Chapter 6: Policies and Procedures
The material in this section covers policies and procedures for which all students are responsible. As a student at St. John's University, you are expected to know and abide by the University's regulations
- Student Conduct Process and Code of Conduct
- Notice of Non-Discrimination, Equal Opportunity
- Academic Regulations/Program Requirements
- Academic Standing
- Withdrawal from Courses
- Pass/Fail Option
- Graduating with Honors
- Academic Fairness
- Student Files (FERPA)
- Financial Payments
- Medical Withdrawal
- Parking and Library Fines
- Bias and Hate Crime: Information and Guidelines
- Computer and Network Use Policy
- Demonstration Policy and Procedures
- Services for Students with Disabilities
- Policy Against Discrimination and Sexual Harassment and Related Complaint Procedures
- Drug and Alcohol Policy
- Legal Sanctions
- Greek Letter Organization Membership Eligibility
- HIV/AIDS Policy
- Leave of Absence
- Public Safety
- Residence Hall Policies and Procedures
- Student Activities: Policies and Procedures
Student Conduct Process and Code of Conduct
Please visit Student Conduct Process and Code of Conduct.
The Board of Trustees at the May 14, 2014, meeting approved these policies. Policies were effective immediately following this Board meeting. Policies are reviewed annually by the Board and therefore are subject to future revision.
Notice of Non-Discrimination, Equal Opportunity
St. John’s University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex (including sexual harassment and sexual violence), sexual orientation, disability, religion, age, status in the uniformed services of the United States (including veteran status), marital status, status as a victim of domestic violence, citizenship status, genetic predisposition or carrier status in its programs and activities as required by Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and the Amendments Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title VI or Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and other applicable statutes and University policies.
The following person has been designated to handle student inquiries regarding the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Amendments Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and related statutes and regulations: Dorothy Schmitt, Associate Director of the Counseling Center, Marillac Hall, Room 130, 8000 Utopia Parkway, Queens, NY 11439, email@example.com, 718-990-1482.
Examples of the types of discrimination that are covered under Title IX include sexual harassment and sexual violence, the failure to provide equal opportunity in athletics, and discrimination based on pregnancy. If you feel you have been discriminated against, you may contact the following persons designated to respond to inquiries regarding Title IX non-discrimination policies and compliance:
- Title IX Coordinator for overall campus compliance: Yael Wepman, Director of Employee Relations and Compliance, 8000 Utopia Parkway, Queens, NY 11439, firstname.lastname@example.org, 718-990-2660
- Title IX Deputy Coordinator for the Division of Student Affairs: Jackie Lochrie, Associate Dean for Student Services, 8000 Utopia Parkway, Queens, NY 11439, email@example.com, 718-990-6568
- Title IX Deputy Coordinator for Athletics: Kathleen F. Meehan, Associate Vice President for Athletics/Senior Women’s Associate, 8000 Utopia Parkway, Queens, NY 11439, firstname.lastname@example.org, 718-990-6173.
Inquiries concerning the application of anti-discrimination laws may be referred to the Title IX coordinators or to the Office for Civil Rights, United States Department of Education. For more information on notice of non-discrimination, you may visit https://wdcrobcolp01.ed.gov/CFAPPS/OCR/contactus.cfm for the address and phone number of the United States Department of Education office that serves your area; or call 1 800-421-3481.
In addition, all students should be familiar with the following policies, guidelines, and procedures:
Academic Regulations/Program Requirements
A student is in good academic standing if he or she is enrolled as a matriculated student in a program of study leading to a degree, diploma or certificate and is making satisfactory progress toward the completion of the program of study. Satisfactory progress is divided into two categories:
All students who maintain at least a 2.0 cumulative quality-point index.
All students whose cumulative quality-point index is below 2.0 but who, in the judgment of the Dean of the school in which the students are enrolled, are considered to be making acceptable progress toward a 2.0 cumulative quality-point index and are permitted to continue on a matriculated basis.
Students in the master's and professional diploma programs must maintain a 3.0 quality point average to continue in graduate work. Students who fail to maintain this average, either in a particular semester or in their overall academic record, are subject to having their academic program terminated. Students in the doctoral program are required to receive at least a B grade in all courses: when a student receives a grade of less than a B, his or her program will automatically become subject to review by the appropriate department, interdepartmental graduate committee and the Office of the Dean.
Withdrawal from Courses
Students wishing to withdraw from any course must receive written permission from their academic dean that states the course, the date, the professor teaching the course and the reason for withdrawal. Students wishing to withdraw from a science laboratory course must personally check out of all laboratories concerned and receive a clearance from the stockroom. Withdrawal without adhering to these regulations will result in a failure for the course.
A student may withdraw from a course anytime prior to the final five weeks of the semester. After that time a student may not officially withdraw from any course.
The date of withdrawal will be considered the date on which the "Change of Status" form is signed by the dean. A notation of WD means that the student withdrew from a course within the period in the academic calendar. The notation of AB indicates that the student did not take a final examination at its scheduled time. If the student does not take the make-up examination on the day scheduled, the AB will be changed to a grade of F.Students withdrawing from all courses should complete the proper withdrawal forms in the office of the appropriate dean. Failure to do so may jeopardize any subsequent application for readmission to the University.
Religious Observance Law
St. John's University makes accommodations for its students who are absent because of their religious beliefs. Each student who is absent from school because of his or her religious beliefs will be given an equivalent opportunity to register for classes or make up any examination, study or work requirements which he or she may have missed because of such absence on any particular day or days. No fees of any kind shall be charged for making such accommodations.
Each of the University's undergraduate schools has its own attendance regulations, and students are subject to the regulations of their school. In addition, when students are enrolled in courses in a school other than their own, they are held responsible for that school's attendance regulations as well as for their own. Specific attendance regulations for each school are detailed in the Undergraduate Bulletin and Graduate Bulletin.
Each of the University's undergraduate divisions has its own pass/fail option. Specific pass/fail options for each school are detailed in the Undergraduate Bulletin and Graduate Bulletin.
Graduating with Honors
For graduation with honors, a student must have fulfilled the obligation of conducting himself or herself in a manner compatible with the University's function as a Catholic institution of higher education and must have obtained the following point indexes for all courses taken:
- Summa Cum Laude: 3.85
- Magna Cum Laude: 3.70
- Cum Laude: 3.50
Students who transfer to St. John's University must complete at St. John's a minimum of one-half of the total number of credits required for their degree in order to be considered for honors at graduation. Grades of all courses taken by students, including internal and external transfer students, will be calculated in the index of honors at graduation. However, in no case shall the honor conferred be higher than that which would have been earned solely on the computation of the St. John's courses and grades.
The Academic Fairness Procedure is the procedure to be used by students to resolve certain types of complaints of an academic nature. After action by the University Senate on Apr. 28, 1978, the resolution which follows was adopted by the Board of Trustees on May 17, 1978.
