Jun 17, 2024  
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog

Laws, Policies and Regulations Governing Campus Life

University Police Department (UPD)

The quality of life on campus is critical to achieving quality education.

  • The goal of the campus community is academic achievement. To realize that goal there must be a safe, secure and attractive environment with a positive social atmosphere.
  • The goals and functions of the University Police Department (UPD) are service to the community, protection of life and property, prevention of crime, resolution of conflict, and enforcement of state and local laws, all of which are geared to help provide a positive social atmosphere.

As part of the academic community and charged with the responsibility of maintaining an atmosphere conducive to education, the University Police Department (UPD) strives to combine “law and order” with harmony and humaneness.

“Public education” and “community relations” are as important as “service and protection.” Here at SUNY Old Westbury, we stress that all officers be aware of and appreciate the uniqueness of the University, and the diverse community that it serves.

  • The UPD Headquarters building is located in the Northern area of the Student Union parking lot. The office is open 24 hours per day and can be reached at (516) 876-3333.

Vehicle Registration (Parking Permits)

All vehicles parked on campus must display a registration decal. The decal can be purchased online at a location identified on the University’s website. All vehicles utilized on campus must be properly registered, inspected, and insured pursuant to the vehicle and traffic laws of New York State.

The University Police Department (UPD) acknowledges and honors all handicapped parking permits issued by governmental authorities. The department issues only 14-day temporary handicapped permits to employees. Students and staff requiring temporary handicapped permits must report to the Student Health Service located in the Campus Center for approval by that office. Members of the college community who feel they require full-time handicapped parking should contact the Office of the Physically Challenged in their local community. Check the blue pages in your telephone directory for the number.

College Campus Safety Report

Each year SUNY Old Westbury prepares a College Annual Security and Fire Report that addresses issues of safety and security at the University. This annual report includes crime reporting, drug and alcohol policies, daily crime log, crime prevention, disciplinary process, resident hall security, sexual assault and harassment policies, victim’s rights, crime identification, campus crime statistics, fire safety and other topics pertaining to campus safety. The document is available by October 1 of each year in hard copy at University Police Headquarters and from many other offices throughout the campus. It can also be accessed through the Unversity’s Web Site at www.oldwestbury.edu, by going to the home page, clicking on Student Life - go to Services and click on University Police and then click on Safety Reports.

Campus Codes and Policies

Code for Student Conduct

SUNY Old Westbury expects that all students will conduct themselves in accordance with campus, local, state and federal laws, policies and regulations. The University’s Code for Student Conduct is intended to protect the safety, and well-being of the campus and all members of the community. The Code of Student Conduct informs members of the University community of the expectations, prohibited conduct, disciplinary procedures and sanctions applicable for violations of the Code. In addition to the Code of Conduct, there are specific rules and regulations for resident students called the Guide to Campus Living which can be found at www.oldwestbury.edu.

Alcohol and Drug Policies

Per the Code for Student Conduct, the possession, consumption, use, or knowingly being in the presence of alcohol or drugs is prohibited at SUNY Old Westbury. Procedures and sanctions for violation of this policy will be in accordance with The Code for Student Conduct, which can be found in its entirety at www.oldwestbury.edu.

Bias/Hate Crimes on Campus

It is a State University of New York at Old Westbury University Police mandate to protect all members of the SUNY Old Westbury community by preventing and prosecuting bias or hate crimes that occur within the campus’s jurisdiction.

Hate crimes, also called bias crimes or bias-related crimes, are criminal activities motivated by the perpetrator’s bias or attitude against an individual victim or group based on perceived or actual personal characteristics such as race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or disability. Hate based crimes have received renewed attention in recent years, particularly since the passage of the Federal Hate/Bias Crime Reporting Act of 1990 and the New York Hate Crimes Act of 2000 (Penal Law Article 485). Copies of the law are available in the Office of the University Police at the college.

Committee on Animal Care and Use

The University has an Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) whose function is to ensure animal welfare. All research involving animals must be approved by this committee. The IACUC ensures that the College is in compliance with the Public Health Service Policy (PHS) and federal animal welfare regulations.

Acceptable Use of College Technology Resources

This policy is applicable to all persons accessing University-based electronic information and services and/ or using University computing facilities, and networks. Users of College Technology Resources must comply with federal and state laws, College rules and policies, and the terms of applicable contracts including software licenses.

