Sep 15, 2019  
Student Handbook 
    
Student Handbook

General Policies and Regulations


ACCEPTABLE USE POLICY FOR TECHNOLOGY

The purpose of this policy is to specify user responsibilities and to promote ethical, legal, and secure use of computing resources for the protection of all members of the Merrimack College community.

Technology at the College is a shared resource and is intended to be used to support the mission of the College by integrating technology in the design, delivery and management of educational programs, academic support, and administrative services in an Augustinian, values-sensitive environment. All users have the responsibility to make use of these resources in an efficient, ethical, and legal manner.

All persons granted access to Merrimack College’s resources must comply with all security, legal, and confidentiality requirements established by the College and by external legal authorities.  Access to and use of Merrimack College technology resources and the internet shall comply with federal laws, the laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and the policies and procedures of the College.  By using the College’s technology resources, including its network, users agree to the rules, regulations and guidelines of the College. 

Each user is responsible for the security of his/her own password and account. A securely guarded password provides a high level of assurance of privacy and security of resources. A password is not to be shared with others or posted in a place accessible by others. A password authenticates the holder as an authorized user of the computing environment and must be protected from falling into the hands of an intruder. As a precautionary measure, passwords should be changed every 60 days. For privacy and security, all users are encouraged to lock their screens when they are away from their PCs.

Email users must adhere to the following:

  • Messages should be non-commercial in nature. Use of the College network for non-College business activities is not permitted.
  • Users are expected to practice common courtesy in using the email system and respect the privacy and feelings of others. 
  • Unauthorized access to another person’s email or electronic files is prohibited.
  • Mass e-mail messages to any group must be approved by the Vice President of Communication prior to being sent.
  • Harassing and/or offensive messages, pyramid or chain letters, and pornographic material are all examples of inappropriate content for email transmission. Any use of obscene, indecent, racist, defamatory, threatening or harassing material is against College policy and will not be tolerated.  Such use is subject to College discipline as well as criminal prosecution.

Users must understand that email is not absolutely private and should practice caution in sending messages that you would not want everyone to see over the network. ITS does not make a practice of monitoring email and other files, but may be requested to provide a copy of any file or information resident on College systems allegedly related to unacceptable use or to protect the College’s network from systems and events that threaten or degrade operations. The College reserves the right to examine material stored on or transmitted through its systems.  Any activity that inhibits or interferes with the use of the computers or networks of the College is not permitted.  The College will ensure reasonable and acceptable use by monitoring access logs, traffic data, and network utilization. 

Merrimack College users who conduct Web publishing are solely responsible for their sites’ content and adherences to all policies stated in this document, as well as all other College policies and public laws, and are asked to follow these guidelines:

  • Third-party advertising or commercial promotion of non-Merrimack entities is not allowed. No banner or pop up banner advertising is allowed.
  • Outbound commercial links must have an educational objective and must link to sites that do not contain content considered sexually explicit, profane, obscene, harassing, fraudulent, racially offensive, defamatory, or otherwise unlawful.
  • All outside links must be targeted to a new window to ensure the user does not leave the Merrimack website.
  • Links that result in personal gain are not permitted.
  • Adherence to copyright law and trademark protection in all of its forms is required, including, but not limited to, books, music, movies, and graphics.
  • No illegal activity of any kind is permitted.
  • No threatening, harassing, or slanderous language will be condoned.
  • All College policies apply.

Merrimack College respects the copyright protection given by federal law to owners of software and intellectual property as stated in the Copyright Act of 1976 and under the Federal Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, and adheres to the statement of principle developed by the EDUCOM Software Initiative relating to intellectual property and ethical use of software. It is against College policy to copy or reproduce any licensed software or intellectual property, or to illegally download from the Internet any copyrighted material, including music, movies, and videos. A user may not use software that has been obtained illegally on College equipment or personal equipment housed at the College or any systems used by the College hosted off-campus.

United States law also prohibits duplicating software for use by multiple users within an organization, and/or distributing an unauthorized copy to another individual. Users of College computers are subject to the United States copyright laws, including ensuring that the restrictions that apply to the reproduction of software and intellectual property are adhered to and that the bounds of copying permissible under the fair use doctrine are not exceeded (i.e., a backup copy may be made).  Violation of these requirements will subject the offender to disciplinary action that may include suspension of access, disciplinary action by the College, and/or accountability in a court of law. 