There shall be a formalized academic fairness procedure established by the Faculty Council of each school or college of the University. Before a student can utilize the formalized academic fairness procedure, the student must first have attempted to resolve the complaint informally with the faculty member involved and then, if necessary, in schools or colleges with departments or divisions, with the chair of the department or division, and then, if necessary, with the Dean. The sole purpose of the academic fairness procedure is to redress student academic grievances relative to academic matters. The academic fairness procedure shall seek both: To assure an objective, impartial hearing of alleged student academic grievances and a timely response thereto; To assure that the good name and reputation of the faculty member are not unjustly or frivolously impugned. In any hearing of alleged grievances, the burden of proof shall be on the student lodging the complaint. The academic fairness procedure shall provide an appropriate academic remedy of any injustice judged to have been done to the student lodging the complaint. Each Faculty Council has adopted a formalized academic fairness procedure. For further details, students should contact their respective college office.
Student Files (FERPA)
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their educational records. They are:
- The right to inspect and review the student's educational records within 45 days of the day the University receives a request for access.
Students should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department or other appropriate official, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The University official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the University official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
- The right to request the amendment of the student's educational records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading.
Students may ask the University to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the University official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the University decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the University will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
- The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student's educational records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosures without consent. One exception which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an educational record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
- The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:
- Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20202-4605
- Family Policy Compliance Office
The Act provides that "Directory Information" may be released to any person without the written consent of the student, unless the student has requested that such information not be disclosed.
"Directory Information" of St. John's University is on file in the registrar's office and includes a student's name, address, e-mail address, telephone number, date and place of birth, major field of study, dates of attendance, degrees, honors and awards received, participation in officially recognized activities and the most recent educational institution attended. Although the directory in which this information is contained is generally not circulated outside of the University, requests for such information are frequently received.
Students who do not want any or all of the information designated as "Directory Information" to be disclosed must notify the registrar's office in writing on or before Oct. 1 of each academic year.
In addition to the foregoing information, participation in intercollegiate sports by student-athletes and their height and weight are considered "Directory Information." Student-athletes who do not want any or all of this information to be disclosed must advise the Director of Athletics in writing on or before October 1 of each academic year.
Recently, FERPA was amended to indicate that an institution does not violate FERPA if it informs the parents or guardian of a student who is under the age of 21, that the institution has determined that the student has committed a disciplinary violation with respect to the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance, even if the violation is in the student's educational record. The amendment does not impose any affirmative obligation on the institution to inform parents of the disciplinary violation; rather it specifically states that such action does not violate FERPA or the Higher Education Act.
All fees and the entire tuition for each semester are due and payable in full before registration can be completed and an official class schedule/receipt will be issued. Any student who has not made sufficient payment arrangements for the semester or confirmed their attendance based on full aid will be subject to have their registrations removed by the University. Delinquent accounts may be referred to a third party for collection which will result in the addition of collection costs to the account balance. All payments may be made by check or money order payable to St. John's University or by credit card (Visa, American Express, Master Card, or Discover).
Please ensure that your Student ID number is written on all checks to the University. The University staff will write the student ID number on checks where a student has not done so already.
For those students and parents of students who wish to make tuition payments on a monthly basis, St. John's University makes available various payment plans. Information regarding this plan can be obtained from the Office of Student Financial Services or you may view the options online through the UIS “View Term Bill” page.
Students whose accounts are in arrears will not be permitted to register for a subsequent semester, issued a diploma, grades or a transcript record. All room and board charges must be paid in full before admittance to the residence halls. All past due balances are charged interest at the rate of 1% per month.
All outstanding tuition account balances are educational loans extended with the express understanding that future repayment shall be made to the University. Pursuant to federal bankruptcy law and regulations, such tuition expenses are educational loans that are not automatically discharged in bankruptcy.
Students holding full tuition scholarships are required to pay the general fee and any other fees required for the courses they are taking before an official class schedule/receipt will be issued.
The University reserves the right to change the schedule of tuition and fees when necessary, but every effort is made to maintain them at the lowest possible level. Actual cost figures may be found in the Undergraduate Bulletin and Graduate Bulletin.
The University provides a petition process for Health Related Leave of Absence (HRLOA) or academic withdrawal due to medical reasons which supersedes the term tuition cancellation policy if approved. If an HRLOA is approved, the student will be credited 100% of tuition only, fees are non-negotiable. Room and Board charges do not qualify under this policy. Please see the withdrawal policies for Residence Life concerning these circumstances.
In order to be considered for a medical withdrawal, the following is the process for an academic Health Related Leave of Absence (HRLOA). The request must be submitted before the end of the semester for which the student is requesting a medical withdrawal.
- The student must discuss the medical withdrawal with the academic Dean first and provide all supporting documentation.
- The academic Dean will forward all supporting documentation to Dr. Robert Tringone, Associate Director for Clinical Services, for review. Dr. Tringone will determine if an academic Health Related Leave of Absence (HRLOA) is recommended.
- The academic Health Related Leave of Absence (HRLOA) decision is forwarded to the Academic Dean for approval.
- If a Medical HRLOA is approved by both the Associate Director for Clinical Services and the academic Dean, the student will be granted an academic Health Related Leave of Absence.
- Based on the academic HRLOA, the University will approve a 100% credit of tuition only. A calculation on any financial aid received along with the tuition credit will be performed by Student Financial Services in order to determine the exact amount, if any, refund to the student.
Parking and Library Fines
Please see Office of the Registrar.
Bias and Hate Crime: Information and Guidelines
Please see Bias and Hate Crime: Information and Guidelines (PDF).
Computer and Network Use Policy
Please see Office of Information Technology's Computer and Network Use Policy.
Demonstration Policy and Procedures
St. John's University supports the right of all members of the University community (viz., persons who are students, faculty, staff or administrators of the University) as individuals or as organizations to examine, to discuss and to advocate any issue and to express any opinion, both publicly and privately, within constitutionally valid limitations, set by local, state or federal law. In particular, all substantive issues relating to University policy are to be considered open to full discussion and debate by the University community, whether through open forum or some other procedure. Members of the University community, whether individuals or campus organizations, are free to support causes by orderly means. A rational and orderly examination of issues (whether local, national, or international) is fundamental to the academic process and is to be encouraged rather than repressed.
To this end members of the University community are permitted to conduct orderly demonstrations which do not disrupt the educational process taking place at the University or interfere with the rights of any member of the University community.
The broadest possible exercise of freedom can be carried out only in conjunction with responsibility. Members of the University community and all other persons on University property assume the obligation to conduct themselves in a manner compatible with the University's function as an educational institution.
To this end, the following acts and/or conduct are prohibited:
- Persons who are NOT members of the University community are not permitted to demonstrate.
- Conducting a demonstration at a time or place other than the time and place previously approved by the President or his designee, or in the case of students, the Chief Student Affairs Officer.
- Obstruction or disruption of teaching, research, administration, disciplinary procedures, or other University activities on University owned or controlled property, including its grounds, campus, buildings, and/or other facilities (hereinafter collectively referred to as University property.)
- Physical abuse of any person on University property or at University sponsored or supervised functions or conduct which threatens or endangers the health or safety of any such person.
- Theft or damage to property of the University or of a member of the University or campus visitor.
- Unauthorized entry to or use of University property.
- Disorderly conduct or lewd, indecent, or obscene conduct or expression on University property or at University sponsored or supervised functions.
