Jun 21, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Student Handbook 
2020-2021 Undergraduate Student Handbook [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

University Policies & Regulations

Student Code of Conduct 

The Student Code of Conduct is designed to promote responsible behavior by all students consistent with the values and welfare of the Florida Polytechnic University community. It exists to define the behavioral rights and responsibilities of University students and student organizations. The Code of Conduct fosters and enhances the academic mission of the University, as well as protects the rights of all University students, faculty and staff.

Please see FPU-3.006 Student Code of Conduct in the University Policies and Regulations to read in its entirety.


The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords eligible students certain rights with respect to their education records. (An “eligible student” under FERPA is a student who is 18 years of age or older or who attends a postsecondary institution at any age.) These rights include:

  1. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days after the day the University receives a request for access. A student should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The school official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the school official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
  2. The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA.

A student who wishes to ask the University to amend a record should write the University official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed.

If the University decides not to amend the record as requested, the University will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student’s right to a hearing re­garding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

The right to provide written consent before the University discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

The University discloses education records without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position (including law en­forcement unit personnel and health staff); a person serving on the board of trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance com­mittee. A school official also may include a volunteer or contractor outside of the University who performs an institutional service of function for which the school would otherwise use its own employees and who is under the direct control of the school with respect to the use and maintenance of PII from education records, such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent or a student volunteering to assist another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official typically has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an educa­tion record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibilities for the University.

The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202

See the list below of the disclosures that postsecondary institutions may make without consent.

FERPA permits the disclosure of PII from students’ education records, without consent of the student, if the disclosure meets certain conditions found in § 99.31 of the FERPA regulations. Except for disclosures to school officials, disclosures related to some judicial orders or lawfully issued subpoenas, disclosures of directory information, and disclosures to the student, § 99.32 of FERPA regulations requires the institution to record the disclosure. Eligible students have a right to inspect and review the record of disclosures. A postsecondary institution may disclose PII from the education records without obtaining prior written consent of the student -

  • To other school officials, including teachers, within University whom the school has determined to have legitimate educational interests. This includes contractors, consultants, volunteers, or other parties to whom the school has outsourced institutional services or functions, provided that the conditions listed in § 99.31(a)(1)(i)(B)(1) - (a)(1)(i)(B)(3) are met. (§ 99.31(a)(1))
  • To officials of another school where the student seeks or intends to enroll, or where the student is already enrolled if the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer, subject to the requirements of § 99.34. (§ 99.31(a)(2))
  • To authorized representatives of the U. S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or State and local educational authorities, such as a State postsecondary authority that is responsible for supervising the university’s State-supported education programs. Disclosures under this provision may be made, subject to the requirements of §99.35, in connection with an audit or evaluation of Federal- or State-supported education programs, or for the enforcement of or compliance with Federal legal requirements that relate to those programs. These entities may make further disclosures of PII to outside entities that are designated by them as their authorized representatives to conduct any audit, evaluation, or enforcement or compliance activity on their behalf. (§§ 99.31(a)(3) and 99.35)
  • In connection with financial aid for which the student has applied or which the student has received, if the information is necessary to determine eligibility for the aid, determine the amount of the aid, determine the conditions of the aid, or enforce the terms and conditions of the aid. (§ 99.31(a)(4))
  • To organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, the school, in order to: (a) develop, validate, or administer predictive tests; (b) administer student aid programs; or (c) improve instruction. (§ 99.31(a)(6))
  • To accrediting organizations to carry out their accrediting functions. (§ 99.31(a)(7))
  • To parents of an eligible student if the student is a dependent for IRS tax purposes. (§  99.31(a)(8))
  • To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena. (§ 99.31(a)(9))
  • To appropriate officials in connection with a health or safety emergency, subject to § 99.36. (§  99.31(a)(10))
  • Information the school has designated as “directory information” under § 99.37. (§ 99.31(a)(11))
  • To a victim of an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or a non-forcible sex offense, subject to the requirements of § 99.39. The disclosure may only include the final results of the disciplinary proceeding with respect to that alleged crime or offense, regardless of the finding. (§ 99.31(a)(13))
  • To the general public, the final results of a disciplinary proceeding, subject to the requirements of § 99.39, if the school determines the student is an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or non-forcible sex offense and the student has committed a violation of the school’s rules or policies with respect to the allegation made against him or her. (§ 99.31(a)(14))
  • To parents of a student regarding the student’s violation of any Federal, State, or local law, or of any rule or policy of the school, governing the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance if the school determines the student committed a disciplinary violation and the student is under the age of 21. (§99.31(a)(15))

Additional Information may be found at https://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/ferpa/students.html.

