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Involuntary Medical Withdrawal Policy

Authority

This policy is intended to establish standards and procedures for addressing specific student conduct in extraordinary instances when, in the judgment of appropriate administrative officials, the Student Code of Conduct is not applicable or cannot be timely applied effectively. Authority to issue an Involuntary University Withdrawal for direct threat reasons rests with the vice president for Student Affairs & Enrollment Management (VP-SAEM), the associate vice president for Student Affairs & Enrollment Management, and any assistant vice president for Student Affairs & Enrollment Management (AVP-SAEM).

Issuance

A student will be subject to involuntary university withdrawal for direct threat reasons if the student engages or threatens to engage in behavior that poses a direct threat of harm to that individual or others and the behavior is related to mental or psychological disorders. Direct threat means behavior that:

1) Presents a significant risk of substantial harm to the health or safety of an individual or others, or

2) Substantially impedes the lawful activities of other members of the campus community, or the educational processes or business activities or administrative functions of the university, its trustees, administrators, faculty, staff, employees and contractors. If the AVP-SAEM determines on the basis of evidence that

1) from the examining mental health provider the student is suffering from a mental disorder, as defined by the current American Psychiatric Association diagnostic manual or its equivalent;

2) as a result of the mental disorder, a direct threat of harm to self or others is present; and

3) it is in the best interest of the student, apparent potential third party victims, and/or the University that the student receive an Involuntary University Withdrawal for direct threat reasons, the student will be informed of this decision, the reason(s) for the decision, and of his or her right to an informal administrative hearing with the VP-SAEM or designee.

If it is determined that a direct threat of harm to self or others is not present, procedures under this policy will have been concluded. The student will be referred to Student Conduct for review and adjudication of any violations of the Student Code of Conduct that may be outstanding. The student must provide written authorization to permit verbal and written communication about his or her condition between University officials and all the examining licensed mental health providers specified in this policy. Failure by the student to complete any required mental health assessment(s) under this policy and procedure, failure to provide written authorization for communication among pertinent University and designated non-University individuals under this policy, or failure to abide by deadlines and other requirements of this policy will result in initiation of an Involuntary University Withdrawal for apparent direct threat reasons.

Throughout the term of the Involuntary University Withdrawal for direct threat or apparent direct threat reasons, the student may not attend class or use university facilities, must vacate university housing, and may not return to campus unless approved by the VP-SAEM or designee. The student will be responsible for his or her own food and shelter during the period of the Involuntary University Withdrawal. The student will be entitled to any applicable refunds of tuition, fees, and room and board, and unclear: alleged Student Code of Conduct violation(s) during the Involuntary University Withdrawal. A registration hold will be placed on the student’s record so that any request for subsequent registration will come to the attention of the VP-SAEM.

Hearing

A student who receives an Involuntary University Withdrawal for direct threat or apparent direct threat reasons related to mental or psychological disorders may request an informal administrative hearing with the VP-SAEM or designee to review only 1) the accuracy/reliability of the information regarding the student’s behavior and 2) whether the criteria? for Involuntary University Withdrawal for direct threat or apparent direct threat reasons has been met. The request for an informal administrative hearing must be submitted to the VP-SAEM in writing within three (3) business days of the issuance of the Involuntary University Withdrawal and must include the student’s authorization for release of relevant information for the purpose of conducting the hearing. If the student refuses to provide such authorization, the informal hearing will proceed without the requested information. The student will remain involuntarily withdrawn from the University pending the conclusion of the informal hearing.

If the student is hospitalized during the time interval for requesting an informal administrative hearing, the request deadline will normally be deferred to the third business day after the date of the student’s discharge from the medical facility.

The informal administrative hearing will normally be convened by the VP-SAEM within three (3) business days of receipt of the student’s written request. The student may be assisted during the proceedings by a licensed mental health provider of his or her choice, a member of the university faculty or staff, or a family member. The student may request that the AVP-SAEM and the executive director of the Counseling & Student Development Center or designee be present. As part of the informal hearing process, the VP-SAEM may require the student to undergo, at University expense, an additional psychological evaluation and direct threat assessment by a licensed mental health provider designated by the university, and the results of such evaluation shall be communicated to the VP-SAEM for consideration. No other person may accompany the student during this evaluation.

Normally, within two (2) business days of concluding the informal hearing, the VP-SAEM will determine if the Involuntary Withdrawal for direct threat or apparent direct threat reasons related to mental or psychological disorders is appropriate, or if the student will be reinstated. The VP-SAEM may consult with pertinent university officials prior to making this determination. The VP-SAEM’s decision will be final. Written communication of the decision will be given to the student in person or sent by certified mail within one (1) business day of the decision.

Reinstatement

The Involuntary University Withdrawal will remain in effect until the student adequately demonstrates that his or her behavior no longer constitutes a direct threat of harm to self or others. For reinstatement at the University, the student must submit a written request to the AVP-SAEM and arrange for the submission of documentation from his or her licensed mental health provider confirming the absence of a direct threat of harm to self or others as defined in this policy. The student must authorize verbal and written communications about his or her condition between all licensed mental health providers involved in this process and relevant university staff. The executive director of the Counseling & Student Development Center or designee will review this information and provide a written recommendation to the AVP-SAEM regarding the student’s eligibility for reinstatement. The AVP-SAEM may require the student to undergo, at University expense, additional psychological evaluation by a licensed mental health provider designated by the university, and the results of such evaluation shall be communicated to the VP-SAEM for consideration. No other person may accompany the student during this evaluation. Written communication of the decision to grant or deny reinstatement will normally be given to the student in person or sent by certified mail within one (1) business day of the decision.

Upon reinstatement at the university, the student will be referred to Student Conduct for review and adjudication of any violations of the Student Code of Conduct that may be outstanding. When all judicial proceedings have been completed and any applicable academic requirements satisfied, the student may be permitted to re-enroll at the university.

Contact Info

Student Conduct
Campus Life Building, Room 280
DeKalb, IL 60115
Phone: (815) 753-1571
Fax: (815) 753-9289
Email: judicial@niu.edu

NIU Student Conduct Blog