Merrimack College’s Acceptable Use Policies shall not supersede federal or state laws.  Illegal actions may result in prosecution by federal, state, or local agencies.  Under the terms of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, the College is obligated to take appropriate action if it receives a complaint that copyrighted material is being published over our network without permission.

In addition to internal College sanctions that can impact on a student’s academic performance, the College will cooperate with all local, state, and federal agencies whenever necessary.  The College will not be responsible for sanctions taken by these agencies for violations of the College’s Acceptable Use Policy that are against local, state, and federal laws and criminal codes.

Tampering with computer files, software, or knowingly introducing a virus to a College computer system is a criminal offense punishable through a court of law.

All users are expected to uphold all applicable federal, state, and local laws, regulations, treaties or tariffs, as well as ethical laws of decency while using the Merrimack College computing resources.  Any individual, who participates in conduct which adversely affects the College’s pursuit of its educational objectives, violates or shows disregard for the rights of individuals within the College community, or damages property will be subject to institutional discipline.  Reports of known or suspected offenses may be made to the College’s Chief Information Officer, who will refer any apparent violations to the appropriate disciplinary process.

Merrimack College provides campus-wide wireless internet access, including in the residence halls. To ensure the most reliable and consistent wireless internet access, students are not permitted to bring or use any potentially interfering wireless devices on campus. This includes, but is not limited to personal wireless routers, wireless access points, and wireless printers. Please contact the Help Desk if you have any questions about wireless interference.

Users should NOT expect or assume any right of privacy with respect to the use of the College’s information technology (IT) resources.  Although the office of Information Technology Services (ITS) does not routinely monitor the communications of its students, system administrators or other authorized personnel may access or examine files or accounts that are suspected of unauthorized use or misuse, that have been corrupted or damaged, or that may threaten the integrity of the College’s computer systems or network. 

ATHLETIC ELIGIBILITY POLICY

Merrimack College recognizes its obligation to uphold the standards of eligibility for all student athletes as governed by the NCAA, Hockey East, Northeast-10 Conference and affiliated conferences.

Competing at the College level is a major commitment and typically draws only the elite athletes from high schools. If interested in competing in intercollegiate athletics, student athletes must contact the coach of that particular sport. Because Merrimack College is a division II institution with division I ice hockey all student-athletes must register and be certified by the NCAA Eligibility Center. For more information on eligibility and other NCAA guidelines, check out the online Guide for the College Bound Student Athlete at http://ncaapublications.com  and type guide to college bound student-athletes in the search box.

All incoming freshman student-athletes must meet the criteria set forth in NCAA Bylaw 14.3 Freshman Academic Requirements and must be certified by the NCAA Eligibility Center. Provided the student-athlete is enrolled full-time, he or she may practice but not compete (including scrimmages) for a maximum of 45 days prior to being cleared. Returning student-athletes must meet all of the criteria set forth in both the Merrimack College catalog and NCAA Bylaw 14. Each student-athlete will be certified at the end of each semester by the athletic department.

*For Rules and Regulations please see http://www.ncaa.org/

CLASS CANCELLATION POLICY/WEATHER EMERGENCY POLICY

Students are responsible for obtaining information concerning the cancellation of classes by calling the Weather Emergency Hot Line at 978- 837-5700 (off campus) or ext. 5700 (on campus) or by visiting the Merrimack College website at www.merrimack.edu. Cancellations will also be announced on WBZ Radio 1030 AM and WBZ-TV Channel 4. Decisions about Continuing Education classes and Graduate School will be made by 2pm. Evening classes may be held even if day classes are not. BSEE (Bachelor of Science Electrical Engineering) classes which start at 4pm are considered part of Continuing Education for purposes of weather-related cancellations.

We also recommend that students sign up for RAVE Alert emergency notifications.  Cancellation alerts will also be issued on the RAVE network.

EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION

RAVE ALERT

Merrimack College has partnered with Rave Wireless, a leader in mobile safety, to offer an emergency notification system; RAVE ALERT is capable of sending the Merrimack College community, text, voice, and email messages in the event of emergency situations or school closings.  All students, faculty, and staff are now able to receive Rave Alerts to their Merrimack email only.  To receive Rave text alerts to your cell phone, go to: www.getrave.com/login/merrimack

Merrimack College will only send you messages related to emergencies and school closings.  You will never receive advertisements and your information is secure and never provided to advertisers. Any student, staff, or faculty member can subscribe to Rave Alert.  

The entire campus community is highly encouraged to subscribe to this free service to be informed of emergencies and school closings when you are on the go. Subscription by all members of the campus community is pivotal in proper communication during an emergency.  Failure to subscribe to the RAVE ALERT system is at the sole risk of the individual.  All U.S. mobile carriers are supported. The text messages will come from either 67283 or 226787.  We encourage you to save these numbers into your phone so that you will recognize them when messages are sent.

RAVE GUARDIAN

Download the Rave Guardian app for your smartphone (free from the Apple app store). You will need a merrimack.edu email address to download the full app, but family and friends can download a limited version that allows them some functionality.

 There are three major components to Guardian:

  • Emergency call function. One-touch calling for local 911 or Merrimack College police. Safety timer.
  • Schedule your trip, designated a “guardian,” and let that person track your route and timing, so he or she will know right away if you encounter difficulty.
  • Confidential tip ability: send a confidential text or photo to Merrimack College Police.

Campus incidents considered to be a threat to the safety and well-being of the College community are publicized through the Merrimack College Police Department., Office of Residence Life, and the College’s email and Emergency Notification System. Facilities maintains College buildings and grounds with a concern for safety and security. It inspects facilities regularly and promptly makes repairs affecting safety and security, such as broken windows and locks.  In addition to an active telephone jack in each student’s room, there are many outdoor emergency call phones, strategically located throughout the campus, and connected directly to the Merrimack College Police Department which operates 24/7. These phones can be used for emergencies as well as to request safety escorts and other police assistance. The Police Department can be contacted anytime at 978-837-5555 for general business or 978-837-5911 for emergencies.

INDEPENDENT STUDENT POLICY

Merrimack College will consider all students to be dependents of their parents unless the Office of the Registrar and the Office of Campus Life are notified to the contrary within 30 days after registration. This notification should include evidence that the student is in fact financially independent. A certified copy of the parents’ most recent income tax return, other public records, accounting records, etc. is acceptable for this purpose.

INTRAMURAL PARTICIPATION BEHAVIOR POLICY

A fundamental principle, which is strictly enforced in our intramural sports program, is “Good Sportsmanship.” The positive behavior exhibited by the participants is an important goal of our program. Any player/s who is/are ejected from a game for unsportsmanlike behavior will receive an automatic two game suspension.  Ejected individuals may be subject to disciplinary action as stated in the Community Standards.  In the instance that a team is completely uncooperative and the captain has no control over the team or spectators the team may be asked to forfeit the game and be place on official probation. 

INVOLUNTARY LEAVE OF ABSENCE POLICY

In exceptional circumstances or emergency situations, a student may be required to leave Merrimack College or college-provided housing in accordance with this policy. 

Interim Suspension

The College may temporarily remove from the campus and/or college-provided housing any student whose behavior presents an immediate and substantial danger to the safety, health or welfare of any person, or whose behavior is substantially damaging College property or disrupting College operations.  In emergency situations, advance notice to the student may not be feasible.

Involuntary Leave

The College may require a student to withdraw or take a leave of absence for a semester or more when the student’s behavior presents a significant risk of substantial harm to any person, or substantially disrupts the College’s academic or housing environments.

Assessments

In each case where emergency removal or involuntary leave is being considered, the College will conduct an individualized risk assessment.  The Dean of Students (or designee) will be responsible for the assessment in consultation with the Director of the Hamel Health and Counseling Center, the Campus Police Chief, Legal Counsel, and/or other advisors, when feasible, at the Dean’s discretion.  The assessment will rely on objective evidence and the most current medical information reasonably available to the College or provided by the student.  The College may require authorization from the student to review relevant medical records and may also require a medical examination of the student by an independent or College-employed health care provider.

Relevant factors to be considered in the risk assessment include the nature of the risk, its duration, frequency, severity and probability, as well as what reasonable support measures and/or modifications to existing policies and practices might sufficiently mitigate the risk.  Speculation, stereotypes, or only marginally increased risks will not be considered. 

