Student Behavior Consultation Team
If you have a question regarding a student of concern and would like to speak through how to submit a referral, please call Kat Dennehy, Director, Residence Life and Student Conduct at (716) 880-2449.
If this is an emergency, please contact public safety at (716) 880-2911.
The Student Behavior Consultation Team (SBCT) is a campus wide team designed to support the health, safety and success of students as members of the Medaille College Community.
The purpose of this team is to provide a confidential means for early intervention of at-risk students through collaboration with campus departments, faculty and staff. The Student Behavior Consultation Team provides consultation, makes recommendations for action and coordinates campus resources in response to reports of disruptive or concerning behavior displayed by students.
Information from faculty, staff and students if confidentially shared among the team members. The team broadens the scope of involvement and includes other faculty and staff members, when appropriate. At this point, the team will then determine an action plan and monitor the student on a case–by-case basis. Communication with involved parties is led by a member of the SBCT to ensure consistency and monitoring of these students when necessary.
The core team is not meant to be the sole mechanism of communication and will not take the place of services provided by the Wellness Center, Student Conduct, Public Safety and other established student services.
What We Do
The SBCT does not enact sanctions or administer policy regarding referrals. However the SBCT can coordinate and share information with offices/departments that may take administrative actions.
When there is an imminent threat of harm to self or others, the SBCT will share information with offices/departments responsible for evaluating the need for immediate detention; refer to necessary campus administrator(s); or provide emergency notification of others. Potential notifications could include:
- Referral to community health and mental health agencies/hospitals
- Notifying parent/guardian only if student is deemed a threat to self and/or others, or if the student provides consent to talk with parent/guardian.
- Requesting permission to obtain outside medical and educational records.
- Checking with law enforcement or other outside agencies for past history.
The SBCT may also recommend that reports be made to offices responsible for conduct/disciplinary action.
In some cases, there may be no violation of campus rules or policies, but the behavior may evoke alarm or concern among involved persons. The SBCT provides consultation and recommendations to the appropriate parties, such as: classroom or workplace management strategies; behavioral contract development; communicating concerns; and, awareness of campus resources and services.
Potential recommendations for disposition:
- No action taken
- Assist faculty or staff in developing plan of action
- Referral to existing campus support resources
- Referral to appropriate community resources
- Recommendation of parental notification
- Recommendation of a voluntary withdrawal
- Recommendation of an involuntary health withdrawal
- Referral to Student Conduct Office
- Referral to Counseling Center for an assessment
Submit a Student of Concern Report
We invite you to collaborate with the Office of Residence Life and Student Conduct by submitting a report of your concerns. Please click on the link below to begin your report. Depending on the nature of your report, the form will route to the appropriate individual(s) for review.
Types of Reports
Academic Integrity Violation
Academic Violations include cheating, plagiarism or falsifying official records related to the College. General classroom misbehavior is considered a non-academic violation (see below). If you have questions about whether a behavior is considered academic misconduct, please contact the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Non-academic violations include behavior that is not related to an allegation of cheating or plagiarism (i.e. alcohol, drugs, hazing, infliction or threat of bodily harm, theft, vandalism, disorderly conduct, etc.). If you have questions about whether a behavior is considered a violation, please contact the Office of Residence Life and Student Conduct.
Relationship Violence, Interpersonal Violence, or Sexual Misconduct (Title IX)
If you have questions about whether a behavior is considered a violation, please contact the Title IX Coordinator or the Office of Residence Life and Student Conduct. If you are a Responsible Employee, you have an obligation to report relationship violence, sexual misconduct or stalking to the College.
Concerning, Worrisome, or Threatening Behaviors
For information on what is meant by concerning behavior, please view the faculty & staff resources tab.
Recognizing Warning Signs
Faculty and staff are often in a position to recognize students who are at risk. Identifying the signs of at-risk behavior and responding in a timely manner may be a significant part of linking the student with the appropriate campus resource(s).
Some students are struggling to adapt to college life along with considerable family and personal problems. As a result, students may experience a heightened emotional response that impacts their ability to function. We appreciate the central role faculty and staff members have in the everyday lives of our students and also that faculty and staff may be the first to observe any change in a student’s behavior. Marked changes in academic performance, a noticeable decline in personal appearance and/or a student repeatedly engagement in disruptive behaviors in class can all be signs of a student in crisis.
