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700 - Other Policies

700 – Smith College Affirmative Action Policy

Smith College affirms that diversity in all aspects of the educational environment is necessary for achieving the highest level of academic excellence. As a central element of this commitment to excellence, the college seeks to provide an environment that fosters the recruitment and success of a diverse student, faculty and staff community. The college aspires to create and maintain an educational, working and living environment that is respectful of differences and free from harassing behavior.

It is the policy of Smith College to provide equal employment opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, disability, veteran or disabled status. This policy relates to all phases of employment, including, but not limited to, recruiting, employment, placement, upgrading, demotion or transfer, reduction of workforce and termination, rates of pay or other form of compensation, selection for training, the use of all facilities, and participation in all college-sponsored employee activities.

Consistent with its commitment to access and diversity and as a federal contractor, the college takes affirmative action as called for by applicable laws and executive orders to assist with its goal of ensuring that minority group individuals, females, veterans and qualified disabled persons are introduced into our workforce and considered for promotional opportunities as they arise.

It is the resonsibility of each supervisor of the college to ensure affirmative action implementation of its equal employment opportunity policies to avoid any discrimination in employment. All employees are expected to recognize these policies and cooperate with their implementation. Intentional violation of these policies is a basis for employee disciplinary action. Employees and applicants shall not be subjected to harassment or intimidation because they have:

  1. filed a complaint;
  2. assisted or participated in an investigation, compliance review, hearing or any other activity related to the administration of any federal, state or local law requiring equal employment opportunity;
  3. opposed any act or practice made unlawful by any federal, state or local law requiring equal opportunity;
  4. exercised any other legal right protected by federal, state or local law requiring equal opportunity.

The Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity has been assigned to direct the establishment of and to monitor the implementation of personnel procedures to guide our affirmative action program throughout the college, and to oversee and coordinate all efforts of the college to achieve its goals in the attainment of campus diversity. This policy and related initiatives are posted at the Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity.

Policy updated 1/3/12

700.1 – Religious Preference

Students in an educational institution who, because of their religious beliefs, are unable to attend classes or to participate in any examination, study or work requirement on a particular day shall be excused from any such examination or study or work requirement, and shall be provided with an opportunity to make up such examination, study or work requirement which they may have missed because of that absence, provided that the make-up examination or work shall not create an unreasonable burden upon the school. No fee of any kind shall be charged by the institution for making available to students this opportunity. No adverse or prejudicial effects shall result to students availing themselves of the provision of this section.

701 – Statement of Academic Freedom & Freedom of Expression

Academic freedom and, more generally, freedom of expression are of paramount value in an academic community. Among the central purposes of such a community are acquisition and transmission of knowledge, cultivation of the creative and critical faculties of the human intellect, expression of ideas and emotions through the arts, and development of aesthetic sensitivity and appreciation. Academic freedom and freedom of expression are essential to the fullest realization of these purposes, and therefore Smith College must preserve and protect those freedoms. It must do so even when the ideas and values expressed are believed, by some or even many, to be inimical to humane society.

In the college as in society as a whole, freedom of speech and expression cannot be absolute. For example, speech that is libelous, slanderous, incites to riot or is unlawfully harassing is not constitutionally protected; in addition, speech directed at persons with clear intent to cause substantial injury is not protected by academic freedom. For the School for Social Work, freedom of speech and expression is further informed by the accreditation standards of the Council on Social Work Education and by the Code of Ethics of the National Association of Social Work.

Within these commonly accepted limits, Smith College endorses the following principles. Members of the Smith community may write about and discuss freely any subject of intellectual inquiry and shall not be subject to censorship, discipline, or intimidation. They are entitled to freedom in research and in the publication of results. They are also members of the larger society: when they speak or act as individuals, and not as representatives of Smith College, they shall be free from institutional censorship, discipline or intimidation.

Freedom of speech and expression is the right both of members of the Smith College community and of invited guests. Once members of the Smith community extend an invitation, others may not abridge a speaker's freedom of expression because they dislike or oppose the speaker, find her or his ideas noxious, or perceive the speaker to be associated with policies or practices believed to be erroneous or even evil.