The student will be given a reasonable opportunity to provide the assessment team with medical records or other information applicable to the risk assessment.  Whenever reasonably possible, a meeting between the student and the Dean will be held prior to a decision on involuntary leave. 

In emergency situations, the College will need to respond quickly based on limited information.  Accordingly, the College may temporarily remove a student from the campus and/or college-provided housing before completing its comprehensive risk assessment.  In such cases, the College will endeavor to complete its assessment as soon as practicable.  The student may confer with the Dean and assessment team by telephone if a meeting is not feasible.  A decision on involuntary leave will not be final until the student has had a reasonable opportunity to submit information applicable to the risk assessment.   

When warranted by health or safety concerns, the College may impose temporary restrictions on the student pending final determination of the risk assessment.  Such restrictions may include curfews, limitations on access to certain areas or equipment, no contact orders, meetings with advisors, compliance with the terms of a behavior contract, among other safeguards. 

The student will be provided with written notice of the decision on involuntary leave.  If leave is required, the notice will identify the risk factors on which the decision was based.  Once invoked, the leave becomes effective immediately, and the student will be required to vacate the campus and/or college-provided housing.

The student may appeal a decision on involuntary leave to the Dean of Students (or designee).  Absent extraordinary circumstances, the appeal must be presented in writing within five (5) calendar days of the decision to place the student on involuntary leave.  Leave requirements will be enforced while the appeal is pending.  The decision of the Dean of Students(or designee) is final.

The records of the assessment and any appeal will be treated as confidential and maintained separately.

Returning to Campus and/or Housing

All students seeking to return to the College from an emergency removal or involuntary leave must demonstrate to the College’s satisfaction that they are able to meet the College’s academic and conduct requirements for continued enrollment and/or college-provided housing, live independently in college-provided housing (if applicable), including reasonable expectations for health, safety and welfare.  The particular conditions for return shall be determined for each student on a case-by-case basis after an individualized assessment.  In general, the College will require a meeting with the Dean of Students and/or the Director of the Hamel Health and Counseling Center, up-to-date information about the student’s medical condition, and a certification from a treating physician or applicable health care provider regarding the student’s ability to meet the College’s academic and conduct requirements safely.  Typically, students are also asked to authorize the Director of the Hamel Health and Counseling Center to consult directly with student’s health care providers concerning any health or medical conditions applicable to the involuntary removal or leave.  Other conditions may include a personal statement, behavior contract, medical examinations, compliance with a treatment program, or other safeguards.

The Dean of Students, in consultation with the Director of the Hamel Health and Counseling Center, will make the final decision as to whether a student may return and under what conditions.  The student may appeal the Dean’s decision to the Vice President for Mission and Student Affairs (or designee).  Absent extraordinary circumstances, the appeal must be presented in writing within five (5) calendar days of the Dean’s decision.  The decision of the Vice President of Mission and Student Affairs (or designee) is final.[AC1] 

Notice to Parent/Guardians

Absent medical advice to the contrary, the College will ordinarily notify a student’s parents or guardians about an emergency removal or involuntary leave situation

VOLUNTARY MEDICAL LEAVE OF ABSENCE POLICY

Matriculated students need to request a medical leave of absence by completing the application for withdrawal and submitting it to the Director of the Hamel Health and Counseling Center.  The application must include written documentation from a physician or other qualified licensed professional that is unaffiliated with the College detailing the need to take a leave. The Director of the Hamel Health and Counseling Center will in turn make a recommendation to the Dean of Students. Authorization for medical leaves of absence will be granted by the Dean of Students upon review of the student’s application for withdrawal and in consultation with the Director of the Hamel Health and Counseling Center. The Dean of Students grants and determines the start date of the leave and will notify the Dean of Student Success or approved designee who will then notify the student’s professors and additional relevant College staff.  While on leave, students must request the permission of the Dean of Students to be on campus. 

Requests for a medical leave must be made within three weeks of the effective date requested or by the last day of classes in the semester in which the leave is requested, whichever comes first. 

