Student Employee Rights & Privacy
What resources exist for students experiencing a conflict in their campus jobs?
The Campus Employment team (firstname.lastname@example.org) is available to support students with navigating conflicts during their job search and during their campus employment, including facilitating dialogues and advocating for their labor rights. We can meet with individual students, as well as mediate conversations between student employees or the student employee and their supervisor. Additional resources include:
Student Ombuds – Each Student Ombud serves as a neutral and confidential* peer resource focused on empowering students to successfully navigate the institution and advocate for themselves in moments of conflict, particularly when there are power dynamic considerations. Reach out to the Student Ombuds via email@example.com, or the program manager Dr. April Ruiz, Dean for Academic Equity, Inclusion, & Success at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Office of Equity & Inclusion – In cases of discrimination, harassment, and sexual misconduct, The Office of Equity & Inclusion is available to offer support, discuss situations, and provide resources/options. Reach out to Debbie Colucci, Wesleyan’s Assistant Vice President for Equity & Inclusion / Title IX Coordinator, at email@example.com.
Counseling and Psychological Services – CAPS offers confidential* psychotherapy services where students may discuss worries, distressing feelings, or difficult situations they are currently experiencing. Individual counseling and group counseling are available. For urgent matters, same-day crisis appointments can be scheduled by calling 860-685-2910.
Class Deans – The Class Deans are available to advise students and help facilitate students’ access to academic and non-academic support services. They work with faculty and staff to support student success. Visit the Class Deans page to contact your respective Class Dean.
Accessibility Services – Students with documented learning, physical, sensory, health, or psychiatric disabilities are able to request reasonable accommodations through Accessibility Services. Students who have, or suspect they may have, a disability for which they would like to request accommodations, should contact Accessibility Services at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss their needs.
*Note: The confidential resources listed above have exceptions to confidentiality if students are considered at imminent risk of harm to either themselves or another person. Read more about the exceptions to confidentiality on their respective websites.
What are student employees’ protections regarding discrimination, harassment, and disability accommodations?
Wesleyan University abides by all applicable federal laws and regulations, as well as laws and regulations in the state of Connecticut. Student employees are protected by the federal laws and regulations of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, as well as the state laws and regulations of the Connecticut Discrimination Employment Practices Act. These laws prohibit employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, and disability. These laws also prohibit sexual harassment in the workplace, including quid pro quo acts, hostile work environments, and sexual assault. The Americans with Disability Act (ADA) additionally protects reasonable work accommodations for qualified individuals with a disability.
To learn more about these protections, navigate to the links below.
-Policy Prohibiting Discriminatory Harassment & Sexual Misconduct | Wesleyan University | Human Resources
Are student employees’ employment records protected by privacy laws? Can students’ parents request access to the student employee’s employment records or employment information?
Student employment records are protected by the Family Education Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA), as regulated by the U.S. Department of Education. Under FERPA, students are provided with access to their employment records and have the opportunity to inspect and review these records, including employers’ evaluations. At Wesleyan, students have access to their job applications and job descriptions via Handshake.
The student employee must notify their supervisor if they need their supervisor to disclose their employment information to others. On-campus employers must have the student employee’s consent in order to disclose employment information to others, including information about their shifts. This consent must be signed or written, and the purpose must be clearly defined. For example, if the student employee has a prospective employer that wants to check their work history, the student must contact their on-campus employer in writing and give permission for the on-campus employer to discuss the student’s work, specifically for the purpose of that professional reference check. These restrictions apply to the student employee’s family members, including parents. If a parent calls a campus employer to ask whether their student is at work because they need to reach them, the campus employer is advised to direct the parent to the Office of Public Safety.
FERPA allows on-campus employers to disclose student employment information without student permission in these instances:
-Requests from a school official that has legitimate educational interests in the student (e.g. a class dean who is supporting the student through accommodations, etc.)
-Requests from the Financial Aid Office to help determine a student’s eligibility for financial aid
-Requests for federal or state audits
-Court orders and subpoenas
Does the Gordon Career Center or Campus Employment team play a role in student-employee labor unions?
Our involvement does not extend to unionization efforts, neither in the representation of students nor on behalf of campus employers. However, our commitment to being a supportive resource for individual students remains steadfast. We acknowledge and respect students’ impactful, purpose-driven efforts to engage thoughtfully and critically with the tenets of their labor rights.
To gain insights into the legal aspects of labor unions, we recommend visiting the National Labor Relations Board. Additionally, researching recent advancements made by undergraduate and graduate labor unions in the realm of collective bargaining agreements can provide valuable insight.