The purpose of the General Student Complaint process at Midwestern State University is to establish a protocol by which students may address general issues that do not fall under formal grievance policies. In an effort to expedite resolution of complaints, students will, under most circumstances, follow the Informal Complaint Process when initially submitting a complaint. If resolution does not occur via the Informal Complaint Process, the student may follow the Formal Complaint Process.
Informal Complaint Process
The informal complaint process promotes dialogue and understanding, and provides a framework to expedite resolution. It additionally promotes student development through self advocacy and open communication. Prior to filing a formal complaint, a student must use the following informal procedure. The Informal Complaint Process is initiated in the Office of Student Affairs.
- The student should discuss with the Dean of Students, or designee, the nature of the complaint in order to determine the most appropriate and expeditious manner of addressing said complaint. The Dean of Students, or designee, and the student determine the faculty or staff member(s) best equipped to address the complaint. The comfort of the student in addressing the complaint with any member of the faculty or staff is considered.
- The Dean of Students, or designee, will assist the student in contacting the faculty or staff best equipped to handle a complaint. The student should discuss the complaint thoroughly with the determined faculty or staff as soon as practical. Both parties should openly discuss the issue and attempt to explore a mutually satisfactory outcome.
- Within five days of logging the complaint, the Dean of Students, or designee, will follow-up with all parties directly involved in order to determine the disposition of the complaint.
- If the complaint is resolved informally, the process ends.
- If the complaint is not resolved, the student may then initiate the Formal Complaint Process.
Formal Complaint Process
A formal written complaint may be issued if the Informal Complaint Process does not produce resolution. The student is encouraged to contact the Dean of Students office prior to submitting a formal complaint in order to be well-informed of the formal complaint process. The student must use the following procedure for formal complaints:
- The student must submit, in writing to the appropriate Dean, Director, Chair, or Supervisor, as determined in consultation with the Dean of Students, an outline of what occurred, any witnesses to the alleged event, and the desired outcome of the complaint.
- The appropriate Dean, Director, Chair, or Supervisor, with guidance from the Dean of Students, interviews all affected parties and witnesses.
- Within seven business days of receiving the written complaint, the Dean, Director, Chair, or Supervisor issues a written decision regarding the complaint.
- If the complaint is resolved the process ends.
- If the complaint is not resolved, the affected student may appeal the decision to the appropriate Vice President. The Dean of Students will assist the student in making this determination. The appeal must be in writing, no later than seven business days after receipt of the final disposition of the formal appeal.
- The Vice President will consider the appeal and issue a decision to the student in writing. A copy of the final resolution will be sent to the student and the Dean of Students.