Student Defense: Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine

The Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine (SIUSDM) is a private school of dental medicine established in 1972. Located in Alton, Illinois, the dental school is one of a mere three dental schools in the state. SIUSDM has small class sizes and a low student-to-teacher ratio, allowing students to access a high-quality education. If you're a dentistry student at SIUSDM, you'll have the opportunity to engage in the best of both worlds. St. Louis is less than 200 miles away, and you have a quiet, prestigious campus to enjoy. But to remain enrolled, you must not have any academic, behavioral, or progression issues.

As a dental student, you're experiencing some of the most engaging and intense academic pursuits of your educational path. However, because it's so competitive and rigorous, you must work harder to stay ahead. It's imperative in this scenario since SIUSDM is one of only three dental schools in the state. A negative note on your record can spill over to another college, especially with a suspension or expulsion on your record. These penalties set you back, prevent you from graduating on time, and may discourage you from pursuing dentistry altogether.

Conduct Policy at SIUSDM

SIUSDM is a part of the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) and follows the same conduct policy. According to the Student Rights and Conduct segments, intellectual honesty is the basis of education. As a result, the university does not tolerate any form of academic misconduct, including:

  • Plagiarism
  • Cheating
  • Failure or refusal to follow clinical protocol
  • Falsifying data
  • Helping other students commit academic misconduct

If a professor believes that a student is engaging in academic misconduct, they try to discuss it with the student. When there is no resolution or straightforward answer to the faculty member's concerns, the case receives a review by the Provost. The Provost sends the student a notice informing them of the charges against them and asks them to deny or accept the allegations. If a student maintains their denial of any wrongdoing, the university schedules the formation of a faculty hearing.

Progression Issues

Students must be on their best ethical behavior when enrolled in dental school. They must also make sure to excel in their studies to proceed to the next phase of their program. Since you will deal with people's oral health, you must have the knowledge, skills, and training to work with them and perhaps direct a group of up-and-coming dentists. You may have to repeat a course when you do not progress adequately at SIUSDM. This repetition sets you back and prevents you from graduating on time.

Sometimes, you may have the option to remediate your grades before you repeat a class. Although it may seem burdensome, this may be the only way to stay in dental school. And with so few options available in the state, dismissal due to poor academic performance limits your chances of enrollment at another dental school. With the guidance of an attorney-advisor, you won't have to deal with the matter alone. You may still have the power to negotiate with your school's panel.

Repercussions of Dismissal

Whether temporary or permanent, a dismissal from dental school negatively impacts your future. A suspension prevents you from graduating with your class, while expulsion means you have to start somewhere else. Given your limited options in Illinois, avoiding these two sanctions is the only way to graduate without any issues. Some of the obstacles you may face after a permanent dismissal include:

  • Reputation damage: Your transcript will have a notice that you received an expulsion or suspension from dental school. Admissions officers and potential employers may reject your application and opt for applicants without blemished records.
  • Loss of time and effort: Whether you spent one semester or two years studying, a severe offense takes you back to square one. Since every dental school has a unique program and standards, you cannot simply start over.
  • Difficulty enrolling in a new program: You may mistakenly assume that you can start over in a new dental school. While that may be possible in big cities and metropolitan areas, it is not always the case in Illinois, especially since it has only three dental schools.
  • Financial burdens: Even with the best financial planning before enrolling in medical school, losing your placement in college is seldom something you prepare for in advance. You'll lose all scholarships and financial aid, including dealing with unexpected expenses.
  • Loss of morale: With everything that can go wrong, you may not be interested in dentistry altogether.

Since you work hard and dream of becoming a dentist, every step you take after receiving notice of an allegation is critical. The best option is to call an attorney-advisor specializing in student defense.

Hiring an Attorney-Advisor

Some students mistakenly assume they can take on a panel independently. But when your reputation and degree are at stake, you can't simply “wing it” and hope for the best. It would be best if you had the expertise and experience of an attorney-advisor who knows what you're going through.

Attorney-Advisor Joseph D Lento has a wealth of experience working with dental students facing harsh sanctions. With his solid understanding of how panels function and adjudication processes in private and public universities, attorney-advisor Lento works for the best possible outcome. With his drive and thirst for justice, attorney-advisor Lento looks at every case with fresh eyes and draws back on his experience for the best results.

You're a student who makes mistakes as part of your educational journey. Every step you take today affects how your case goes in the future. Whether you face challenging circumstances, made a genuine error, or engaged in conduct that is out of character, please don't wait until it's too late. Call the Lento Law Firm at 888-535-3686 today for more information on how to approach your case.

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If you, or your student, are facing any kind of disciplinary action, or other negative academic sanction, and are having feelings of uncertainty and anxiety for what the future may hold, contact the Lento Law Firm today, and let us help secure your academic career.

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