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The Brody School of Medicine
Office of Student Affairs


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Brody School of Medicine
Student Attendance Policy
9-23-15
 
 

General Items: 

It is the responsibility of the student to communicate well whenever an absence is required.The Request Form for Excused Absences is available in the Office of Student Affairs or at our website:
http://www.ecu.edu/cs-dhs/bsomstudentaffairs/upload/Form-AbsenceExcused.pdf These are reviewed by the Dean for Student Affairs and designated as 'excused' or 'unexcused'.The affected courses are then notified by Ann Wall, the contact person in the Office of Student Affairs regarding absences. 

Religious Observances: 

Students are allowed a minimum of two excused absences each academic year for religious observances required by the faith of the student.These absences must be submitted at least one week in advance of the observance.Please see the ECU Policy regarding religious observances:
http://www.ecu.edu/prr/05/25/01 

Jury Duty: 

Medical Students will, at times, be called for jury duty.Your student status, along with the rigor of your curriculum allows for a deferment of this duty.Please contact Ann Wall and provide her with a copy of your jury duty summons.She will provide the needed documentation for the deferment. 

Abuse of Policy: 

Any student with excessive absences or abuse of the absence policy will meet with the Dean for Student Affairs, as well as the Promotion and Review Committee for the corresponding year of school. 

Other Considerations: 

Any absence need that is not addressed in this policy can be discussed on a case-by-case basis with the Dean for Student Affairs.

M1 and M2 Students: 

As soon as a student realizes that they will be absent from a required class, they are expected to notify the Course Director and the Office of Student Affairs (Ann Wall).In the event of illness or unexpected personal needs (death/illness of immediate family member) which require an absence from a required class, the student must complete the absence form on return to school.For an illness lasting longer than 3 days, a doctor's note is required. 

For planned events (doctor visits, weddings of immediate family members, etc.), including professional travel, the absence form must be received in the Office of Student Affairs 30 days prior to the travel date.Students must be in good academic standing to be approved for professional travel.Exams will not be rescheduled to allow attendance at a professional conference. 

M3 Students:  

M3 Students are an integral part of the healthcare team with professional obligations and responsibilities.It is our expectation that students will be present for their clinical rotations.As soon as a student realizes that they are ill or have an unexpected personal need, they are expected to notify their Clerkship Director, Clerkship Coordinator, the Office of Student Affairs and their clinical team (attending and residents).Email is an acceptable option for notification.Upon return to school, the student is required to submit an excused absence form to the Office of Student Affairs. For an illness lasting longer than 3 days, a doctor's note is required. 

It is expected that students will communicate with the Clerkship Director and Coordinator regarding all planned absences, and that every effort will be made on the part of the student to minimize time away from their clinical rotations.For planned events (doctor visits, weddings of immediate family members, etc.), including professional travel, the absence form must be received in the Office of Student Affairs 30 days prior to the start of the affected clerkship.Students must be in good academic standing to be approved for professional travel. Clerkship orientations and examinations will not be rescheduled for planned travel. 

The following are the maximum amount of excused absences allowed given the clerkship length.Please note that any student exceeding these limits will be required to repeat the clerkship or make up the time in some other fashion at the Clerkship Director's discretion. 

-8 weeks: 5 days
-6 weeks: 4 days
-4 weeks: 3 days
-2 weeks: 1 day 

Any M3 student missing more than 2 days in one clerkship, 2 days in each of 2 consecutive clerkships or more than 5 days in a year (for anything other than approved travel) will be required to meet with an upper level student to discuss barriers to attendance, as well as submit a written plan to the Dean for Student Affairs as to how barriers to attendance will be addressed.Any M3 student missing more than 10 days in the M3 year will be required to meet with the Dean for Student Affairs to discuss barriers to attendance.Students will not be allowed to miss more than 20 days of the M3 year. 

M4 Students:  

M4 Students are an integral part of the healthcare team with professional obligations and responsibilities.It is our expectation that students will be present for their clinical rotations. All M4 students are allotted 6 weeks of 'flex time' to use toward USMLE Step 2 preparations and interviewing.These weeks can be taken in 2 week blocks.No flex time may be taken in Block 10 (April). 

It is expected that students will continue to submit absence forms to the Office of Student Affairs for illness, personal need and planned absences (except for interviews –see below).Just as in the M1-M3 years, students are expected to notify the Clerkship Director and Coordinator, the Office of Student Affairs and their clinical team as soon as they are aware that they will be absent. 

It is expected that students will communicate with the Clerkship Director and Coordinator regarding all planned absences, and that every effort will be made on the part of the student to minimize time away from their clinical rotations.For planned events (doctor visits, weddings of immediate family members, etc.), including professional travel, an absence form must be received in the Office of Student Affairs 30 days prior to the start of the affected clerkship.Students must be in good academic standing to be approved for professional travel. Clerkship orientations and examinations will not be rescheduled for planned travel. 

During the residency application process, M4 students will communicate directly with their Clerkship Directors regarding absences for interviews –an absence form is not necessary.The following are the maximum amount of excused absences allowed given the clerkship length.Please note that any student exceeding these limits will be required to repeat the clerkship or make up the time in some other fashion at the Clerkship Director's discretion. 

-4 weeks: 3 days
-2 weeks: 1 day

It is imperative that the student communicate well regarding leave required for interviews.Students should make Clerkship Directors and Coordinators aware as soon as they know about a planned interview.If a student plans to be absent for the majority of a clinical rotation, the Clerkship Director may refuse to have the student continue in that clerkship.

 
 
Leave of Absence (LOA)

The mission and purpose of Brody School of Medicine is to train competent and caring physicians who will help to meet the primary care health needs of Eastern North Carolina.

Your goal is to graduate and become a competent, caring and compassionate physician.  For some individuals, this goal will be achieved in four years.  For others, the goal will be achieved, but it may take longer than four years.  Many individual circumstances, that cannot be predicted in advance, contribute to a situation where an individual student needs to utilize more than four years to graduate from the School of Medicine.  Some of the circumstances that may occur include personal illness or family illness, academic difficulty, or rethinking career choice. 

The goal of the School of Medicine is to assist each individual student in achieving their goal in a manner that is consistent with their individual values, quality of life and accommodates, as feasible, extenuating circumstances that arise during their medical education.

Individual schedule adjustments and Leave of Absences are available for students who determine that they would benefit from an individualized curriculum (utilizing more than four years to complete the medical curriculum) or from a leave of absence. 

Please schedule an appointment with the Dean for Student Affairs to discuss your individual situation and concerns.  Decisions regarding an Individualized Curriculum or Leave of Absence for a student are based on individual circumstances and personal needs.  Once a decision has been made, the student will receive a letter detailing the specific terms of an Individualized Curriculum or Leave of Absence.  The Office of Student Affairs will notify appropriate Course Directors and individuals of the student’s status.

[Note:  Education Policies of the School of Medicine and Code of Student Conduct for ECU-SOM appear in the appendix.]