, not on opinions or conduct in matters unrelated to academic standards.
- Protection of Freedom of Expression. Students should be free to take reasoned exception to the data or views offered in any course of study and to reserve judgment about matters of opinion, but they are responsible for learning the content of any course of study for which they are enrolled.
- Protection Against Improper Academic Evaluation. Students should have protection through orderly procedures against prejudiced or capricious academic evaluation. At the same time, they are responsible for maintaining standards of academic performance established for each course in which they are enrolled.
- Protection Against Improper Disclosure. Certain information about students is protected from public disclosure by federal and state laws. Protection against improper disclosure is a serious professional obligation. Judgments of ability and character may be provided under appropriate circumstances.
Theft of Student Property
Nashville State cannot assume responsibility for loss, theft, or damage of students’ property. Students may store items in lockers that may be obtained during registration for a nominal fee of two dollars per semester. Students who desire a locker should contact the Records Office located in the Student Services Center.
Tobacco-Free Campus Policy
Tobacco use is not permitted in any NSCC owned or leased property. This includes all grounds, vehicles, and buildings owned or leased by NSCC. The new policy is effective Fall Semester 2011 (starting August 27, 2011).
This policy applies to all faculty, staff, students, contractors and visitors of NSCC and is in effect 24 hours a day, year round. This policy applies to all forms of tobacco products including, but not limited to, cigarettes, pipes, cigars, chewing tobacco, and snuff, as well as, smokeless electronic cigarettes and other similar devices.
Penalties for violating this policy are as follows:
Student violations should be reported to Security or Dean of Students.
- First offense. Verbal warning from Dean of Students
- Second offense. Probation
- Third offense. Suspension
- Fourth offense. Expulsion
Employee violations should be reported to immediate supervisor.
- First offense. Written record of conversation
- Second offense. First written warning
- Third offense. Second written warning
- Fourth offense. Termination
In an effort to encourage student participation in the election and voting process, Nashville State provides voter registration forms for any student in attendance at the college. These forms are located at strategic locations on campus and the Student Life Representative’s Office, Student Services Center.
Weapons on Campus Policy
No Nashville State employee, visitor, or student shall knowingly possess, handle, or transmit any object that can reasonably be considered a weapon while on-campus. T.C.A. §3-6-1359 “A…State or federal government entity or agent thereof is authorized to prohibit possession of weapons by any person at meetings conducted by, or on the premises owned, operated, managed or under control of such…government entity.” T.C.A.§3-6-1718 “Felony: state law prescribes a maximum penalty of six (6) years imprisonment and a fine not to exceed $3,000.00 for carrying weapons on College-owned or controlled property.”