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Raritan Valley Community College    
 
    
 
  Dec 17, 2017
 
2014-2015 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Campus Life



Upon registration at Raritan Valley Community College, all students become members of the College community with all the rights, privileges and responsibilities that go with such membership. The student is expected to make satisfactory educational progress, to respect the rights of others, and to know and follow the policies and regulations developed by the College community for the good of the total membership.

Student Code of Conduct

One of the core values of Raritan Valley Community College is fostering an environment of mutual respect, responsibility, and collaboration.

The RVCC Student Code of Conduct (Code) establishes expectations of behavior for all RVCC students regardless of enrollment status or campus location. The provisions of the Code govern the actions of all students, whether at a College-owned or managed location or at a College-sponsored or supervised function or event. The Student Code of Conduct is included in the Student Handbook and posted in the Student Conduct section of the RVCC website.

Upon admission to the College, a student incurs the responsibility for becoming familiar with and abiding by, the provisions of the Code. Violations of the Code may result in a student receiving an appropriate penalty.

The Code of Conduct also affords all students appropriate due process.  

The College maintains records of all charges filed against students under the Code, and the disposition of those charges.

Dissent and Demonstrations

Any member of the College community or the public is free to express or demonstrate support for, or opposition to, any principle, issue, or action through orderly means that do not violate any College policy or regulation. Such demonstrations must not interfere with or disrupt normal operations of the College or infringe upon the rights and/or freedoms of other members of the College community. 

College Hours

The College designates time each week as College hours for College community activities and events: Tuesday and Thursday, 1-2:20 p.m. Students are encouraged to use this free time to participate in extracurricular activities, which include student government meetings, club meetings, intramural sports, College committees, and other College-sponsored functions.

Office of Student Life

The classroom experience is only one segment of the available education at Raritan Valley Community College. The cultural, recreational, and governmental activities and functions at the College are equally important. By sharing in these activities, students have the opportunity to develop many personal and career skills.

Student life at Raritan Valley Community College develops according to student interest. While the selection, planning, and administration of these activities depend on the interest, time, organization, and effort of the students, assistance is provided by the Office of Student Life. Groups of students interested in forming a student organization should consult with the Student Life Office.  More information is available in the Student Life section of the RVCC website.

Student Activity Fund

RVCC dedicates a portion of the General Registration Fee it collects from students to create and maintain a Student Activity Fund. This fund is used to support co-curricular programming to further develop the academic, social, cultural, athletic, and leadership skills of RVCC students. The College’s Student Government Association is responsible for making recommendations to the College administration on the allocation and expenditure of this fund. Programs supported by the Student Activity Fund must be open and available to all RVCC students.

To be eligible to receive support from the Student Activity Fund, a student organization must meet all of the following criteria.

  • Be an active student organization recognized by the College’s Office of Student Life.
  • Have on file with the Office of Student Life a current Constitution and Mission Statement, a list of officers, and the identification of active faculty or staff sponsor(s).
  • Have a detailed expenditure budget approved by the Office of Student Life.

All student organization funds, including dues, donations, fund-raising income, and allocations from the Student Activity Fund, are maintained in internal accounts managed by the College. All expenditures from an organization’s account must be consistent with the organization’s Constitution and Mission Statement, and must be processed in compliance with College policies and procedures relating to the purchasing of goods and services.

The College reserves the right to establish further regulations, or modify existing regulations, relating to the collection, management, and expenditure of student organization funds as it deems appropriate at any time.

Clubs and Organizations

Every student is encouraged to get involved and participate in a variety of activities. Student organizations covering a wide spectrum of interests exist to meet the needs of students. More information about current clubs and organizations can be found at http://www.raritanval.edu/clubsandorgs.html.

Athletics

Raritan Valley Community College is a member of the National Junior College Athletic Association (Region XIX) and the Garden State Athletic Conference. RVCC Athletic Programs include Men’s and Women’s Soccer (DIII), Men’s and Women’s Cross Country (DIII), Women’s Volleyball (DIII) Men’s and Women’s Basketball (DII), Baseball, and Softball (DII).

