St. Mary’s College of Maryland, in compliance with federal and state laws and regulations governing affirmative action and non-discrimination, does not discriminate in the recruitment, admission, and employment of students, faculty, and staff in the operation of any of its educational programs and activities as defined by law.
Maryland law states that:
- It is unlawful for any minor (a person under age 21) to possess or consume alcoholic beverages
- It is unlawful for any minor to misrepresent or lie about his/her age in order to obtain alcoholic beverages
- It is unlawful for any person to obtain alcoholic beverages on behalf of a minor
- It is unlawful for any person to consume alcoholic beverages on public property unless authorized to do so by proper officials.
Students are prohibited from having kegs and multi-liter containers.
It is the responsibility of all faculty, staff, and students at St. Mary’s College to uphold the conditions of this state law. The College also promotes an active, healthy, social life on campus and accommodates groups that request College facilities for events where alcohol is appropriate.
- For returning students: A $200.00 non-refundable deposit for housing is due before students are assigned to campus housing. The deposit is due by the first Friday in March for returning students. Cash, checks, money orders, and credit cards will be accepted. The deposit is credited toward the next year’s housing fee.
- For new students: A $500.00 non-refundable deposit is due before students are assigned to campus housing. The deposit is due by May 1. Cash, checks, money orders, and credit cards will be accepted. The deposit is credited toward the next year’s fees.
A $50.00 non-refundable maintenance fee must be paid annually. The maintenance fee includes, but is not limited to: costs for any breakage, damage, loss of College property, default on townhouse utility payments, and any other financial obligation owed to the College. Students are responsible for damages that occur in public areas of their residence unless the damage can be attributed to specific individuals or groups. Students receive itemized statements of any charges assessed to their accounts. If these charges exceed the maintenance fee, the student will be billed the difference. Students that cause excessive room or common-area damage (in the residence halls, $150 or more; suites, townhouses, and apartments, in excess of $300) may have their Housing Contract revoked and face additional conduct charges.
Leave of Absence (Also see “Withdrawal from the College”)
Any degree-seeking student may be granted leaves of absence up to a total of three semesters during his or her College career. In cases of unusual need, degree students may be granted additional leaves of absence by the assistant vice president for academic services following consultation with the Academic Policy Committee. If a student is academically dismissed or expelled from the College during the semester preceding the semester for which a leave of absence is conditionally granted, the approval of the leave is canceled automatically. When a student on leave of absence returns to the College, he or she is reinstated as a degree student and retains the rights to the provision of his or her prior catalog. Applications for leaves of absence are available in the Office of Academic Services and must be filed by the student no later than the last day of classes in the semester in which the leave of absence is to begin. Credit earned at another institution during a leave of absence will be transferable to SMCM under the same provisions as other transfer credit. However:
- If a student pays a deposit and subsequently is granted a leave of absence before the deposit deadline, the deposit, at the student’s discretion, may be held until such time as the leave of absence is terminated.
- A student who requests a leave of absence after the deadline forfeits the deposit.
- A student who does not return at the conclusion of the leave of absence will forfeit the deposit.
One of the areas of concern noted by the employees is the continuing presence of unauthorized pets on campus. College policy states that pets and other animals are not permitted in any College building because of sanitation, noise, and potential health and safety concerns for students, faculty, staff, and visitors. Pets are prohibited from all athletic venues including the stadium, baseball field, and the practice fields. The exceptions are dogs for the visually/hearing impaired, certain pets for live-on professional staff, and non-meat-eating fish and non-venomous reptiles in closed aquariums. Animals that are temporarily on the grounds must be under the control of the owner (leashed) at all times. Pets should not be left in cars (due to the potential of problems from heat or cold), and are not permitted to be “tied up” outside of buildings. Pets found tied up or running loose on campus may be taken by Animal Control. Faculty, students, and staff must also ensure that their visitors abide by the College’s pet policy. If you plan to visit your student, please leave your pet(s) at home. It has become necessary to stridently enforce this policy for all students, faculty, staff, and visitors. Effective immediately, please note the following action that may be taken if students disregard this policy.
- Students may not bring their pets to campus while attending classes, except as noted above.
- Pet owners may face a $250 cleaning/extermination charge, hours of community service, and/or an educational project.
- Repeat offenders face disciplinary probation and restriction from all residences or suspension.
