If a student feels unfairly treated or aggrieved by faculty, staff, or another student, the University offers several avenues to resolve the grievance. Students’ concerns about unfair treatment are best handled directly with the person responsible for the objectionable action. If the student is uncomfortable making direct contact with the individual(s) involved, they should contact the advisor or the person in charge of the unit where the action occurred (CMB Program Administration or Chair, Lab Department Administration or Chair, Lab Manager, etc.). Many departments and schools/colleges have established specific procedures for handling such situations; check their web pages for more information. If such procedures exist at the local level, these should be investigated first. For more information, see the Graduate School Academic Policies and Procedures.
Procedures for proper accounting of student grievances within the CMB Program:
- The student is encouraged to speak first with the person toward whom the grievance is directed to see if a situation can be resolved interpersonally at this level.
- Should satisfactory resolution not be achieved, the student should contact the CMB Office and the CMB Program Chair to discuss the grievance. The program will facilitate problem resolution through informal channels and facilitate any complaints or issues of students. The first attempt is to help the student informally address the grievance prior to any formal complaint. Students are also encouraged to talk with their faculty advisor or thesis committee members if appropriate. University resources for sexual harassment, discrimination, disability accommodations and other related concerns can be found on the UW Office of Equity and Diversity website.
- The Graduate School
- McBurney Disability Resource Center
- Employee Assistance Office
- Ombuds Office
- University Health Services
- UW Office of Equity and Diversity
- If the issue is not resolved to the student’s satisfaction, the student can submit a formal grievance in writing to the CMB Office and CMB Program Chair. The written formal grievance must be submitted within 60 days of the alleged unfair treatment.
- On receipt of a written complaint, a faculty committee will be convened within 10 working days by the CMB Program to manage the grievance. The program faculty committee will obtain a written response from the person toward whom the complaint is directed. This response will be shared with the person filing the grievance.
- Within 10 working days of being convened, the faculty committee will make a decision regarding the grievance. The CMB Program will report on the committee’s decision and any action taken by the committee in writing to both the student and the party toward whom the complaint was directed.
- At this point, if either party (the student or the person toward whom the grievance is directed) is unsatisfied with the decision of the faculty committee, the party may file a written appeal within 10 working days of the committee’s decision. The appeal will go to the tenure School/College of the grieving student’s primary advisor.
The Graduate School has procedures for students wishing to further appeal a grievance decision made at the school/college level. These policies are described in the Graduate School’s Academic Policies and Procedures.