Sep 29, 2022  
Fitchburg State University 2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog 
    
Fitchburg State University 2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog

Student Support Services



Fitchburg State University is committed to the academic success of its students. Several programs are available to advise, assist, and support students to achieve their academic goals. Students are encouraged to take advantage of these programs throughout the academic year.

Academic Coaching and Tutoring Center

Overview of the ACT Center’s Services

The Academic Coaching and Tutoring (ACT) Center has many services to help students achieve excellence. Highly qualified and trained peer tutors offer free individual, small group, and walk-in tutoring, serving students in all majors. Professional Academic Coaches offer individualized, workshop-based, or in-class support for key student success skills, such as time management, motivation, and concentration. Peer mentors are fellow students who provide academic and social support. We promote a friendly, supportive, non-judgmental approach to success.

Our mission is to help increase your academic achievement, enhance your ability to learn, apply knowledge, develop study habits, become more self-directed learners, and build critical thinking skills.

Individual and Group Tutoring

The ACT Center has tutoring for courses in all majors and our Writing Center supports all stages of the writing process, including brainstorming, drafting (papers, presentations, projects, and more), revising, and interpreting faculty feedback.

Students can schedule a tutoring appointment on SSC (https://fitchburg.campus.eab.com/), come by 306 Hammond during drop-in hours (M-Th, 10am-7:30pm, F, 10am-4pm), or email tutorcenter@fitchburgstate.edu for help. To find an ongoing tutoring group, students can fill out a form on our website (https://www.fitchburgstate.edu/offices-services-directory/tutor-center/) and speak with our scheduler about finding a group that fits their schedule.

During the academic year, drop-in schedules are posted on our website: https://www.fitchburgstate.edu/offices-services-directory/tutor-center/tutor-center-walk-in-schedules/

Graduate Student and Professional Programs Tutoring

The ACT Center also offers writing tutoring specifically geared toward students in graduate and professional programs: https://www.fitchburgstate.edu/offices-services-directory/tutor-center/professional-online-writing-support/

Academic Coaching

Our Academic Coaches individualized, workshop-based, or in-class support for key student success skills, such as time management, motivation, and concentration. Students can schedule Academic Coaching appointments on SSC (https://fitchburg.campus.eab.com/) or email or email tutorcenter@fitchburgstate.edu for help.

Academic Success Seminars

Applying research-based college study methods save students time studying and maximizes their learning. Attending these one-hour seminars provides students with specific step-by-step strategies for academic success.

Peer Mentoring

Peer mentors are fellow students who provide academic and social support. In the fall semester, they attend class alongside new students enrolled in the First Year Experience seminars, and in the spring semester, they provide Academic Success Workshops to support a wide range of student success skills. Peer mentors lead a variety of activities throughout the year to help fellow students learn about campus resources, participate in campus social events, and develop effective study strategies.

Placement Test Center

The Placement Test Center administers the required placement tests in algebra, reading, writing and foreign languages for all new freshman and transfer students. Please visit the Web site at https://www.fitchburgstate.edu/offices-services-directory/tutor-center/placement-center/ for further information regarding waivers, test dates, test registration and test preparation resources.

Center for Diversity and Inclusiveness

The Center for Diversity and Inclusiveness (CDI) lays the foundation for Fitchburg State University to be a place that creates and nourishes a culturally diverse community by educating students, faculty and staff so that attitudes of racism, bigotry, hate, prejudice, and intolerance, on any level, are overcome. The center will provide the tools of understanding, sensitivity, and acceptance to diversity in its many varied forms. It is CDI’s charge to the Fitchburg State student and its community that they:
•    Be exposed to cultural diversity
•    Learn to be accepting of people and ideas not their own
•    Acquire sensitivity & knowledge of cultural differences
•    Develop techniques on how to best deal with diversity issues
•    Advance personal skills and demonstrate competencies’ in understanding diversity.
 
