Campus Services

CAMPUS SERVICES

CAMPUS BOOKSTORE

The Campus Bookstore at Georgia Southwestern State University is institutionally owned and operated. The bookstore has been established to provide the student body with goods and services at the least possible cost. It is a part of the University that has goals directly centered on the satisfaction and success of the students and the faculty. The bookstore is self-sufficient, receiving no funding from the University System, and any profit is returned to the institution. The success of the bookstore lies with the success of the students. The bookstore carries new and used textbooks, with an emphasis on trying to obtain as many used textbooks as possible through student buybacks and various wholesale distributors. In addition to course materials, the bookstore stocks computer software, mass-market paperback books, computer books, study aids, reference materials, and school/office supplies for academic use. The bookstore also has gifts, including t-shirts, hats, coffee mugs, seasonal gift items, balloon bouquets, greeting cards, a classic collection of crystal engraved with the school seal, and many other gift items. Other goods and services offered through the bookstore include fax services, and special ordering for any academic materials at no cost. The bookstore accepts personal checks, MasterCard, Visa, Discover, American Express, and also has a voucher system allowing students to purchase academic materials with their financial aid funds.

LOCATION/STORE HOURS

The Campus Bookstore is located in the Marshall Student Center. During fall and spring semesters, the bookstore is open from 8:30am until 4:30pm Monday through Thursday, and 8:30am until 3:00pm on Friday. The bookstore closes during breaks to restock shelves for the following term. The store is also closed on holidays. Extended hours of operation are offered during the beginning of each term to accommodate the large volume of students buying books and supplies for new classes.

www.gswbookstore.com is your place for official Georgia Southwestern State University textbooks, gear and supplies. Buy used and new textbooks, find official Georgia Southwestern State University gear, and purchase software and gifts - all online.

TEXTBOOKS

The textbook buyback is conducted at the end of every semester during final exams. Books that are not changing to new editions and will be used the following term will be purchased at 50% of the price paid for the book. Books that are not being used again by the bookstore will be purchased by the buyer at established wholesale prices. The textbook carried by the bookstore is based strictly on faculty selection. Every attempt is made to have the books in stock before the beginning of the term, however, there are occasional delays due to receiving the text information late, publishers being out of stock, late or misdirected shipments, or unexpected increases in a course's enrollment.

REFUND POLICY

The bookstore encourages students to attend class before purchasing textbooks. A full refund will be given during the add/drop period of the current term, which is generally the first three days of the semester. The store is simply unable to allow students to keep the materials for a longer period of time and still return them for full credit. New textbooks must be returned in a new, saleable condition with no markings whatsoever in order to be eligible for a refund. A student ID and cash register receipt is required for a refund. Any markings result in the book being reduced to a used status and only a 75% refund given. General supply, gift, and clothing merchandise may be returned for any reason for a full refund within 7 days of purchase with a receipt. Defective merchandise may be returned any time throughout the semester for an exchange. Shrink-wrapped books must be returned in the original wrapping for a full refund. Textbooks purchased after the add/drop period are non-returnable. Sale items, study guides, special-order items, mass-market paperbacks, and computer software are non-returnable.

CONTACTS

Leann Miller, Web Textbook Coordinator, (229) 931-2373
Mary Ann Roper, Assistant Bookstore Manager (229) 931-2366
Amber DeBaise, Bookstore Manager and Director of Auxiliary Services (229) 931-2042

LIBRARY SERVICES

The James Earl Carter Library was completed in 1971 and named in honor of President Jimmy Carter's father. It contains over 150,000 volumes and currently subscribes to 242 journals. As a selective United States Government Depository, the Library houses over 300,000 federal government publications in various formats. The library also has a small multimedia collection (LPs, video tapes, audio-tapes, CDs, DVDs, and software). Special collections include the Dr. Harold Isaacs Third World Studies collection, GSW Historical collection, POW and Oral History collections, ERIC collection, rare books, newspapers, and popular reading materials.

Through our participation in GALILEO (Georgia Library Learning Online), the Library provides access to over 100 databases and more than 2000 journal titles. The Library's online catalog is part of the statewide integrated online system, GIL (Galileo Interconnected Libraries). GIL provides a web-based interface with a standardized search format to the USG's Universal Catalog and borrowing system (GIL Express) allowing easy access to materials held by other USG institutions. The Library is a charter member of LYRASIS a network created to increase the availability of bibliographic resources through the use of electronic data processing and communications.

The Library seats over 600 and provides individual and group study areas. The Library's computer lab has 20 state-of-the-art workstations. Audiovisual and copying equipment and facilities include microfilm and microfiche reader-printers, copying machines, scanner, an individual viewing/listening room, and headphones, tape-recorder, and a CD player, which can be checked out for in-house use. The Library also offers an adaptive technology Kurzweil machine and specially-equipped Music listening rooms.