Raritan Valley Community College has been represented at the state and national levels in many sports, enabling students to compete for athletic scholarships at four-year colleges and universities. The College currently offers athletic scholarships for NJCAA Division II programs, including Women’s Basketball, Men’s Basketball, Women’s Softball, and Men’s Baseball.

Students are also encouraged to use the Fitness Center, Pool, Track and Gymnasium during their leisure time. Athletic facilities are free to students with a valid College ID Card.

More information can be found at www.rvccathletics.com. To contact Athletics, e-mail rvccathletics@raritanval.edu, call (908) 218-8868 or fax (908) 575-9458.

Services

Bookstore

The Golden Lion Bookstore is located on the lower level of the College Center and is operated by the Follett Higher Education Group. The store sells new and used printed textbooks, many textbooks in digital format, study aids, computers and computer supplies, clothing, greeting cards, and snacks and magazines. A textbook rental program is available for a large number of  titles. Textbooks in good condition can be sold back to the store during regular business hours. The bookstore also can be found online at http://www.raritanval.bkstr.com. Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, and personal checks are accepted.

Textbook Refund Policy

  1. A sales receipt is required for all refunds and exchanges.
  2. Returns are accepted within five working days of the date on the receipt.
  3. Refunds will be given for the first 10 days of the semester if a class has been dropped (Drop/Add form required) and the receipt is dated within one month of the start of the current semester. Standard policy is in effect thereafter.
  4. Exchanges will be granted until the 10th day of the semester with a recent receipt.
  5. If a new book has been written in, contains highlighting or is damaged in any way, only a 75% refund will be given.
  6. Shrink-wrapped packages must be returned with all materials that came in the package. No refund will be given for packages missing items.
  7. Software included in textbooks must not have been loaded and must have original seal. Internet codes must not have been used and must have original seal.

Federal Credit Union Services

Anyone in the RVCC community may become a member of the Affinity Federal Credit Union, which operates a branch on campus on the upper level of the College Center, behind the cafeteria. The full-service facility is staffed by students on a four-day per week schedule, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.  The student service representatives go through an intensive training program that enables them to deliver competitively priced credit union products—checking and savings accounts, loans, etc.—with the same degree of professionalism as any other Affinity branch. Affinity also conducts several financial literacy seminars during the year.

Traffic and Parking

Students may park in lots 1,2,3,4,5, 7 and 8. Students are not allowed to park in the visitor’s lot. Parking in spaces designated for disabled individuals is reserved for vehicles authorized under laws of the State of New Jersey, and is monitored by the Branchburg Police Department. Parking is prohibited on all roadways, lawns, medians, crosswalks, loading zones, marked emergency fire lanes, emergency phone access lanes or any other areas designated by the College unless authorized by Campus Security.


Overnight parking is prohibited anywhere. Drivers must adhere to all posted speed limits on campus and must yield to pedestrians in crosswalks. Persons in violation of these regulations are subject to towing, citations, and fines. The College is not responsible for any damage to the vehicle during towing.  The College is not responsible for any injury, property damage, or loss sustained by a vehicle’s owner/driver while on College property.


Under New Jersey law, a disabled person may obtain either a special license plate or vehicle placard that provides special parking privileges. To park in a designated disabled area on campus, you must have handicap license plates or the placard, which is only provided by your local police department. Temporary placards can be issued to a person who has temporarily lost mobility as certified by a physician or podiatrist. Placards must be displayed in full view. Any person without a placard properly displayed may receive a parking summons and fine, at the discretion of the Branchburg Police Department.

Food Services

Hot meals, fast food, snacks and vending machine services are provided in the main campus dining hall by the College’s food service partner, CulinArt. The dining hall is located on the upper level of the College Center. Service is offered Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m to 6:30 p.m., and Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., when classes are in session. Check the RVCC website for summer hours.  Vending machine services are available throughout the campus.

A snack bar featuring nationally branded Starbucks coffee and limited food choices is available on the ground floor of Somerset Hall by the Mannheimer Welcome Center. Hours are Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Fridays, 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Check the RVCC website for summer hours. 

Children’s Campus (Child Care Center)

The Children’s Campus, a child and professional development center, is open 12 months a year, from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. Located near Parking Lot #4, the Children’s Campus accepts children age 3 months through age 5 years. After-kindergarten care is provided when space is available. Priority for registration is given first to RVCC faculty, staff and students. Children from the surrounding communities are accepted on a space-available basis once the priority registration period for each semester has been concluded. Drop-in care is available as space permits to regularly enrolled children.