The members of the Center for Diversity and Inclusiveness, in addition, will design, plan, and oversee the delivery of various programs such as Heritage Month Celebrations, multicultural education, and cultural activities designed to contribute to a positive campus culture of appreciation and respect for differences. The center advices active, diverse student organizations such as Black Student Union, Latin American Student Organization, World Integrated Nations, and Gay Straight Alliance on topics such a program planning, leadership development, heritage celebration, diversity, etc., including such multicultural events as Latin American Heritage Month, Black History Month, Native American Month, Woman’s History Month and Gay Pride Week.
                                               
The Center for Diversity and Inclusiveness, a division of Student Affairs, works diligently towards the goal of maintaining a truly diverse and engaged campus environment, where students feel comfortable, respected, appreciated and challenged. Anyone is welcomed to be a member of the Center for Diversity and Inclusiveness! The staff welcomes you to call them at (978) 665-3701 or visit the office on the G-Level of Hammond Room G04. Additional information can be found on our Web site www.fitchburgstate.edu/cdi/ 

TRIO SSS

TRIO SSS is a student support services program designed to promote the academic success of Fitchburg State University students who are income-eligible, families where neither parent has attained a baccalaureate degree, and/or students registered with the Disability Services Office. Funded by the federal government, TRIO SSS is part of the nationwide network of TRIO Programs, established more than 80 years ago, that have helped millions of students enter and graduate from university despite barriers due to race, ethnic background, socio-economic circumstances, or disability.

TRIO SSS at Fitchburg State University strives to create a smaller learning community within the larger campus community. TRIO SSS staff work with students to facilitate the adjustment to university and enhance their ability to attain their fullest academic potential. TRIO SSS offers a number of programs and services.

To be eligible for TRIO SSS, a student must be a citizen or national of the United States or meet the residency requirement for federal financial assistance, be enrolled or accepted for enrollment at Fitchburg State University and have an academic need for services. In addition, students must:

  • Meet federal low income guidelines 

And/or

  • Be a first generation college student (neither parent has achieved a baccalaureate degree)

And/or

  • Be registered with Disability Services

For further information, or to be a participant in TRIO SSS, visit the office on the third floor of the Hammond Campus Center or call (978) 665-4613.The TRIO SSS application can be found at fitchburgstate.edu/triosss.

International Education Office

Fitchburg State University encourages a global perspective on campus by promoting programs for international students as well as for students who want to study in another country. Both types of students enrich the cultural and ethnic diversity of the university community. The Office of International Education benefits international students, those who wish to study in another country, and those who are interested in an on-campus international experience.

Services offered to international students include assistance with their transition to university, cultural awareness programs, and guidance when completing the necessary paperwork and communications with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Fitchburg State University encourages students to consider a semester or a year of study in another country as part of their educational experience. The university has established a number of study abroad programs with colleges and universities throughout the world. For specific information about international study possibilities, contact the Office of International Education, (978) 665-3089.

Disability Services

Hammond Campus Center, Suite 303
Hours Monday - Friday, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Fitchburg State University encourages students with disabilities to participate fully in all academic programs and student activities. Disability Services is the primary support system for students with disabilities taking classes in the undergraduate, graduate, in person and online, remote/hybrid settings.

The objective of Disability Services is to promote independence, build self advocacy skills, and facilitate achievement of educational goals for individuals with disabilities. A number of services are available through the office. Some examples of services and academic accommodations are listed below. Please note that this list is not comprehensive.

  • Adaptive software and computer equipment
  • Testing accommodations (for example, out of classroom testing, extended time testing)
  • Alternate format materials (for example, Braille or electronic text)
  • Sign language interpreters
  • Reduced course load
  • Skill-building workshops

To be eligible for academic accommodations, qualified students must request services themselves and must provide appropriate documentation from a licensed provider to support the need for such services. Requests for accommodations must be made in a timely manner and must be reasonable for the specific disability.

For comprehensive information about obtaining accommodations, please contact the department administrative assistant at (978) 665-4020 or via email at disabilityserviceslist@fitchburgstate.edu Visit the Web site at www.fitchburgstate.edu/disability

Career Services and Advising Center

The Career Services and Advising Center aims to guide and support students as they navigate their academics at Fitchburg State University and discern a career path. Career advising services offered by our office are available to both students and recent alumni. The center’s staff provides a multitude of services, including: 

  • Alumni Job Shadowing Program

  • Career Advising

  • Career Assessment

  • Career Exploration

  • Career Fairs 

  • Graduate School Advising 

  • Internship/Job Search Support 

  • Major Exploration

  • Mock Interviews

  • Networking Opportunities 

  • On-Campus Recruiting 

  • Pre-Major Student Advising

  • Transfer Student Advising

  • Workshops

Academic and career advisors are available to support students in achieving their academic and career goals. Students can work with advisors as they see fit, whether it is an appointment to explore a change of major, or a series of appointments focused on career exploration. Advisors can help students get and stay on track for academic and career success. Advisors are available to meet with students by appointment Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.