The Library offers many services including Interlibrary Loan, reserves, a Library Instructional Program, and reference assistance. The Library offers a two for-credit courses, LIBR 1101 and HON2000 as well as customized classes. It also participates in UNIV 1000, the University's orientation course, and provides group and individual library instruction, tutorials, and demonstrations upon request. The Library's electronic services include email submission of ILL, renewal, hold requests, reference inquiries, and an online suggestion box.

Further information about the Library, its collections, services, and staff can be found on the Library's website: http://www.gsw.edu/~library.

OFFICE OF DISABITLITY SERVICES

Georgia Southwestern State University Office of Disability Services provides equal educational and accessible services for students with disabilities. Office of Disability Services coordinates compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and American with Disabilities Act. Students with a documented disability should contact the Office of Disability Services as soon as possible. The Office of Disability Services goal is to provide an educational, physical and social environment for students with a disability while attending Georgia Southwestern State University.

STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES

The Student Support Services Program is a federally funded program designed to (1) improve the retention and graduation rates of students, (2) provide academic support services necessary for program participants to maintain good academic standing, (3) provide supplementary activities for program students that will enhance their personal development, (4) assist them toward the realization of their educational goals, and (5) foster an institutional climate supportive of the success of low-income and first generation college students and individuals with disabilities. The program provides in-depth academic and personal counseling; career development; tutoring; personal assistance with study skills development; cultural activities, special focus on incoming freshman, transfer students, and returning adult students; and individualized accommodation services for learning disabled/handicapped students. Tutoring is free of charge to Student Support Services participants. It is mandatory for participants on academic warning or probation.

CAREER SERVICES

Planning for a future career is an important fact of every student's day-to-day college experience. Career Services provides a wide range of services for students throughout their years at Georgia Southwestern State University including

  • Career Counseling
  • Employment Counseling
  • Classroom seminars on resume writing, interviewing, and other job search topics
  • Regional and statewide Career Fairs
  • Career Resource Lab, utilizing computer technology
  • Current employer information and employment opportunities via Internet
  • NACELINK CSM, a link on our web site that connects employers to students/alumni. The link offers different employment opportunities, including: full-time, part-time, internship, summer and seasonal.
  • Listing of local part-time job opportunities for students
  • Operation of JLD (Job Location Development)
  • Workshops on all career related issues

Career Counseling is available to help students discover satisfactory solutions to academic and career concerns. This process is assisted by the use of various personality and interest inventories. Employment counseling aids students with resume development, interviewing skills and the job search process.

The Career Resource Lab provides students with a centralized location to explore specific career and occupational information, including educational requirements, potential employers, work environments, opportunities for advancement and a financial outlook. Information about professional programs and graduate schools is also available.

COUNSELING SERVICES

The goal of personal counseling is to help students discover satisfactory alternatives to social, academic, and personal concerns, including substance abuse and other health related issues. Counseling sessions take place in a private office and confidentiality is respected. When another person, office, community agency or medical professional can provide better information or assistance, the counselor will make referrals and help the student make an appointment. Counselors are available through the Office of Student Life, the Counseling Services Office, the Financial Aid Office, the Academic Skills Center, the Student Support Services Program, and the Residence Halls.

THE ROSALYNN CARTER INSTITUTE FOR CAREGIVING

The Rosalynn Carter Institute establishes local, state and national partnerships committed to building quality long-term, home and community-based services. Its focus includes supporting individuals and caregivers coping with chronic illness and disability across the lifespan as well as limitations due to aging.

The Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving (RCI) works at four levels (see below). For more information, see the RCI website: www.rosalynncarter.org

Training Caregiving Leaders at Georgia Southwestern State University:

The Caregiving Issues and Management Certificate Program is an interdisciplinary program designed to foster understanding of the caregiving field through the exploration of the journey of a caregiver, evidenced-based caregiver support programs, vulnerable populations needing caregivers, and culturally appropriate approaches to caregiving. Estimates have consistently projected that the need for caregiving will escalate significantly in the coming decades. This increase in demand can be attributed to several key trends, including an aging demographic, increased longevity, and the growing burden of chronic illnesses. This certificate program is designed to inform both professionals in caregiving (i.e. business, health care, education, social services, public health, and psychology) and family caregivers about available resources, support programs, and research findings for caregivers of individuals across the lifespan.

This Certificate is the only one of its kind in the state and represents a unique commitment of Georgia Southwestern State University to prepare leaders in the field of Caregiving. Pope Scholarships and Fellowships are available. Please see the RCI website for applications: www.rosalynncarter.org

Serving Caregiving Families in Georgia:

RCI operates a caregiver support center emphasizing evidence-based support programs for caregivers living in Georgia. The Alzheimer’s Disease Supportive Services Program (ADSSP) of the Administration on Aging has awarded RCI a total of 4 three-year cooperative agreements to implement evidence based caregiving interventions in Georgia. The interventions include: REACH (Resources for Enhancing Alzheimer’s Caregiver Health II) at two sites, Care Consultation, and New York University Caregiver Intervention. RCI also assists with assessment of community needs and resources for caregivers in Georgia and assists others to establish programs to meet those needs.