Examples of concerning behavior include, but are not limited to:
- Behavior that appears to be dangerous or threatening to oneself or others.
- Bizarre or strange behavior such as acting ‘out of touch’ with reality.
- Angry, hostile, or abusive behavior.
- Observed behaviors that lead to concerns about someone’s well-being.
- Other behavior that is inappropriate, worrisome, or disruptive.
All concerns requiring immediate attention (criminal, violent, threatening, or imminent suicidal behavior) should be directed to Public Safety.
Some behavioral warning signs carry more weight than others and multiple indictors increase the risk of potential harm to self and/or others. Emergencies and imminent threats of violence must be reported immediately to public safety at (716) 880-2911.
Some student behaviors that are appropriate to refer to the SBCT are:
Aberrant behavior: Exhibits actions and/or words that cause people around him/her/them to become fearful and suspicious.
Acting out: Impulsivity; Expresses disproportionate anger or humor in situations not warranting it.
Aggressive behavior: Expresses contempt for other(s), makes threatening comments or gestures. Indicates a desire to become physically aggressive.
Alcohol and other drug use: Shows a pattern of inebriation and/or substance abuse. May smell of alcohol, sleep in class and/or have excessive class absences.
Anger management problems: Difficulty controlling anger, aggressive behavior, impulsivity and making threats – particularly, anger that is expressed intensely and frequently for seemingly minor reasons.
Anhedonia: Exhibits reduced emotional expression or a near absence of expression (flat affect). An inability to express and experience joy or pleasure.
Fascination with weapons: Exhibits an inappropriate interest in guns, knives and explosives.
Inappropriate affect: mismatch between emotional expression and what the person is thinking or speaking about. Exhibiting affect unsuitable to the situation.
Non-compliance and disciplinary problems: refuses to abide by written and/or verbal rules. Rejects the authority of faculty and staff.
Social withdrawal: Isolation, inability to establish friendships, does not seem to fit in, less engaged and prefers to be alone.
Stalking: Follows, harasses, repeatedly attempts to contact a person regardless of the person’s expressed annoyance and demands to stop behavior.
Suicidal ideation: Expresses hopelessness and despair, depression, may exhibit suicidal preparatory behavior such as giving belongings away.
When to Refer a Student
- If your efforts to manage a significant classroom behavioral issue has not resolved the problem
- If you are concerned about the welfare of a student, yourself and other students
- If a student asks for help in dealing with personal issues that are out of your role as a faculty or staff member
Please also refer to the following to review:
Dealing with students who are disruptive in class - refer to the academic catalog
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Student Behavioral Consultation Team (SBCT)?
The Student Behavior Consultation Team provides consultation, makes recommendations for action and coordinates campus resources in response to reports of disruptive or concerning behavior displayed by students.
What should I report to the SBCT?
The SBCT is designed to be a campus resource to assist in identifying and addressing troubling behavior before it escalates to something more serious. Experience shows that tragedies affecting college campuses (for example the Virginia Tech tragedy) are often preceded by warning signs or concerning patterns of behavior. Early communication and intervention may help to prevent an escalation of behaviors to critical levels. Therefore, report any behavior that is troubling or makes you concerned. It is better to be safe than sorry: if you have a "gut feeling" that something is not quite right, report it. If a member of the Medaille community behaves in a way that is disruptive, causes you concern for their well-being, or poses a potential threat to the safety of any aspect of our community, such behaviors should be reported to the SBCT. All concerns requiring immediate attention (potentially criminal activity, violent, threatening, or imminent suicidal behavior) must first be directed to Public Safety [911 or (716) 880-2911].
Who is on the SBCT?
The SBCT is a multidisciplinary team composed of individuals from various departments on campus to allow for effective collaboration and coordination of efforts. Team members include representatives from: Academic Affairs; Wellness Center (health and Counseling); Academic Success Center; Athletics; Student Involvement; Residence Life and Student Conduct. Additional campus representatives may be included on an ad-hoc basis depending on the nature of the referred incident.
