Situations sometimes arise in which students feel that they have not been dealt with fairly, do not agree with a policy decision made by an office of the University, or have a complaint about the performance of a member of the staff or faculty of the University. The University has a set of procedures designed to address these kinds of problems. Student Affairs can assist students who have non-academic complaints or grievances and need help in determining the procedures to be followed.
As a general rule, a complaint from a student who is dissatisfied with a situation or event should be directed to the person(s) whose actions or inactions have given rise to the complaint. Whenever possible, every effort should be made to resolve the problem fairly and promptly at that level. In the event that a student is not able to satisfactorily resolve the matter with those directly involved, he or she may pursue the issue within the normal reporting structure (appropriate administrative channels) of the academic or administrative unit.
Students who are uncertain as to the proper procedure to follow for a particular grievance should seek help and information from Student Affairs.
Students with disabilities who believe they have received inappropriate treatment or inadequate service from the University pertaining to their granted accommodations have the right to file a grievance with Director of Disability Services. The grievance must be submitted in writing to Office of Disability Services and should include a detailed description of the inappropriate or inadequate service and supporting documentation (when appropriate). Students with disabilities must indicate the resolution they are seeking.
Students with disabilities who are unsatisfied with the response from the Director of Disability Services may submit an appeal within 5 business days to the ADA Coordinator, Dr. Ann Coyne, Vice President for Student Affairs & Dean of Students, Student Affairs Office, 12th floor 73 Tremont Street, Boston, MA 02108, 617-573-8239, TDD: 617-557-4875. Students with disabilities must state the resolution they are seeking. The decision of the appeal by the Dean of Students is final.
Grievances Related to Students Enrolled in an Online Program
Suffolk University operates under the approval of “NC-SARA”, National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements. Consistent with 610 CMR 12.00 [PDF], students must attempt to resolve complaints at the institutional level. If the matter is not resolved at the institutional level students may submit a SARA complaint. Massachusetts residents may submit a complaint via the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education’s (DHE) consumer complaint form. Non-Massachusetts residents that are located in SARA member states may seek to file a formal complaint with the DHE using the SARA Complaint Procedure Process form. Students located in nonmember states may utilize the DHE’s consumer complaint form in lieu of the SARA complaint form.