The Georgia Coalition of CARE-NETS (Caregivers Network):

These Caregiver Networks serve as a unique coalition of caregiver support organizations who provide services across a broad array of illnesses and disabilities. There are 12 community CARE-NET Coalitions that are strategically located throughout the state in each Area Agency on Aging district.  They provide ongoing assessment of community resources, identify and remedy gaps in services, share information and resources among agencies, develop strategies for complementary professional and family caregiver activities, offer caregiver education and, most importantly, advocate for Caregivers.

Today, the CARE-NETs represent a unique resource in the state of Georgia and is one of the most promising opportunities for developing comprehensive caregiver supports anywhere in the country.Georgia Caregiver of the Year Awards are given tothree outstanding caregivers in Georgia annually.

National Research and Demonstration Programs:

With funding from Johnson and Johnson, the Administration on Aging and others, RCI works to facilitate the communication between research and practice  RCI builds partnerships between leading researchers and community organizations to implement proven programs in communities around the nation and assure that family caregivers have access to the most effective support available.  Johnson and Johnson, a corporate sponsor, provides more than $250,000 each year in community grants to build such partnerships around the country. We also present a number of prestigious awards including the Rosalynn Carter Leadership in Caregiving Award  and the Mattie Stepanek scholarships offered in cooperation with Johnson and Johnson.

Finally, RCI has developed and supports the National Quality Care Network. This national network of agencies and researchers serves as a vehicle for developing and disseminating evidence-based interventions to improve the quality of caregiving and of caregiver supports in communities across the country.

ORIENTATION PROGRAM

Prior to the beginning of the student's first semester at Georgia Southwestern, the new student participates in an orientation program. The GSW O'Team, a specially selected and trained group of undergraduate students, and UNIV 1000 instructors, design an orientation program which makes transition into college life at GSW easier and more enjoyable. Areas given special attention include academic advisement and class schedule planning, University services and facilities, academic policies and procedures, rights and responsibilities of students, issues about which students need to make personal choices, skills necessary for academic success, and opportunities for involvement in student activities. Such topics are explored in more depth in UNIV 1000, The GSW Experience, a 1 semester hour course requirement of all first-time entering students.

New students will be notified by email and online at http://gsw.edu/Campus-Life/CampusServices/Orientation/index and/or by mail with the date and time for orientation for the semester in which they plan to enroll. These sessions provide opportunities for them to meet GSW faculty and administrators as well as to become familiar with University policies and to ask any questions they may have about the University.

STUDENT LOCATOR SERVICE

In emergency situations, students may be located by calling the Office of Student Life at 229/928-1387 or the Public Safety Office at 229/931-2245 (8 am to 5 pm weekdays) or 229/931-2245 (nights and weekends). Communication with the students will be made from these offices. These offices will not provide directory information to non-GSW personnel.

HOUSING/RESIDENCE LIFE

Residence Life at Georgia Southwestern State University offers students the opportunity to meet new people and make life-long friends, to feel a sense of independence, yet belong to a community, and to be in close contact with people who have values, attitudes, desires, and academic interests different from their own. They will be challenged to question, to think, and to grow as individuals. Students living on campus are more involved in leadership roles than their off-campus peers, including Student Government, sororities and fraternities, campus honorary organizations, the Campus Activities Board, the Orientation Team, the Residence Hall Association, and Hosts and Marshals. Living on campus can be a real PLUS if the student wants to become involved in campus life.

There are four residence halls on the GSW campus ranging in size from 230 to approximately 403 students. The halls are staffed with professional and student staff members whose primary objective is to insure a comfortable, congenial, and secure place for students to live and learn.

HOUSING ELIGIBILITY AND REGULATION

GSW has the following on-campus living requirement: All full-time students under the age of 21, who have earned less than 60 semester hours are required to reside on campus unless they have lived on campus for four (4) full term semesters NOT including summer, they are married, have a dependent child, have a documented medical condition or they are living in the legal residence of a family member. For this purpose family member is defined as parent(s), guardian(s), grandparent(s), son/daughter, uncle/aunt, or brother/sister who is not a student at GSW.

In order to provide on campus housing at the lowest possible rate, the University operates its residence halls on a contract basis for the full Academic Year beginning with the Fall Semester and continuing through the end of Spring Semester. A separate contract is signed for the Summer Term. Since the ANNUAL HOUSING CONTRACT is a binding agreement between the student and the University, applicants are advised to read this document before signing.

Failure to submit the ANNUAL HOUSING CONTRACT will not cancel the obligation to live on campus. Students who wish to commute to campus from their legal residence or live with a family member who is not a GSW student may request an exemption from this policy by submitting the REQUEST FOR HOUSING EXEMPTION form available from the Office of Student Life.

CANCELLATIONS

(A) New and continuing applicants for campus housing who decide not to ENROLL at Georgia Southwestern must cancel their contract in writing no later than thirty (30) working days prior to the first official day of classes for the affected term. Cancellation after this date will result in forfeiture of the deposit.