- Failure to comply with directives of University officials acting in the performance of their duties.
- Any other violations of civil law and/or University regulations.
- In addition to the foregoing specific prohibitions, which are not exclusive, members of the University community and other persons on the property of the University shall conduct themselves at all times in a manner which does not disrupt the University community or infringe upon the rights of others, and faculty and non-faculty staff shall conduct themselves in a manner not inconsistent with the duties and responsibilities of their positions.
The President or his designee is directed to protect the rights of all members of the University community by maintaining order and enforcing the provisions referred to above.
Violations of any of the foregoing prohibitions shall be dealt with as follows:
- In the case of any individual who is not a member or the University community: The authority of such individual to remain on University property will immediately be revoked; and if the individual thereafter refuses to leave University property, necessary and appropriate action will be taken to eject such person therefrom.
- In the case of a student: The student shall be requested to cease and desist from such prohibited conduct and, if he/she fails to do so, necessary and appropriate action will be taken to eject such student from the University property. In addition, disciplinary proceedings shall be commenced against such student, pursuant to the provisions of the Student Handbook. In accordance with these provisions, the penalties of suspension, expulsion, or other appropriate discipline may be invoked against the student.
- In the case of a faculty member: The faculty member shall be requested to cease and desist from such prohibited conduct; and if he/she fails to do so, necessary and appropriate action will be taken to eject such faculty member from the University property. In addition, charges shall be brought against such faculty member in accordance with the procedures set forth in the Statutes of the University, as amended. In accordance with those provisions, the penalties of suspension, removal from the faculty or other appropriate discipline may be invoked against the faculty member.
- In the case of a non-faculty staff member or administrator: The staff member or administrator shall be requested to cease and desist from such prohibited conduct; and if he/she fails to do so, necessary and appropriate action will be taken to eject such staff member from University property. In addition:
- In the case of a non-academic professional staff member or administrator, disciplinary action shall be taken against such staff member or administrator by the President or his designee subject to review by the Board of Trustees or a committee thereof;
- In the case of any other staff member, disciplinary action shall be taken against such staff member by appropriate representatives of the University, subject to the procedures in the Handbook for Staff Personnel.
- As a result of such disciplinary action, any staff member or administrator may be suspended, discharged or otherwise disciplined.
In addition to the foregoing, the University reaffirms all of its rights to utilize and seek the aid of public authorities and such judicial, civil and criminal process and proceedings as may, in the discretion of the University, be necessary or appropriate.
Approved by the University Senate, May 23, 1969
Adopted by Board of Trustees, June 4, 1969
Filed with the New York State Department of Education, July 1969
Services for Students with Disabilities
The Office of Disability Services coordinates equal opportunities for students with disabilities. These services are designed to ensure, for all students, full participation in programs and activities offered throughout the University. The aim of these services is to improve the quality of the academic, social, and personal lives of the disabled members of our community. All documentation will be kept confidential in accordance with legal requirements.
Services for students with a documented disability are available through the Office of Disability Services. All documentation is kept confidential and should be submitted directly to the Disability Services. Students (not their parents) requesting accommodations should identify their needs as early as possible. All information regarding the student’s accommodations is provided to the student. Types of accommodations provided are, but not limited to:
- Extended test time (time plus one-half, unless otherwise documented)
- Sign language interpretation
- Readers for exams
- Scribes for exams
- Assistance with course or program accessibility
- Note taking assistance (NCR paper available upon request)
- Photocopy enlargement of materials
- Separate testing room under a proctor's supervision
Guidelines Determining Eligibility for Services
St. John's University students requesting accommodations for a disability must present documentation of the disability and present functional limitation for verification of eligibility.
The evaluation must have been completed by a qualified, certified and/or licensed professional (physician, health care provider, psychologist/psychiatrist) who has experience with an adolescent and adult population. The professional's credentials must appear on the documentation.
The evaluator must include, in the test report, evidence that instruments selected are reliable and valid for use with an adolescent or adult. Documentation of impairment alone may not be sufficient to require that the student be provided a reasonable accommodation. It must be demonstrated that the impairment rises to the level of a disability according to the Americans with Disabilities Act. For example, the impairment must substantially limit or restrict a major life activity (e.g. learning, reading, concentrating, thinking.) The documentation must provide information to support the need for all accommodations requested..
Disability Services makes an individual assessment and the request for the accommodation will be determined. When necessary, specific academic units will be consulted regarding the accommodation requested. If the presented documentation is sufficient the student will meet regarding the appropriate accommodations at St. John's University. The additional documentation may be required to support that provided by the student.
Temporary accommodations are considered.
A student having dissatisfaction with the decision for accommodation granted has the right to appeal the decision in accordance with the University's Policy Against Discrimination and Harassment and Related Complaint Procedures in the Employee Handbook under Rights and Responsibilities. All members of the University community may use this procedure.
The Disability Services administrator may be contacted regarding specific documentation required or for explanation of this policy.
Handicapped parking spaces are limited and, pursuant to law, only individuals with appropriately issued handicapped permits can park in these locations. Any member of the University community with a disability requesting permission to park in a handicapped parking areas, must apply to the appropriate municipal authority to secure a New York State handicapped parking permit. A parking zone identified with a sign bearing the international disability symbol is restricted at all times for use by vehicles bearing both (1) a valid St. John's parking permit and (2) New York State-issued handicapped parking permit.
Temporary Handicapped Permits
St. John’s strongly supports the provision of disability parking spaces at a reasonable proximity to campus buildings for people with a temporary disability. University members can obtain a temporary handicapped parking permit from Public Safety. These disabled parking privileges will be granted only after submission of medical documents or doctor’s note which indicates that the applicant has established physical limitations. In addition, a valid photo ID is required when visiting the office. Public Safety will not accept any substitute forms or letters.
Emergency Response Procedures
In the event of an emergency, all students, including those with disabilities should follow the directions given by Public Safety regarding exiting buildings and gathering at a central location.
Students with physical disabilities (that have self-identified) will be assigned to classrooms no higher than the second floor of any academic building.
Students with physical disabilities should proceed out of the classroom and into the hallway to the closest exit that is not affected by the emergency. Students on a second floor will need to wait for assistance in getting down the staircase as the elevators are not an option in the event of certain emergencies. Tell others who are evacuating the building to inform Public Safety of your location and your need for assistance. Be sure to program Public Safety’s phone number into your cell phone so it is readily available in the event of an emergency.
- Queens Public Safety: 718-990-6281
- Staten Island Public Safety: 718-390-4487
- Manhattan Public Safety: 212-277-5155
lease make yourself aware of the exits in your buildings and let either the Dean of Students or the Associate Dean for Student Services know if you have any questions or concerns regarding how you will evacuate a building during an emergency.
Individuals experiencing challenges accessing any University area, i.e. building, sidewalk, classroom, meeting room, restroom, etc, should contact Public Safety for assistance.
- Queens Public Safety: 718-990-6281
- Staten Island Public Safety: 718-390-4487
- Manhattan Public Safety: 212-277-5155
For more information, please contact:
Queens and Manhattan Campuses:
Dorothy Schmitt, LMHC
Coordinater of Services for Students with Disabilities
Office of Disability Services
Marillac Hall Room 134
Staten Island Campus:
Erin Ryan, Ph.D.