- The owner of the pet faces a $250 cleaning/extermination charge, hours of community service, and/or an educational project.
- Repeat offenders will face loss of housing, disciplinary probation, and/or suspension.
- Residents who permit unauthorized pets in their room, suite, townhouse, or apartment face community service after their first offense and repeat offenders face disciplinary probation.
Your cooperation in following this policy is appreciated and will help to create better working conditions for our employees and reduce concerns about personal safety and problems and inconveniences associated with allergies, fleas, odors, and damages.
For students officially withdrawing from the College (through the Office of Academic Services), a refund schedule for tuition, room, and board is listed below. There is no room refund for students that are removed from housing due to a housing contract violation or judicial sanction. The board plan charges will be refunded on a pro-rated weekly basis. Tuition refunds for full-time and part-time students that withdraw from the College shall be as follows:
Before classes officially begin, 100% of tuition and mandatory fees will be refunded. As of the first day of classes, mandatory fees are non-refundable.
- 80% of tuition will be refunded only prior to the end of the second week after the official beginning of classes.
- 60% of tuition will be refunded only during the third week after the official beginning of classes.
- 40% of tuition will be refunded only during the fourth week after the official beginning of classes.
- 20% of tuition will be refunded only during the fifth week after the official beginning of classes.
- After the fifth week of classes, no tuition or fees shall be refunded.
For students withdrawing from the College, the room refund schedule is as follows:
- 100% less penalty fee as noted on the Housing Contract before classes begin.
- 80% prior to the end of the second week after the official beginning of classes.
- 60% during the third week after the official beginning of classes.
- 40% during the fourth week after the official beginning of classes.
- 20% during the fifth week after the official beginning of classes.
- No refund after the fifth week following the official beginning of classes, regardless of room occupancy.
Response to Psychological Crises
This procedure refers to the St. Mary’s College Catalog section on Student Life Regulations, in which “the College reserves the right to suspend… or try to separate from the College any student whose… personal conduct, on or off the campus, is… unsatisfactory or detrimental to the best interests of the College.”Short-Term Incident
College students sometimes experience psychological crises that might affect their functioning and behavior. When this occurs, the student is strongly urged to seek assistance at Counseling Services. However, occasionally these crises might escalate to the point that the community is being disrupted. At these times, the student might be hospitalized and/or return home to be under the care of a mental health professional.
If the student’s treatment is short-term and s/he would like to return to the campus, it is important that the College immediately be informed of the situation and professional interventions. The student must immediately grant a Release of Information so that vital information can be quickly and continuously shared between the College and the treating professionals. The treatment information will be reviewed by the director of Counseling Services who will relay it to the dean of students along with a recommendation. If the dean decides that the information from all sectors merits the student’s return to campus, then permission will be granted with appropriate safeguards. If not, then the student will need to take a leave of absence for a longer time period.
If a student takes a leave of absence from the College due to a mental health concern or emergency, then the request for re-admission will be evaluated by the dean to determine whether or not it is appropriate that the student is ready to return to school at this time. The dean’s judgment is based upon documentation of the health and readiness of the student to return and the possible effect on the community. It is in no way a punitive process. Rather, it is an essential educative deliberation at the end of a usually difficult and disturbing experience for those involved. It is intended to be beneficial for all and deserves wisdom and compassion. As such, the process cannot be rushed. To assure adequate review and contact of all those needing to be involved, the necessary information must reach the College at least a month before re-admission is planned to allow for full consideration of the request. This would also give the student enough time to make plans for course registration and housing for the semester.
The re-admission request includes the following:
- A letter addressed to the dean of students from the student describing his/her readiness to return to the campus, including his/her view of the problem’s origin, treatment and resolution.
- Written report(s) from treating mental health professional(s) sent to the director of Counseling Services, fax: 240-895-4937. The report(s) should address the following:
- Presenting complaint(s), symptoms and diagnoses
- Treatment course, including response to treatment
- Recommendations for continued treatment, including medications if applicable. Counseling Services does provide follow-up treatment and medication monitoring. However, it should be noted that these are short-term services and not a long-term resource.
- The potential for harm, to self or others, needs to be addressed in the report.
It is very important that the student share this requirement with his/her treatment professional(s) during their initial meeting and go over the components of the report before the evaluation is sent to the director of Counseling Services (fax: 240-895-4937). If this information is not comprehensive and thorough, then there may not be time for the director to make a responsible recommendation to the dean to permit the student’s return for the requested semester.