The Acceptable Use of College Technology Resources details the various measures the University employs to protect the security of its computing resources and its user’s accounts; outlines the restrictions and prohibitions that are, or may, be put in place to ensure the capacity and security of University resources; and details the methods of enforcement that are applied in those instances where users violate the policy.

The policy is available on the campus website, www.oldwestbury.edu, and upon request from the ITS division. All campus users should review the policy in its entirety.

Email as Official Means of Communication

The University provides students with an email account upon the student’s matriculation to the institution. This account is free of charge and is active as long as the student is actively pursuing a degree at the University. A University-assigned student email account is the University’s official means of communication with all students. The University has established these accounts with the full expectation that students will receive, read and respond (as necessary) timely to emails. Students are responsible for all information sent to them via their University-assigned email account. Students who choose to have their email forwarded to a private (unofficial) email address outside the official University network address, do so at their own risk.

Institutional Review Board

The Institutional Review Board (IRB) is the University’s federally registered body that monitors and approves research involving human subjects. The mission of the IRB is to facilitate ethical research involving human subjects. Any member of the Old Westbury community who is conducting research involving human subjects must obtain IRB approval before beginning the activity; IRB approval is also necessary for any research activity that uses Old Westbury students as research subjects, regardless of researcher affiliation. Please note: retroactive approval is prohibited by Health and Human Services federal regulations.

Further information is available at www.oldwestbury.edu/irb.

Consent to Use of Images for Publicity/Promotional Uses

Registration as a student and attendance at or participation in classes and other campus and University activities constitutes an agreement by the student to the University’s use and distribution (both now and in the future) of the student’s image or voice in photographs, videotapes, online and social media, electronic reproductions, or audiotapes of such classes and other campus and University activities. Questions related to this policy should be directed to the Office of Public and Media Relations. This statement reflects the complete University policy on this subject.

Non-Discrimination / Anti-Harassment Policy

SUNY Old Westbury is committed to an educational and employment environment in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity. Each individual has the right to work or study in a professional atmosphere that promotes equal treatment and prohibits discriminatory practices, including harassment. Therefore, the University expects that all relationships among persons at the University will be professional and free of bias, prejudice and harassment.

It is the policy of the University to ensure equal treatment without discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability, citizenship, marital status, sexual orientation or any other characteristic protected by law. The University prohibits and will not tolerate any such discrimination or harassment.

Definitions of Harassment

  1. Sexual harassment constitutes discrimination and is illegal under federal, state and local laws. For the purposes of this policy, sexual harassment is defined, as in the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Guidelines, as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when, for example: (1) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment or academic treatment; (2) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment or academic decisions affecting such individual; or (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or study performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working or learning environment.

    Sexual harassment may include a range of subtle and not so subtle behaviors and may involve individuals of the same or different gender. Depending on the circumstances, these behaviors may include, but are not limited to: unwanted sexual advances or requests for sexual favors; sexual jokes and innuendo; verbal abuse of a sexual nature; commentary about an individual’s body, sexual prowess or sexual deficiencies; leering, catcalls or touching; insulting or obscene comments or gestures; display or circulation on the campus of sexually suggestive objects or pictures (including virtually); and other physical, verbal or visual conduct of a sexual nature.
  2. Harassment on the basis of any other protected characteristic is also strictly prohibited. Under this policy, harassment is verbal or physical conduct that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual because of their race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, citizenship, sexual orientation, marital status or any other characteristic protected by law or that of his/her relatives, friends or associates, and that: (1) has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work or study environment; (2) has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or study performance; or (3) otherwise adversely affects an individual’s employment or learning opportunities. Harassing conduct includes, but is not limited to: epithets, slurs or negative stereotyping; threatening, intimidating or hostile acts; denigrating jokes and display or circulation on the campus of written or graphic-material that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual or group (including virtually).

Individuals and Conduct Covered

These policies apply to all applicants, employees and students, and prohibit harassment, discrimination and retaliation with respect to employment, programs or activities at the University, whether engaged in by fellow employees, supervisors or managers, faculty members or students or by someone not directly connected to the University (e.g., an outside vendor, consultant or customer).

Conduct prohibited by these policies is unacceptable in the workplace/classroom and in any college-related setting outside the workplace/classroom, such as during business (college) trips, business (college) meetings and business (college)-related social events.

Retaliation is Prohibited

The University prohibits retaliation against any individual who reports discrimination or harassment or participates in an investigation of such reports. Retaliation against an individual for reporting harassment or discrimination or for participating in an investigation of a claim of harassment or discrimination is a serious violation of this policy and, like harassment or discrimination itself, will be the subject of disciplinary action.