Associate Director, Center for Counseling and Consultation
Staten Island , NY 10301
Policy Against Discrimination and Sexual Harassment and Related Complaint Procedures
Please see the St. John's University Employee Handbook, under Rights and Responsibilities, for the complete Policy Against Discrimination and Harassment and Related Complaint Procedures; all members of the University community may use this procedure.
For the purpose of this policy, the University Community includes, but is not limited to, all students, faculty, administrators, staff (including student workers), alumni, interns, members of the Board of Trustees, and members of University-sponsored advisory committees. Visitors to the University, vendors and service-providers also may be subject to this policy.
Drug and Alcohol Policy
- It is the University's policy to prohibit the unlawful distribution, dispensing, possession or use of illicit drugs or alcohol on the St. John's University campus.
- The University will take into consideration, when determining sanctions, the case of a student who is a drug user or who abuses alcohol as long as he or she is willing to undergo medical treatment in a sincere attempt toward rehabilitation. In the case of any student who is not willing to undergo such treatment, the University reserves the right to take investigatory and disciplinary action up to and including dismissal.
- The University will not penalize any student or applicant for admission who has been in the past, but no longer is, a drug user.
Please see the Drug-Free Campus Guidelines (PDF).
Federal law makes it a criminal offense to manufacture, distribute, or dispense, or possess with intent to manufacture, distribute, or dispense, or simply possess a controlled substance. The New York Penal Law makes it a criminal offense to possess, possess with intent to sell, or actually sell various drugs. The drugs to which this law applies include marijuana.
The possible sanctions for violation of federal and state and local law involving controlled substances and drugs depend upon the particular offense violated. The various offenses are premised on factors which include the type and quantity of drugs involved. Depending upon the particular circumstances involved, violations of said law could result in sanctions ranging from a monetary fine to life imprisonment.
A person need not be in actual physical possession of a controlled substance to be guilty of a crime. The unlawful presence of a controlled substance in an automobile is presumptive evidence of knowing possession of each passenger, unless the substance is concealed on the person of one of these occupants. Similarly, the presence of certain substances, including marijuana, in open view in a room under circumstances demonstrating an intent to prepare the substance for sale is presumptive evidence of knowing possession of anyone in close proximity.
New York law also prohibits the misuse of alcohol. Alcohol may not be sold, delivered, or given away to anyone under 21 years of age, nor may someone under the age of 21 present false evidence of age to purchase alcohol. A fine of up to $25 or imprisonment for up to five days can be imposed for consuming an alcoholic beverage in a public place or for public possession of an open container of an alcoholic beverage with intent to consume. Operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, or impaired by the use of drugs, is a crime for which a sentence of up to one year in prison can be imposed.
Excessive, abusive, illegal and /or repetitive use of alcohol and/ or drugs is inconsistent with the maintenance of an educational environment. Such behavior threatens the well-being of persons and property and tends to diminish students' prospects for personal and intellectual development and academic success. When student's under the age of 21 are found to have committed serious or repetitive violations of University policies related to the possession, use, or distribution of alcohol and/or drugs, the Dean of Students or his/her designee has the authority to determine when and by what means to notify parents or guardians. Whenever possible, students will be informed that parental notification is planed in advance of their parents receiving the notice. The Dean of Student Life will follow these guidelines in determining whether or not to notify parents.
Notification of parents is indicated when:
- The violation involves harm or threat of harm to person or property.
- The violation involves an arrest in which the student was taken into custody.
- The student requires hospitalization as a result of alcohol consumption or drugs.
- The violation results in or could result in the students being suspended from the University and or/ dismissal from the residence halls.
- The student has shown patterns of violence even if they are minor. Two or more violations associated with drugs or alcohol use would be reasonable cause for notification.
St. John's University Alcohol and Other Drug program utilizes evidenced-based prevention strategies focusing on early prevention with our first year students during orientation, a required pre-matriculation online course, (AlcoholEdu), classroom transition labs (Freshmen Experience Workshops) and a multimedia social norms campaign (www.sober24-7.com). Parents also are engaged in our prevention strategies during orientation as well as follow up communication the parent connection newsletter.
Our active peer education program facilitates late-night alcohol-free events, mandated prevention initiatives required by Greeks, Athletes and campus leaders and DCTC (Don’t Cancel that Class) workshops.
BASICS (Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students) and CHOICES (Conscious Healthy Options in College Environments) programs are designed for students who need additional guidance in the decision making process around using alcohol and other drugs addressing expectancies, reasons for use and healthy options.
The Alcohol and Other Drug policies on campus are reviewed biannually as part of the Biennial Review process, Department of Education, Part 86.
Greek Letter Organization Membership Eligibility
Fraternities and Sororities
Eligibility for consideration for fraternity/sorority membership is defined as:
- A student is eligible to participate in recruitment activities if they are a full-time undergraduate student (minimum of 12 credits) and in good academic standing.
- First-semester freshmen are not permitted to participate in the New Member Education Program.
- Upperclassmen and transfer students are eligible to join a Greek organization if they are registered as a full-time student (minimum of 12 credits) and have a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.25.
For more information, please contact:
Director of Campus Life
Staten Island Campus:
Associate Director of Student Life and Residence Life
Campus Center, Room B-11
New Member Procedures
In order to assist the Greek Letter Organizations, to improve the quality of their new member/intake programs, and to insure compliance with New York State Law, the Department of Student Life - both campuses - has established guidelines for new member education/intake programs. Any organizations which have new member education/intake programs are required to contact the appropriate office on their campus prior to the new member education/intake education programs and are required to follow the guidelines as outlined by the Department of Student Life. Any questions regarding new member education or hazing should also be directed to these offices on the student's respective campus.
Whereas the rules and regulations of the University have, for numerous years, prohibited various activities commonly referred to as 'hazing'; and
Whereas the State of New York has enacted a law which required the University to file with the Regents and the Commissioner of Education its rules and regulations relating to the subject of 'hazing';
Now be it Hereby Resolved that the following Rules and Regulations Regarding Hazing are hereby adopted by the Board of Trustees and that the same be filed with the Regents and the Commissioner of Education and be disseminated among the University community.
St. John's University, New York, recognizes that membership in a fraternity/sorority or other campus organization (hereinafter collectively referred to as an 'organization') can be a meaningful experience in conjunction with other aspects of the educational process. Unfortunately, however, membership or prospective membership in an organization is sometimes accompanied by a wrongful activity commonly known as 'hazing'.
Hazing is both a violation of the Penal Law and other laws of the State of New York as well as the general regulations of the University. Accordingly, the University hereby reaffirms its policy that it will not condone hazing of any kind. To this end, any student, faculty member, staff member, visitor, licensee or invitee who engage in hazing may be ejected from the campus and, where appropriate, shall be subject to suspension, expulsion or other disciplinary action. Similarly, the University may take any or all of the following actions against any organization which authorizes hazing or whose members (whether individually or in concert) engage in hazing: rescind permission for the organization to operate on campus property; rescind recognition of the organization; prohibit the organization from using the University's name.