(B) Students who have signed contracts and will enroll at Georgia Southwestern may petition to cancel their contract by submitting the Request for Release petition (obtained in the Residence Life Office) to the Department of Residence Life, Georgia Southwestern State University, Americus, Georgia 31709 thirty (30) days prior to the beginning of the affected term. Notification submitted to other University offices will not insure requested action. Upon approval of housing cancellation, a contract buyout will be required.

DEPOSITS AND RENT PAYMENTS

(A) The application fee of $50 and the damage deposit of $250, must accompany the housing contract and is nontransferable to another person. The deposit is refunded according to the following conditions: 1) the University is unable to provide campus housing, 2) the terms of the contract are fulfilled, the student has been officially checked out of the room by a residence hall staff member, and the student is cleared of responsibility for damage to the room or building. The deposit will be forfeited, wholly or in part, when the student 1) is responsible for damage to the room or building, 2) fails to follow departmental check out procedures, 3) terminates the contract after the established deadlines or before the terms are completed, or 4) owes the University any debt, fine, or other obligation owed by the student.

(B) Housing fees are due and payable in advance at the prescribed rate per academic term. If payment is not made by the stipulated deadline, the student's registration can be canceled.

REFUNDS

Students who officially withdraw from the University qualify for a prorated refund of MEAL fees as determined by the date of the official checkout of the residence hall. Refunds will be prorated by the formula set by the Business Office. Students who vacate their assigned room during the semester without an official withdrawal or official residency release and students who withdraw and fail to officially check out of the room with the Residence Life Staff or students who are evicted for disciplinary reasons will receive no refund of either housing fees or deposit.

FOOD SERVICES

The dining service at GSW provides students with a quality and variety of food choices at an economical cost. A student who has earned less than 60 semester credit hours and who lives in a residence hall is required to purchase a meal plan. The three available meal plans, which include unlimited seconds, are 10 meals per week, 15 meals per week and unlimited meals per week. Included with each meal plan are flex dollars for purchase of items in the Canes Den, Java City, Convenience Store (C-Store) and/or for additional meals in the Dining Hall (RFOC).

After purchasing a meal plan the student's identification card is used to gain entry into the RFOC (located in the Marshall Student Center).. The Cane's Den (located in the Student Success Center), Java City (located in the Marshall Student Center) and the C-Store (located in the Marshall Student Center) accepts cash, checks, credit cards, and Declining Balance dollars. The Canes Den features a Wokery, Grill Works, Grab-N-Go as well as gourmet Pura Vida coffee.

Commuting students are also invited to use the University Dining Services. Options include purchasing any of the available semester meal plans, flex plans or applying dollars to a declining balance card (through the Office of Student Life). Purchases can also be made with cash, check, or credit card at any of the locations.

Special diet needs can be provided but must be discussed with the Food Service Director one on one. Students can do this by calling the Food Service Director, at (229) 924-2732 or stopping by the offices located within the RFOC.

For any questions concerning the dining services offered at GSW please feel free to call Dining Services at (229) 924-2732.

HEALTH SERVICES

The Student Health Center at Georgia Southwestern State University is a primary care medical clinic with a specialty in college health providing a broad range of affordable health care to eligible students. Staffed by a physician, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, and support staff, our mission is to assist students with preventive health care and consultations, as well as evaluating, diagnosing and treating health concerns, illnesses and injuries, thereby minimizing their impact on academic progress.

Georgia Southwestern State University provides on campus health services at the Herschel A. Smith Health Center. The Health Center staff provides assistance to students with minor illnesses or injuries and promotes positive physical and mental health by providing health awareness information to students. A women's comprehensive health program staffed by nurse practitioners and registered nurses is available, by appointment, every Wednesday of each month while the university is in session.

The Health Center staff includes a physician, a family nurse practitioner who serves as Director of the Health Center, and registered nurses. The clinic is open Monday through Friday. Refer to website for posting of hours of operation of the Health Center and Women's Clinic. The Health Center services are available by appointment or on a walk-in basis during operating hours while classes are in session. Hours are subject to change to reflect the needs of the University. The Student Health Center is closed on university holidays and weekends. On weekends, students should notify the Residence Life staff member on duty or Public Safety for medical emergencies. The Health Center can handle minor emergencies, but we cannot deal with life- or-limb threatening emergencies. For medical emergencies, please dial 911 for emergency medical services and then call the Campus Police for assistance, at 229-931-2245. If a student becomes ill, the Health Center will notify family members and faculty if the student so requests.

A student who utilizes Health Center medical services is expected to visit the Health Center at times that do not conflict with academic responsibilities. After a student has been assessed in the Health Center, we will provide a written recommendation to excuse from class only if we feel there is justification. By Georgia Southwestern State University policy, an excuse from class can only be granted by the professor of that class.

The Health Center provides care for all currently registered students and currently employed faculty and staff (who must pay the co-pay health fee whenever using the health center). A mandatory health fee is assessed to students currently enrolled in five or more credits on GSW's campus. A student registered for less than three credit hours has the option to pay the semester health fee, or a co-pay for each visit. The semester health fee entitles the student to consultation services with the professional Health Center staff. There are free over the counter medications available as well as first aid supplies, without charge. Students are accessed fees for prescription medications dispensed at the center, equipment, lab tests and special procedures.

