Accidents and Health Services
All personal injuries should be reported to the Dean of Student Services or the Executive Vice President/Chief Financial Officer. Students requiring first aid for minor injuries should contact the nearest College employee. First aid kits are provided in all buildings on campus. The College does not provide medical or health services nor assume responsibility for injuries incurred during College sponsored activities. If necessary, emergency transportation by the Burke County EMS will be arranged. A low-cost accident insurance policy is made available to curriculum students through the Business Office. All curriculum students are required to purchase this protection at registration, except those groups determined to be exempt by the College. Certain specialized programs may require additional insurance coverage.
Children on Campus
To avoid disruptive behavior and to ensure the safety of young visitors, all children on campus must be under the direct supervision of an adult. Western Piedmont cannot assume responsibility for these children. Appropriate action will be taken to remove unattended and/or disruptive children from the campus. Contact the Executive Vice President/Chief Financial Officer or a College employee for implementation of this rule.
The communicable disease/pandemic influenza policy of Western Piedmont Community College is an effort to ensure the good health and safety of all employees and students. The College adopts this policy in an effort to control communicable diseases and the threat of pandemic influenza on campus based upon established rules and regulations of the N. C. Division of Health Services. Employees, employees of contractors or contracted services, or students infected with a communicable disease have the responsibility of reporting this fact to the Director of Human Resources or the Dean of Student Services, as appropriate.
Communicable Disease is defined as an illness due to an infectious agent, which is transmitted directly or indirectly to a person from an “infected person or animal through the agency of an intermediate animal, host, or vector, or through the inanimate environment” (N.C.G.S. 130A-133). Communicable disease could include for example, Chickenpox, Infectious Mononucleosis, Influenza (New Type A Virus), Measles, Meningitis, Tuberculosis, and Whooping Cough.
Persons who are infected with a communicable disease are expected to seek expert medical advice and are encouraged to advise local health authorities. Local health authorities should offer counseling to these persons about measures that can be taken to prevent the spread of infection and to protect their own health.
Notification Procedures for Students
Students who know, or have a reasonable basis for believing, that they are infected with a communicable disease have an ethical and legal obligation to behave in accordance with such knowledge to protect themselves and others. Students are required to report this information to the Dean of Student Services. Medical information relating to the communicable disease of a student or employee will be disclosed to responsible college officials only on a strictly limited need-to-know basis. No person, group, agency, insurer, employer, or institution should be provided any medical information without the prior specific written consent of a student unless required by state and/or federal law. Furthermore, all medical information relating to the communicable diseases of students and employees will be kept confidential, according to state and federal law, including the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act.
If a student reports a communicable disease condition to the Dean of Student Services, the student may be excluded from the institution until an appropriate evaluation of the student’s medical condition can be made. The evaluation may be made by a physician or a health department official and testing may be required if appropriate. Students in any Allied Health program may have additional requirements, as specified in each program’s student handbook; therefore, this student should report any suspected communicable disease to the Program Coordinator who in turn will notify the Dean of Student Services.
The assessment of a student with a suspected communicable disease and the final determination of that student’s ability to remain in school will be made by the Dean of Student Services, after consultation with a Communicable Disease Committee and based upon professional medical judgment.
If a student is found to have a communicable disease, then the Dean of Student Services will prohibit the attendance of the student on campus or at any College activity until a satisfactory letter or certificate is obtained from one or more licensed physicians or public health officials stating that the student is not a health risk to employees and other students at the College.
The Annual Crime Statistics Report is available in the Student Handbook and on the College’s website. Information regarding campus safety is available in the Student Handbook.
Emergency Closing of the College
Occasionally the College will be closed because of weather conditions or emergencies beyond the control of College officials. In the event of closing, radio stations in Morganton and news media in other cities within the service area of the College will be notified. Students may call 828-438-6000 or go online to www.wpcc.edu for additional information. Students may also receive these notifications via text, voice and email messaging by visiting www.wpcc.edu and enrolling in the WPCC Messaging Service.
Emergency Contact of Students
In emergencies, students may be contacted through the Office of Student Services. In order to avoid interruption of the educational program, classes will not be disturbed to deliver personal messages except in emergencies as determined by the Dean of Student Services or a designated substitute. Public pay telephones for student use are located on the breezeway between Moore Hall and Patton Hall, on the first floor of Hildebrand Hall, at the lower entrance to E-Building, at the entrance to Carr Hall, in the lower lounge of the Phifer Learning Resources Center, and in the lobby of K-Building on the Jim A. Richardson Complex.
Sex Offender Notification
According to the federal Campus Sex Crime Prevention Act, Western Piedmont Community College is authorized to notify the College community when knowledge is received that a registered sex offender is enrolled. This Act amends The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 to clarify that nothing in the Act can prohibit an educational institution from disclosing information provided to the institution concerning registered sex offenders.
