Student Feature | MSUM’s New Student Bereavement Policy & The Role Students United Played

written by | Elizabeth Aydt


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Life is very unpredictable, and when an unpredictable event occurs for college students, they want to know that their education will not suffer because of it. The new Student Bereavement policy at Minnesota State University Moorhead—which is planning on being implemented Fall 2018—will provide students with leniency on their homework, tests, and other classroom responsibilities when a death occurs during their academic year. An advocate for the student will be provided if needed as well (i.e. a professor, faculty member, etc.) The amount of leniency the students will receive will be determined by the event the students encounter. International students will be honored under this policy as well.

Michael Reeves—MSUM’s Students United Issues Specialist—started working on the policy with MSUM’s Student Senate after learning about it at a Students United committee retreat when Director of Equity and Inclusion, Abeer Syedah, said she believed an equity component is often missing from campus bereavement policies. Reeves has some personal connection with the policy. Last year, he went through a tragic loss of multiple relatives in a short amount of time. “professors were not lenient” said Reeves, and this made it difficult for him to be successful in his studies and cope with his personal losses. He hopes this policy makes it easier for other students who go through tragic losses. Thank you to Michael, Abeer, MSUM Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs, and MSUM’s Student Senate, for bringing this issue to light and advocating for MSUM’s students. 

Read the full Student Bereavement Policy here.

Aly Hagglund