Broadcast Email to Students Policy

Sponsor:

Office of Integrated Technologies

Contact:

Chief Information Officer and Vice President for the Office of Integrated Technologies

Category:

Computer and Integrated Technology Policies

Number:

700.001

Effective Date:

2006/10/17

Review Date:

2012/10/17

Implementation History:

Keywords:

Email, students, broadcast, FERPA

Background Information:

Purpose

Empire State College increasingly transacts most of its business online. Email communications are a critical aspect of our business operations. Email is an essential tool for communicating with students about enrollment, registration, financial aid, books and learning resources and their ongoing academic work.

Students’ email addresses are private and protected under the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). They are not to be revealed to outside groups, may not be used for commercial purposes and may be used by Empire State College employees only within the scope of their college work assignments.

Email is also a way to promote community building within a widely distributed organization, particularly to inform our constituency about student and alumni activities. Informational emails, however, must be managed within the business and legal context described previously.

Definitions

Statements

Broadcast emails to students, whether generic or personalized by name, are restricted to the following kinds of communications:

  • formal communications relating to college business or academic matters
  • notification of significant events or changes in governance, policy and practice
  • alerts concerning matters of safety and health.

The president, the appropriate vice president or Coordinating Center director, or the center dean may approve broadcast emails to students.

Anyone choosing to communicate via broadcast email must place the student addresses in the bcc field to protect the identity of students, as required by FERPA.

Applicable Legislation and Regulations

Related References, Policies, Procedures, Forms and Appendices

Monthly Broadcast Email to Communicate about Student-Alumni Activities
To help build community and to enable college constituents to connect with others of similar interests, Empire State College will maintain a bulletin board on its website that lists activities of interest to the broad college community.

The Office of Alumni and Student Relations will maintain the bulletin board. It will be constantly updated, and events will be deleted automatically once they have occurred. The bulletin board will be housed in the student life section of MyESC. The bulletin board will be organized, by month, in two sections: collegewide activities and regional activities. It will include items such as graduations, all college meetings, center and unit events and activities of interest to segments of the college community.

Each bulletin board entry will consist of a title, a brief description and the name of the individual or group initiating the listing, including contact information. Anyone in the college community may propose items for listing. Criteria for inclusion include the following:

  • listings must be college-sponsored events or of interest to some identifiable segment of the college community (i.e., they may not represent the interests of merely one or two individuals)
  • listings should be relevant to the educational purposes of the college
  • no commercial postings, including individual commerce, are allowed
  • listings may include activities about which there may be disagreement or controversy, but must not be inflammatory or pose a danger to anyone in the college community.

On the first Tuesday of each month, the Office of Alumni and Student Relations will distribute via broadcast email to all students and college employees a monthly digest of activities. Similar to the organization of the bulletin board, the digest will list a simple, informative headline announcing each event or activity. Readers who desire additional information or involvement, may click any headline to be taken directly to that bulletin board entry.

Individuals wishing to list items are encouraged to plan ahead since the activities digest will be sent via bulk email only once each month. There is no provision for distributing individual items in this manner.

Students or employees who do not wish to receive the monthly digest may ask to be omitted from future mailings.