The leave should provide enough time for the student to pursue appropriate treatment.  After each semester on medical leave, the Hamel Health and Counseling Center will contact the student and ask if they intend to return for the next semester.  When a student wishes to return to the College following a medical leave, the student will submit documentation from a treating physician or other qualified licensed professional responsible for the student’s care that is unaffiliated with the College regarding their readiness to return.  The Director of the Hamel Health and Counseling Center or Dean of Students will then arrange a meeting with the student. The Director will then make a recommendation regarding the student’s return to the College to the Dean of Students, who will make the final determination and notify the Dean of Student Success.  The student will be withdrawn from the College if they either do not wish to return, or do not respond to the Director of Hamel Health’s attempts to confirm when they wish to return before the end of the Add/Drop Period following the expected date of return. 

Students on leaves of absence of more than one year’s duration may be held to any changes in the College curriculum or their programs of study occurring during their leave.  Upon return, a student’s academic circumstances, including academic monitoring and/or probation, will remain the same as it was when the student was granted a leave. 

Acceptance for return as a resident student is always contingent upon available space in the residence halls.

Please refer to the refund and grading policies for information on any potential refund if a leave is granted.

PERSONAL LEAVE OF ABSENCE POLICY

Matriculated students need to request a personal leave of absence by completing the application for withdrawal and submitting it to the Registrar’s Office.  The Registrar’s Office will then forward the application to the Dean of Students.  Authorization for leaves of absence will be granted by the Dean of Students upon review of the student’s application for withdrawal. The Dean of Students grants and determines the start date of the leave and will notify the Dean of Student Success or approved designee who will then notify the student’s professors and additional relevant College staff.  While on leave, students must request the permission of the Dean of Students to be on campus.  Requests for a personal leave must be made within three weeks of the effective date requested or by the last day of classes in the semester in which the leave is requested, whichever comes first. 

Personal leaves of absence are granted to matriculated students who determine that circumstances necessitate a temporary interruption of their college careers. A personal leave of absence is granted for not more than one year, unless the student receives an extension of the leave from the Dean of Students.

A leave of absence guarantees readmission to the College upon receipt by the Dean of Students of a notification of the intent to return and a verification of any change in criminal record and/or student conduct records at institutions the student may have attended while on leave.  The guaranteed readmission may be revoked if the student’s conduct while on leave is such that it would have resulted in disciplinary action had he or she remained at the College. The student retains the right of appeal in such cases.

Students on leaves of absence of more than one year’s duration may be held to any changes in the College curriculum or their programs of study occurring during their leave.  Upon return, a student’s academic circumstances, including academic monitoring and/or probation, will remain the same as it was when the student was granted a leave. 

Acceptance for return as a resident student is always contingent upon available space in the residence halls.

Please refer to the refund and grading policies for information on any potential refund if a leave is granted.

MERRIMACK VAN DRIVER POLICY

Students otherwise licensed to drive may drive a Merrimack College vehicle only after taking and passing a driving training course. To sign up for a training course, students must contact their advisor and the advisor will arrange a training time with the Merrimack College Police Department. Once Van Driver Certified, students may sign out the vans through their student organization/group advisor in conjunction with Facilities. All vans are monitored for speed via a GPS tracking device and all reports of speeding, reckless driving or inappropriate use of the van will be dealt with accordingly: a first offense may range from a warning to a student having his or her driving privileges suspended; a second offense will always be met with the suspension of a student’s driving privileges.

NOTICE OF NONDISCRIMINATION

Merrimack College is firmly committed to the practice of equal opportunity and prohibits discrimination of any kind. Every student is entitled an environment free of discrimination, which erodes dignity and morale. Discrimination constitutes a serious infraction of College policy, as well as a violation of state and federal law. Any member of the Merrimack College community, who discriminates against, excludes, degrades, or otherwise devalues another on basis of race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, age, mental or physical disability, or other lawfully protected categories, will be disciplined accordingly, up to and including dismissal.

It is policy of Merrimack College to administer all decisions without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, mental or physical disability, or other lawfully protected categories.

OFFICIAL COMMUNICATION POLICY

The official communication channel to all students, faculty, staff and administration is the College-assigned e-mail account. All members of the College community are responsible for reading materials sent via electronic mail. This includes official announcements or policies that affect operations of the College. Lack of awareness of e-mail sent by the College will not be accepted as a reason for failure to comply with information in the message and can lead to disciplinary measures as described in the “Student Conduct Process” section of this handbook. The College will also send information through printed communication as determined by Office of Communications.

