Student Wellness

Effective learning happens in a setting where students feel happy, comfortable and secure. Engineering curricula can be very challenging. Chemical engineers (and engineers generally) are well paid because they possess a valuable skill set, acquired through hard work in hard courses.

A primary purpose of the mandatory advisement each fall semester is to keep you on track, so that you will not miss prerequisites, take unnecessary courses, or take extra time to graduate, or have other academic worries.

Advising also has a broader purpose: to make sure that you are OK. We ask you to speak with your CBE advisor about any concerns or problems you have whatsoever, such as stress keeping up with homework, test-taking anxiety, and concerns about your academic performance overall or in specific courses.

We especially ask you to speak with your advisor if you are experiencing severe stress, depression, a feeling of hopelessness, problems with other students, problems at home, or any other circumstances that interfere with your ability to study and your general wellbeing. If there is a serious problem, then we would want to help you set up an appointment with UB Counseling Services. It’s very important to realize that all problems can be solved, no matter how big or hopeless they seem. Sometimes it takes talking with another person to realize you need help. The faculty cares about you, and wants to support you in this way if you have any problem that seems insurmountable to you.

If your advisor is unavailable and your concern is urgent, then we also that ask you contact Marlo Roetzer, Academic Coordinator, 645-2569 or Johannes Nitsche, Director of Undergraduate Studies, 645-1182 for help when you need it.

Dealing with Courses

Engineering curricula are challenging. Chemical Engineers (and engineers generally) are well paid because they possess a valuable skill set, acquired through hard work in hard courses. A primary purpose of the mandatory advisement each fall semester is to keep you on track, so that you will not miss prerequisites, take unnecessary courses, or take extra time to graduate, or have other academic worries.

Advising also has a broader purpose: to make sure that you are OK. We ask you to speak with your CBE advisor about any concerns or problems you have whatsoever, such as stress keeping up with homework, test-taking anxiety, and concerns about your academic performance overall or in specific courses.

We especially ask you to speak with your advisor if you are experiencing severe stress, depression, a feeling of hopelessness, problems with other students, problems at home, or any other circumstances that interfere with your ability to study and your general wellbeing. If there is a serious problem, then we would want to help you set up an appointment with UB Counseling Services. It’s very important to realize that all problems can be solved, no matter how big or hopeless they seem. Sometimes it takes talking with another person to realize you need help. The faculty cares about you, and wants to support you in this way if you have any problem that seems insurmountable to you.

If your advisor is unavailable and your concern is urgent, then we also that ask you contact Marlo Roetzer, Academic Coordinator, 645-2569 or Johannes Nitsche, Director of Undergraduate Studies, 645-1182 for help when you need it.

Conduct

Students are required to treat all UB faculty, staff, visitors and fellow students with professionalism and respect. All students are expected to abide by the Student Code of Contact and the Obstruction or Disruption in the Classroom Policy.

In any instance of disruptive, disrespectful or aggressive conduct the Department contacts the Office of Student Conduct and Advocacy for definitive interpretation of a student’s conduct vis-à-vis these rules, and determination of the appropriate course of disciplinary action.

Academic Integrity

Dealing with academic dishonesty is stressful. UB has a well-defined Academic Integrity policy to deal with such instances. Our department follows this policy. It involves Consultative Resolution, in which a discussion occurs between you and the faculty member teaching the class to determine exactly what occurred, a decision (that an act of academic dishonesty did not occur, or that it did with a sanction such as a point penalty). There are two important things to keep in mind about academic integrity situations.

First, the goal of the Consultative Resolution process is for students to recognize what they did, and take responsibility for their action. It is best just to be honest in discussing the incident at the outset. Faculty are on the student’s side, and they do not like to deduct point penalties. They just want to help the student face the incident, and then move on with the positive experience of having taken responsibility for an error in ethical judgment. Students generally feel a great sense of relief at this moment. CBE faculty remind students that they should feel good about having had the courage to face the incident, and are most welcome and should feel happy about going to class afterwards. Also, just talking about the incident can help students get over the frustration of losing more points than they had hoped to gain. Students should view faculty as a resource to help them get over the incident and move on.

Second, there is always a right to appeal. If a student feels the incident was decided incorrectly or unfairly, then he or she can appeal the decision at the Department level, the School level and the Vice Provost level. If a mistake was made, it is highly likely that at least one of three independent sets of eyes would get to the bottom of what happened and correct the mistake. Faculty are actually glad when an alternate explanation is found for what looked like academic dishonesty. Also, students can always have an advocate present to give them moral support. The best decisions are made when all parties feel comfortable and secure.

The bottom line is that the more students get in the frame of mind of facing the incident and moving on, the less stress they feel. Ultimately, that’s what we are trying to achieve.