All students are urged to have adequate health coverage for illnesses or emergency visits to the local hospital or a physician's office when the Health Center is closed. Insurance coverage is also recommended for medical care that is not available at the Health Center, including treatment of major injuries, surgery, and hospitalization. The university has a student health insurance plan available to all Georgia Southwestern State University students. Applications for enrollment are available in the Health Center.

Laboratory and x-ray services, inpatient hospital services, hospital emergency room treatment, ambulance transportation to a hospital, and professional services of a non-university medical specialist are not included in the semester health service fee. The Health Center staff, however, will assist the student in making arrangements with medical specialist.

The university physician is available for student visits at the Health Center at designated hours. As a part of your visit to the Health Center, the physician/nurse practitioner can dispense prescription medication at discounted prices-antibiotics, allergy and cold medicines, ear and eye drops, dermatological creams, and more (the clinic does not perform pharmaceutical services for prescriptions written off campus). Medications not stocked by the Health Center are the financial responsibility of the student for whom they are prescribed. The Health Center does not see patients who are pregnant. The Health Center will assist the patient with a referral to an Obstetrician /Gynecologist.

A student accepted for admission will receive a health history and immunization form which is to be completed and returned to the Health Center once accepted for admission to the University. All new students (freshmen, transfers, and others) attending regularly scheduled classes or receiving resident credit will be required to submit a certificate of immunization prior to attending such classes. Students will be given 30 days from the start date of classes for a required immunization record to be on file with the Health Center. After this, a hold will be placed on the student's account preventing registration and obtaining grades or transcripts.

Measles (Rubeola) required for students born in 1957 or later. Two doses of live measles vaccine (combined measles-mumps rubella or MMR meets this requirement), with first dose at 12 months of age or later and second dose at least 28 days after the first dose, or documented laboratory/serologic evidence of immunity.

Mumps is required for students born in 1957 or later. Two doses at 12 months of age or later (MMR meets this requirement), or documented laboratory/serologic evidence of immunity.

Rubella (German Measles) is required for students born in 1957 or later. (Because rubella can occur in some persons born before 1957 and because congenital rubella syndrome can occur in the offspring of women infected with rubella during pregnancy, women born prior to 1957 who may become pregnant are strongly encouraged to ensure that they are immune to rubella). One dose at 12 months of age or later (MMR meets this requirement), or documented laboratory/serologic evidence of immunity.

Varicella is required for all U.S born students born in 1966 or later and all foreign born students regardless of year born. One dose given at 12 months of age or later but before the students 13th birthday, or if first dose given after the students 13th birthday: Two doses at least 4 weeks apart, or reliable history of Varicella disease (chicken pox), or documented laboratory/serologic evidence of immunity.

Tetanus, Diphtheria is required for all students. One tetanus/diphtheria containing booster dose within 10 years prior to matriculation. Combined tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis (whooping cough) booster (Tdap) is preferred but Td is acceptable (Students who are unable to document a primary series of 3 doses of tetanus/diphtheria-containing vaccine (DTaP, DTP, or Td) are strongly advised to complete a 3- dose primary series).

Hepatitis B is required for all students who will be 18 years of age or less at matriculation. Three doses hepatitis B series (0, 1-2, and 4-6 months), or 3 dose combined hepatitis A and hepatitis B series (0, 1-2, and 6-12 months), or 2 dose hepatitis B series of Recombivax(0 and 4-6 months, given at 11-15 years of age), or documented laboratory / serologic evidence of immunity or prior infection.

Meningococcal quadrivalent polysaccharide vaccine required for newly admitted freshmen or matriculated students planning to reside in university managed campus housing. One dose within 5 years prior to matriculation, or signed documentation that student (or parent or guardian if student <18 years old) has received and reviewed information about the disease as required by House Bill 521.

International students must meet the above requirements and the following: A PPD tuberculin skin test is required within 10 days of arrival to campus. If positive, the students must have a chest X-ray within 2 weeks of arrival to campus. No X-ray films will be accepted. A tuberculosis-screening questionnaire must be completed upon arrival to campus. All reports and documentation must be in English. All immunization forms and reports must have signature of health care provider, address and contact phone number in English.

It is recommended that each student discuss with his/her health care provider the need for additional immunizations such as, Pertussis, Hepatitis A, and Influenza.

MANDATORY STUDENT HEALTH INSURANCE

The Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia has contracted with Pearce & Pearce, Inc. to provide student health insurance. All 35 Institutions of the University System of Georgia are required to use Pearce & Pearce, Inc. for student health insurance. Students in the following categories are required to have insurance that meets the minimum standards (all graduate students receiving a Full Tuition Waiver as part of their graduate assistantship award, undergraduate, graduate and ESL international students holding F or J visas; undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in programs that require proof of health insurance (e.g. nursing); and graduate students receiving fellowships that fully fund their tuition. Students who are not covered by a policy held by a parent, spouse, company or organization on the approved waiver list or if the policy does not meet the minimum standards must purchase the USG SHIP policy. Students with individual or association plans will not be considered for a waiver.