Freedom of speech and expression is the right of opponents of a speaker as well. Opponents may make their views known in a variety of ways so long as they do not thereby interfere with a speaker's ability to make hers or his known, or with the rights of others to listen.

–As revised by the Board of Trustees February 22, 1992

702 – Policy on Substance Abuse & Substance Use

Smith College Policy on Substance Abuse and Substance Use

This policy reflects a collegewide commitment to an environment free of drug and alcohol abuse through (1) education and counseling programs, and (2) the prohibition of illegal or imprudent use of drugs or alcohol. The college prohibits the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession and use of controlled substances. Controlled substances include, but are not limited to, narcotics, barbiturates, amphetamines, cocaine, marijuana, anabolic steroids and misused prescription or legal drugs or alcohol. As used in this policy, the words “substance” and “controlled substance” include alcoholic beverages. Those who use controlled substances or illicitly use or abuse legal substances, including but not limited to alcohol, are in violation of the law and of this Smith College policy. Compliance with this policy is a condition of employment and/or enrollment at the college. All members of the Smith College community are expected to be familiar with and abide by the principles and details of this policy.

Health Risks
The use of drugs and alcohol has both physical and psychological repercussions. Such substances can interfere with memory, sensation and perception, and impair the brain’s ability to synthesize information. Regular users develop tolerance and physical dependence. The psychological dependence occurs when the substance becomes central to the user’s life and decision making.

Alcohol consumption may cause a number of marked changes in behavior. Even low doses may significantly impair the judgment and coordination required to drive a car safely. Low to moderate doses of alcohol may increase the incidence of a variety of aggressive acts, including physical attacks. Moderate to high doses of alcohol may cause marked impairments in higher mental functions, severely altering a person’s ability to learn and remember information. Very high doses may cause respiratory depression and death. If combined with other depressants of the central nervous system, much lower doses of alcohol may produce the effects just described.

Repeated use of drugs and alcohol can lead to dependence. Sudden cessation of substance intake can produce withdrawal symptoms, including severe anxiety, tremors, hallucinations and convulsions. Substance withdrawal can be life threatening. Long-term consumption of substances, particularly when combined with poor nutrition, can also lead to permanent damage to vital organs, such as the brain and liver.

Women who use controlled substances during pregnancy may give birth to infants with fetal alcohol or drug syndrome. These infants have irreversible physical abnormalities and mental retardation. In addition, research indicates that children of alcoholic parents are at greater risk than other youngsters of becoming alcoholics. A chart of the effects of use of certain controlled substances is attached. More information is available at

The buildings and residences of the college are not beyond the reach of the law and are not sanctuaries from state and federal law enforcement. Members of the administration will not obstruct such enforcement. When the conduct of a member of the college community on college property or during a college activity, wherever it may occur, is in violation of this policy, the college will take appropriate action, up to and including expulsion, termination of employment and referral for prosecution. This policy supplements, and does not replace, other regulations, policies, standards and expectations regarding the conduct of college students and employees. Nothing in this policy shall be construed to remove or otherwise affect those protections normally afforded to all employees and students. The information below is a brief summary of Massachusetts law. It is not legal advice and readers should refer to the actual law for complete information.

Illegal Offense



Using, altering, selling or distributing false ID or driver’s license

Up to $200 fine or up to 3 months’ imprisonment

MA Gen Law 138 §34B

Transporting alcoholic beverages in a vehicle by driver under 21 years of age

Up to $50 fine for first offense; up to $150 fine for subsequent offenses AND suspension of driver’s license for 90 days

MA General Law 138 §34C

Furnishing alcoholic beverages to another under 21 years of age

Up to $2,000 fine and/or up to 1 year imprisonment

MA General Law 138 §34

Making, stealing, altering, forging or counterfeiting a driver’s license or identification card or for possessing or using such a license or identification card

Fine up to $500 or up to five years in prison; immediate suspension of driver’s license for up to 1 year