The director of Counseling Services will review these reports and consultations as well as the letter requesting re-admission. S/he may call for a personal interview (face to face, or by telephone) with the student to further assess the situation, and, in some cases, may discuss the issues with parents or family. The director will then make a recommendation to the dean.
The dean of students will review the information provided and may seek further input (for example, from Residence Life, Public Safety, Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs/Dean of the Faculty, the conduct officer, etc.), depending upon each particular situation. When the dean is assured that the student is reasonably emotionally healthy and fully ready and able to handle the psychological, academic, and social pressures of college life, s/he will re-admit the student under conditions deemed supportive. If the dean/vice president does not judge that re-admission is appropriate at this time, then s/he will specify reasons for the decision and what is needed for future consideration.
St. Mary’s College of Maryland established the following policy regarding the smoking of tobacco products. The Governor’s Executive Order (01.01.1992.20) established guidelines upon which the St. Mary’s policy is based. Smoking or carrying any lighted tobacco product is prohibited in all State buildings and facilities.
Effective July 1, 2001, smoking in all residence halls and townhouses is prohibited.
Withdrawal from the College
It is assumed that a student who withdraws from the College does not intend to return. A student may withdraw from the College at any time during the semester on or before the last day of classes, provided the student is not under temporary suspension. To withdraw from the College the student must receive the approval of the assistant vice president for Academic Services (or a designee). A student suspended on an interim basis or against whom a temporary suspension or expulsion may be initiated may not withdraw from the College before the conclusion of his/her judicial case. If a student decides to return to the College, he or she will have to be re-admitted through the Admissions Office. A student who withdraws from the College or is suspended or expelled before the end of the tenth week of the semester will be assigned a grade of W in each course for which he or she is currently registered. A student who withdraws from the College after that date but on or before the last day of scheduled classes will be assigned a grade of WP (withdrawal/passing) or WF (withdrawal/failing) in each class for which he or she is currently registered.
Students will be held financially responsible for any damage caused by them or their guests. Any existing damages must be listed on the “Room Condition Report” or “Townhouse Condition Report” and should be reported to the Residence Life Staff. Students are held responsible for damages to their rooms and their contents and for damages to public areas in the residences. The College will not raise room rent for all students in order to pay for damages in common areas (stairwells, hallways, bathrooms, lobby, rec. room). Rather, it will assess those members of a living area (wing, floor, building) when the responsible individual(s) is not identified. It is the responsibility of all residents to exercise their influence in the student community to prevent damage or require responsible individuals to pay. Excessive damages to rooms or areas may result in disciplinary action and possible non-renewal of the housing contract.
If students have incurred a damage charge, they will receive a statement from the Business Office. Bills must be paid within 30 days. The one-hour minimum labor charge on any damage call is $26.00. Student costs for damage repair equal the cost of materials plus the cost of labor ($26.00/hour).
If damages are discovered during check-out at the end of the semester, billing will take place then, and the amount billed will be subtracted from the pre-paid damage deposit. Unused damage deposit funds will be credited to the next year’s damage deposit or refunded to students who are not returning to College housing.
Housing Contract Release Requests
Students requesting to be released from the Housing Contract due to participation in a College-approved program (for example, internship site outside of St. Mary’s County, study abroad, NSE), or who are graduating, are automatically approved with no financial penalties. Housing deposits will be transferred to the semester in which the student returns to the College. Students who transfer or withdraw from the College are released from the contract and must pay a housing contract release fee as noted below. A committee has been established (made up of faculty, staff, and a student representative) to review requests from students who want to be released from the Housing Contract in order to live off campus, based on medical or financial need. To be released from the contract, a resident must submit a timely written request to the Office of Residence Life. (See the Housing Contract.) The deadline for such request for release for the fall semester is May 1.The deadline for such request release for the spring semester is November 1. If a resident files a late request that is after the deadline but by July 1 (fall) or December 1 (spring), the student will be charged ten percent (10%) of the assigned housing rate for the type of housing assigned for that semester. If the request is filed after July 1 (fall) or December 1 (spring) but before classes begin, the student will be charged twenty percent (20%) of the assigned housing rate for the type of housing assigned for that semester. If a student is academically dismissed prior to the start of the fall semester, the housing deposit will be refunded. If a student is dismissed at any other time, cancels his or her registration and housing, or decides to transfer, withdraw, or take a leave of absence, the charges and deadlines noted above will be enforced. Students who elect to move off-campus without prior written approval from the Office of Residence Life or who notify the College after classes begin that they will not be living on campus will be financially liable for the full amount of the semester’s housing fee.