Students who are required to have health insurance will be enrolled each semester in the Mandatory Plan, which is an accident and sickness insurance policy that includes diagnosis and/or treatment of illness, injury, or medical conditions. Benefits include physician, hospital, surgical, pharmacy, behavioral health services (i.e., mental health /substance abuse), as well as legally mandated benefits. Premiums for individual students in the Mandatory Plan are available upon request from the Student Account’s Office. Students in the mandatory group will have fees assessed by GSW and placed on their student account for payment.

OPTIONAL STUDENT HEALTH INSURANCE

All GSW students who are not required to have health insurance may purchase the Optional Plan if they are (a) enrolled in six (6) or more semester hours or (b) participating in Cooperative Education Programs. The Optional Plan is an accident and sickness insurance policy that includes diagnosis and/or treatment of illness, injury, or medical conditions. Benefits include physician, hospital, surgical, pharmacy, behavioral health services (mental health / substance abuse), as well as legally mandated benefits. Students may also purchase health insurance coverage for their spouse and children for an additional premium. Various payment options are also available for the Optional Plan, including annual and semesterly payments.

For more information about Pearce & Pearce, Inc., students are encouraged to visit their web site athttps://www.pearceandpearce.com/PearceSite/Schools/GA/gssu/ or call 1-888-722-1668. Enrollment information is also available at the Health Center and auxiliary services.

For more information about the Health Center call (229) 931-2235 or fax (229) 931-2666.

In order to help create an environment conducive to the furthering of educational pursuits and personal development, the University has established minimum behavioral expectations of students. These expectations, as well as student rights, are published in the Rights and Responsibilities section of the GSWeathervane. Also included in this publication is the University policy statement relative to implementation of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.

Each student is responsible for reading and observing the policies stated in the student handbook. The GSWeathervane is revised annually and is made available to students via the GSW website at http://gsw.edu/Campus-Life/ResourcesInformation/StudentHandbook/index.

GEORGIA SOUTHWESTERN STATE UNIVERSITY DRUG FREE CAMPUS POLICY

Georgia Southwestern State University is committed to support and comply with the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 (Public Law 101-226, Section 22, subpart B) as an Institution of Higher Education. The law under this act now covers both drugs and alcohol and relates to faculty, staff, and students. Therefore, the entire campus community of Georgia Southwestern State University is under the mandate to comply. A committee appointed by the President of Georgia Southwestern has been charged with ensuring compliance with the aforementioned federal mandates.

The Task Force on Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs Committee is a committee appointed by the President of Georgia Southwestern State University.

The Task Force shall focus on alcohol, tobacco, and other drug education, prevention and intervention for the GSW campus community. The Task Force shall:

  • provide continual guidance and support to ensure that the 1989 amendments (Part 86) to the "Drug-Free Schools and Campuses Act" regulations are being followed.
  • develop a strategic plan for GSW on ATOD issues. This will include the assignment of sub-committees to accomplish strategic plan tasks.
  • forward any recommendations or modifications in any current GSW drug/alcohol/tobacco policies to the President.
  • establish and assess the Student Assistance Program to educate and provide interventions to students who violate current GSW alcohol, tobacco, and other drug policies as well as any federal, state, or local laws.
  • oversee the general education of the campus community in relation to policies, laws, and risks associated with ATOD use including programming, classes, seminars, and workshops.
  • collaborate with GSW's chapter of the BACCHUS Peer Educators to provide quality educational programming in the areas of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs for the campus community.
  • provide training for task force members and peer educators on ATOD issues.
  • provide financial support for GSW education and prevention programs.
  • assess the university environment surrounding perceptions and use of ATOD using a variety of instruments such as the CORE survey.
  • collaborate with members of the community to ensure a community approach to ATOD education.

To achieve the maximum benefit under this program, Georgia Southwestern State University expects faculty, staff, and students to meet appropriate standards of performance, to observe basic rules of good conduct, to comply with Institutional personnel policies and procedures as contained in the Personnel Policy Manual, the Faculty Handbook (as amended), and the GSWeathervane: A Student Handbook (as amended).

As an institution of higher education, the primary focus of the University is on the health and safety of all faculty, staff, and students. It is well substantiated that the health risks in using illicit drugs and abusing alcohol are enormous to the individual, as well as devastating to family, friends, and the community.

Georgia Southwestern provides a confidential counseling and referral program and encourages faculty, staff, and students who feel they have a potential alcohol or other drug-related problem to utilize these services. An important part of this program includes the Student Assistant Program (SAP) which is a coordinated effort by the Office of Student Life, Counseling Center, and the Task Force on Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs.

In the discharge of its responsibilities as an employer and an institution of higher education, Georgia Southwestern State University aggressively promotes and requires a drug free campus among its faculty, staff, and student body. The unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of illegal drugs, tobacco or alcohol by Georgia Southwestern State University employees and students is prohibited by Institutional policy. Violations of this policy, including felony and/or misdemeanor drug or alcohol convictions during the course of employment or enrollment in any academic program at Georgia Southwestern State University, may result in appropriate disciplinary penalties being imposed by the University, up to and including termination of employment or expulsion and referral for prosecution.

