This summer I have been steadily working on my prelim exams for my doctorate program. One part of my exams requires me to find case law and key information that backs each of the legal, policy, and risk management implications as found in the NACE Professional Standards (p. 31-32) http://www.naceweb.org/searchresults.aspx?searchtext=professional+standards (PDF download). Sounds like exactly how you'd want to spend your summer, right? Actually, I have genuinely enjoyed reading the case law associated with each standard (I’m primarily finding the cases in “A Legal Guide for Student Affairs Professionals” by William A. Kaplin and Barbara A. Lee).

 

I will spare you the details of all the cases, but reviewing these standards only takes a few minutes and serves as a great training procedure. I am reminded that our policies exist so we manage risk in our workplace and our work with students as much as possible. Remember that your actions could result in major ramifications for your students, your organization, or for you personally. Generally, if you are acting within the scope of your employment and seeking proper permissions, you are able to lessen your personal and organizational liability. We really need to think about much more than just the Fire Code (although we all know that is also VERY important).

 

The NACE website also provides articles related to other legal issues such as internships, the Affordable Care Act, immigration/international students, references, etc.:  http://www.naceweb.org/knowledge/legal.aspx

 

Dana Nordyke is a Senior Assistant Director at Kansas State University