Hazing has been defined as generally including, among other things:
- Any action or situation which recklessly or intentionally endangers mental or physical health or involves the forced consumption of alcohol or drugs for the purpose of initiation into or affiliation with any organization.
- Any other act or series of acts which cause or are likely to cause bodily or physical harm or danger.
- Mistreatment by playing stunts or practicing abusive, humiliating or ridiculous tricks that subject an individual to personal indignity, humiliation or ridicule.
- Harassment by exacting unnecessary, disagreeable or difficult work or harassment by banter, ridicule or criticism. Some examples of such prohibited activities are:
- Abnormal or unusual dress; e.g., extraordinary headwear, costumes, underwear, body painting, etc.
- Performing unusual or abnormal acts; e.g., dancing on tables, standing at attention, standing on windowsills, etc.
- Excessive or unusual physical exercise.
- Verbal harassment or abuse; e.g., yelling, making demeaning remarks, etc.
Violations of any of the foregoing prohibitions shall be dealt with by the University as follows:
- In the case of any individual or group that is not a member of the University community: The authorization for such individual or group to remain on University property will immediately be revoked, and if the individual or group thereafter refuses to leave University property, necessary and appropriate action will be taken to eject such a person or group therefrom. In addition, the University may, in its sole discretion, take all necessary and appropriate action to prevent any such individual or group that engages in hazing from reentering University property.
- In the case of a student: The student shall be requested to cease and desist from such prohibited conduct; and if he/she fails to do so, necessary and appropriate action will be taken to eject such student from University property. In addition, disciplinary proceedings shall be commenced, pursuant to the Procedures for Student Discipline in Nonacademic Affairs, against any student who engages in hazing. In accordance with those procedures, the penalties of suspension, expulsion or other disciplinary action may be imposed.
- In the case of a faculty member: The faculty member shall be requested to cease and desist from such prohibited conduct; and if he/she fails to do so, necessary and appropriate action will be taken to eject such faculty member from University property. In addition, charges shall be brought, in accordance with the Procedures set forth in of the Statutes of the University, against any faculty member who engages in hazing. In accordance with those Procedures, the penalties of suspension, removal from the faculty or other disciplinary action may be imposed against the faculty member.
- In the case of non-faculty staff member or administrator: The staff member or administrator shall be requested to cease and desist from such prohibited conduct; and if he/she fails to do so, necessary and appropriate action shall be taken to eject such staff member or administrator from University property. In addition:
- In the case of a non-academic professional staff member or administrator who engages in hazing, disciplinary action shall be taken by the President or his designee, in accordance with procedures to be established by the President.
- In the case of any other staff member who engages in hazing, disciplinary action shall be taken by appropriate representatives of the University, subject to the grievance procedures set forth in the Handbook for Staff Personnel.
As a result of such disciplinary action, any staff member or administrator may be suspended, discharged or otherwise disciplined.
In the case of an organization: The organization shall be requested to cease and desist from such prohibited conduct; and if the organization fails to do so, necessary and appropriate action will be taken to eject such organization from University property. In addition, charges shall be instituted, pursuant to the Procedures for Student Discipline in Nonacademic Affairs, against any organization which authorizes or engages in hazing. In accordance with those procedures the penalties of temporary or permanent recision of permission for the organization to operate on campus property; temporary or permanent recision of the University's recognition of such organization; and prohibition of the use of the University's name by such organization, may be imposed.
The foregoing Rules and Regulations shall apply equally to individuals and organizations at the School of Law except that the hearing procedures to be followed with regard to students and organizations at the School of Law shall be those set forth in the Grievances Procedure adopted by the Faculty Council of the School of Law. In accordance with those Grievance Procedures, the penalties of suspension, expulsion or other disciplinary action may be imposed upon any student at the School of Law who engages in hazing. In connection with any organization of the School of Law, in addition to the penalties set forth in those Grievances Procedures, the penalties of temporary or permanent recision of permission for the organization to operate on campus property; temporary or permanent recision of the University's recognition of such organization; and prohibition of the use of the University's name by such organization, may be imposed.
Wherever, in the opinion of the President or his designee, the conduct of any individual or organization poses an imminent threat to the physical or emotional safety of himself/herself or to others or to property, the President or his designee may immediately suspend such individual or organization from the campus pending any appropriate hearing and final determination therein.
In addition to the foregoing, the University reaffirms its right to utilize and seek the aid of public authorities and such judicial, civil and criminal process and proceedings as may, in the discretion of the University, be necessary and appropriate. Any penalty imposed by the University shall be in addition to any penalty pursuant to the penal law or any other law to which a violator or organization may be subject.
The foregoing Rules and Regulations shall be deemed to be part of the bylaws of all organizations operating on the University's campuses. Every organization shall annually review its bylaws with all individuals affiliated with such organization.
Adopted by the Board of Trustees on September 22, 1980
Current medical information indicates that students or employees with any form of HIV/AIDS infection do not pose a health risk to other students or employees in an academic setting. Persons with HIV/AIDS are considered as having a disability and the legal rights of these individuals must be protected.
St. John's University will not consider the existence of any form of HIV/AIDS infection in the initial decision for people applying for admission or employment by the institution except as it may affect any individual's ability to meet objective standards as applied to all others.
Students and employees with HIV/AIDS infection will not be denied or restricted access to student unions, theatres, restaurants, snack bars, gymnasiums, swimming pools, saunas, recreational facilities, or other common areas.
Further, Student Health Services and the Center for Counseling and Consultation will provide support services that promote the physical and mental health of persons with HIV infection. If required services are beyond the scope of those provided on campus, individuals will be referred to other health care providers or facilities
If an individual reveals HIV/AIDS status to any member of the University community, this information will be accepted as strictly confidential. No person, group, agency, insurer, employer, or institution will be provided with medical information of any kind, including information relative to HIV/AIDS infection, without the prior written consent of the individual unless otherwise mandated by law.
Leave of Absence
Voluntary Health Related Leave of Absence
St. John's University students may apply for a Voluntary Health Related Leave of Absence (HRLOA). An HRLOA is an agreement regarding a separation between the student and the University for a period of time. HRLOAs are coordinated through the Department of Student Wellness, Division of Student Affairs. HRLOAs are recommended in those instances when a student’s medical and/or mental health condition is judged to significantly impair his or her ability to function successfully or safely as a student. It is expected that a student who is granted an HRLOA will use the time away from the University for treatment and recovery. It should be understood that most students require a reasonable period of time away from St. John’s University, and, in the case of mental health services, a course of clinically recognized and accepted treatment interventions to recover their health sufficiently in order to obtain the requisite clearance from the Health Related Leave Review Committee to pursue reenrollment.