This policy shall be communicated to new faculty and classified faculty by the Department of Human Resources to all new entering students and all other students by the Office of Student Life. Each contractor engaged in the performance of federal contract or grant will be provided with a copy of this policy. The institutional Personnel Policy Manual, Faculty Handbook, and GSWeathervane are amended to incorporate this policy.

1. Outside groups wishing to host a function serving alcohol must adhere to the following procedures:

* Submit request to Continuing Education to be routed to the Golf and Conference Center ONLY. 
* Groups must hire a company that holds Liability Insurance with a License to Serve Alcohol (ARAMARK). BYOB will not be allowed at any function. 
* Proof of the above Insurance and License must be provided to the Golf and Conference Center, 2 weeks in advance of function.

2. GSW related groups and organizations wishing to host a function serving alcohol must adhere to the following procedures:

* Submit a request to Serve/Sell Alcohol Form located online that must be approved by the following departments before final approval. Aramark, Office of Public Safety, Office of the President, Director of Campus Life.
* Only the President can approve or deny the serving of Alcohol in a GSW facility. 
* Groups must hire a company that holds Liability Insurance with a License to Serve Alcohol (ARAMARK). BYOB will not be allowed at any function. 
* Proof of the above Insurance and License must be provided to the President, 2 weeks in advance of function.

3. GSW groups and organizations wishing to host a non-alcoholic function must adhere to the following procedures:

* Submit a Facilities request to the Reservation Office in the Office of Student Life located in the SSC # 3416.

STUDENT ACTION PLAN

Any student violating any policy of the Student Code of Conduct that relates to alcohol, tobacco, or drugs or for which the presiding judicial officer or judicial board feels that the use alcohol, tobacco or drugs contributed to or was related to that student’s violation will be assigned judicial sanctions as outlined in the Student Assistance Program. The program also will be available for any individual seeking help for alcohol, tobacco, or other drug issues.

The plan of action will be as follows:

First offense: The student will be sent a letter stating that he/she is required to sign up for and successfully complete the GSW Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drugs (ATOD) Education program at the next available offering. The student will be required to pay a $100 fee for the program. In addition, the student may be required to provide up to 40 hours of community service to the campus among other sanctions. This will be determined by the appropriate Student Affairs staff.

Second offense: The student will be subject to the following action. This will include an appointment with Counseling Services. The student will be required to sign up for and successfully complete the ATOD Education program - extended curriculum at the next available offering. The extended curriculum includes a research paper and a program presentation. The student will be required to pay a $200 fee for the program. A clinical assessment may be necessary to determine if addiction counseling or other treatments should be recommended. In addition, the student may be required to provide 60 hours of community service to the campus among any other appropriate sanctions. If the student is under the age of 21, the Judicial Officer may chose to notify the student’s parents of this second violation of the Student Code of Conduct

Third offense: The student will be suspended from school for a minimum of one semester. In addition, he or she will be referred to Alcohol/Drug addiction counseling such as Middle Flint Behavioral Services, for proper evaluation and must complete his or her addiction education program. Only after providing verification of completion of the educational program, may the student return to school.

POLICY STATEMENT ON SEXUAL HARASSMENT

(The following is compliance with Federal law and Board of Regents Policy)

It has always been our policy to maintain the best possible environment for all faculty, staff, and students. All employees and students have the right to be free from sexual and all other forms of unlawful harassment of any kind in the workplace, including harassment because of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, disability, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state or local law. GSW will not tolerate such harassment.

What is Sexual Harassment?

Sexual harassment is an unwelcome advance, request for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when....

  1. submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual's employment or academic standing, or
  2. submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for employment or academic decisions affecting that individual or,
  3. such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual's work or academic performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive academic or work environment.

Sexual Harassment can take many forms including:

  • Remarks of a sexual nature concerning a person's body or clothing.
  • Sexually explicit slurs or words which are used to describe a person.
  • Unnecessary and unwelcome touching, patting, pinching or fondling.
  • Unwelcome propositions or requests for social dates or sexual activity.
  • The circulation or displaying of sexually oriented cartoons, pictures, or other potentially offensive materials while on campus.
  • Remarks exchanged by two consenting adults that may be offensive to other individuals.

What should you do if you think you're being subjected to Sexual Harassment at Georgia Southwestern State University?

First, make it clear to the harasser that his or her behavior is unwelcome, and firmly request that it be stopped. If you then feel you are a victim of sexual harassment, you should bring your concerns to University's Affirmative Action Office in the Human Resources Department or the Vice President of Student Affairs. The earlier the incident is reported, the sooner University officials can investigate concerns. Any complaint under this policy will be handled confidentially and fairly. No reprisal or retaliation will occur because of the report of an incident of sexual harassment. A formal grievance can also be filed when reporting an incident of sexual harassment.