The center is located on the third floor of Hammond Hall, Room 318.  You may also contact the office at 978-665-3151.

Counseling Services

The Counseling Services Office provides confidential short-term counseling to students at no charge. Clinicians are available for individual, group and couples counseling, crisis intervention, educational programming, outreach workshops, community referrals, and inservice training.

Counseling Services offers a variety of outreach programs to educate students in the areas of sexual assault and violence prevention, body image, stress and anger management, eating disorders, depression, and substance abuse.

The Counseling Services Office is located on the third floor of Hammond Hall. The hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Appointments can be made by emailing counselingscheduler@fitchburgstate.edu or by calling the office at 978-665-3152.

For more information, see the Web site at www.fitchburgstate.edu/counselingStudents are strongly encouraged to schedule appointments, however, the office reserves a limited number of same-day urgent appointments from 2pm-3pm, daily.

Counseling Services Office provides 24-hour emergency response to the university during the regular academic year. The counselor-on-call can be reached through the Campus Police Department at (978) 665-3111, or by contacting Housing and Residential Services staff.

Fitchburg Anti-Violence Education (FAVE)

Fitchburg Anti-Violence Education (FAVE) is a campus-wide effort to prevent interpersonal and relationship violence, and sexual assault, and to support those affected by violence.  In collaboration with all University departments and offices, FAVE seeks to create a safe and respectful community for all members by providing educational programming and training opportunities, promoting victim/survivor services, and implement awareness initiatives. 

Emergency Funding Options

The University has the following options available for emergency funding:

  • Emergency Small Loan Program.  The Office of Student Affairs can provide loans, typically up to $100, to help students manage unexpected financial situations quickly.  These loans are issued in the form of a check made payable to the student and are repaid through Student Accounts.  Students have used these loans for purposes such as textbooks or online education materials, food during University breaks or other living expenses.
     
  • Emergency Grants.  The University has different types of emergency grants available to students, either funded by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts or by donations from Alumni and Friends of the University.  These grants are designed to help students with expenses that are directly or indirectly related to their academics and do not require repayment.  Students can contact the Office of Student Affairs for more information and the application process.
     
  • Either process can be initiated through this form:  https://forms.gle/DJxM8yo34hDzWn51A

Student Health Services

Fitchburg State University has partnered with Community Health Connections (CHC), a highly respected, federally qualified health center that has two locations very close to our campus, to provide services to the campus community. Many of our students and employees already use one of their four locations in our area.

The ACTION Community Health Center is located close to our campus in Central Plaza at 130 Water Street (Market Basket plaza), where students can access a broad array of primary care services, behavioral health care services,* and dental care.

Click here to see a list of common questions and answers about the transition.

Medical services are provided from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. The cost for accessing care will usually be determined by what type of insurance you have.  

  • For students covered by MassHealth, most of the services will be provided at no cost (students will be required to designate Community Health Connections as their primary care provider);
  • For students enrolled in the University’s Blue Cross and Blue Shield student health insurance planthe office visit copayment is $15; or 
  • Students under a parent’s plan should be aware that Community Health Connections participates with most insurance plans and the cost for medical visits and ancillary services will be determined by the insurance plan’s schedule of benefits.

Community Health Connections is committed to providing services regardless of the patient’s ability to pay. Access to the sliding fee discount program will allow for out of pocket costs to be as low as $15 for a primary care visit.

Fitchburg State will have a dedicated provider located at the ACTION Center with preferred appointment availability for our students. Students may also use a second location at 326 Nichols Road in Fitchburg, as well as health centers located in Gardner and Leominster. Students will be able to access additional services such as optometry and podiatry at these other locations. 
 