Current policy requires that specific steps be followed in order for a student to both obtain an HRLOA and to return from one. First, the student should initiate the process by informing the Dean of his/her school or college that he/she wishes to take a leave of absence as a result of a medical and/or mental health condition. The Dean’s office will then refer the student to the University’s Health Related Leave Review Committee. The student must provide a written request for an HRLOA to the Committee. The student’s written request must be accompanied by a letter from a licensed health care provider who is familiar with the student’s condition. Acceptable sources would include, but not be limited to, the student’s primary care physician, hospital-based physicians and clinicians, the University’s Counseling Center’s clinical staff, and private licensed clinicians. This letter should indicate dates of evaluation and/or treatment, a clear recommendation from the health care provider that the student cannot continue his/her academic program because of his/her medical and/or mental health condition, and an estimate regarding the time period for an HRLOA. The Committee shall review the documentation and make a recommendation to the Dean of the student’s school or college as to whether the condition warrants an HRLOA. The Dean shall make the final decision regarding whether to approve or deny the HRLOA and then notify the student in writing as to his/her decision. If an HRLOA is approved, the Dean’s office will notify the appropriate University personnel to enact the HRLOA, including the Registrar, Financial Aid, Bursar, and Office of Residence Life, if applicable.
Before Taking a Voluntary Health Related Leave of Absence
It is essential that each student review his or her current health insurance coverage. Students should contact the University Health Plan office (1-800-437-6448) or their parent’s insurance plan (if applicable) for further information as needed. Students who are covered by the St. John’s University Student Health Insurance Plan (www.universityhealthplans.com) when they convert to On Leave status are automatically covered for the remainder of the plan year, and they may be eligible to purchase a one-time, one-year extension of their SHIP insurance if needed. Students who are covered by a parent’s employer plan when they convert to On Leave status may need to apply for continuation of coverage (COBRA) with the parent’s plan. Enrollment in COBRA is time sensitive.
For more information, please see Voluntary Health Related Leave of Absense.
Involuntary Leave of Absence
Reason for Policy:
The University is committed to providing a safe and orderly environment, protecting its community members from the risk of physical harm, and preserving the integrity of its learning environment. In so doing, the University reserves the right to compel an involuntary leave of absence in extraordinary circumstances for any student whose behavior includes engaging in or a likelihood of engaging in behavior that either poses a danger of harm to self or others, or disrupts the learning environment of others.
Involuntary Leave of Absence is defined as the involuntary separation of a student from the University and its facilities for no less than one calendar year that is prescribed by the Vice President for Student Affairs.
Purview of this Policy:
This policy is meant to be invoked only after extensive involvement with a student – in an effort to effect voluntary leave and after alternative actions have been explored. An Involuntary Leave of Absence may be imposed if a student is unwilling or unable to request a voluntary leave of absence, and such a leave may be necessary to protect the safety of that student and/or others, or the integrity of the University’s learning environment. This would include such situations as unresolved, ongoing, and serious suicidal threats, self-starvation of a life-threatening nature, and serious threats of harm to others.
This policy and these procedures do not take the place of disciplinary actions that are in response to violations of the Judicial Code of Conduct, nor do they preclude the removal or dismissal of students from the University or University owned facilities as a result of violations of other University policies or regulations.
Placing a Student on Involuntary Leave of Absence:
When the Vice President for Student Affairs, or a designee, learns of a student's disconcerting behavior, and deems it appropriate, s/he will initiate the following procedures: The Vice-President for Student Affairs may be notified of the behavior by any source on campus such as a College Dean, Faculty upon recommendation of College Dean, Public Safety, Residence Life, Dean of Students, or Health or Counseling Services.
- Upon notification and as needed thereafter, the Vice President for Student Affairs may consult with a cross-functional team of administrators including, a representative of the Dean of the College, Residence Life, Dean of Students, Health or Counseling Services, General Counsel and other administrators as needed, regarding the student’s behavior and appropriate avenues for addressing the behavior.
- The Vice President for Student Affairs, or a designee, will notify the student an Involuntary Leave of Absence is under consideration.
- The Vice President for Student Affairs, or a designee, will discuss with the student the implications of and procedures relating to an Involuntary Leave of Absence. The student will be provided with a copy of this policy. Whenever possible and appropriate, the Vice President for Student Affairs, or a designee, will encourage the student to take a voluntary leave of absence, thereby eliminating the need to complete the process for an involuntary leave.
- When warranted, the Health Related Leave Review Committee shall review the student’s medical records. The Health Related Leave Review Committee may make a recommendation to the Vice President for Student Affairs and will confer with him or her as necessary.
- When consulting with the cross-functional team, the individuals will pay particular attention to the criteria for invoking an involuntary leave, specifically whether the student engages in, or is judged to be likely to engage in, behavior that poses a danger of causing harm to self or others, or disrupts the learning environment.
- Following these consultations, the Vice President for Student Affairs or a designee, will make a final decision regarding the involuntary leave of absence, and shall provide written notice of this decision to the student.
- The Vice President for Student Affairs or a designee will notify the student when the involuntary leave is imposed. Along with notice of this decision, the student will be informed of the steps that must be taken to initiate re-enrollment.
Implications of an Involuntary Leave of Absence:
- Effective Dates of Leave: The Involuntary Leave shall remain in effect for a minimum of one calendar year.
- Campus Visitation: While on Involuntary Leave, the student may visit campus only as authorized in writing by the Vice President for Student Affairs or a designee, for the duration of the leave.
- Notification: The Vice President for Student Affairs or a designee reserves the right to notify a parent, guardian, or other person, if notification is deemed appropriate. In addition, the parent, guardian, or other person may be asked to make arrangements for the safe removal of the student from the university environment.
- Campus Housing: Students who desire campus housing on their return from an Involuntary Leave are responsible for notifying the Residence Life Office of their intention with sufficient advance notice. The University cannot guarantee on-campus housing will be available upon return from leave.
Request for Re-enrollment:
A written request for re-enrollment must be submitted to the Vice President for Student Affairs. The student’s re-enrollment request will be reviewed by the Vice President for Student Affairs or a designee. The University reserves the right to establish that the student meet certain criteria prior to resumption of enrollment. The criteria include, but are not limited to, compelling evidence that the behavior that precipitated the need for the Involuntary Leave has been ameliorated to the degree that it will no longer adversely affect the student’s safety and/or functioning. The criteria and supporting documentation will be identified to the student at the time when the Involuntary Leave is imposed.
Please note that each student in the leave review process is responsible for reading the information provided in the addendum to this policy regarding insurance coverage, financial obligations, and financial aid.
Please see Public Safety.
Residence Hall Policies and Procedures
Please refer to the Residence Life Handbook from your campus for a specific list of policies and procedures:
Student Activities: Policies and Procedures
Registration of Student Groups and Organizations
St. John's University aims to complement the formal knowledge imparted in the classroom with other learning experiences which promote personal development. While stressing academic excellence, the University recognizes the importance of providing facilities, services, programs and staff which help integrate social, cultural, athletic, spiritual and academically-related activities with classroom learning. Involvement in these groups and organizations presents students with the opportunity to take responsibility for shaping the campus environment, for broadening their learning, for gaining leadership and interpersonal skills and for developing a commitment to service.
Students are free to organize and to join associations whose stated purposes are consistent with the University mission and its Catholic character and Vincentian tradition. All student organizations seeking eligibility for University benefits must be registered with the Department of Student Life and with the Student Government of their respective campus and must follow the procedures outlined below.