POLICY AND PROCEDURES FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES

Georgia Southwestern State University's goal is to ensure equal access to all programs and makes reasonable accommodations for the needs of students with disabilities. Students should contact the Student Support Services office to request academic accommodations or address accessibility issues. Please note that it is the student's responsibility to self-identify. Please visit the Student Support Services web page at:
http://gsw.edu/Academics/Academic-Resources/Student-Support-Services/index or call us at (229) 931-2294 for more information.

Faculty and staff are encouraged to direct all students inquiring about services for students with disabilities to the Student Support Services program, 1st floor, Sanford Hall.

SERVICES TO STUDENTS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES

The Student Support Services Program is a federally funded program designed to (1) improve the retention and graduation rates of students, (2) provide academic support services necessary for program participants to maintain good academic standing, (3) provide supplementary activities for program students that will enhance their personal development, (4) assist them toward the realization of their educational goals, and (5) foster an institutional climate supportive of the success of low-income and first generation college students and individuals with disabilities.

The program provides in-depth academic and personal counseling, career development, tutoring, personal assistance with study skills development, cultural activities, special focus on incoming freshmen, transfer students, and returning adult students. Tutoring is free of charge to Student Support Services participants and is mandatory for participants on academic warning or probation. To complete an application or to obtain more information on the Student Support Services program, please visit the web page at: http://gsw.edu/Academics/Academic-Resources/Student-Support-Services/index

ADMINISTRATIVE MEDICAL/MENTAL HEALTH WITHDRAWALS

For the provision of an academic learning environment and the protection of students and the total University community, the University has adopted a policy for the administrative medical/mental health withdrawals of students by the Vice President for Student Affairs. In making this decision, the Vice President for Student Affairs may consult with the Director of Counseling Services, the University physician, the Director of the University's Health Services, the Director of the University's Public Safety Office, Director of Human Resources, other appropriate university officials [such as Residence Life staff, Dean/Asst. Dean of Students, faculty, etc.], as well as with the student's parents/legal guardians [if under age 18-FERPA based], and the student's physician and appropriate health professionals [in the form of medical records documentation].

The Vice President for Student Affairs may administratively withdraw the student when it is determined that the student suffers from a physical, mental, emotional or psychological health condition which: (l) poses a significant danger or threat of physical harm to the student or to the person or property of others or (2) causes the student to interfere with the rights of other members of the University community or with the exercise of any proper activities or functions of the University or its personnel or (3) causes the student to be unable to meet institutional requirements for admission and continued enrollment, as defined in the Student Conduct Code and other publications of the University.

Except in emergency situations, a student shall, upon request, be accorded an appropriate hearing prior to the final decision concerning his or her continued enrollment at the University. The request for this hearing should be made, in writing, to the Vice President of Student Affairs. The student has the right to appeal the administrative withdrawal. This appeal must be submitted, in writing, to the President's Office within five [5] days of receiving the notification. The President may reject or accept the appeal. If the appeal is accepted, the President shall schedule a review within five class days following receipt of the student's written appeal, and a final decision must be rendered in writing within five class days after the conclusion of the review. The President may independently handle the review or appoint a committee to conduct the review. If the President appoints a committee to handle the review, it shall occur within ten [10] class days upon receipt of the appeal. The committee should be composed of three members of the faculty of the institution, or the President may utilize the services of an appropriate existing committee. This committee shall review all facts and circumstances connected with the case and shall within five days make its findings and report thereon to the President. After consideration of the committee's report, the President shall within five days make a decision, and notify the student, in writing. This decision shall be final so far as the institution is concerned.

STUDENT LIFE

The Division of Student Affairs exists to plan, coordinate, and implement co-curricular programs and services which support students while they learn. The goal of the Division of Student Affairs is to identify non-academic needs of GSW students and to put its staff and resources to work in order to meet those needs. The staff of Student Affairs is particularly interested in fostering the development of the student as a whole person. Providing opportunities for students to interact effectively with each other and with faculty, to expand their leadership and communication skills, and to achieve their goals are the underlying objectives of the programs and services of the Division of Student Affairs.

Under the leadership of the Vice President for Student Affairs, the Division of Student Affairs includes counseling, career planning and placement, admissions, financial aid, judiciaries, Greek life, orientation, residence life, student activities, intramural sports and recreation, and the student center. For complete information concerning these programs and services, see the GSWeathervane, which is made available to all students by the Division of Student Affairs.

STUDENT IDENTIFICATION CARDS

The student ID card is the official means of identification for currently enrolled students. GSW student identification cards are made during the registration process at the beginning of each term and also 8:00AM to Noon and 1PM to 5:00 PM in Room 3425 of the Student Success Center. A $10.00 fee is charged for replacing a lost or stolen student ID card. This fee is placed as a hold on the student's account and then must be paid in the Student Accounts Office.

Each semester the student must have his/her card updated with a current validation label in the Student Accounts Office. A $10.00 fee is charged for replacing a lost or stolen student ID card and is paid in the Office of Student Life.