The university will assist in transferring students’ medical records from Student Health Services to Community Health Connections once they have an established patient relationship. For students who may be uninsured or under-insured, Community Health Connections provides enrollment assistance to help find the right health insurance plan that fits your needs.

Students who do not wish to transfer their primary care physician to Community Health Connections may continue to access services at the three urgent care centers that are located close to our campus. Students who are on MassHealth should check the back of their insurance card to see if specific urgent care centers must be used or if there are any other restrictions.

Note that there is no special arrangement for access to care at those locations; out-of-pocket costs will be determined by individual insurance coverage. 

Absences Due to Illness

It is the responsibility of students to contact their professors if they will miss classes because of illness. In the event of an extended absence, you are advised to contact the Office of Student Affairs. The Office will notify faculty with a request for excused absences and other flexibility, however the final decision will rest with each faculty member. Students are responsible for any content missed due to health related absences.

Student Health Insurance

Every student registered for nine or more credits is required by law to purchase health insurance. Students must purchase the school sponsored health plan or show proof of comparable coverage in an alternate health plan in order to enroll in classes.

After a student registers they will receive an enrollment/waiver form. All students must complete this form by either choosing to be enrolled in the Student Health Insurance Program or waiving participation by providing the policy number of an alternate insurance plan.

If a student does not complete the enrollment/waiver form, the university will automatically enroll them in the health plan and include the cost of the insurance in the tuition bill. Students will be enrolled in the plan unless they waive the health insurance requirement online.

For more information regarding the Student Health Insurance Program, call Student Accounts at 978-665-3486.

Health and Immunization Requirements

The following immunizations are required by Massachusetts State Law:

  • Tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis (Tdap)
  • Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) - 2 doses on or after first birthday.  People born before 1957 are considered immune and are not required to have 2 doses.  If unable to document 2 doses, laboratory evidence of immune titers is required.
  • Hepatitis B - 3 doses.  If unable to provide documentation, laboratory evidence of immune titer is required.
  • Varicella Vaccine - 2 doses or documented proof of disease or laboratory evidence of immune titer.
  • Meningococcal vaccine - within 5 years (for newly entering residence students) or a signed Massachusetts waiver that acknowledges the risk but declines the immunization.

Fitchburg State University Health Services requires the following:

  • Physical exam within the past year
  • TB test performed in the USA is required if you answer “yes” to any of the three questions on the TB Risk Assessment Form.  If the TB test is positive, a report of the chest x-ray is required.
  • All medical information is due by the start of your first semester - July 15 for the fall; December 15 for the spring.

Confidentiality

Fitchburg State University Health Services is legally and ethically obligated to protect the patient’s right to privacy. Student medical records are strictly confidential. All Fitchburg State University Health Services staff are required to sign a statement of adherence to confidentiality policies. No one other than Fitchburg State University Health Services staff has access to student medical records without a patient’s prior written permission. This restriction includes parents, faculty and staff or outside agencies. In life-threatening emergencies, only pertinent information will be released to appropriate parties.

If a student is younger than 18 years of age, any care that is sought or provided related to reproductive health is also a confidential matter and will not be disclosed to a parent unless Health Services has prior written permission from the student. In the event that a student reports abuse or there is suspected abuse the providers at Health Services are mandated to report the abuse to the Massachusetts Department of Social Services.

If a student wishes to have their records released to themselves or another facility, they must sign the medical release of records form that is available in Health Services.

Limited Exceptions

Certain communicable diseases need to be reported to the Department of Public Health and patients will be informed of this action prior to Fitchburg State University Health Services notifying the department.

University Police Department

The University Police Department is located at 32 Clinton Street. Our mission is to reduce the incidence and fear of crime, to partner with the community to solve problems, and to enhance public safety in a manner that is reasonable, unbiased, and transparent.  The Fitchburg State University Police Department strives to provide exemplary community-oriented policing services by creating partnerships and problem solving strategies that promote the safety, security, and well-being of our community.  The department operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week utilizing cruiser, bike, and foot patrols of the entire campus.
 

Safety Escorts

Between the hours of 8 pm and 1 am, our student security officers assist University Police Officers in providing safe, personal escorts to and from any point on campus. In addition, our police officers will provide escorts outside of those times. Students are encouraged to take advantage of our escort program by calling our dispatch center at 978-665-3111.
 