The Children’s Campus uses the research-based Creative Curriculum to provide a stimulating learning experience for young children. Curriculum is designed to provide even the youngest learners with a stimulating and nurturing atmosphere. In addition to providing professionally directed child care, the Children’s Campus offers practical experience to students of the Early Childhood Education program and work study students.

More information regarding employment possibilities can be found on the Career Services web page, on the Human Resources web page, or by calling (908) 526-1200, extension 8260.

Housing and Transportation

Housing and transportation are not provided by the College.

Identification Cards

All students are required to have a valid RVCC Identification (ID) Card in their possession at all times when on College property or at any other location where the College offers courses. Student ID cards must be obtained and validated at the Office of Student Life or the Library. Students are expected to have their student ID Card on them at all times while on campus. A student is required to present his/her Identification Card when requested to do so by College personnel and Security staff. Failure to provide a student ID Card upon request will result in verification action by Student Services or the Security Department. If a person’s identity cannot be verified, the unidentified persons may be asked to leave campus property.   

A student’s ID card is used for access to various College facilities and services, and the Office of Student Life. The student ID card includes a bar-code that is required for use of the College Library, the public libraries in Somerset and Hunterdon Counties, Fitness Center and RVCC athletic facilities. The Theatre at RVCC offers discounted tickets to students with a valid ID card. For additional information, contact the Office of Student Life at (908) 526-1200, extension 8873.

Mannheimer Welcome Center

RVCC Staff in the Mannheimer Welcome Center provides information and gives directions. Other areas for current information are bulletin boards, the Student Handbook, video display screens, the RVCC website, and College publications.

Automated Teller Machines (ATMs)

Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) are available on the second floor of the College Center and the lower level of Somerset Hall near the Mannheimer Welcome Center.

Campus Emergencies

Raritan Valley Community College cooperates with all local safety and health regulatory and enforcement agencies. In response to a fire alarm or notification of other emergency requiring an evacuation, everyone, with the exception of authorized safety officers, is to immediately evacuate all campus buildings and move quickly and safely to designated evacuation areas along the exterior of the campus. The interior courtyard area of the campus is not an approved evacuation site. No one is to reenter any building until approved to do so by emergency personnel or by a College official. Other emergencies may require building occupants to stay in their rooms.   Red phones to be used in an emergency are located throughout the campus buildings.  There are blue emergency phones in the parking lots.

In the event of any emergency, students, employees, and visitors are to follow specific instructions issued by the College administration or the law enforcement agency in charge of the incident. Evacuation directions are posted in each room. More detailed instructions are available in the Annual Security Report posted on the College website in the Security section.

The Confidential TIPS Hotline 

The TIPS Hotline is available for members of the College community or other interested parties to share any knowledge about a crime, a planned crime, or suspicious activity on campus, as well as any information about a troubled individual or threatening situation that could develop into a violent act or assault. Knowledge of threats or potential acts of violence needs to be brought to the attention of College security personnel so they can immediately act to prevent anyone from being injured. All threats need to be taken seriously, and any information will be acted upon as quickly as possible. The TIPS Hotline can be accessed via phone at (908) 231-8806 or online by visiting the TIPS Hotline page of the RVCC website.  

Smoking and Tobacco Use

To provide a healthy working environment for the College community, RVCC is a tobacco-free and smoke-free environment, with the exception of main campus parking lot areas that are at least 50 feet or more from any College building. Persons in violation of this policy are subject to citations, fines, and/or other disciplinary actions. Citations are issued without prior warnings. Currently, $25 will be charged for the first offense, $50 for the second offense, and $75 plus charge of violation of student conduct for the third offense. This policy includes vaporizers and or electronic cigarettes. 

Firearms, Weapons, Explosives, Dangerous Knives, Hazardous Materials

Firearms, weapons, ammunition, explosives, destructive devices, fireworks, firecrackers or any item that imitates or is reasonably capable of being mistaken as a weapon, explosives or destructive devices are not permitted on College property. This includes antique firearms, air guns capable of launching a projectile either by propelling force or compressed air, components that can be assembled into a weapon or explosive devices, whether operable or inoperable.

