Amelia Carpenter

Miami University’s faculty and staff can now report concerns about students’ well being online with the Student Concern Management System, a tool available this spring.

The system is not meant to discriminate against personal contact or phone calls, but to move away from phone tag and redirecting concerns multiple times, according to Timothy Parsons, emergency case manager at Miami.

“(It is a) streamlined process where they enter student’s name and plus number and helps us to respond more quickly and help students more efficiently,” Parsons said.

Sample concerns would be students who are sick, struggling with personal issues or not attending class regularly, Parsons said.

Parsons said, however, the system is not meant for emergency purposes.

The system is monitored daily and concerns processed as soon as possible, according to a Miami news release. The site can be found under ‘S’ in the ‘Quick Links’ tab on Blackboard.

Leslie Haxby McNeill, assistant director for health education at Miami, said the new system parallels with the campus assistance program, “a presentation given to faculty and staff of how to identify students in trouble.”

“I think this is a way to kind of help connect the dots,” McNeill said.

McNeill said she hopes people will take advantage of the system.

“We’re trying to help students succeed in school,” McNeill said. “(This is) a way to catch those problems, provide some help or support before it becomes crisis issue (if it) affects students’ ability to be successful.”

Resident advisers do not currently have access to the system and typically report concerns about residents to their resident director, who report to the Office of Residence Life.

“Even when the swine flu happened, we didn’t learn that the residents had swine – we were never reported about that,” said Sarah Schultz, Hamilton Hall resident adviser.

The dean of students’ office expects bugs in the system while the program is in its first semester, but Parsons said it has not yet received any concerns on the system.