Students and parents must remember that it is the College’s goal to be at 100% occupancy. The College budget is built, in part, on having a certain number of students living on-campus throughout the academic year. The College has financial obligations that must be met (for example, payment to contractors, salaries, equipment purchases), and must therefore hold students liable for their financial responsibilities. At the same time, there are occasional extenuating circumstances, beyond a student’s control, that may have an impact on his/her ability to live on campus.
The following items are prohibited in the residence halls, suites, apartments, and townhouses. This list is not all-inclusive. The Office of Residence Life reserves the right to prohibit items and practices which may not appear on the list but which are deemed hazardous or unsanitary.
- Firearms or weapons of any kind—including guns, BB guns, air pistols, bows and arrows, and knives with a blade of 3″ or longer except for kitchen use in the townhouses and apartments
- Explosives or fireworks of any kind
- Volatile liquids including, but not limited to, propane gas fuel, paint, paint thinner, and turpentine
- Non-UL-approved multi-outlet plugs
- Beer kegs and “party balls”
- Gasoline motors, including motorcycles and mopeds
- Open burning elements, including cigarettes, pipes, candles, and incense
- Waterbeds, hot tubs (including homemade tubs), and saunas
- Electric heaters
- Gas grills
- Air conditioner (without prior written permission from Health Services and Residence Life)
- Flammable or non-UL-approved decorations, including live Christmas trees
- Unsanitary items, including dead animals
- Major weight-lifting equipment
- Illegal drugs and drug paraphernalia
- Objects placed on window ledges or dangerously hung from windows
- Appliances which exceed the rated outlet capacity of 110V, 15 amp, or are considered fire hazards including, but not limited to, the following: crock pots, hotplates, toaster ovens, electric frying pans, toasters, immersible heating coils, microwave ovens, and halogen lamps
Quiet Hours (Noise in and Around the Living Area)
Residence Hall Opening and Closing Times
Opening and closing dates and times for room occupancy are specified on the College calendar and must be observed. Therefore, students may not check into their residence hall rooms early nor will they be allowed to deliver personal property to their rooms before the residence halls and townhouses officially open. Residence halls are closed during vacations. All students must leave by the appointed time. If transportation problems arise, students must make other arrangements. Students who remain in their residence without prior permission to stay after closing will be fined $25 for the first 15 minutes, and $15 for every 15 minutes thereafter. Students must check out of their residence hall or townhouse in the presence of a staff member following established check-out guidelines. Failure to do so will result in a $50 improper check-out fine and loss of the right to appeal damage charges. Additional fines will be assessed for students not complying with dates and times for closings.
Students may not stay in any residence hall during the period of a vacation or break. Suite, apartment, and townhouse residents may remain in their units during Thanksgiving vacation and Spring Break. When necessary, residence hall students may stay in a suite, apartment or townhouse space, provided all residents of a unit are in agreement. If this option is necessary, students are responsible for identifying and making the appropriate arrangements and following posted procedures concerning campus living during a break. Only those students who are approved through the Office of Residence Life to remain on campus during a break may do so. The registration and approval process during the past few years has decreased undesirable activity on campus, thus reducing incidents such as break-ins and theft. Residents will be billed for electricity during break periods. The residence facilities will close and reopen during the 2012 – 2013 academic year as listed below:
- Close Tuesday, November 20 at 10:00 p.m. Reopen Sunday, November 25 at 2:00 p.m.
- Close Friday, December 14 at noon. Reopen Sunday, January 13 at 10:00 a.m.
- Close Friday, March 8 at 5:00 p.m. Reopen Sunday, March 17 at 2:00 p.m.
End-of-year closing schedule for 2013:
- Tuesday, May 7 at 5:00 p.m. for non-graduating students
- Saturday, May 11 at 3:00 p.m. for graduating residence hall and suite residents
- Saturday, May 11 at 5:00 p.m. for graduating townhouse and apartment residents
St. Mary’s has developed a visitation policy that provides for a degree of flexibility to accommodate varying lifestyles. Because some students prefer a restricted visitation policy and others desire a greater degree of choice in entertaining guests in their rooms, roommates must determine their own limitations. Our visitation policy is based on our confidence in the ability and inclination of SMCM students to make mature decisions about their social behavior. We also believe that no individual has the right to infringe upon another’s freedom, privacy, happiness, and safety, and that students are willing to accept both the rights and responsibilities of such a policy.
