Tennessee is home to five distinct medical schools, all of which share a promise to provide their state with the highest standard of medical professionals. Students are expected to abide by strict academic and professional standards and provide their patients with exceptional care and kindness. For some students, expectations as high as these can feel incredibly overwhelming, and they can find themselves struggling academically or professionally. They may even succumb to opportunities to violate the school's code of conduct. If you have been accused of violating academic or behavioral standards, an attorney advisor will be able to recommend the next steps you should take so that you will receive the best possible outcome.
Academic and Professionalism Policies for Tennessee Medical Students
Medical schools almost always start their students' medical school careers with an oath they must recite. This oath is printed in the school's code of conduct and acts as a behavioral standard the university expects the students to uphold. For example, at Eastern Tennessee's College of Medicine, the code of conduct specifies that students are supposed to abstain from doing anything illegal, make objective decisions in regard to their relationships with their peers, refrain from academic misconduct, and act professionally at all times, whether on campus or off.
Additionally, at the DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine, students will be disciplined for violating the academic integrity of the program. Academic integrity violations can look like anything from failing to progress through the program on the timeline the medical school puts forth, or cheating on an exam, assignment, or clinical rotation.
If you are accused of violating these standards, you will be required to attend several conferences and hearings. During these proceedings, you will have to present your side of the story with the hopes of having the accusations dropped. If they are not dropped, you may face formal sanctions, which could include being dismissed from the medical school completely. Attorney advisors can help avoid or mitigate these negative consequences by gathering evidence and witnesses to speak on your behalf so that such concerns are reasonably resolved.
Remediation at Tennessee Medical Schools
Physicians are held to very high standards because of the nature of their work. They are expected to have compassion for their patients, providing them with the best medical care they can give. But this level can only be reached through proper education, which includes academic and professional education. Medical schools achieve this by constantly testing their students on their understanding of different aspects of medicine and anatomy and on how to relate to patients in a kind and professional manner.
If your school is like Meharry Medical School College of Medicine, they will require you to pass these challenges with flying colors. If they see that you are unable to keep up with the coursework, are failing your exams, or are behind in your rotations, they will offer you the chance to remediate the work once before sending your case over to a dismissal hearing committee. How your school treats remediation may differ, so being familiar with the procedure is key. Additionally, an attorney-advisor will be able to help you fight for remediation if it is not offered or the circumstances around it are inherently unfair.
Dismissal From a Tennessee Medical Program
Dismissal actions are scary procedures for medical students to face. They mean having to fight to protect your dreams of becoming a doctor, and you never expect to have to undergo that fight when you start medical school. Unfortunately, though, there are several incidents that might occur which could lead to a dismissal hearing. For instance, at Vanderbilt University, students will face dismissal if academic and professional performance issues continue to occur even after being given the opportunity to resolve them. Performance issues might include attitude and deportment or interpersonal communication skills being subpar or continuous failing grades even after remediation.
Additionally, your medical school will outline a specific timeline they expect students to finish their education in. If you fail to meet these expectations, or fall significantly behind, your medical school may believe you won't fair well as a practicing physician and decide to dismiss them from the program.
Most medical schools in Tennessee allow their students to present their case and be heard before issuing a dismissal. They also opt for warnings and probationary periods. It's only after these opportunities to reform that dismissal proceedings are started. An attorney advisor will be able to advise you on how to best represent yourself throughout this entire process. Sadly, being insufficiently defended could result in long-term consequences that go beyond being expelled from the program. You might have already taken out significant loans to attend medical school, and without the promise of a doctor's salary in your future, you may not be able to pay them back.
Additionally, the personal hardships that might occur can be insurmountable. Your whole life has led you to medical school; what career do you choose to pursue next? Can you, and should you, continue to pursue a medical career at a lesser-promising program?
Due process rights are very important aspects of any dismissal process. Your school will identify the exact process for appeals, which grounds they can be made on, and how quickly it must be submitted. It is important to review your school's processes and procedures to ensure you don't miss any steps. Medical schools usually preserve processes that allow you to hear the allegations against you, face the person you made the allegations, present your case to the disciplinary board, request a chance to remediate the course, exam, or rotation, and offer an opportunity to appeal and adverse ruling by the disciplinary board.
It is imperative you take advantage of the appeals process and keep an eye on submission dates. For students facing suspension and expulsion, appeals are your last chance to stay in school without any mars on your transcripts or professional career. Attorney advisors will be able to advise you on how to proceed at every step of the process to limit the sanctions against you and preserve your dreams for a future in medicine.
Additionally, if your appeal is denied, your attorney advisor will work to negotiate for an alternative outcome with the Office of General Counsel at your medical school. These discussions tend to have more favorable results than if you were to bring a suite against the school.
Tennessee Medical Student Defense Advisor
Medical schools in Tennessee have the power to transform you into an incredible physician. Getting accepted to one is a fete you should be proud of, but if you are accused of violating your school's honor code or code of conduct, for example, all those dreams of practicing medicine might be gone in an instant. Whether you are just accused or fully adjudicated and dismissed, the consequences can have lasting effects beyond just your time on campus. Attorney Joseph D. Lento has dedicated his professional career to helping medical students overcome academic and professional challenges and to defending medical students accused of violating their university's code of conduct or other policies. Attorney Lento and his team understand that a strong defense will best help protect your medical career goals. Call the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686 to discuss your case or schedule a time online.