The following are questions frequently asked of Student Relations, and the answers most often given. Please keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list and you are always welcome to ask your questions in person or via email. We know that if even the most “general” of questions can always have a unique and personalized aspect.
Q: Does Whittier Law School have an attendance policy?
A: Yes, as spelled out in detail on pages B16 of the Policies Manual. Regular class attendance and preparation are deemed essential to a satisfactory understanding of a course of study. A student who is absent from more than 20% of the class hours in any given course will be automatically disqualified from further attendance at that course and the student will be ineligible to take the final examination. A student may petition the Assistant Dean for Student Relations (as provided for in the Policies Manual) for a waiver of the automatic disqualification based upon: (1) a showing of good cause for the absences and (2) adequate assurance of no future absences.
Q: Does the Assistant Dean for Student Relations excuse Absences?
A: No. Students are strongly encouraged to notify the Assistant Dean for Student Relations regarding their absences for illness and other potentially “good cause” reasons, as that information may become critical if the student is absent from more than 20% of class hours in a course, as discussed above. Also, the Assistant Dean for Student Relations will, upon the student’s request, inform the professor(s) that the student is ill and has missed (or will miss) a class for other potentially “good cause” reasons. Again, however, the Assistant Dean for Student Relations does not grant excused absences, but rather will take the reason(s) for the absences into account in making a determination of whether the penalty described above will apply.
Q: What if the Assistant Dean for Student Relations does not find good cause for the absences?
A: The matter will then be referred to the Academic Standards Committee for review.
Q: Is there someone in Student Relations I can meet with for academic counseling?
A: Yes, Nidhi Parikh, the Assistant Dean for Student and Alumni Relations. or Camille Heenan, Director of Student and Alumni Relations.
Q: Who do I see about ADA accommodations?
Q: After my first year, can I change from part-time to full-time, or vice versa?
A: Yes. A student may change status from full- to part-time or part- to full-time only by a petition granted by the Assistant Dean for Student Relations for good cause.
The Law School does not tape classes for students. We understand that students who know in advance that they will miss a class or more may wish to have those classes taped. It is, however, the student’s responsibility to have a friend or peer tape the class, after obtaining the professor’s permission to tape the class. Faculty members have complete discretion to deny such a request.
Q: Who do I talk to about exam conflicts?
A: The Office of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs (714-444-4141, ext. 111). Please note that, pursuant to Whittier Law School Policy, a student’s examination schedule which consists of three examinations in a 24-hour period would constitute an approved excuse for changing the date or time of one of the student’s exams. Two examinations in one day is not an approved excuse.
Q: What do I do if I am ill on the day of a test?
A: Contact the Office of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs (714-444-4141, ext. 111) as soon as possible in advance of the test in order to request consideration for exam relief, i.e., taking the test at another time. Exam relief is not readily granted and proof of illness or other need for exam relief must be provided. Under no circumstances should you contact your professor to tell them that you are too ill to take the test, as that might compromise test anonymity and is in violation of school policy. Students receiving Americans with Disabilities Act accommodations who seek exam relief due to illness or other reasons should contact the Office of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at 714-444-4141 ext. 111.
Q: Who do I see about transcripts, grades and ranking requests?
Q: What do I do if I need medical attention?
A: If an emergency and you are on campus, you should call 911 and then immediately notify Campus Safety (714-444-4141, ext. 401).
Q: Who can help me with questions about health insurance?
A: Nidhi Parikh, the Assistant Dean of Student and Alumni Relations or Camille Heenan, Director of Student and Alumni Relations.
Q: Does the law school have a Health Center?
A: No, but Whittier College has a Health Center and the law students are entitled to use it. Please visit http://www.whittier.edu/Students/HealthAndWellness/HealthCenter/ for further information.
Q: Does the law school require health insurance?
A: Yes. Please see the following link for further information: http://www.law.whittier.edu/index/student-affairs/health-insurance/.
Q: Is there someone I can see for personal counseling?
A: Yes, a counselor from Whittier College will be on campus Tuesdays from 12pm – 6pm in Conference Room 2C. Schedule and appointment: 562.907.4239.
Q: I have heard that students must sometimes petition in order for a request to be considered. To whom do I submit my petition?
A: Petitions vary. Some can be completed on the Petition form. Others may require you to go into more detail and write a petition in a typical memo format. In any event, please contact Student Relations to discuss. Also, whenever you petition the Academic Standards Committee (“ASC”), as provided for in the Policies Manual, please send your petition to the Assistant Dean for Student Relations, who will then make sure that it is transmitted to the ASC.
Q: My first year schedule was set for me. Is there someone I can speak with to get advice on what upper division courses I should take and when I should take them?
A: Yes. The Assistant Dean for Student Relations and Alumni Relations, & Director of Student Relations and Alumni Relations are available to meet with you to plan your schedule and assist you during, and before, enrollment time.
Q: Do we have a policy manual and is it important for me to be familiar with it.
A: Yes and yes! The manual contains information regarding the grading system, class load and attendance, the Dean’s List, and virtually every possible question you can imagine. The Policy Manual may be found on-line as a PDF at http://www.law.whittier.edu/index/student-affairs/policy-manual/ Also included in the Policy Manual are the following; Code of Student Conduct; Policy on Plagiarism and Misuse of Sources; Examination Rules; Policy for Students and Applicants with Disabilities; Sexual Harassment Policy; Student Educational Records (FERPA) Policy; Crime Awareness and Security Policy; Drug Policy; Alcoholic Beverage Policy; and Earthquake Preparedness Policy. SUFFICE IT TO SAY THAT YOU DO WANT TO BECOME FAMILIAR WITH THE POLICY MANUAL!
Q: I am an officer or member of a student organization and have questions regarding event planning, expense reimbursement, and other related issues. Who do I speak with to obtain advice and learn about applicable policies?
Q: May I take courses at another law school?
A: Yes. Students seeking to take courses at other ABA law schools, including summer programs at other schools or in foreign countries, must first obtain written permission from the Assistant Dean for Student Relations. A maximum of six (6) units for courses taken at other law schools after starting at Whittier Law School will be counted toward graduation requirements. It is best to set up an appointment with the Assistant Dean for Student Relations to discuss our policies regarding visiting at another school.
Q: How do I withdraw from law school?
A: We realize that life circumstances and time often result in this not being the opportune time for all enrolled students to remain. A student who wishes to withdraw before the last three (3) weeks of the semester or last two (2) weeks of the summer session should petition the Assistant Dean for Student Relations. After that time period, a student may withdraw from school only by a petition granted by the Academic Standards Committee for good cause.