If you have questions about your Merrimack e-mail account, please contact the Information Technologies Help Desk in McQuade Library or call ext. 3500 or email askit@merrimack.edu

PARKING POLICIES

Parking & Traffic Updates

Please check the Merrimack College Police web site at www.merrimack.edu/police  for the most up to date rules and regulations regarding Parking and Traffic. Please send all parking-related questions to parking@merrimack.edu.  Parking regulations will be strictly enforced.

General Vehicle Regulations

Please note that operating and parking a vehicle on campus is considered a privilege.  Individuals who do not adhere to parking and traffic policies may lose the ability to have a vehicles on campus.

Any student or employee who operates or parks a motor vehicle on the campus must register the vehicle with the Merrimack College Police Department and every vehicle must display a parking decal on the rearmost section of window on the driver’s side of the vehicle. The parking decal must be permanently affixed with the adhesive that exists on the decal. In the case of convertibles, tinted windows, etc., ask the Police Department where the decal should be affixed. Decals must be removed after a student or employee is no longer registered/employed at the College.  When a vehicle is sold or transferred to another and the student/faculty member requires a new decal, the old sticker must be returned.

Operators must have a valid driver’s license in their possession while driving on campus and must present it to a police officer upon request. All vehicles must be insured and registered and the vehicle registration must be presented to a police officer upon request.

The student who owns and/or operates a vehicle on campus shall be responsible for any liability or damage claims (including parking penalties) arising from the vehicle. The College assumes no responsibility for the care or protection of any vehicle or any of its contents at any time including the time it is in any parking area.

During the first three class days of each semester, cars will not be issued parking citations for not having the appropriate parking decal as long as the car is authorized to be on campus and is parked legally and in the appropriate parking lot. After the three-day grace period, vehicles must be registered immediately upon arrival on campus. The Police Department is always open.

A lost or defaced decal must be replaced at once. Decals are not transferable. Decals for students/employees are issued only for their own personal use. Any transfers or misuse of these decals will result in the cancellation of said decal and a fine of $100 to all parties involved.

Motorcycles and scooters must be registered with the Police Department, but they will not be issued a decal.

Students from states other than Massachusetts are reminded that if they operate a motor vehicle here for thirty days or more, they must comply with the statutes of the Commonwealth regarding compulsory insurance.

The use or parking of motor homes, campers, off road and recreational vehicles on campus is prohibited.

Resident Student Parking

A non-refundable Resident Student Parking Decal Fee of $600 will be charged to all students who wish to park their cars on campus.  There will be no charge for eligible resident students who choose to park off-campus at the East Mills parking garage.

Resident student parking decals will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis to seniors during the first week of class, and then, if available, to juniors by lottery, and sophomores thereafter, should any parking spaces remain. Freshmen students will not be permitted to have a vehicle on campus. Only seniors who intend to purchase a decal should have any expectation to keep a car on campus during the academic year; no other resident students should bring cars unless they become eligible to purchase a decal.

If a resident student changes vehicles during the year, the original resident decal must be returned to campus police before a new decal can be issued.

Guests

Parents and other family members having a car on campus while visiting resident students must obtain a parking permit from the Police Department.  The Town of Andover does not allow on-street parking in the College neighborhood except for those who have Andover resident parking permits.

Overnight guests must be registered with the Office of Residence Life.  Guests must park their vehicles in lots A or C and have a printed copy of the guest registration confirmation email on the car dashboard as well as a copy on their person. Vehicles that are not registered and/or not parked in the designated lot will be towed at the owner’s expense.

Please note: Cars that are falsely registered will be ticketed and towed at the owner’s expense. You are only to register your guest’s car.

Parking Decals for Commuting Students

All commuter students are eligible for commuter parking decals and commuter students are required to register their vehicle with the campus Police Department when they arrive on campus for the start of the fall semester.  Commuting students will be issued parking decals for $150 per semester or $300 for the academic year.

The Town of Andover does not allow on-street parking in the College neighborhood except for those who have Andover resident parking permits.

