One of the resources the University makes available to students is the support and guidance of a University administrator who is on call and can be reached when University offices are closed. The Emergency Dean supports students who are experiencing health or safety emergency situations in which an immediate University response is needed and which cannot wait until the next business day. The Emergency Dean is not a substitute for trained emergency personnel such as 911, police, or fire professionals.
The Emergency Dean is a full-time employee of the university who volunteers to be on call at home, and is available:
- Monday through Thursday, 5:00 pm-8:30 am
- Friday at 5:00 pm through Monday at 8:30 am
Please Note: For emergencies that occur during business hours (Monday-Friday, 8:30 am-5:00 pm), students should call the Student Assistance Center at (217) 333-0050.
When to Call the Emergency Dean
- A student has been seriously injured in a car accident and may not survive. A group of friends are in the hospital waiting room upset and awaiting news about the student’s condition.
- A group of students living in an apartment complex experienced flooding in their apartments at 9 pm. They are displaced and need assistance finding lodging for the night.
- A parent wants university assistance in notifying a child, who is a student, about the sudden death of the student’s other parent.
When NOT to Call the Emergency Dean
You are ill and anticipate missing classes or an exam.
What to do instead: Email your professor about your illness and seek medical attention.
You need to leave campus unexpectedly one evening to return home to tend to a family emergency. You will not be in class for the next several days.
What to do instead: Send an email to your instructors as soon as possible to inform them of your circumstances and determine if and how they will work with you to manage your absences.
You are seeking documentation regarding absences.
What to do instead: Contact the Student Assistance Center the next business day by phone, (217) 333-0050 to discuss your request, or email email@example.com. Consult the available information About Absence Letters.
You are extremely worried about a final exam tomorrow. Your anxiety has grown so intense that you can’t breathe and you think you are having a panic attack.
What to do instead: Call the Crisis Line at (217) 359-4141, 911 to seek emergency services, or call Dial-A-Nurse (217) 333-2700.
You want to make a complaint regarding your dissatisfaction with a university office or department.
What to do instead: Contact the department in question the next business day to inquire about their complaint processes.
Role of the Emergency Dean
The Dean-on-Call is the University official responsible for providing referrals, information, and support to students during a health or safety emergency. The Dean-on-Call intervenes to work with campus and community partners to coordinate the University’s response to students experiencing emergencies. The Emergency Dean will work to make sure adequate support and resources continue to be made available to students throughout and after emergency incidents.
The scope of the Emergency Dean role does not include:
- Giving legal advice
- Giving academic advice
- Giving medical advice
- Interfering with law enforcement
- Contacting professors on a student’s behalf or excusing absences
- Assisting or interfering with academic policy or procedure
- Mediating landlord-tenant or roommate disputes
Engaging the Emergency Dean
Individuals wishing to contact the Emergency Dean because of a serious or urgent matter that requires an immediate response, and that is NOT related to a previous or anticipated absence from class, may reach the Emergency Dean who is on-call at their home by calling (217) 649-4129. Please note, the Emergency Dean is not a substitute for trained emergency personnel such as 911, police, or fire professionals. If this is an emergency that involves an imminent risk of harm to self or others, please call 911. Again, this number should be used for urgent matters only and not for calls about absences from class. If you are unable to reach the Dean, please call University Police at (217) 333-1216 and ask for the Emergency Dean.
Who are the Emergency Deans?
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