Student Life

Student Government Association

The Student Government Association (SGA) serves as the student voice and is responsible for the allocation of the student activities fee to student organizations. The Association also represents the student body to the administration and appoints students to most university committees. In addition, the SGA provides copying services for students at the Student Center Information Desk.

The SGA is comprised of a Student Senate and an executive board. Students are encouraged to participate in their government. For further information, contact the SGA Office in the Student Center, room 215.

Student Activities & Clubs/Organizations

It is said that 90% of what you learn at college comes from outside the classroom. If that is the case, then WestConn's center for education is the Student Center/Student Life office.

The Student Center/Student Life office is available as a resource for all students. Leadership development programs are designed and offered to all students by this office. The Student Center/Student Life office also assists with the administration of all student clubs/organizations. The staff will assist you in getting involved on campus and making the connection to the organization of your choice.

A complete listing of all clubs/organizations on campus can be found in the Student Handbook 2004-2005. If you would like to start a club or organization, please call the Student Center/Student Life Office at (203) 837-8415.

Athletics, Intramurals, Recreation

Faculty: E. Farrington, Dir.; M. Allen; S. Ames; M. Bourque; J. Burrell; R. Campbell; J. Cook; P. Hull; F. McCarthy; J. Mingachos; A. O'Brien; K. Rybczyk; P. Schachter; D. Stachelek Grasso; J. Susi.

Intercollegiate Athletics

Western offers a variety of opportunities for the student-athlete to excel at the local, regional and national levels of competition. Sporting events are scheduled throughout the academic year, and opportunities are provided for male and female teams and club activities.

Men:

Fall - Soccer, Football
Winter - Basketball
Spring - Tennis, Baseball, Lacrosse

Women:

Fall - Volleyball, Tennis, Soccer
Winter - Basketball, Swimming & Diving
Spring - Softball, Lacrosse

The men's and women's programs each belong to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III. The football program is a member of the New Jersey Athletic Conference. The 12 other intercollegiate athletic programs are members of the Little East Conference. In addition, the men's and women's programs hold membership in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC).

The University belongs to conferences and associations appropriate to the specific athletic program.

The department supervises and coordinates intramural and recreational activities.

Club Sports

Club sports are formed by groups of at least 20 individuals who share a common athletic interest and wish to pursue this activity. Club sports are organized on recreational, instructional, and competitive levels and activities range from informal play to a regular practice or instruction. Intercollegiate and tournament competition may be included. Some clubs hire instructors and/or coaches, and competition clubs receive funding from the intramural and recreation department.

Club sports allow students to participate in intercollegiate competition without the demands of playing at a varsity level. Many clubs compete with other schools and are part of a collegiate league of play. Each club is created in response to student interest and is run by students.

Active clubs include but are not limited to: cheerleading, dance team, women's rugby, men's rugby, men's ice hockey and martial arts.

Intramurals

With the opening of the William A. O'Neill Athletic and Convocation Center, intramurals at WestConn have greatly expanded. Intramural programs include: flag football, 3-on-3 and 5-on-5 basketball, floor hockey, indoor soccer, softball, and volleyball tournaments, ultimate frisbee and a fitness challenge. Non-competitive programs include: step aerobics, kick-boxing aerobics and several health and fitness seminars. The intramural programs are designed to give students as much variety and as many opportunities as possible to enhance fitness, personal skills and enjoyment.

Recreation

Like the intramural programs, the recreation department has grown considerably over the last few years. The William A. O'Neill Athletic and Convocation Center on the school's Westside campus and the Bill Williams Gymnasium at Midtown allow the University to sponsor a variety of activities. Intercollegiate football, soccer and lacrosse are played on the Westside campus in the Athletic Complex. The O'Neill Center at Westside houses a six-lane natatorium, a four-lane indoor running track, four full basketball/tennis/volleyball courts, and a state-of-the-art fitness center for all students, faculty and staff. WestConn also offers a fitness center on the Midtown campus in the Bill Williams Gymnasium.

Eligibility to Participate in Varsity Athletics

Eligibility is determined in accordance with policies established by the NCAA, including requirements for satisfactory progress and good academic standing.

Residential Life

When people are asked what decisions most influenced attending and enjoying college, responses often center on their choice of where to live. Many students see this decision as a defining moment not only for their success at a college or university, but for their personal development as well. Some of the strongest bonds of friendship are forged in the residence halls at campuses around the globe.