Directory Information and Release to Third Parties

Directory information is the information available about a student that is not considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. The following is student directory information that may be released upon request or otherwise published without student consent:

  • Student’s name
  • Student’s date and place of birth
  • Local and permanent addresses
  • Telephone number
  • Email address
  • University student ID number (not social security number)
  • Enrollment status
  • Dates of attendance at Florida Polytechnic University
  • Level and class
  • Majors, minors, certificates, concentrations
  • Degrees, honors, and awards earned by the student
  • Graduation date
  • Titles of publications by the student
  • Student’s photo
  • Student’s participation in officially recognized or registered activities and sports
  • Student’s weight and height when he/she is a member of an athletic team
  • Most recent previous educational institution attended by the student
  • Nature and place of the student’s employment at the University

For additional information, see FPU-3.001 Confidentiality of Students Records and Applicant Records.

Student Educational Records 

The University maintains student educational records in a confidential and secure manner in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended, (“FERPA”), also known as the Buckley Amendment (20 U.S.C. 1232g). Florida Statutes Section 1002.225 provides certain rights to students concerning their student records. Florida Statutes Section 1006.52 makes both student records and applicant records confidential and exempt from disclosure under the State’s Public Records Law.

Please see FPU-3.001 Confidentiality of Student Records and Applicant Records policy to read in its entirety.

Grade Forgiveness Policy 

The Grade Forgiveness Policy is a method by which undergraduate and non-degree students may repeat a limited number of courses, provided the initial grade earned for the designated course is less than a “C”, to improve their grade point average (GPA).

Undergraduate degree and non-degree students may be eligible for a grade forgiveness upon meeting the following requirements:

  • Grade Forgiveness may only be granted for courses taken and repeated at Florida Polytechnic University.
  • Original course grade of C- or lower has been recorded on the individual’s academic record.
  • The repeated grade must be higher than the recorded original course grade.
  • The student must complete and submit the Grade Forgiveness form no later than the designated graduation application deadline date as stated in the Academic Calendar for the semester the student intends to apply for graduation. Students are strongly encouraged to apply for Grade Forgiveness upon the student’s completion of the repeat course or by the graduation application deadline if they are in their final semester.

Additional Conditions for Grade Forgiveness Eligibility:

  • Grade Forgiveness is limited to two (2) courses (a single time per course) during a student’s undergraduate career.
  • Only 1000-4000 level courses are considered eligible for Grade Forgiveness.
  • All course grades remain on the student’s academic transcript. Grade Forgiveness granted courses will be appropriately designated by an official comment on the student’s transcript.
  • Courses in which a student has received an academic dishonesty penalty are not considered eligible for grade forgiveness.
  • Departments may have further restrictions; therefore, the student should discuss their eligibility for Grade Forgiveness with their academic advisor. Applications for Grade Forgiveness can be obtained from online or in the Office of the Registrar. For more information see FPU-5.0006AP.

Military Calls to Active Duty

The purpose of regulation FPU-4.005 Student Withdrawal from Courses Due to Military Service is to provide the policies for students currently enrolled at the University who are called to, or enlist in, active military service to withdraw from courses.A student who is currently enrolled at the University shall not incur academic or financial penalties by virtue of performing military service on behalf of the United States of America. For the purposes of this regulation, “active military service” means active duty in the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, National Guard of the State of Florida, or other military service as provided in Florida statutes. The student must provide official orders or appropriate military certification to verify such military service.

For more information see FPU 4.005.

Name Change 

Official name change forms are available through the Office of the University Registrar. For the purpose of authentication, students are required to present a valid form of supporting documentation showing both the change and the reason when the form is submitted.

