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Student Complaint Process

Occasionally, a student will encounter a problem on campus that he or she does not know how to resolve. When this happens, students should always try to work out the problem by first discussing it with those most involved with the issue. Dealing with conflict in the most direct and straightforward manner should always be the first step toward resolution. It is conceivable that many issues are settled or problems resolved when a student makes an appointment with a faculty or staff member and calmly and honestly communicates their frustrations or concerns.

If however, an issue or problem still exists, there is a formal complaint process at NNMC that a student may initiate. All formal complaints must be put in writing using the official NNMC Student Complaint Form. These forms are available in hard copy in the Dean of Students office, or online.

When initiating a formal complaint, the following steps should be followed:

  1. Be sure you have first attempted to resolve the issue by speaking directly with the individual(s) or office(s) involved.
  2. Complete a NNMC Student Complaint Form.
  3. Submit the form to Don Appiarius, Assistant Provost, in the Montoya Administration office (don.appiarius@nnmc.edu, 505.747.2255).
  4. When the complaint is received it will be forwarded to the appropriate individual to review and address the issue.
  5. After your concern has been addressed, you will receive a letter documenting the receipt and review of your complaint.

For information regarding issues or concerns that are not covered by this process (such as issues of sexual harassment and grade appeals) please refer to the NNMC Catalog or Student Handbook, or contact the Dean of Students office.

Special Note:

Sometimes NNMC students find they are particularly pleased with how something has been handled for them, how they were assisted by a particular staff member, the positive experience they had in a specific class, or some other outstanding thing that happened to them at NNMC. As a student you should know that the same "Student Complaint Form" that is used to lodge a concern, can also be used to provide a written compliment or note of appreciation. In this case, the process for submitting the form is the same as for filing a formal complaint.

The complaint process is based upon the following definitions:

Complaint: A written concern or formal charge of dissatisfaction with a person, service, or process that requires clarification, investigation, and resolution.

Level I Complaint: A verbal complaint that is resolved. Will not be tracked.

Level II Complaint: A written complaint, based upon the complaint definition that requires a student's signature. If a form is submitted without a student's name, the complaint will not be considered. Level II complaints will be tracked to ensure an action has been taken.

Exclusions: The Student Complaint Process does not apply to grade appeals, complaints of sexual harassment, or any student to student complaints. Please refer to the Student Code of Conduct for procedures regarding these types of complaints. IN addition, outcomes of appeal processes are not subject to further consideration through this process.

What can I do if I am still not satisfied?

Student complaint process for non-distance education students:

The New Mexico Higher Education Department (NMHED) has authority to help facilitate resolution to student complaints, only after the student has utilized all internal complaint procedures at the educational institution. Please visit https://hed.nm.gov/students-parents/nc-sara for more information about NMHED’s Student Complaint Process for non-distance education students. Complaints regarding grades and student conduct violations shall not be reviewed by NMHED.

Student complaint process for distance education students:

The National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA) is an agreement among member states, districts and territories that sets national standards for interstate offering of post-secondary distance education courses and programs. Northern New Mexico College (NNMC) is a NC-SARA approved institution and the New Mexico Higher Education Department (NMHED) is the NC-SARA Portal Entity for New Mexico. Distance Education students attending NNMC who would like to resolve a grievance should follow NNMC’s established Student Complaint Process. However, if an issue cannot be resolved internally, you may file a NC-SARA complaint with the New Mexico Higher Education Department. Complaints regarding grades and student conduct violations shall not be reviewed by NMHED. Please visit https://hed.state.nm.us/students-parents/nc-sara for more information.

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