MA General Law 90 §24B

Purchasing or attempting to purchase alcoholic beverages if under 21 years of age, including using a false ID

Fine of $300 and suspension of driver’s license for 180 days

MA General Law 138 §34A

Having an “open container” of alcohol as a passenger in a vehicle

Fine of $100 up to $500

MA General Law 90 §24I

Driving under the influence, if under the age of 21, is driving with a blood alcohol level of .02 as a percentage by weight of alcohol in the blood

Fines not less than $500 and up to $5,000; mandatory suspension of license for 180 days and up to 1 year and/or up to 2.5 years’ imprisonment for the first offense.  Subsequent offenses carry significantly higher penalties.

MA General Law
90 §24 (1)(a) and §24P


Driving under the influence, if over the age of 21, is driving with a blood alcohol level of .08 as a percentage by weight of alcohol in the blood

Fines not less than $500 and up to $5,000; suspension of license for 1 year and/or up to 2.5 years’ imprisonment for the first offense. Subsequent offenses carry significantly higher penalties.

MA General Law 90 §24 (1)(a)

Refusal to submit to a breathalyzer test

Immediate suspension of a driver’s license for minimum of 180 days. If under 21 years of age OR previously convicted of driving under the influence, immediate suspension of driver’s license for 3 years or longer.

MA General Law 90 §24(1)(f) (1)

Causing serious bodily harm while driving under the influence of alcohol

2.5 to 10 years’ imprisonment and a fine up to $5,000; revocation of driver’s license for 2 years

MA General Law 90 §24L


Federal, state and local sanctions for unlawful possession or distribution of illicit drugs range from probation and forfeiture of property to fines and imprisonment. For example, the sanctions against an individual for distribution of, or possession with intent to distribute, controlled substances include imprisonment for several years up to a maximum of life imprisonment, with fines up to $4 million. Sanctions can increase for repeat offenders or for offenses resulting in death or serious bodily harm, and can be doubled for each of the following occurrences: distribution to persons under 18 years of age, distribution within 1,000 feet of a school, including the College Campus School, or employing someone under 18 in the distribution. Attempt or conspiracy to commit a crime can be treated as severely as the intended offense. Many of the state and federal statutes that prohibit the illegal distribution of controlled substances provide for minimum mandatory prison sentences. Conviction for violation of any state or federal drug law can lead to ineligibility for any federal benefit, including grants and loans. Thus a student can make herself ineligible for student loans through drug conviction.

All students should be aware that current federal statutes permit notification of parent(s) regarding a student’s violation of the college’s controlled substance policy. Both designated college administrators and judicial boards may recommend to the dean of students that parental/legal guardian notification occur. The dean of students will make a final determination of the appropriateness of notification, carrying it out if deemed appropriate. (The dean of students may notify parent[s]/legal guardian[s] without a designated college administrator’s or judicial board’s recommendation if she possesses information that would support this step.) Each student should be forewarned that parental/legal guardian notification may occur if a student is found responsible for a violation of the college’s controlled substance policy.

Massachusetts makes it illegal to be in a place where heroin is kept and to be “in the company” of a person known to possess heroin. Any person in the presence of heroin, such as at a private party or a dormitory suite, risks conviction of a serious drug offense. Sale and possession of “drug paraphernalia” is illegal in Massachusetts.

More complete tables of federal sanctions for illegal drug activity are attached.

The director of human resources must be notified by an affected employee of any criminal drug statute conviction for a violation occurring in the workplace no later than five days after the conviction. The college will then notify the federal funding agency involved, if any, within 10 days after receipt of such notice.

Education and Counseling
In order to promote an environment free of substance abuse, the college supports an active program of community awareness and education. This program extends to the misuse or abuse of controlled substances including prescription drugs, alcohol and other harmful substances. The college also offers assistance with confidential counseling. Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to refer individuals who appear to be troubled by drug or alcohol use to one of these resources. For students, such counseling is available through the Counseling Service (extension 2840). Students who are concerned about their own or others’ use of such substances may seek advice and counsel from appropriate college resources without fear of breach of normal rules of confidentiality or fear of punishment. The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) offers confidential counseling for employees confronting substance abuse. Employees or supervisors can contact the EAP at 1 (800) 828-6025. The Office of Human Resources (extension 2270) may be contacted for information on the EAP program.

