The United Stated Department of Education requires that each accredited institution of higher education maintain a record of student complaints received by the institution (34 CFR 602.16(a)(1)(ix)). As required by federal regulations, this record is made available to the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. The record will be reviewed by the Commission as part of the institution’s Self Study and Periodic Review Report evaluations.

Student Complaint Policy

The Sage Colleges aims to provide an environment that fosters the personal and intellectual growth and development of all students where concerns can be discussed and resolved in a professional manner. The Sage Colleges complaint process encourages informal resolution through direct communication with the individuals directly involved. Formal complaints will be considered if the student has followed and exhausted the informal processes. The Sage Colleges makes every effort to resolve student complaints internally, using policies and procedures outlined in the current Catalogs and Student Handbooks. It is expected that students will fully utilize any and all procedures to address concerns and/or complaints in as timely a manner as possible.

This Policy applies to all students (full time or part time, onsite or online) who are enrolled at The Sage Colleges at the time that the complaint is filed. Parents, relatives, employers, agents, and other persons acting for or on behalf of a Student are not considered students under this policy.

Complaint Policies and Procedures

Concerns regarding the following matters should be addressed using the policies and procedures outlined.

Informal Complaints

Informal complaints (concerns or expressions of dissatisfaction or disagreement) should be handled through direct communication (conversation, email, letter) between the student and the individual or office involved. The majority of student complaints can be addressed through communication with the individual(s) involved.

If the issue remains unresolved, the informal complaint should be directed to the appropriate supervisor (see theStudent Assistance Directoryfor guidance and contact information for the most common student concerns). Students may also consult with the Dean of Students on their campus if they are unsure about where or how to address a concern.

Formal Complaints

A student may file a formal complaint if (a) the issue remains unresolved after attempting an informal resolution or (b) the student has utilized one of the complaint processes described in point 1 above and believes s/he has been unfairly treated, or that College/School procedures or policies have not been followed. Formal complaints must be made in writing and submitted via the online Student Complaint Form by a student (not by a parent or other agent). Formal complaints must be filed within one year of the occurrence that prompted the complaint.

Procedures for Filing a Formal Complaint

  1. Attempt an informal resolution of the matter as noted above.
  2. Complete the online Student Complaint Form.
  3. A student should expect a preliminary response from a College representative within five (5) business days (when the College is open) to seek any additional information required to address the concern.

Formal Complaint Review and Resolution Process

Formal complaints submitted via the online form are directed to the Office of the Provost and the Vice President for Student Life. These offices do not act as advocates for any party to a dispute, but are facilitators to ensure a fair process. They will then refer the complaints to the appropriate College official to review and resolve. Any individual who is named in a formal complaint will be notified and asked to provide information related to the complaint.

To comply with federal regulations, The Sage Colleges will maintain a record of formal complaints and their resolution, including those complaints reported to external agencies. The record will be housed within the Office of Institutional Research and made available to the Middle States Commission on Higher Education evaluators for their review.

Retaliation against a student for filing a complaint is harassment and will be addressed as described in Sage’s Discrimination and Harassment Policy.

Additional Resources

In the unlikely event that an issue cannot be resolved internally, students may file a complaint with their respective State Licensing Authority and/or the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. These agencies should be contacted only after the student has utilized the established informal and formal complaint processes.

State Licensing Authority Contacts

Middle States Commission on Higher Education
3624 Market Street,
2nd Floor West
Philadelphia, PA 19104-2680
267-284-5000

Information on how to submit a complaint with Middle States.

Code of Federal Regulations
34 CFR 602.16(a)(1)(ix)
34 CFR
668.43(b)

Student Assistance Directory

The following is a Student Assistance Directory that identifies common student concerns that can be addressed informally through the offices, departments and processes provided.

Academic Affairs Concerns

Concerns Involving an Instructor or a Course

  • In the event that a student has a complaint involving a course in which s/he is enrolled (course policies, instruction, grading, etc.), the student should follow the procedures listed below:
  • Meet or speak with the instructor. In the best interests of both parties, resolution ideally should be reached at this stage.
  • If a resolution is not reached between the student and instructor, meet or speak with with the instructor’s department chairperson or program coordinator.
  • Meet or speak with the Dean of the College.

Concerns Related to Administrative Departments or Personnel within Academic Affairs

Concerns regarding academic affairs administrators or departments should be addressed through department leadership (as identified via the links below) and then to the College Dean, if not resolved.

Students can access general Academic Policies in the College Catalogs regarding academic standing, degree requirements, course offerings, the application of transfer credits.

General Information regarding Sage Online policies and procedures are available at: http://online.sage.edu/.

For assistance with directing academic concerns to the appropriate office or process, contact Associate Dean Karen Schell at schelk@sage.edu on the Albany campus, Associate Dean Stacy Gonzalez at gonzas@sage.edu on the Troy campus, or Ms. Kim Taylor taylok3@sage.edu for Sage Online students.

Discrimination because of race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, disability or national origin in regard to programs, courses, activities, facilities, financial aid, or student employment.

Students can meet with any campus compliance officer regarding any of these concerns. Students may view the Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual harassment and Sexual assault Policy online, which includes contact information for the campus compliance officers.

Facilities Concerns

Contact Director of Facilities John Zajaceskowski at zajacj@sage.edu for assistance with directing concerns to the appropriate office or process.

Non-residential concerns regarding facilities can be addressed through the Maintenance department.

Note that residence hall facilities concerns should be addressed through the residence life office.

Information Technology Concerns

Most concerns related to IT (wireless access, Sage email issues, Moodle, SageAdvisor, campus computers) can be addressed by contacting the IT Help Desk at 518-244-4777, by emailing helpdesk@sage.edu, or by checking the online Knowledge Base for common questions and solutions.

Contact Assistant Director of Information Technology Tom Bennett at bennet2@sage.edu for assistance with directing concerns to the appropriate office or process.

Student Life Concerns

Contact Dean Sharon Murray at murras2@sage.edu on the Albany campus or Dean Mike Baumgardner at baumgm@sage.edu on the Troy campus for assistance with directing concerns to the appropriate office or process.

  • Residence Hall/Residence Life (Contact Chris Oertel, oertec@sage.edu)
  • Disabilities accommodations
  • Disciplinary charges/procedures/sanctions related to Student Code of Conduct
  • Inter-campus Shuttle
  • All policies related to student rights and responsibilities are located in the Student Handbook.
  • Concerns regarding student life administrators (including athletics, career planning, disability services, residence life, spirituality and wellness centers) should be addressed through department leadership and then to the College Dean of Students, if not resolved.
  • Building access
  • Parking issues
  • Student safety issues (cameras, blue lights, etc.)
  • General Information regarding Public Safety Resources and Policies are available at: Public Safety

Public Safety Concerns

Contact Director of Public Safety Bob Grebert at greber@sage.edu for assistance with directing concerns to the appropriate office or process.

Student Services: Financial Aid, Registrar, Student Accounts

Contact Student the Service Center Coordinator, Rhiannon Antico, at anticr@sage.edu for assistance with directing concerns to the appropriate office or process.

Financial Aid

Registrar

  • Privacy (e.g., FERPA violations)
  • Questions re: registration policy or procedures

Student Accounts

Concerns regarding Student Services personnel can be directed to the Student Service Center Coordinator.