Fall 2015 Symposium on Legal Issues in Higher Education

October 15, 2015, the Office of Legal Affairs held its Fall Symposium on Legal Issues in Higher Education, addressing a number of legal topics relevant to faculty, staff, and administrators. Below are the agenda and copies of the presentations that were made during the symposium.  

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Powerpoints and Session Descriptions

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Powerpoints and Session Descriptions:

FERPA: The Rules for Protection and Disclosure of Student Information (1A, 3B): 

  • Presented by Jesh Humphrey, Deputy General Counsel.
  • This session provides an overview of university policy, federal law, and best practices related to the confidentiality and safeguarding of student information.

Federal Government Enforcement in Higher Education: No One is Immune! (1B): 

  • Presented by Susan Burgess, Director of University Compliance.
  • This session will provide an overview of recent federal government investigations at universities, how they are resolved, the types of obligations imposed and what can be learned from them to strengthen our own compliance and withstand external scrutiny

Employment Discrimination Update (1C) (no Powerpoint)

  • Presented by Jeff Jensen, Senior Associate General Counsel.
  • Presenter will review elements of employment discrimination law through a discussion of factual scenarios in the context of recent legal and regulatory developments. Specific topics will include disability, age, religion, and pregnancy discrimination, as well as the prohibition against retaliation.

Updates and Trends in Title IX and Campus SaVE (2A): 

  • Presented by Dawn Floyd, Title IX Coordinator.
  • This program will focus on updating our community on the evolution of policy and programming at UNC Charlotte and on a national level, and discussing trends in the ever-changing and growing area of sex and gender-based discrimination.

Supplies, Equipment, and Services: How to Purchase Them, Insure Them, and Account for Them (2B): 

  • Panel discussion with Scott Brechtel, Purchasing Manager; Greg Verret, Assistant Controller-Compliance; and Sally Peterson, Risk Analyst; moderated by Amy Kelso, Senior Associate General Counsel.
  • This session will provide a broad overview of the process for purchasing commodities (supplies and equipment) and services on behalf of the University. It will include a discussion of not only the basic contracting and insurance requirements, but also liability, mitigation of risk, state rules and benchmarks for procurement, and the basic framework for recording the purchases in fixed assets.

Intellectual Property Basics: What Rules Apply to Faculty, Staff, or Student Work Product? (2C, 4A): 

  • Presented by Dave Broome, Vice Chancellor and General Counsel.
  • This session will present the basics of patent, copyright and trademark law and then explore ownership and use of IP created at UNC Charlotte. Copyright "fair use" in the classroom setting will be covered.

When Hashtags and Selfies Become Headaches and Safety Concerns: Students and Social Media (3A): 

  • Presented by Catherine Mitchell, Higher Education Legal Fellow.
  • Social media is widely used on our campus and can be an effective communication tool; however, it can also present some risks to #NinerNation. This session will focus on the legal implications surrounding student social media use and how the university can best respond. A few points to be discussed include free speech, electronic harassment, and special concerns surrounding student-athletes.

FLSA Developments and Managing Overtime Eligible Employees under UNC Charlotte’s New Mobile Communication Device (MCD) and Telework Policies (3C): 

  • Presented by Jeff Jensen; Jeanne Madorin, Executive Director of Human Resources for EPA Non-faculty Administration, Employee Relations, and Compliance; and Laura Williams, University Controller.
  • Presenters will review key components of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and discuss how new federal White Collar regulations will raise the minimum annual salary level, resulting in the reclassification of many University employees and making them eligible for overtime. In addition, the presenters will review the University’s new Mobile Communication Device (MCD) and Telework Policies and will discuss best practices for managing overtime-eligible employees under these policies.

Policies, Policies, Policies! How to Develop New University Policies and Revise Old Ones (4B): 

  • Presented by Amy Kelso, Senior Associate General Counsel, and Tina Dadio, Paralegal and University Public Records Officer.
  • This session provides an introduction to the new University Policy 805, University Policy Development, Approval, and Publication. It will include an overview of the procedures for policy development, review, revision, approval, and publication from start to finish. If you are ever tasked with reviewing, revising, or drafting a University Policy, you won’t want to miss this session!

Q&A with the Experts on Employment Issues (4C) (no Powerpoint)

  • Panel discussion with Jeff Jensen; Jesh Humphrey; Catherine Mitchell; Jeanne Madorin; and Lori McMahon, Associate Provost for Academic Budget and Personnel.
  • The panel will take any of your employment-related questions. Fire away!

Handling Disruptive/At-Risk Students (5A): 

  • Presented by Jesh Humphrey.
  • Trouble with a disruptive student in the classroom? Wondering how to help a student in crisis? This session will cover recommended practices and campus resources for all UNC Charlotte employees.

Q&A with the Experts on Business/Administrative Issues (5B) (no Powerpoint)

  • Panel discussion with Amy Kelso; Dave Broome; Susan Burgess; Scott Brechtel; and Laura Williams.
  • The panel will take any of your business/administration-related questions. Fire away!

U.S. Supreme Court’s Same-Sex Marriage Decision and What It Means for UNC Charlotte (5C): 

  • Presented by Catherine Mitchell.
  • In June 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court legalized marriage for same-sex couples across the country. This was not only a significant decision for our country but also has repercussions for the university, particularly in the employment context. This session will provide an overview of the decision by the U.S. Supreme Court and discuss some of the ways it affects UNC Charlotte employees and overall campus life.

Q&A with the Experts on Student Issues (6A) (no Powerpoint)

  • Panel discussion with Jesh Humphrey; Amy Kelso; Catherine Mitchell; Dawn Floyd; Christine Reed Davis, Dean of Students; and Dave Spano, Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Programs and Services.
  • The panel will take any of your student-related questions. Fire away!

Ethical Issues in Higher Education (6B) (no Powerpoint)

  • Presented by Susan Burgess and Gordon Hull, Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy and Director of the Center for Professional and Applied Ethics.
  • Join us for a lively discussion of ethics and the intersection of FERPA and social media and other topics of interest.

Intersection between the Public Records Act and the State Human Resources Act (formerly State Personnel Act): Connecting the Dots (6C): 

  • Presented by Tina Dadio.
  • What specific records within your personnel file can be made public? What do you need to know when it comes to search committee notes? Get a refresher on the Public Records Act and explore additional topics like best practices in using email communications during the recruitment and selection of new colleagues.