Temporary dashboard parking permits are available to students who are using another vehicle while their primary vehicle is not being used for a short period of time.

Parking/Traffic Regulations

All students/employees must park on campus in the areas designated for the type of permit they have been issued. A student using a car that belongs to an employee (such as a parent who works at the College) must follow the parking rules and regulations relative to their status as a student. Parking is permitted only in marked spaces - the area between two parallel yellow lines.

There is no driving/parking in the fire lanes - a fire lane being any way that would restrict emergency vehicles to any building on campus.

Driving/parking on sidewalks and service vehicle lanes is prohibited. A Merrimack College email will be sent out to authorize use of these areas for move-in and move-out days. Use of these areas at other times (to drop off or pick up a large item) is permitted only after obtaining advance permission from the Police Department.

Stopping, standing, or parking on any part of Walsh Way and Cullen Ave is prohibited. Please use parking areas and 15-minutes spaces for this purpose.

Unless otherwise posted, the speed limit on all campus roadways is 20 miles per hour. Speed limit in parking lots is 10 miles per hour.

Any accidents occurring on College property that involve personal injury or property damage must be reported at once to the Police Department.

Any person owning or operating a motor vehicle which becomes disabled while on the Merrimack College campus must assume the responsibility for notifying the Police Department of the disablement of the vehicle before abandoning the vehicle to return to his or her home or residence area. Failure to do so will result in the removal of the vehicle from the campus at the owner’s or operator’s expense.

The abandonment of any motor vehicle on any part of the Merrimack College campus is prohibited. Any motor vehicle parked on the campus without current state registration plates attached to the vehicle will be deemed to be an abandoned vehicle and as such will be subject to immediate removal from the campus.

The absence of posted signs shall not constitute a valid excuse for violating the regulations set forth in the official motor vehicle rules and regulations booklet. 

Handicapped Parking

Only those vehicles displaying a valid state handicap license plate or placard will be authorized to park in designated handicapped parking areas. Those individuals who require temporary access to handicapped parking areas due to a temporary medical condition may obtain a temporary handicap permit from the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles after providing appropriate medical documentation signed by a physician. Applications are available at the campus Police Department.

Penalties

Merrimack College parking/traffic citations will be issued to those who violate parking/traffic rules and regulations as well as to those who fail to comply with posted signs or the directions of the Campus Police Officers or Campus Safety staff.

Payment of citation fines is to be made to the Bursar’s Office. Students who do not pay such fines will have the amount added to their student bill. Outstanding balances on student accounts will result in grades/diplomas/transcripts being withheld as well as the inability to register for classes. Unpaid citations from persons other than students may result in the vehicle being towed from campus, being immobilized, or the operator/owner being banned from campus.

A vehicle receiving two parking citations during an academic year will be deemed a habitual offender. The vehicle will be towed from campus upon the second and subsequent violations. Owners/Operators of such vehicles may also have their current and future parking privileges revoked by the Chief of Police and their vehicles may be towed.

 A person who operates a motor vehicle on campus while under the influence of intoxicating liquors, who otherwise operates a vehicle in a manner that potentially jeopardizes the safety of others on campus, or who is issued more than one moving violation citation during an academic year, may have their current and future privilege to drive on College property revoked by the Chief of Police.

A vehicle parked on campus in violation of any parking rule or regulation may be towed from campus at the discretion of the campus Police Department. Cost of such removal, and any storage fees, are payable directly to the towing company.

Appeals of Parking/Traffic Citations

A person receiving a parking citation may file a written appeal within 10 calendar days from the date the citation was issued. Appeal Forms are available at the campus Police Department or can be downloaded from the Police Department web site. Appeal forms may be dropped off at, or mailed to the campus Police Department.

A Parking Appeals Committee - consisting of student, employee (non-police) and faculty representation - meets regularly to hear appeals and the appealing party will generally receive a written response within two weeks.

The decision of the Appeals Committee is final unless new, relevant, and previously unavailable information can be presented, by email or letter, to the Chief of Police within 7 calendar days of receiving the original appeal decision. In such cases, the Chief (or his/her designee) will consider if a re-appeal is appropriate and the appealing party will be notified.

A person receiving a citation for a moving violation, or a person who had their car towed from campus, may file a written appeal within 10 calendar days by following the procedures in the previous bullet. Such appeals will be heard by the Chief of Police or his/her designee.