In addition to the confidential counseling services mentioned above,
several national hotlines can provide information and referral:

Information on Local 12-Step Programs (24 hour)

Alcoholics Anonymous..................................... 1 (413) 532-2111*

Al-Anon and Ala-teen....................................... 1 (413) 253-5261*
(Al-Anon is open to anyone whose life has been affected by another person’s drinking)

Narcotics Anonymous......................................... 1 (800) 481-6871

National Alcohol and Drug Abuse
24-Hour Helpline ..................................................... 1 (800) 252-6465

* local calls from Northampton

This policy will be reviewed at least biennially to assess its effectiveness, to implement appropriate changes and to ensure that the disciplinary sanctions discussed are consistently enforced.
Revised: 10/10; Reviewed: 9/13

702.1 – Smith College School for Social Work Policy on Alcohol

No alcohol shall be allowed in the classroom.

703 – Sexual Harassment and Sexual Relations Policies

703.1 – Sexual Harassment Policy

Smith College is committed to maintaining an environment free of discrimination or forms of harassment that unreasonably interfere with the security, well-being, or academic experience of any member of the community. Sexual harassment on campus or in other settings related to college employment or enrollment is unlawful as well as unethical and will not be tolerated. The college will respond promptly to formal complaints of sexual harassment, and, where it is determined that sexual harassment has occurred, will act promptly to eliminate the conduct and impose such corrective action as is necessary, including disciplinary action where appropriate. This policy applies to all activities of the college, including Smith-sponsored study abroad programs.

While this policy sets forth the college's goal of promoting a work and educational environment that is free from harassment, the policy is not designed or intended to limit the college's authority to discipline or take remedial action for conduct that the college deems inappropriate or unacceptable, regardless of whether that conduct satisfies the legal definition of harassment.

703.2 – Definition of Sexual Harassment

Both federal and state laws define and prohibit sexual harassment in employment and in the provision of educational services to students. In Massachusetts, the legal definition of sexual harassment is as follows: "sexual harassment" means sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

  1. submission to or rejection of such advances, requests or conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment or enrollment or is used as a basis for employment or educational decisions, placement services or evaluation of academic achievement; or
  2. such advances, requests or conduct have the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work or educational performance by creating an intimidating, hostile, humiliating or sexually offensive work or educational environment.

Under these definitions, direct or implied requests by a supervisor, professor, athletic coach or trainer, or other individual responsible for work or academic evaluations for sexual favors in exchange for actual or promised job or academic benefits constitutes sexual harassment. Benefits include grades, academic assignments, research opportunities, favorable reviews and recommendations, salary increases, promotions, increased benefits and continued employment or enrollment.

Sexual harassment can occur between individuals of the same gender and regardless of sexual orientation. The same standards that apply to harassment between individuals of the opposite sex apply to harassment involving individuals of the same sex.

The legal definition of sexual harassment is broad, and, in addition to the above examples, other sexually-oriented conduct may also constitute sexual harassment. Whether intended or not by the person engaging in the conduct, sexually-oriented conduct that is unwelcome and has the effect of creating an environment that is hostile, offensive, intimidating or humiliating to another on the basis of sex may also constitute sexual harassment.

703.3 – Commitment to Academic Freedom

As an academic institution, teaching, doing research and learning are subject to the protections of "academic freedom" as described in the college's policy on academic freedom. (See "Related Matters" at the end of this policy.) Actions or words used in the context of the academic curriculum and teaching environments that serve legitimate and reasonable educational purposes will not be evaluated as sexual harassment or other unlawful discrimination because of the principles underlying academic freedom.