Open visitation hours are not to be construed as permission for students or guests to sleep overnight in another’s room or to conduct themselves in such a way as to invade a roommate’s privacy and full use of the room. Should such behavior come to the attention of Residence Life staff, disciplinary action may be taken.
Should visitation arrangements lead to problems between roommates, they should feel free, after trying to resolve the problem privately, to ask the Residence Life staff to assist. The staff in turn will participate in the resolution of the problem, which might include, among other things, a change in housing assignments.
Residents are responsible for escorting guests within the building. The College recommends that male guests use the bathrooms on a male wing and female guests use the bathrooms on a female wing. Some buildings have bathrooms for guest use in the lobby.
Student Conduct ensures the timely, fair, and consistent adjudication of alleged violations of the College’s Student Conduct Code while adhering to the tenets of due process and confidentiality. The conduct system strives to provide learning opportunities and experiences for students found responsible for conduct detrimental to themselves, their peers, and the College community, as well as protect each student’s relevant rights. The campus conduct process is educational, with an emphasis on personal responsibility and commitment to community standards. It is the philosophy of this College, as reflected in the conduct process, that inappropriate behavior be redirected rather than punished. Serious and ongoing violations of the College’s student code of conduct, however, may result in suspension or expulsion from the College and/or criminal prosecution.
Each St. Mary’s student is entrusted with the responsibility of upholding community standards, as set forth in the Code, as well as county, state, and federal laws.
In compliance with the Student Right-to-Know and Campus Security Act, Public Law 101-542, St. Mary’s College of Maryland will make available, upon request, a report on graduation rates and a campus security report. Please contact the Office of Institutional Research or Public Safety. In addition, in compliance with the Federal Education Rights to Privacy Act of 1994 (FERPA), staff members cannot discuss conduct cases with parents unless the student submits prior written consent.
Students, as members of the College community, have certain rights. These rights shall include the freedom to pursue educational goals, the freedom of expression and inquiry, the right to privacy and confidentiality of records, and the right to due process as established in the Code of Student Conduct. These rights are subject to the limitations of the Code.
We expect our students to uphold certain responsibilities:
- The responsibility for acting in such a manner as to ensure that other students enjoy the rights mentioned above.
- The responsibility for respecting and complying with College rules and regulations.
- The responsibility for respecting and complying with local, state, and federal law.
- The responsibility for acting in a manner which promotes an atmosphere of learning and free expression.
- The responsibility to respect the human rights, dignity, and worth of every individual in the College community.
- To The Point, the student handbook, is published online each year. Students are required to abide by the policies and procedures outlined in the handbook, on the Housing Contract, Resident Student Handbook, and as noted on the College’s Web site. For more information about the student conduct process, please visit the student conduct website.
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, commonly called the Buckley Amendment, is a federal law designed to protect the privacy of education records, to establish the right of students to inspect and review their education records, and to provide guidelines for the correction of inaccurate and misleading data through information and formal hearings. Information on the Buckley Amendment can be found online: http://www.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/ferpa/index.htmlIn accordance with FERPA, disclosure of student information, including financial and academic, is restricted. Release of information other than “directory information” to anyone other than the student requires a written consent from the student.
The College may release “directory information” without prior written consent from the student. St. Mary’s College considers the following to be directory information:
- name, phone number, e-mail address;
- date and place of birth;
- year in college;
- parents’ names and addresses;
- prior educational institutions attended;
- dates of college attendance;
- scholarships and awards received;
- weight and height of members of athletic teams;
- participation in officially recognized activities and sports.
We understand that you are concerned with your student’s academic progress. If your student is willing, he/she may sign a waiver giving specific permission for you to view confidential information, including grades. However, it is not the College’s policy to send grade reports to parents. The best way to find out about your student’s grades is still to ask him/her.
If you have academic concerns for your student, please don’t hesitate to contact the Office of Academic Services at 240-895-4388. However, please understand that the amount of information we are able to discuss without written student consent is limited.