Medical students face many challenges in their early medical careers. Medical school is difficult, exhausting, but also an all-important part of your future successes. When issues related to academic progress, professionalism, or academic or behavioral misconduct occur or are charged against you, there is a serious risk that your entire medical career could be derailed as a result. At an absolute minimum, future residency and employment opportunities can be severely diminished.
Medical students all too commonly face academic issues such as failure to meet progress requirements, course or clinical failures, and related concerns, in addition to disciplinary issues such as accusations of Title IX violations, plagiarism, or lapses in professionalism. The upside is that these issues can be handled and defended against as necessary with the help of a highly experienced medical student defense attorney.
If you are dealing with academic or disciplinary issues while in medical school, experienced medical student defense attorney Joseph D. Lento is here to help. You deserve to have your rights protected, and the Lento Law Firm has helped countless students with academic issues at more than a thousand colleges and universities across the United States.
Experienced Medical Student Academic Issues Attorney
A veteran of the nation's highest-stakes court systems, Joseph D. Lento has spent close to 20 years passionately advocating for medical students. As an attorney, he learned the practice of law in the trenches, dedicating himself to finding solutions to clients' matters both in and out of the courtroom. At times, a student's academic matter can be resolved diplomatically, and he is a skillful negotiator. At other times, resolving a client's matter requires additional efforts, and with the right attorney at your side, your rights will be well protected.
Remediation & Academic Progress Appeals
When a medical student is struggling academically, many schools will engage in remediation with the student in order to help him or her move forward, if and when possible. Every medical school is different in its willingness to engage in this process, how it works, and whether there is much or any patience at all in helping a struggling student. Many schools have processes in place that govern how and for how long remediation will take place.
In some cases, remediation policies are not followed, or are not appropriately effectuated by the school, and can be subject to an appeal if you were negatively affected by remediation or an academic progress evaluation. Many students are not given a fair shake to explain why they are struggling, as the outside influences that can affect academic performance are great. For many students, a little help could go a long way. Academic progress evaluations can even lead to your dismissal from medical school.
If your medical school has taken action against you as a result of an academic progress evaluation or remediation, you can fight back and fight for your rights to continue in medical school.
Professionalism Concerns in Medical School
Medical schools have high standards of professionalism embodied in their very nature, and typically have strict policies in place to ensure that students follow the guidelines imposed. When a medical student is accused of violating the standard of professionalism, the consequences can be dire. Many of these violations stem from outside criminal acts, drugs or alcohol, or even claims of sexual harassment or assault.
However, the concept of "professionalism" is often ill-defined, and very open to interpretation. All too often, medical schools are overly concerned about saving face and take hasty action before learning all of the actual facts of the case. Because of this, many students see their academic careers threatened over unproven or even mistaken allegations of unprofessional conduct. You can appeal your case through your medical school to contest the allegations against you.
Title IX Violations
Title IX is a federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex. Title IX applies to any educational “program or activity” that receives federal funding, including medical schools. Title IX's definition of sex discrimination includes sexual harassment and sexual violence such as sexual coercion, sexual battery, sexual assault, and rape.
When a medical student is accused of a Title IX violation, he or she will be put through the rigorous Title IX administrative process to determine the nature of the allegations. While the process is theoretically designed to find the truth of the matter, it is way too often used to punish the alleged offender, even without proper evidence or facts. Title IX requires you to be afforded due process, including the right to have an attorney represent you in the process.
Title IX cases are incredibly serious, and you must not take it lightly. The stakes are even higher for medical students as a finding of sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, or sexual assault will assuredly stop a medical student's career in its tracks. With the help of a highly experienced student rights attorney at your side, however, you can make sure your rights are protected and you will be able to mount the strongest possible defense.
Academic Misconduct by Medical Students
A great many things can be considered academic misconduct that could land a medical student in hot water. Many students who now face these charges did not even realize what they were doing is against the rules. A few examples of academic misconduct include, but are not limited to:
- Unauthorized collaboration
- Unauthorized assistance
- Forging a professor's signature on a letter of recommendation or any other document
- Using unauthorized materials during an exam
- Posting, selling, or distributing lecture notes, handouts, or any other information drafted by a professor, or using them for commercial purposes without approval
- Submitting the same assignment for more than one course without the approval of all the professors involved etc.
Academic misconduct can be the basis for sanctions at your school that can harm your permanent record. In other cases, it may even lead to suspension or expulsion from your medical school. Undergraduate students are held to a high level of accountability in cases involving academic misconduct or academic integrity, and medical students are held to a higher level yet.
If you face academic misconduct charges you must act now to defend your rights. If you have already been found responsible and punished, you can file an appeal to overturn the actions taken against you as long as you meet the applicable grounds for an appeal and an effective appeal is made.
Consult a Medical Student Defense Attorney
Medical students face unique challenges that require highly experienced legal help in order to protect their future careers. Academic or disciplinary issues that arise during medical school can have a lasting or permanent effect on your future career, not only the here and now.
Attorney Joseph D. Lento has a firm understanding of the issues medical students face and has helped countless medical students with such concerns at colleges and universities across the United States. Contact attorney Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm at (888) 535-3686 today for help.