703.4 – Examples of Conduct

While it is not possible to list all circumstances that constitute sexual harassment, the following are some examples of conduct that may constitute sexual harassment depending upon the totality of the circumstances, including the severity of the conduct and its pervasiveness:

Depending on the totality of the circumstances and the nature of the complaint, the fact that a relationship began as a consensual relationship may not be a defense to a claim of sexual harassment.

703.5 – Informal Resolution and Opportunities to Ask Questions

An individual who believes he or she has been subjected to sexual harassment is advised to make it clear to the offender that such behavior is offensive. Early informal methods are often effective in correcting questionable behavior or resolving incidents of possible harassment.

By bringing the matter immediately to the attention of a supervisor, the director of Institutional Diversity, the dean of students, the dean of the School for Social Work, the associate provost, or the executive director of human resources, the college can assure that prompt efforts will be made to help assess the situation, and determine what informal or formal steps are necessary.

703.6 – Responding to a Complaint

If you have supervisory responsibilities, as do academic department chairs and managers, and possible harassment or other violations of this policy are reported to you, whether or not the person making the report is personally affected, you must immediately advise the advisor for equity complaints. This reporting will result in an evaluation of how best to respond and can include informal resolution, intervention, or filing of a formal complaint (see 703.7).

If you are a faculty member who receives information from a person who believes that she or he is being or has been sexually harassed your obligation is to consult with someone who has been trained in sexual harassment awareness and response. Be aware that the complainant's interest in confidentiality and the reputation of the respondent are of equal importance at every stage of considering information shared. Depending on the totality of the circumstances and the nature of the complaint, and especially if the complainant is a student, information may have to be shared with the advisor for equity complaints.

703.7 – Formal Complaint

An individual who believes that he or she has been subjected to harassment may file a formal complaint with the college. This may be done in writing or orally by contacting the advisor for equity complaints, (413) 585-2141. If the adviser is unavailable or if circumstances make it more appropriate, the complaint may be filed with the executive director of human resources (413) 585-2260, or the dean of students (413) 585-4940, or the dean of the School for Social Work (413) 585-7977, or the associate provost (413) 585-3000, or the director of Public Safety (413) 585-2490. These individuals are also available to discuss any concerns related to sexual harassment and to provide information about the college's policy on harassment and its complaint process.

703.8 – Complaint Investigation

When the college receives a formal complaint, it will promptly investigate the allegation. An investigator will determine facts that support findings about the complaint. The investigation generally will include interviews with: 1) the complainant; 2) the respondent; 3) witnesses (if any and if deemed necessary by the college); and others as determined by the investigator.

All employees and students are expected to cooperate fully in efforts to investigate and enforce this policy. When the college has completed the investigation, the findings of the investigation will be shared with the complainant, the respondent, and others involved to the extent appropriate.

Investigators of sexual harassment complaints include the advisor for equity complaints, the executive director of human resources, the dean of the School for Social Work, the dean of students, the associate provost, and the director of Public Safety. There may be circumstances in which one of these investigators will appoint another person to conduct the investigation.

703.9 – Confidentiality

The college recognizes that confidentiality is very important. All actions taken to investigate and resolve complaints shall be conducted with as much privacy, discretion and confidentiality as possible without compromising the thoroughness and fairness of the investigation. All persons involved in an investigation are expected to treat the process with respect and to hold information confidentially. Information about individual complaints and their disposition will be shared only on a "need-to-know" basis. However, even informal efforts to end harassment may require that an accused harasser learn of the identity of the complainant. The college will work closely with students or employees to ensure their ability to complete their academic program or continue to work during all stages of handling an informal or formal complaint of sexual harassment.

703.10 – Disciplinary Action

If it is determined that an employee or student has engaged in sexual harassment or other inappropriate conduct, the college will take action appropriate under the circumstances. Such action may include written warnings, required counseling, probation, suspension, termination, or expulsion, and it may include such other forms of disciplinary action, as the college deems appropriate. Likewise if it is determined that a complainant invoked the investigatory process in bad faith or knowingly presented false or misleading information, appropriate disciplinary action may be taken.