  • Marriage License
  • Divorce decree
  • Legal name change documentation
  • Social Security card, signed
  • Passport
  • Current Florida driver’s license or State issued I.D. card

Original copies and the form must be submitted in person. Originals submitted in person are returned immediately. If unable to submit in person, the request and notarized copies of the original documents may be mailed to Florida Polytechnic University, Attn: Registrar’s Office, 4700 Research Way; Lakeland, FL 33805-8531.

Students requesting a name change and reissue of diploma will be responsible for the cost of the new diploma. Name change requests from non-enrolled students will not be honored.

Please see FPU-5.011AP Name Change on Academic Records policy to read in its entirety.

Alcohol Policy

Florida Polytechnic University does not prohibit the legal consumption of alcohol on its campus or properties under its control. The intent of the alcohol policy is to establish guidelines and procedures for the legal and responsible use of alcohol on University property. The use of alcohol by members of the University community is subject to the applicable alcoholic beverages laws and ordinances of the State of Florida, the City of Lakeland and Polk County at all times. No person may sell, furnish or give alcohol to any person under the age of 21.

Please see the FPU-1.0003P Alcohol Policy to read in its entirety.

Sexual Harassment Policy

Florida Polytechnic University is committed to ensuring that each member of the University community shall be permitted to work, study and interact with each other in a dignified learning environment, free from any form of sexual harassment (sex discrimination, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, stalking, and intimate partner violence). This policy provides guidance regarding conduct that constitutes sexual harassment, reporting responsibilities regarding such behavior and specific information on where to go to seek guidance or file a complaint of sexual harassment. All complaints of sexual harassment will be handled in accordance with the University’s grievance and disciplinary procedures.

Policy Statement 

Sexual harassment violates University policy, federal and state laws and may also be subject to criminal prosecution. The University is committed to fostering an environment that promotes prompt reporting of all types of sexual harassment and timely and fair resolution of sexual harassment complaints.

Florida Polytechnic University does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its educational programs and activities.  Title IX of the Higher Education Amendments of 1972, 20 USC 1681 et seq., a federal civil rights law, prohibits such discrimination, in any form, including sexual harassment, sexual violence and gender-based discrimination. The University has designated a Title IX coordinator (see contact information below) to handle all complaints alleging sexual harassment and to conduct investigations of such complaints in a manner that ensures a prompt and equitable resolution. Additionally, as an employer, the University is required to comply with Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other federal and state laws regarding sex-based harassment and sex discrimination.

Please see FPU-1.005P Sexual Harassment regulation to read in its entirety.


The University prohibits all forms of hazing as defined by the Student Code of Conduct, regardless of where or when the hazing occurs. In addition to facing disciplinary actions by the University, students engaging in hazing may face criminal charges under Section 1006.63, Florida Statutes.

Please see FPU-30062P Anti Hazing policy to read the policy in its entirety.

Non-Discrimination/Equal Opportunity Policy 

The University is committed to providing and maintaining a dignified environment in which all members of the University community appreciate and respect one another by collectively sustaining a welcoming environment to work, study and interact with one another free from any form of unlawful discrimination.

The University shall not unlawfully discriminate in offering access to any educational programs or activities or in conducting its employment practices on the basis of race, color, national origin, marital status, sex, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or veteran status (each hereinafter referred to as a “protected class”) or any other legally protected class or basis under applicable federal and/or state laws. The purpose of this regulation is to provide the University’s expectations to maintain and foster an inclusive and welcoming environment in which diversity is valued and opportunity is equalized. This regulation provides guidelines and information regarding conduct that constitutes unlawful discrimination or harassment; reporting responsibilities; and requirements for filing a complaint of discrimination or harassment with the University. All complaints of discrimination or harassment filed with the University will be handled in accordance with applicable University grievance and disciplinary procedures.

Please see FPU-1.004 Non-Discrimination/Equal Opportunity policy to read in its entirety.

Discrimination and Harassment Complaint and Investigation Procedures

The purpose of this regulation is to allow the University to maintain its commitment to provide an environment free from any form of unlawful discrimination and to ensure compliance with the various applicable federal and state laws that prohibit discrimination. This regulation provides the procedures and related guidelines for handling and investigating complaints filed with the University that allege discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation in violation of the University’s Sexual Harassment Policy and Non-Discrimination/Equal Opportunity Regulation.

Please see FPU-1.005P Discrimination and Harassment Complaint and Investigation Procedures policy to read in its entirety.