Emergency Call Boxes

Emergency call boxes with blue lights that connect directly to University Police are located throughout campus at strategic spots. When used, an officer will immediately be dispatched to that location.

Crime Prevention Programs and Presentations

The University Police Department provides several personal safety programs, to include; Violence Identification, Prevention and Reporting (V.I.P.R.), Community Response to Active Shooter Event (C.R.A.S.E.), Rape Aggression Defense (R.A.D.), Until Help Arrives, and First Aid/CPR/AED.  We also provide liaisons to the campus residence halls, organizations, and departments.

Fitchburg State Alert (alert.fitchburgstate.edu)

Fitchburg State Alert will enable the university to notify students of important campus announcements, such as campus and regional emergencies, snow closures/delays, and faculty absences. Fitchburg State Alert is set up to send notifications to student email accounts by default. Mobile phones, land lines, and additional email addresses must be entered by the user by visiting alert.fitchburgstate.edu.  

Operation Identification Program

The Operation Identification Program can help identify stolen property, record the serial numbers, model numbers, brand names and description of personal property. Engravers and forms are available from Campus Police to mark personal property as a theft deterrent.

Parking Regulations

Fitchburg State University provides parking facilities for more than 1,600 vehicles. The university requires that all vehicles utilizing the parking facilities must display a valid permit. Permits may be obtained at Housing and Residential Services, located in Aubuchon Hall. The Parking Committee reviews policy and planning related to parking functions for the university, and includes student, faculty, and staff representatives. The current, Parking Lot Maps and Parking Rules and Regulations are available online and in hard copy at the Housing & Residential Services and University Police Department For more information please visit www.fitchburgstate.edu/parking/.

Disability Parking Permit

Persons with a disability are required to have a state issued parking placard/plate for a temporary or permanent disability (issued by the RMV) in order to use accessible campus parking spaces. Please refer to the campus parking map for available locations.

Fitchburg State University Shuttle Bus and Additional Parking

Administrative Services oversees the university shuttle service which continuously transports students, staff and faculty to and from the Wallace Civic Center parking lot (John Fitch Highway) and the main campus. The Fitchburg State University parking shuttle operates on class days during the academic year, non-stop. The schedule for shuttle service is as follows:

Sunday 4:30 p.m. midnight
Monday–Thursday 6:30 a.m.–midnight
Friday 6:30 a.m.–6:30 p.m.
Weekday holidays 4:30 p.m.–midnight

EXCEPTIONS: Sundays preceding a holiday—no service

Thanksgiving Recess—service will end at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday November 24, 2015.

The University provides shuttle tracking via the mobile website during the academic year.  You can see up-to-date locations on our shuttles by browsing to: http://m.fitchburgstate.edu and selecting the Shuttles link.

Expanded MART Service reaches into the Community

Fitchburg State University has partnered with MART to provide free, comprehensive transportation service for all Fitchburg State students. You will be amazed where your Student ID will bring you throughout the Fitchburg/Leominster area. At a nominal fee, there is additional MART service to Gardner. Services run Monday–Saturday (for more details visit: www.mrta.us/)

Parking Services

Parking Services strives to create a pleasant experience for all community members and visitors. Permits may be obtained at the Housing and Residential Services Office, located in Aubuchon Hall. Parking Permits or a Guest Permit is required for any parking lots on the Main and McKay campus. Permits are not required at the Wallace Civic Center but highly encouraged. The Wallace Civic Center is a remote parking location (10-12 minute walk from the main campus). Free shuttle service is available between the Wallace Civic Center and the main campus. 

The university is not responsible for any loss or damage to vehicles while parking in lots on the main campus or at the Civic Center. Proper display of a permit provides support for follow-up if needed. For more information please visit www.fitchburgstate.edu/parking/.

Motorist Assists

Dead batteries and keys locked in vehicles are events with which Campus Police can provide assistance. Call (978) 665-3111 or use an emergency call box.

Campus Police Web Site

For additional information about the Campus Police Department, please visit the Web site at www.fitchburgstate.edu/campuspolice.