What do I do if I know someone that may need to be referred to the SBCT process?
If you believe that the person may pose a threat of imminent danger of harm to self or to others, call Public Safety immediately by dialing 911 or (716) 880-2911. To make a SBCT referral, click on the Report a Student of Concern referral form link on the SBCT homepage. You will be asked for basic information about the person of concern, a description of the incident or behaviors that prompted you to make a referral, and your contact information. You are the Behavioral Consultation Team's best resource because you are familiar with the individual or directly observed the concerning behavior. If you want to speak with the chair of the team before submitting a referral, please call (716) 880-2449.
Who can make a SBCT referral?
Anyone who believes that someone at Medaille is at risk of harming self or others, is exhibiting disruptive or worrisome behaviors, or is otherwise concerned about the wellbeing of a member of the Medaille community, can make a SBCT referral.
What happens to the information I send to the SBCT?
The team receives and prioritizes the information, then begins further investigation. You will likely be contacted for clarification and additional information. Often the initial report is just one piece of the puzzle. A behavior that someone observes can turn out to be an isolated incident and no cause for further concern, or it may be an indication of a larger problem that needs to be addressed. The team attempts to understand the whole of a person's behavior patterns before making any recommendations for action.
I am not really sure this is a big deal. Will the person get in trouble?
Something that may appear to be a minor incident to you may be part of a larger pattern unknown to you. Early and effective communication among key offices and individuals is crucial to identifying problems before they get bigger. The guiding mission of the SBCT is that of early intervention in order to understand what is happening and try to intervene before a situation escalates. The SBCT wants to attempt to resolve a situation BEFORE someone "gets in trouble." The goal is to promote the safety of the individual and campus through early intervention. The SBCT takes into account the concerns of the campus, as well as the needs of the student, faculty, or staff member about whom concerns are expressed. Whether the information will adversely affect the student’s status will depend on the situation. Frequently, when a situation is identified early enough and reported it can be resolved without the need for further disciplinary action or criminal prosecution against the person involved. If you are unsure about whether or not you should say something, report it! Trust your instincts.
What if I am wrong about the person?
You are reporting a concern based on an observed behavior (e.g., verbal exchange, hostile interaction, etc.) not making a determination or judgment about the individual. There is no expectation that reporters make judgments about whether their observations are "right" or "wrong." Let the SBCT weigh all the information available, gather further data if warranted and determine the best course of action.
Will the person I refer be able to know that I sent the form? Can I report a concern anonymously?
Anonymous referrals are accepted but discouraged. Identifying yourself assists the SBCT if clarification or additional information is needed. Submitting your name also gives the referral more credibility. The SBCT will attempt to handle all matters discreetly. We cannot guarantee that the person(s) involved will not be able to determine the source of the report. If this concerns you, please speak directly with a team member. Medaille College does not permit retaliation against any individual who reports a concerning or troubling behavior in good faith.
Will I find out what happens?
That depends on the situation. Various privacy and confidentiality laws apply to the situations handled by the SBCT. A member of the team will follow up with the person making the referral when appropriate and possible to let you know the continuing action or closed status of the referral.
As a faculty or staff member, am I prohibited from disclosing student information to the SBCT by the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)?
No. FERPA expressly permits the sharing of any and all information from you to the team. The information you provide is to school officials and is related to the educational interests of the student involved.
What authority does the SBCT have and what can it do?
The SBCT does not enact sanctions or administer policy regarding referrals; however, the SBCT can:
- develop specific strategies to manage potential harmful or disruptive behavior to protect both the safety and rights of both the individual and the Medaille community.
- assist faculty or staff in developing a plan of action.
- provide information and assist in referrals to campus resources that can provide continued support to the individual (e.g., Academic Advising, counseling services, etc.).
- coordinate and share information with units/departments that may take actions when there is an imminent threat of harm to self or others, such as:
- facilitate evaluation for possible immediate detention,
- refer information to Medaille Public Safety/Buffalo Police Department, or,
- provide emergency notification of others.
- recommend reports be made to offices responsible for conduct/disciplinary actions (student, staff, faculty).
- continue monitoring the situation without immediate action.