SOLICITATION

Solicitation on Campus

All persons soliciting written materials on campus must obtain authorization from the Dean of Students. The College retains the authority to remove any unauthorized materials distributed on campus or any individuals distributing said materials. Any strangers or solicitors without clearance should be reported promptly to the Merrimack College Police Department. Rooms are for residential use only and no student is to use or allow his or her room or common area/lounge to be used for any commercial purposes. The only exception to this policy is solicitation in conjunction with approved student organization activities. Any violations are subject to disciplinary sanctions.

Solicitation of Alcohol Related Advertising

It is the policy of Merrimack College not to solicit or accept funding from any business, corporation, institution, or society that produces or promotes alcoholic beverages for the purpose of advertising its product or business. This policy is in accordance with the national recommendations from the Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention and is in keeping with the college’s mission.

Therefore, it is against College policy to distribute or publish any materials in which alcohol use or any alcohol product is promoted or which uses the logo or label of a business, corporation, institution or society that produces or promotes alcohol.

STUDENT CLUBS AND ORGANIZATIONS POLICY

Students registered at Merrimack College have the ability to join or create student organizations in accordance with the policy present in the Student Organization Handbook of the Office of Student Involvement.  All student organizations must adhere to and are subject to the Student Organization policies as well as those policies in the Community Standards.  These policies provide several benefits to organizations as well as establish criteria for maintaining recognition.  Any violation that is attributed to a student organization could result in sanctions for the organization through the Student Organization Handbook and the individuals involved may be put through the student conduct system in accordance with the Merrimack College Community Standards. 

STUDENT PRIVACY RIGHTS - FERPA

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.

FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children’s education records. These rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18 or attends a school beyond the high school level. Students to whom the rights have transferred are “eligible students.” These rights include:

  • Students have the right to inspect and review the student’s education records maintained by the school. Schools are not required to provide copies of records unless, for reasons such as great distance, it is impossible for parents or eligible students to review the records. Schools may charge a fee for copies.

A student should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The College official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the College official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

  • Students have the right to request that a school correct records which they believe to be inaccurate or misleading. If the school decides not to amend the record, the parent or eligible student then has the right to a formal hearing. After the hearing, if the school still decides not to amend the record, the parent or eligible student has the right to place a statement with the record setting forth his or her view about the contested information.

A student who wishes to ask the College to amend a record should write the College official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed. If the College decides not to amend the record as requested, the College will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student’s right to a hearing re­garding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

  • Generally, schools must have written permission from the student in order to release any information from a student’s education record. However, FERPA allows schools to disclose those records, without consent, to the following parties or under the following conditions (34 CFR § 99.31):
    • School officials with legitimate educational interest;
    • Other schools to which a student is transferring;
    • Specified officials for audit or evaluation purposes;
    • Appropriate parties in connection with financial aid to a student;
    • Organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the school;
    • Accrediting organizations;
    • To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena;
    • Appropriate officials in cases of health and safety emergencies; and
    • State and local authorities, within a juvenile justice system, pursuant to specific State law.

The College discloses education records without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests.  A school official is a person employed by the College in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law en­forcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the College has contracted as its agent to provide a service instead of using College employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; 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 College.

  • Schools may disclose, without consent, “directory” information such as a student’s name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, honors and awards, and dates of attendance. However, schools must tell students about directory information and allow parents and eligible students a reasonable amount of time to request that the school not disclose directory information about them. Schools must notify parents and eligible students annually of their rights under FERPA. The actual means of notification (special letter, inclusion in a PTA bulletin, student handbook, or newspaper article) is left to the discretion of each school.

In general, the College will not release information from students’ records to agencies outside the College without the prior written consent or request of the student. However, the College may release the following directory information, without the prior consent of the student:

  • name, address, telephone number, email address, film, video and electronic images
  • date and place of birth
  • fields of study, academic level and enrollment status
  • participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams
  • dates of attendance
  • degrees, honors and awards received
  • the most recent previous educational agency or institution attended by the student
  • other similar information

Those students who do not desire the release of directory information should notify the Registrar in writing. For more information on FERPA, please contact the Office of the Registrar.