Complaint Procedure

Reporting an Incident of Harassment, Discrimination or Retaliation

The University strongly urges the reporting of all incidents of discrimination, harassment or retaliation, regardless of the offender’s identity or position. Individuals who believe they have experienced conduct that they believe is contrary to the University’s policy or who have concerns about such matters should file their complaints with the University’s Affirmative Action Officer/Title IX Coordinator, Assistant to the President for Administration or the University President or any member of supervision or faculty member the individual feels comfortable with who is then obligated to report the complaint to the Affirmative Action Officer/Title IX Coordinator, Assistant to the President for Administration, or the University President. Individuals should not feel obligated to file their complaints with their immediate supervisor - or a member of supervision - before bringing the matter to the attention of one of the other of the University’s designated representatives above. Individuals who have experienced conduct they believe is contrary to this policy have a legal obligation to take advantage of this complaint procedure. An individual’s failure to fulfill this obligation could affect his or her right to pursue legal action.

Early reporting and intervention have proven to be the most effective method of resolving actual or perceived incidents of harassment, discrimination or retaliation. The University strongly urges the prompt reporting of complaints or concerns so that rapid and constructive action can be taken.

The availability of this complaint procedure does not preclude individuals who believe they are being subjected to harassing conduct from promptly advising the offender that his or her behavior is unwelcome and requesting that it be discontinued.

The Investigation

Any reported allegations of harassment, discrimination or retaliation will be investigated promptly. The investigation may include individual interviews with the parties involved and, where necessary, with individuals who may have observed the alleged conduct or may have other relevant knowledge. Confidentiality will be maintained throughout the investigatory process to the extent consistent with adequate investigation and appropriate corrective action.

Responsive Action

Misconduct constituting harassment, discrimination or retaliation will be dealt with appropriately. Individuals who have questions or concerns about these policies should talk with the University’s Affirmative Action Officer/Title IX Coordinator. Finally, these policies should not, and may not, be used as a basis for excluding or separating individuals of a particular gender, or any other protected characteristic, from participating in business, academic or work-related social activities or discussions in order to avoid allegations of harassment. The law and the policies of the University prohibit disparate treatment on the basis of sex or any other protected characteristic, with regard to terms, conditions, privileges and perquisites of employment/ education. The prohibitions against harassment, discrimination and retaliation are intended to complement and further these policies, not to form the basis of an exception to them.

Contact Information:

Department Telephone # Location
Office of the President (516) 876-3160 Campus Center, Rm. H-400
Office of Affirmative Action/Title IX Coordinator (516) 876-3179 Campus Center, Rm. I-211
Office of the Assistant to The President for Administration (516) 876-3179 Campus Center, Rm. I-211
Mailing Address: State University of New York at Old Westbury, P.O. Box 210, Old Westbury, New York 11568-0210.

Federal and State Regulations

The Rules and Regulations for Maintenance of Public Order

The Rules and Regulations for Maintenance of Public Order of State Operated Institutions of the State University of New York were adopted by the SUNY Board of Trustees in compliance with the Educational Law of the State. These rules are applicable to all institutions of the State University system and take precedence over any local codes adopted by the individual colleges and universities in the SUNY system. These rules can be found in their entirety at www.oldwestbury.edu.

Education Law

224 a. Students unable because of religious beliefs to attend classes on certain days.

  1. No person shall be expelled from or be refused admission as a student to an institution of higher education for the reason that s/he is unable, because of religious beliefs, to attend classes or to participate in any examination, study or work requirements on a particular day or days.
  2. Any student in an institution of higher education who is unable, because of religious beliefs, to attend classes on a particular day or days shall, because of such absence on the particular day or days, be excused from any examination or any study or work requirements.
  3. It shall be the responsibility of the faculty and of the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to make available to each student who is absent from school because of religious beliefs, an equivalent opportunity to make up any examinations, study or work requirements which s/he may have missed because of such absence on any particular day or days. No fees of any kind shall be charged by the institution for making available to the said student such equivalent opportunity.
  4. If classes, examinations, study or work requirements are held on Friday after four o’clock post meridian or on Saturday, similar or makeup classes, examinations, study or work requirements shall be made available on other days, where it is possible and practical to do so. No special fees shall be charged to the student for these classes, examinations, study or work requirements held on other days.
  5. In effectuating the provisions of this section, it shall be the duty of the faculty and of the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to exercise the fullest measure of good faith. No adverse or prejudicial effects shall result to any student because of her/his availing herself/himself of the provisions of this section.
  6. Any student who is aggrieved by the alleged failure of any faculty or administrative officials to comply in good faith with the provisions of this section shall be entitled to maintain an action or proceeding in the supreme court of the county in which such institution of higher education is located for the enforcement of her/his rights under this section.