WestConn Housing & Residence Life offers its residents an integrated program known as CULTURETM, which stands for "Creating Undergraduate Learning Through Unique Residential Experiences." The CULTURETM program is designed to help students excel academically and provides a myriad of opportunities for community and leadership development. Students who live on campus are expected to participate in and support their living and learning environments.

Once you have made the decision to live on campus, it is important to find the residence hall that best suits your needs. There are six halls at Western Connecticut State University: three halls on the Midtown campus and three halls on Westside.

Residence Halls

Midtown

The three residence halls on the Midtown campus are all "traditional-style" residence halls. Fairfield Hall houses female students, while Newbury and Litchfield Halls are coeducational. All buildings are state-owned and staffed with professional residence directors. Rooms have basic cable, local telephone access, and students may access the internet through the campus ResNet program.

Rooms accommodate two or three students. Beds, desks, bookshelves, chairs and dressers are provided, and roommates may enhance the decor with items such as drapes, bedspreads, rugs and lamps. Linens are not provided, so students must supply their own mattress pads, pillows, sheets, towels and pillow cases. All beds are regular twin size.

On the Midtown campus and in the new westside residence hall, all resident students are required to participate in the meal plan. This plan is optional for students living in Pinney and Grasso and for students who live off-campus.

Westside

Grasso Hall

Grasso Hall is an apartment-style, upperclass, residence hall. Each apartment is furnished and has 2 bedrooms, a living/dining room, a kitchen, a bathroom and is provided with basic cable service, local telephone access, and access to the internet via ResNet, the campus provider. Traditionally, four students live in each apartment-2 students per bedroom. While Grasso students are usually very involved in academic and campus life, they still maintain an active hall council which provides a variety of social and educational events throughout the year.

Pinney Hall

A 425-person apartment-style building for upper-class students, Pinney Hall has 5-person apartments that include three furnished bedrooms, two bathrooms, a furnished living and dining area, a full-sized kitchen, and a balcony. In addition, there are 2-story floor lounges spaced throughout the building, as well as a conference/meeting room (center). All apartments are provided with basic cable service local telephone access, and access to the internet via ResNet, the campus provider.

Westside Residence Hall

The newest residence hall is a suite-style hall whose furnished suites typically have 2 bedrooms, a living room, and toilet, shower, and sink rooms. Kitchens are not provided in this new residence hall, and residents are required to participate in the meal plan. Four students share a suite-2 students per bedroom. Basic cable, local telephone access, and internet access through the campus ResNet service is provided. Study lounges are located on each floor, and a large multi-purpose area is located on the ground floor. There is a parking garage at the rear of the building.

Application for On-Campus Housing

When students are accepted to the University, they are mailed an application for on-campus housing. Included in this packet are detailed instructions explaining the order in which available housing spaces are filled. Only full-time students are eligible to live in on-campus housing.

Returning students who were not assigned housing the previous semester are placed on the housing assignment list on the date their housing application is received. Students who become on-campus residents must maintain a 2.0 cumulative grade point average and meet the guidelines for satisfactory academic progress in order to remain eligible for on-campus housing. Returning students, 21 and older, receive priority for housing on the Westside campus. Because of the overall demand for on-campus housing, students are encouraged to apply early for housing.

Off-Campus Housing

Call The Housing and Residence Life Office at (203) 837-8531 for a list of off-campus facilities.

Student Rights & Responsibilities

The following guidelines are provided to present a clear statement of student rights and responsibilities and to create fair and appropriate judicial procedures for the protection of said rights and the implementation of said responsibilities.

The Connecticut State University will adhere to the following guidelines which are consistent with the requirements of due process. Students must note that as citizens they are subject to all Federal and State laws in addition to all University regulations governing student conduct and responsibility.

At the conclusion of the investigation, to the extent permitted by law, complainants will be provided with information relative to the disposition of the complaint.

Preamble

Academic institutions exist for the transmission of knowledge, the pursuit of truth, the development of students and the general well-being of society. In line with this purpose, the University has the duty to protect the freedoms of inquiry and expression and furthermore has the responsibility to encourage all of its members to develop the capacity for critical judgment in their sustained and independent search for truth.

The Connecticut State University System has certain self-defined institutional values. Principal among these values is respect for the dignity, rights, and individuality of each member of the University community. The opportunity to live, study, and work in an institution which values diverse intellectual and cultural perspectives and encourages discussion and debate about competing ideas in an atmosphere of civility is a basic component of quality higher education at this University.