The College developed the procedures below to increase the safety and welfare of students and employees by providing timely and appropriate notification of the presence of a registered sex offender. This notification shall be in accordance with applicable federal law and will be in such a manner that maintains safety without creating excessive anxiety among students and staff.
Upon notification from local law enforcement that a registered sex offender is enrolled, or intends to enroll at the College, the Dean of Student Services will take the following steps:
- Obtain additional information, as necessary, from law enforcement;
- Meet with the Chief of Security to review relevant information and assess safety issues posed for students, faculty and staff;
- Meet with the offender to make him or her aware of the notification procedure. Other than the notification procedure approved by FERPA and the Department of Higher Education, registered sex offenders will receive the same rights and privacy protections provided to all students;
- Advise the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the appropriate academic deans of the student’s enrollment; and
- Place a binder with Registered Sex Offender information in the Office of the Dean of Student Services on the main campus and the Office of the Dean of Continuing Education at the Foothills Higher Education Center that will be available for viewing by the College community.
Western Piedmont Community College is committed to providing a classroom and workforce environment free from sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination, illegal under state and federal law and a violation of College policy. Sexual harassment may affect any member of the College community—students, faculty and staff. Complaints are dealt with promptly, and appropriate action is taken.
Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to learn more about their rights and responsibilities with regard to this issue. Any inquiries students may make will be handled with professionalism and confidentiality. Students may contact the Dean of Student Services in Hildebrand Hall or at 828-448-3178. Employees may contact the Director of Human Resources in Moore Hall or at 828-448-3126. Guidelines for filing a grievance are found in the Catalog, Student Handbook and in the Policy Manual.
Western Piedmont Community College has a responsibility to its students and employees to provide a safe and healthy environment. Research findings show that tobacco use in general, including smoking, breathing secondhand smoke, and smokeless tobacco constitutes a significant health hazard. Because smoking is a health and fire hazard, smoking and other tobacco use is prohibited on College property and in College vehicles. Western Piedmont Community College is a tobacco-free campus.
For the purposes of this policy, tobacco is defined as, but not limited to: cigarettes, cigars, cigarillos, pipes, and all smokeless tobacco products. Violations of this policy by faculty, staff or students will be handled in a manner consistent with the violation of other college policies.
All students, faculty and staff who operate or park vehicles on campus are subject to traffic rules and regulations. A handbook of traffic rules and regulations is available in the Business Office. The regulations pertain to everyone and are strictly enforced. Campus Security issues tickets for violations of the handicap parking regulation with a maximum penalty of $250.00. All handicap violations are turned in to the City of Morganton for collection. All parking violations except handicapped areas are $5.00 per ticket. Six violations will result in further disciplinary action. Unpaid fines will result in the inability of students to register for subsequent semesters or the non-issuance of transcripts. Appeals forms can be picked up at the switchboard. All persons parking on campus are encouraged to lock vehicles and pocket the keys. The College cannot be held responsible for property left in vehicles.
All accidents should be reported to the College receptionist/ switchboard operator in Moore Hall. Since the campus is under the jurisdiction of the City of Morganton Department of Public Safety, local officers are called when necessary. It is the responsibility of those involved in an accident to report the accident.
As required by the Student Right-to-Know and Campus Security Act of 1990, crime report statistics for the College are available upon request in the Campus Security Office.
Western Piedmont Community College prides itself on being an open door institution. The open door, while important to the College Mission, applies to the admissions process. To protect the safety of students, faculty, staff, and others on the campus, the College welcomes visitors and guests identified with a specific College purpose or function during normal operating hours. Only registered students are permitted to attend College classes and laboratories and utilize certain College support services. Persons who are not conducting business or purposely engaged in a sanctioned activity of Western Piedmont Community College may be asked to leave the premises. Visitors on campus are subject to the same code of conduct required of students.
Weapons on Campus
It is unlawful for any person to possess or carry, whether openly or concealed, any gun, rifle, pistol, dynamite cartridge, bomb, grenade, mine, powerful explosive as defined in G.S. 14-284.1, bowie knife, dirk, dagger, slingshot, leaded cane, switchblade knife, blackjack, metallic knuckles or any other weapon of like kind, not used solely for instructional or College sanctioned ceremonial purposes, in any College building or vehicle, on any College grounds, recreational area, athletic field, or other property owned, used or operated by The Trustees of Western Piedmont Community College.
This law does not apply to a weapon used solely for educational or College sanctioned ceremonial purposes, or used in a College approved program conducted under the supervision of an adult whose supervision has been approved by the proper College authority.
Furthermore, this law does not apply to armed forces personnel, officers and soldiers of the militia and National Guard, law enforcement personnel, and any private police employed by the College, when acting in the discharge of their official duties.