703.11 – No Retaliation for Filing or Assisting with a Complaint of Sexual Harassment

Retaliation against any individual for making a good faith complaint of sexual harassment or for assisting in good faith in the investigation of such a complaint is illegal and will not be tolerated. All acts of retaliation are subject to disciplinary action. Individuals who believe they have been subject to retaliation should immediately report their concerns to the director of institutional diversity.

703.12 – Commitment to Awareness and Response Training

The college provides regular sexual harassment awareness and response training programs for supervisors and individuals identified with responsibilities in this policy. Additionally, the college informs the community about what constitutes sexual harassment and our moral and ethical commitment to ending sexual harassment.

703.13 – State and Federal Agency Complaints

In addition to the above, an individual who believes he or she has been subjected to harassment may file a formal complaint with government agencies with jurisdiction. Using the college's complaint process does not prohibit an individual from filing a complaint with any of these agencies. Claims filed with MCAD or EEOC must be filed within 300 days from the date of the alleged violation.

The Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD)
436 Dwight Street , Rm. 220
Springfield, MA 01103
(413) 739-2145

The United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
John F. Kennedy Federal Building
475 Government Center
Boston, MA 02203
(617) 565-3200
(800) 669-4000

Complaints from students may also be filed with the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights within 180 days from the date of the alleged violation.

U.S. Department of Education
Office for Civil Rights
33 Arch Street, Suite 900
Boston, MA 02110-1491
(617) 289-0111

703.14 – Related Matters

Statement of Principle on Sexual Relations Between Faculty and Students, Faculty Code Appendix H (PDF)

Statement of Academic Freedom and Freedom of Expression, Faculty Code Appendix A (PDF)

This policy replaces and supercedes all prior policies of the college on sexual harassment.

–Approved by President Carol T. Christ, March 9, 2007

703.15 – Principle on Sexual Relations Between Faculty and Students

The School for Social Work is a small and richly cross-joined system. Because of this fact, any faculty member may find themselves directly involved with any student's educational program as teacher, faculty field advisor, research advisor, or in some other role. Therefore, sexual relations between resident or part-time faculty members and students are unacceptable.

Further, because of the relative isolation of our students from the school, students may be vulnerable in their field placements. Sexual relations between students and their supervisors or others in the agency who have authority in relationship to students are unacceptable.

703.16 – People to See on Campus for Information, Support and Referrals

Carolyn Jacobs
Dean and Elizabeth Marting Treuhaft Professor
School for Social Work
207 Lilly Hall
(413) 585-7977

Maureen Mahoney
Vice President for Campus Life and Dean of the College
College Hall 21
(413) 585-4900

Irene Rodriguez Martin
Associate Dean of Administration and Graduate Enrollment/Continuing Education
School for Social Work
203 Lilly Hall
(413) 585-7962

Joshua Miller
Associate Dean and Professor
School for Social Work
204 Lilly Hall
(413) 585-7972

Laura Rauscher
Disability Services Director
College Hall 3
(413) 585-2071

Hrayr Chant Tamzarian
Associate Dean for International Students
Clark Hall 305
(413) 585-4943

Jennifer Walters
Dean of Religious Life
Helen Hills Hills Chapel
(413) 585-2797

Pamela Nolan Young
Director of Institutional Diversity and Equity
College Hall 103
(413) 585- 2141

704 – Smoking Policy

Smith College recognizes that using tobacco products is harmful to the health of tobacco users and that exposure to secondhand smoke poses a health risk to non-smokers. This policy has been enacted to address these heath concerns and to provide a smoke-free workplace for all members of the college community.

Smoking is prohibited in all college-owned student residences and all academic and administrative buildings. All smoking by faculty, staff, students and visitors is limited to outdoor areas more than 20 feet from an academic, administrative or residential building.

705 – Communications From the School

Important information will be communicated to you via their Smith email account. It is the student's responsibility to check this account on a regular basis; students will be held accountable for this information. Please note that the school will use this account exclusively; no personal email accounts will be used. Students should be sure to monitor this account regularly.

706 – CSW Curriculum Policy Statement


Page updated 5/1/13