All members of the University community must at all times govern their social and academic interactions with tolerance and mutual respect so that the men and women who pass through the University's doors are enriched by these experiences and are prepared for full and enlightened participation in a multi-cultural society. Because of the University's commitment to principles of pluralism, mutual respect, and civility, certain activities are not acceptable on the University campus. Acts of intolerance, of hatred or violence based on race, religion, sexual orientation, disability, gender, age, or ethnic background are antithetical to the University's fundamental principles and values. It is the University's responsibility to secure the students' right to learn by establishing an environment of civility. The complete statement of "Student Rights and Responsibilities" can be found in the Student Handbook 2004-2005.

Educational Records and The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

Western Connecticut State University accords all the rights under the law to students. No one outside the University shall have access to nor will the University disclose any information from a student's educational records without his/her written consent except to personnel within the University, to officials of other institutions in which the student seeks to enroll, to persons or organizations providing students financial aid, to accreditation groups, to persons in compliance with a judicial order, to persons in an emergency in order to protect the health or safety of students or other persons, or to parents of a student who is officially documented as their dependent for income tax purposes. All these exceptions are permitted under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. The University will maintain a record of all requests for and/or disclosure of information from a student's educational records. The record will indicate the name of the party making the request, any additional party to whom it may be redisclosed, and the legitimate interest the party had in requesting or obtaining the information. The record may be reviewed by the eligible student.

Within the Western Connecticut State University community, only those University officials acting in the student's educational interest are allowed access to education records. A University official is any person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support-staff position; any person appointed to the Board of Trustees for the Connecticut State University; or any person employed by or under contract to the University or the State of Connecticut to perform a special task, such as an attorney or auditor. A University official has a legitimate educational interest if the official is: performing a task that is specified in his/her position description or by contract agreement; performing a task related to a student's education; performing a task relating to the discipline of a student; or providing a service or benefit relating to the student or student's family, such as health care, counseling, job placement or financial aid.

At its discretion, the University may provide directory information in accordance with the provisions of the Act to include: student name, address, telephone number, photo ID, date of birth, major field of study, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, and weight and height of members of athletic teams. Students may withhold directory information by notifying the Office of Student Affairs in writing within two weeks after the first day of class for the current term.

Requests for nondisclosure will be honored by the University for only one semester. Therefore, authorization to withhold directory information must be filed each semester in the Office of Student Affairs.

The law provides students the right to inspect and review information contained in their education records, to challenge the contents of their education records and to have a hearing on the matter. The Vice President of Student Affairs or his designee at Western Connecticut State University has been designated to coordinate the inspection and review procedures for student educational records, which include: admissions; personal; academic; financial; disciplinary; cooperative education; and placement records. Students wishing to review their educational records must make requests to the Registrar listing the item of interest. Only records covered by the Act will be made available within forty-five days of the request. Students may have copies made of their records with certain exceptions (e.g. a copy of their academic record for which a financial "hold" exists, or a transcript of an original or source document which exists elsewhere). The charge for such copies will be $3.00 per transcript. Educational records do not include: records of instructional, administrative and educational personnel, which are the sole possession of the maker and are not accessible or revealed to any individual except a temporary substitute; records of a law enforcement unit; student health records; employment records or alumni records. Health records, however, may be reviewed by the physician of the student's choosing.

Students may not inspect and/or review the following as outlined by the Act: financial information submitted by their parents: confidential letters and recommendations associated with admissions, employment or job placement, or honors to which they have waived their rights of inspection and review, or education records containing information about more than one student. In this last case, the University will permit access only to that part of the record which pertains to the inquiring student. The University is not required to permit students to inspect and/or review confidential letters and recommendations placed in their files prior to January 1, 1975, provided these letters were collected under established policies of confidentiality and were used only for the purpose for which they were collected.

Students who believe that their educational records contain information that is inaccurate or misleading or is otherwise in violation of their privacy or other rights may discuss their problems informally with the Office of Student Affairs.

In the event a student's request, either to have access to a record or to amend information in a file has been denied, the student may ask for a formal hearing. The student must submit a written request for the hearing to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. The hearing panel will consist of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Graduate Dean and the Academic Dean of his/her school. Decisions of the hearing panel are final. Any alteration to the student's record will be in accordance with the decision of the hearing panel and will become a permanent part of that record. The student has a right to add a statement to a challenged record if the panel's decision is not to amend the record in accordance with the student's request.

Students who believe that the adjudications of their challenges were unfair or not in keeping with the provisions of the Act may request, in writing, assistance from the President of the University to aid them in filing complaints with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), U.S. Department of Education, Washington, D.C. 20202.


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