Students who hold leadership positions in organizations must be enrolled in at least 12 credits and maintain a 2.0 or better grade point average.
Registered groups are expected to conduct their activities in an orderly, responsible and civil manner in order to maintain a community consistent with the mission and goals of the University. Registered groups which depart from these standards and norms will be held accountable.
Although the University recognizes the educational value of student organizations, the registration of a student organization in no way, expressly or implied, indicates that the University endorses or is responsible for the actions, positions or points of view espoused privately or publicly by any such organization.
The University delegates responsibility for the registration of student organizations as follows:
- All undergraduate student organizations seeking eligibility for University benefits are required to be registered with the Student Government of their respective campus as detailed in the bylaws of the Student Government on that campus.
- Graduate and professional school student organizations seeking eligibility for University benefits are required to be registered with the Dean or designee of the particular graduate or professional school on their respective campus. Registration can be withdrawn by action of the appropriate Dean or designee.
Registration and eligibility for University benefits shall neither be withheld nor denied on the basis of race, color, national and/or ethnic origin, religion, age, sex, marital status or disability.
In registering a student organization, the proponents of the student organization must demonstrate to the respective Student Government (in the case of an undergraduate student organization) or the Dean's office of the appropriate graduate or professional school (in the case of a graduate or professional student organization) that the purpose of the organization is consistent with the mission and goals of the University and its Catholic nature.
With respect to registration of student organizations, the President of the University or his designee reserves the right to review, offer guidance and, when necessary, intervene in the decisions of the Student Government or the Dean of the professional or graduate schools if, in the view of the administration, the educational values or mission of the University appear to be undermined. Since the University seeks to encourage the exercise of responsible freedom; however, student representatives should be allowed the greatest possible discretion in making these judgments.
Disputes, challenges, and exceptions to the above outlined registration policy will be resolved between the Chief Student Affairs Officer or designee and the appropriate student government representative(s). In cases in which a mutually satisfactory resolution cannot be achieved, the Executive Vice President will review the points of difference and make the final determination, subject to review by the President of the University.
The registration of a student organization in no way implies that the University endorses positions or points of view espoused privately or publicly by the organization.
Registered student organizations will be reviewed by their respective Student Government, at a minimum, every three years in order to verify the continued compliance of their activities with their constitutions and the consistency of their constitutions with the mission and goals of the University and its Catholic character.
Clarification and interpretations of these guidelines will be provided as needed by the Chief Student Affairs Officer or designee.
Registration and Responsibilities
The student organization must have a constitution which states the purpose and goals of the organization and how these goals are consistent and compatible with the mission and goals of the University. Any changes in an undergraduate student organization's constitution will require review by the respective Student Government as detailed in the bylaws. Any changes in a professional or graduate student organization's constitution will require review by the appropriate Dean or designee.
The student organization must abide by University policies and procedures appropriate to the organization's activities and conduct.
The student organization must agree to comply with the University's nondiscrimination policy in regard to membership.
The student organization must agree that freedom of expression will be exercised in a peaceful, non-disruptive manner and with appropriate consideration and respect for differing points of view.
The members of the student organization should seek the advice and counsel of their respective moderators or Student Life liaison, especially when involved in issues that may be controversial or provocative.
Because registration of a student organization in no way implies that the University necessarily endorses positions or points of view espoused privately or publicly by members of the student organization, the student organization should articulate the fact that the University is not responsible for the actions, positions or points of view espoused privately or publicly by any such organization. The organization should include in all of its agreements and publications, written or otherwise disseminated, a suitable statement setting forth that the University, in no way, expressly or implied, endorses or is responsible for the actions, practices, positions or points of view of any such organization.
In the event that a particular student organization is affiliated with any off-campus organization, the student organization's constitution must reflect such an affiliation.
All related policies and procedures in the Student Handbook apply as indicated.
Rights and Benefits
The organization may use the University name in association with the organization in a manner designated by the University.
The organization may use the University facilities in accordance with the applicable policies for meetings and activities as set by the University.
The organization may solicit membership on campus under the organization's name subject to the policies and procedures established by the University.
The organization may use designated University bulletin boards and posting areas in accordance with the University policies on posting.
The organization has the right to request access to campus services, leadership programs, Student Life liaison and appropriate communication resources on campus.
The organization has the right to request student activity funding from appropriate sources.
The organization shall have the opportunity to sponsor activities on campus including sponsoring guest speakers subject to the criteria established by the University's Speakers' Policy.
Use of Campus Facilities
Students may reserve campus facilities for meetings, events or other activities through the University Center Student Life office (Queens) which works in conjunction with the University Calendar Clearance office or the Department of Student Life (Staten Island).
Permission to place posters in campus buildings must be obtained from the Department of Student Life or from Student Government for campus student organizations. Any materials of any type printed on or off campus and intended for distribution on campus must first be submitted for authorization to the Department of Student Life or to Student Government for campus student organizations. Vendors will not be permitted to display or sell products unless sponsored by a registered student organization or given permission through the Department of Student Life.
When Saturday evening student events are scheduled, all gates to the campus with the exception of Gate 1 will be closed at 8 pm. This procedure will be cancelled in the event of a basketball game or other major campus event. This procedure may also be in effect for Friday evenings with the later closing date because of night classes.
University Center student staff members will check identification for all individuals attending student events. Proper identification includes St. John's University student identification, other college ID as approved by the sponsoring organization, and previously authorized attendees whose names appear on the guest list and who have appropriate identification such as a driver's license. All individuals in the car must possess one of these types of identification. Cars will be inspected; the license plate number and number of passengers will be recorded.
A count of the number of individuals attending the event will be kept at the Gate. After the number expected (as indicated on the event pass) is reached, no other individual planning to attend that event will be allowed to enter the campus. The event is closed to all attendees at 1 a.m.
Identification will be rechecked at the door of the University Center or other area where the event is being held.
Any questions will be directed to the Student Life administrator on duty.
Speech and Expression Policy
St. John's University is committed to standards promoting speech and expression that foster the responsible exchange of ideas and opinions which enables the pursuit of knowledge and truth. As embodied in the University's Mission Statement,
We commit ourselves to academic excellence and the pursuit of wisdom which flows from free inquiry, religious values, and human experience.
All members of the St. John's University community which includes students, faculty, staff and administrators enjoy the right to freedom of speech and expression that is consistent with the University Mission and its Catholic character and Vincentian tradition. St. John's seeks to foster an environment of global harmony and the incorporation of diverse perspectives. As is true with the society at large, this freedom is subject to reasonable parameters of time, place and manner and compatibility with the Mission of the University.
The right of free speech and expression does not include unlawful activity or activity that endangers or threatens to endanger the safety of any member of the University community or any of the University's physical facilities, or any activity that disrupts or obstructs the functions of the University or immediately threatens such disruption or obstruction.
As stated in the University's Mission Statement,
We embrace the Judeo-Christian ideas of respect for the rights and dignity of every person and each individual's responsibility for the world in which we live.
Expression that is indecent or is obscene or grossly offensive on matters such as race, ethnicity, religion or gender is inconsistent with accepted norms of conduct at the University.
