Invitation to Faculty and Staff
As the Fall 2016 semester is well underway, the Office of the Dean of Students reminds all faculty, staff, and employees of our shared mission to serve our students with cura personalis, or care for the whole person. This calling – one of several hallmarks of a Jesuit education – means that it is the shared responsibility of our entire community to attend to the entirety of our students’ well-being. Whether you are new to Loyola or a veteran employee, a professor or an administrator, this spirit of concern and attentiveness to the physical, emotional, spiritual, developmental, and other needs of our students is part of what makes Loyola a truly special place.
As our new and returning students bring their energy and vibrancy to campus, so do they bring their personal challenges and difficulties. Like all of us, students carry many unseen burdens as they strive for academic excellence. Some have pre-existing mental or physical disabilities; others will face new and unexpected diagnoses during their college years. Others will experience the trauma of gender-based violence, relationship violence, or other threats to their safety and dignity. Others still will face fracturing family structures, the loss of loved ones, unforeseen financial obstacles, or other personal crises during their college experience.
As a University, we offer many resources and tools for students to work through these obstacles, but navigating between offices and campuses to access those resources can sometimes be difficult for students – especially when the issue is especially complex, sensitive, or touches several different areas of a student’s life.
The Office of the Dean of Students (“DOS”) exists to advocate for and empower students, so they are equipped to navigate their college experience successfully. By extension, we are glad to help any faculty or staff member who encounters a student in a state of crisis or distress. The primary services of the DOS are as follows:
Officially launched in the spring of 2015, CARE is short for “Coordinated Assistance and Resource Education,” and is a term that signifies the traditional mission of the DOS to support students when unforeseen obstacles arise. This is the catchall for reporting any student with a complex or particularly sensitive set of difficulties.
The Behavioral Concerns Team (“BCT”) serves as the centralized coordinated body for assessment and intervention regarding students exhibiting behaviors that indicate severe distress or danger, or that cause a disturbance in the classroom or community. This interdisciplinary team is coordinated by the DOS, but relies on the expertise and partnership of colleagues in the Wellness Center, Campus Safety, Residence Life, Student Academic Services, and other departments across campus.
Federal law and Loyola policies prohibit all forms of gender-based discrimination and misconduct, including but not limited to all forms of dating and domestic violence, sexual misconduct, stalking, and harassment. The DOS coordinates the University’s response to such incidents whenever they involve students, with support from the University’s Title IX Coordinator, Senior Vice President Tom Kelly.
The DOS manages a limited pool of resources available to students who experience unforeseen financial difficulties during the academic year. Requests for hardship funds are considered on a case by case basis. Funds will not be applied to tuition costs or used as a substitute for financial aid; rather, they are best suited for one-time expenses.
As the academic year continues, the DOS invites all campus partners to refer or report any students who may be in need of support. By working together in the spirit of cura personalis, we can provide our students the best chance for personal and academic success in the year to come.
For more information or to refer students for any of the services mentioned above, please select from the toolbar on the left or visit www.luc.edu/dos.