Gravity knives, switchblade knives, butterfly knives, daggers, stilettos and other dangerous knives are not permitted on College property.

Dangerous weapons including stun guns, blackjacks, bludgeons, metal knuckles and weapons or other devices which projects, releases or emits tear gas are not permitted on College property.
 
Unless authorized, hazardous materials are not permitted on Campus property.

Violation of this policy can result in legal prosecution and College administrative action.

Possessing or Carrying Firearms on College Property

Off-duty law enforcement officers, who are required to carry a firearm while attending classes, shall properly secure and conceal the firearm at all times while on the College campus, or any other College property.


Retired law enforcement officers authorized by law to carry a firearm shall properly secure and conceal the firearm at all times while on the College campus, or any other College property.

Gambling

In compliance with New Jersey State Laws, gambling is forbidden on campus. Any persons found gambling on campus property may be subject to legal action.
 

Identity Theft

RVCC maintains procedures to prevent, detect, and mitigate identity theft and responds appropriately to any “red-flag” event related to any covered account with the College. A “red-flag” event is any activity indicating the possible existence of identity theft. “Red-flag” events include, but are not limited to, warnings from consumer fraud detection agencies, the presentation or use of suspicious documents or personal identifying information, requests received from external e-mail accounts or addresses not on-file at the College, and notices received alleging the existence of identity theft.

Identifying information includes, but is not limited to, a person’s name; date of birth; address; telephone, Social Security, driver’s license, passport, alien registration, employer/taxpayer, student, or other identification number; Internet protocol address; or routing code.

A covered account is any account opened, maintained, and/or administered by the College for an individual’s personal, family, or household payments or other financial transactions with the College. Covered accounts include, but are not limited to, student accounts, employee accounts and records, and other payment or collection accounts.

In investigating and responding to cases of apparent identity theft, the College may take any or all of the following actions:

  • Close or deny access to a covered account.
  • Issue a new account identification number.
  • Change passwords or other security codes.
  • Notify appropriate security or law enforcement agencies.

To prevent attempted identity theft, RVCC will ensure that:

  • Data and record systems are appropriately secure.
  • Data and records no longer needed are securely and completely destroyed.
  • All College computers with access to covered account information are password protected.
  • Computer virus and other malware protection software is current.
  • Access to covered account information is restricted to employees with specific authorization.
  • Covered accounts contain only information that is essential to the operation of the College.
  • Employees responsible for managing and implementing the College’s procedures regarding identity theft have the most complete and current information and are appropriately trained and responsive.
  • The College’s procedures relating to identity theft are periodically reviewed and evaluated.
     

Animals on Campus

Persons may not bring animals onto the College campus, or any other location where the College offers courses or sponsors events, with the exception of service animals used by individuals with documented disabilities that require their assistance. A service or guide dog trainer, while engaged in the actual training process, shall have the same rights, privileges, and responsibilities with respect to access to public facilities as are applicable to a person with a certified disability. 

Emergency Notification

Raritan Valley Community College utilizes the Blackboard Connect-ED communication service in order to notify students, faculty and staff about actions to take in the event of inclement weather or an emergency.

The multi-modal emergency notification service enables campus leaders and security professionals to contact students, faculty and staff with time-sensitive information and updates within minutes through phone calls, text messages or e-mail. The system enables RVCC students and personnel to be contacted on campus, en route to campus, at home or at work. In order to receive voice and e-mail messages, students provide contact information when registering which is entered into the Connect-ED messaging system by the College. If students also wish to receive text messages, they need to register for this option via the Campus Closing tab on Lion’s Den.

Delayed Openings

If the College announces a delayed opening at any location due to inclement weather or other emergency situation, all offices will be closed and all College classes and/or other activities will be suspended at that location until the delayed opening time.

Classes scheduled to begin before the delayed opening time that have 60 minutes or more of instruction time remaining at the delayed opening time will begin at the delayed opening time and conclude at the regularly scheduled ending time. Classes scheduled to begin before the delayed opening time that have fewer than 60 minutes of instruction time remaining at the delayed opening time will be cancelled.

Classes scheduled to begin at or after the delayed opening time will meet as scheduled.