Facilities Access for Persons with Disabilities

In accordance with federal and state laws, the College is continually modifying its facilities to provide access for disabled persons. To appropriately serve handicapped persons in areas as yet unmodified, University policy is to “reach out” with services and staff in an effort to accommodate specific needs. Students needing special services are encouraged to contact the Director of Services for Students with Disabilities, New Academic Building, Room 2064. at (516) 876-3009 (also see section on Services for Students with Disabilities under Academic Support Services).

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA)

Access to Student Records

The College’s policy follows the spirit and letter of all federal and state laws concerning access to student records. Within certain statutory limitations, students, upon reasonable notice, may review their “education records” containing information directly related to themselves. Students will be afforded an opportunity to challenge the accuracy of factual information in their records.

In the event a student challenges a record, the student will be offered a hearing by a University official who has no personal involvement in the matter challenged and shall receive a decision in writing within a reasonable time (not more than 45 days) after the conclusion of the hearing. Should the student fail to appear at the hearing or request an adjourned hearing date prior to the date set for the hearing, a decision shall be issued based on the facts available.

Students wishing to inspect their records shall direct their requests to the office responsible for those records.

Student information, other than directory information1, will not be released to a third party without the notarized consent of the student to the office housing the requested records, with the following exceptions:

  • The University will cooperate with all legal authorities in every way appropriate, in accordance with all federal and state laws. The office receiving a request for such cooperation shall immediately seek approval for the release of the requested information from the Records Access Officer.
  • The University discloses education records without a student’s prior written consent under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff or a person or company with whom the University has contracted as its agent to provide a service instead of using University employees or officials); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; SUNY System Administration employees 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 education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibilities for the University.
  • Although the following are part of the educational record, students do not have access to:
  • Letters or statements of recommendation submitted in confidence for school records prior to January 1, 1975, provided these records are not used by the school for other than the original intended purpose.
  • Financial records of the parents of the students or any information directly related to the parents’ financial status. Problems or issues concerning access to students’ records, should be directed to the Registrar, Campus Center, Room I-102. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act is available for review on the WEB at www.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/ferpa/index.html.

Public Health Law

Public Health Law (Article 21, Title VI, Section 2165) requires measles, mumps and rubella immunity for students attending colleges and universities in New York State. All registered students must address meningitis by declination or proof of vaccination within the past ten (10) years.

Students born on or after January 1, 1957, who plan to register for at least six semester hours will be required to provide proof of immunity against measles, mumps and rubella in accordance with standards approved by the New York State Department of Health.*

Limited exceptions are granted for students who hold “genuine and sincere religious beliefs” that are contrary to immunization, and for students for whom immunization would be physically detrimental or otherwise medically contra‑indicated. Although students enrolled for fewer than six semester hours are exempt from these requirements immunization is strongly encouraged by public health officials.

When the college is required to exclude a student from campus either because of noncompliance with the stated immunity requirements (or in the case of an epidemic when medically and religiously exempt students will be similarly excluded), the University will not be responsible for any effect on the excluded student’s academic progress, and the student will incur tuition and, if applicable, room and board liability as stated in the SUNY Guidelines. Copies of the University’s immunization policy and procedures are available in The Student Health Center which is located in the Campus Center, I-Wing, first floor.

* New York State Standards: Proof of immunity to measles will be defined as two doses of measles vaccine on or after the first birthday and at least 28 days apart (preferably three months), physician-documented history of disease, or serologic evidence of immunity. Proof of rubella immunity is documented by one dose of rubella vaccine on or after the first birthday or serologic evidence of immunity. Proof of mumps immunity is documented by one dose of mumps vaccine on or after the first birthday, a physician‑documented history of disease, or serologic evidence of immunity.

Records of immunizations should include the date the vaccine was administered, type, manufacturer and lot number of vaccine and signature of persons administering the vaccine e stamped with their address and title.

1 “Directory information” includes information relating to a student’s name, address, e-mail address, date and place of birth, major field study, dates of attendance, honors designation and earned degrees. The parent of a dependent student or an eligible student who wishes to restrict access to “directory information” with respect to that student must inform the Office of the Registrar in writing, within 15 days after the start of each semester.