Although St. John's University supports the responsible exchange of discourse and the expression of ideas and opinions, the use of the University forum shall not imply acceptance or endorsement by the University of the views expressed. If the rights of any member of the University have been violated and/or he/she has experienced a direct conflict with the above stated policy, he/she may file a grievance with the Department of Student Life on his/her campus.
St. John's University has established the following procedures to assist members of the University community in interpreting the Speech and Expression policy.
Approved by the University Senate Mar. 19, 1993
Approved by the Board of Trustees, May 12, 1993
Speech and Expression Procedures
Sponsoring student organizations are requested to state on promotional materials that the opinions expressed do not necessarily represent the opinions and/or beliefs of St. John's University.
When it is deemed necessary to staff the event or speaker with additional security to insure the safety of all those present, the cost for additional security may be the responsibility of the sponsoring student organization. This determination will be made cooperatively by the Department of Student Life, Student Government and the sponsoring organization.
The Department of Student Life reserves the right to request the sponsoring student organization to provide reference materials for a proposed speaker. The sole purpose of these references is to insure that the speaker responsibly represents the subject on which he or she is to speak. Student Life may also request reviews or tapes of prior performances.
In the case of a speaker representing a controversial issue, the Department of Student Life may require, as a condition of approval, that an opposing viewpoint be represented. This may take the form of a debate which will be facilitated by an appropriate faculty and/or student moderator.
The Department of Student Life reserves the right to cancel, postpone or deny the appearance of a speaker or performer. This determination will be based upon any concern for public safety or the belief that the speaker will be in violation of established University policies or will deal with matters that are inconsistent with the University Mission and its Catholic character and Vincentian tradition.
The sponsoring student organization may appeal the decision made to cancel the event by the following process:
- A written request for reconsideration must be submitted to the Chief Student Affairs Officer within three school days of the initial decision.
- The request will be considered by the Speaker Appeals Board. This board on each campus will be comprised of one administrator, appointed by the Executive Vice President and excluding personnel from the Department of Student Life, two full-time tenured faculty members and two students. The chairperson of the Speaker Appeals Board will be elected by members of the board. The remainder of the membership of this board will be elected each fall by the faculty and student government of each campus.
- Once an appeal is received, a final decision by this committee will be rendered within 10 school days.
Use of Alcohol at Events
Alcoholic beverages are viewed as a refreshment that can be utilized for student social and cultural activities. Consumption of these beverages should never be the primary focus of any student activity. Proper use of alcohol depends on students' mature attitudes and the utilization of responsible safeguards.
- New York State Liquor Regulations must be complied with when alcoholic beverages are served and consumed.
- The possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages is prohibited except at campus events as authorized by the Department of Student Life.
- Intoxication and/or disorderly conduct resulting from the misuse of alcoholic beverages are serious violations of University regulations.
- Possession of alcoholic beverages in areas other than those specified or approved by the University is not permitted.
- Persons of legal drinking age are not permitted to purchase, distribute sell and/or procure alcoholic beverages for persons less than 21 years of age, for persons who are visibly intoxicated, and for known abusers.
- Persons presenting false identification and/or proof of age shall be subject to disciplinary action. The University reserves the right to confiscate false identifications.
- No alcoholic beverages other than those authorized by and purchased through the University will be permitted when alcoholic beverages are being served.
- Pledging activities of any kind are not permitted when alcoholic beverages are being served.
- Drinking games of any kind are not permitted in any area or at any function.
- Only authorized persons shall purchase, distribute, sell and/or procure alcoholic beverages.
- No person under the age of 21 years shall purchase, distribute, sell and/or procure alcoholic beverages.
- Sponsors are responsible for ensuring that the activity remains in compliance with applicable local, state and federal laws, this Policy, and other published University regulations and policies.
Event Alcohol Procedures
Persons over 21 years of age will be required to present:
- If a St. John's University student, a valid St. John's University I.D. and a valid photographic identification card issued by a governmental entity which contains the person's birthdate and signature (e.g., a driver's license, a military card, etc.).
- If a guest of a St. John's University student, a valid photographic identification card issued by a governmental entity which contains the person's birthdate and signature (e.g., a driver's license, a military card, etc.), and one of the following pieces of I.D.:
- A valid college or university I.D.
- A valid county I.D.
- A valid credit card
The I.D.'s listed in above must at a minimum contain the person's name and signature which match the name and signature contained in the valid photographic identification card issued by a governmental entity.
Once proper proof of age has been presented, the person will wear a method of identification indicating that he/she is over 21.
The University reserves the right to refuse to serve any individual whose conduct is judged by University officials to be disorderly or in violation of University policy.
Security Policy for University Events
This policy applies to the St. John’s University community, including students, faculty, administrators and staff and to visitors on the University campuses. This policy applies to all St. John’s New York campuses.
The safety and security of students, faculty, administrators, staff, and visitors during events taking place at the University is paramount. The Department of Public Safety will plan and implement appropriate safety protocols for all events taking place on St. John’s University campuses, and will coordinate and plan placement and use of security personnel. In an effort to help facilitate student and/or University programs and to support and encourage on-campus activities, metal detectors, including magnetometer machines and hand-held wands, may be utilized to ensure a safe event.
Metal detection is used at all NCAA sporting events held at the Carnesecca Arena, Belson Soccer Stadium, and DaSilva Field when the total number of expected attendees is greater than 100. In addition, questions normally used to evaluate whether or not the use of metal detectors is an appropriate vehicle for ensuring the protection of the University community include the following:
- Will attendees include people from outside the St. John’s community?
- Will attendance exceed 250 people?
- Are two or more events scheduled on a University campus in close proximity and time?
Metal detection devices may also be used when information exists that warrants their use as determined by members of the Department of Public Safety in conjunction with an executive member of the University. This may include, for example, when there is a history of disruptive behavior on the part of the performer and/or patrons, or when a speaker or sponsoring organization requests security measures be taken. University events hosted by the President and other senior leaders of the University may be deemed by Public Safety not to require magnetometers and discretion will be exercised when assessing this need.
Magnetometer Security Procedures
Public Safety personnel will utilize metal detector devices to screen persons entering an event for weapons and other dangerous instruments. Backpacks and other similar items are normally not permitted into an event. At student-centered events, Public Safety may permit backpacks or similar items; however, they will be subject to search. The University does not allow individuals to bring alcoholic beverages into an event, and non-alcoholic beverages are permitted in plastic containers only. Prospective attendees may (i) refuse to be screened by a metal detector, (ii) refuse to permit Public Safety inspection of their hand-carried items, and (iii) withdraw permission for screening or searches at any time, provided that a weapon or other threat to safety has not already been identified. Any person who refuses or withdraws permission for screening or searching, will be escorted off campus by Public Safety personnel unless the person has a valid St. John’s University identification card identifying him or her as a student or member of the staff, faculty or administration; in such case, the person will be refused admittance to the event and asked to leave the event area. In cases in which a person, by reason of medical necessity, is unable to submit to the screening process, that person may request a manual pat down by a Public Safety Officer, provided that person has a valid medical identification card indicating that he/she is unable to submit to a medical detector or other device.
Questions concerning this policy should be directed to Public Safety.