Need Help?

The Dean of Student office is your go-to resource for addressing student needs and offering guidance on PNW policies. See common issues as well as who to contact for assistance.

Who Can Assist Me?

The Dean of Students office can assist PNW students with a range of issues. We have a Student Assistance team that will work with your to understand your concern. Explore common concerns below to find the best person to schedule a meeting with.

Academic Concerns

Below are some frequently asked questions that advocates from the Office of the Dean of Students (ODOS) can help you with!

Faculty members have the authority and responsibility to assign course grades. ODOS cannot change a grade, but our advocates can help you communicate with your instructor if you feel a grade was assigned unfairly. We can also advise you on preparing a formal grade appeal, which is the only way to overrule an instructor’s assigned grade. Check the policy out here, and contact our office to learn more.

You have the right to appeal academic dishonesty sanctions if you feel they were inaccurate or unfair. ODOS advocates can help you understand academic dishonesty processes and assist with appeals. Check out the appeal policy here, and contact our office to learn more.

We are here to help you if you are struggling! Students fall behind in school for many reasons, and many wait too long before asking for help. If you’re looking for assistance, you’ve already taken the most important step! ODOS advocates can help you understand why you might be falling behind and what you need to do to stay on track, and we can connect you with the family of PNW support staff that is here to help you succeed. Depending on the circumstances, we can connect you with tutoring, financial resources, housing resources, disability access, help you understand the pros and cons of dropping a class, or many other areas of support. Contact us and let’s find a way to help you succeed!

Student Concerns

ODOS is responsible for ensuring the safety of the PNW community by enforcing the student Code of Conduct, formally known as the “Regulations Governing Student Conduct, Disciplinary Proceedings and Appeals.” If you are charged with a violation, you will have the opportunity to receive assistance from an advocate who is not involved in the conduct process. The advocate will help you understand the procedures for deciding cases, including timelines and your right to appeal. We ensure that you are treated respectfully and fairly throughout the process, and that you have the assistance and support that you need. Contact us and let’s talk it out!

We have your back! Students who have concerns about professors often feel intimidated and don’t know where to go for help. Contrary to what some people think, ODOS does not have the authority to discipline faculty members or tell them what to do. However, we can assist in de-escalating or resolving conflicts with professors, and we can help you properly document complaints with supervisors, including department heads and deans. Contact us and let us walk you through your options.

We’re here for you! If you are concerned that another student or staff member might pose an immediate threat to themselves or others, CONTACT CAMPUS POLICE at (219) 989-2222 (Hammond) or (219) 989-2222 (Westville). If someone you know seems depressed, anxious, struggling with school, relationship, or financial problems, let us help. You can make them aware that ODOS is here for them, and you can also fill out a student of concern form. You don’t need to share your name on the form, so you can remain anonymous if you prefer. We’ll reach out and see if we can help.


We can help! Many people don’t realize that pregnant students are entitled to accommodations under federal law. You can be absent without penalty for some days, and receive extended time and other accommodations for coursework. Contact us and we will explain your rights and procedures for requesting accommodations. You can also contact the Disability Access Center directly, which manages pregnancy accommodations.

All Purdue campuses have a Grief Absence Policy which entitles students to time off without penalty to grieve the loss of a family member. Even if your situation is not covered by the policy, ODOS advocates can document your situation, reach out to your professors on your behalf, and request accommodations so that you don’t have to. Most professors are very willing to help. Contact us and let us take care of things for you so you can take the time you need.

All Purdue campuses have a jury duty policy that entitles students to accommodations when called to jury duty. ODOS advocates can document your case, help you understand your rights, and we can talk to your professors and help work out accommodations. Let us take care of school so you can focus on this important civic duty!

All Purdue campuses have a sick leave policy that allows students to miss a limited amount of classes without penalty. We advise you not to send medical records or information to professors by email; instead, we strongly recommend that you contact ODOS to process requests for medical absence. Our advocates can document your medical condition and advise you and your professors on your rights under the policy. Our secure database complies with Federal and state privacy laws, so your medical information is safe and is never shared with professors or staff without your consent.

Student Support and Advocacy

Advocates are located on each campus in the Office of the Dean of Students and are available to help with a wide variety of issues that students are faced with. Students are connected with the appropriate university and community resources to support their academic success and progress. When experiencing unforeseen circumstances, students are provided assistance within university policies and procedures.

Advocates assist students with many personal and life situations. Specialized support and advocacy is available to students who have experienced sexual assault, relationship violence, or stalking, or family circumstance impacting their academic pursuits, like pregnancy or parenting.

Staff are committed to providing services that are non-judgmental, survivor-focused and empowering. Recognizing that each person’s experience is unique, staff are available to help each survivor assess their reporting options and access resources that meet their personal needs.

Respect Boundaries is a short online course in sexual assault prevention and response that all Purdue students at all campuses must complete. We’re required by Federal law to mandate this training, so you’re not able to register for classes until you complete it. If you have completed the course and still see that you’re unable to register, call us and we can help! The registration hold is cleared automatically, but this can take up to 24 hours. ODOS advocates can clear the hold immediately and answer any other questions you might have about Respect Boundaries.

PNW is committed to providing all students, staff and faculty with a welcoming, inclusive, and diverse environment, and we do not tolerate racism in any form. ODOS advocates can explain your rights and assist you in preparing a formal complaint, if necessary. Primary responsibility for investigating claims of discrimination and harassment lies with the Office of Institutional Equity, so you can contact them directly if you prefer.

PNW is committed to providing all students, staff and faculty with a welcoming, inclusive, and diverse environment, and we do not tolerate violence or harassment in any form. ODOS advocates can explain your rights and assist you in preparing a formal complaint, if necessary. Primary responsibility for investigating claims of harassment lies with the Office of Institutional Equity, and you can contact them directly if you prefer. We’ll also check in regularly with you and provide any supports you may need to cope with the effects of a traumatic event—whether it’s counseling, class accommodations, or a place to stay, we’re here for you.

Update Forms

No problem! Some employers and graduate schools request letters of good standing from your college or university. We’re happy to complete a form provided by your prospective school or employer, or generate a completed form letter that you can use. Due to the volume of cases we process, please allow at least five business days to process the request—but usually we’ll get it done sooner than that.

Students at Purdue University Northwest may use their preferred names on campus regardless of whether it matches their legal name. We are committed to providing a process for those campus community members who use names other than their legal names to identify themselves in times and places where a legal name is not required.

See Our Guide to Preferred Names at PNW

Campus and Community Resources

Campus Resources

Center for Healthy Living at Purdue University Northwest
Hammond Campus: 2250 173rd Street

Counseling Center
Hammond Campus: Riley Center, 2250 173rd Street
Westville Campus: Technology Building 101
Contact: (219) 989-2366

Office of Dean of Students
Hammond Campus: Classroom/Office Building, Room 152
Westville Campus: LSF, Room 103
Contact: (219) 989-4141 / (219) 785-5230

Office of Institutional Equity
Hammond Campus: Lawshe 231
Westville Campus: Schwarz Hall, 25 C
Contact: (219) 989-2337 / (219) 785-5545

PNW Police
Hammond Campus: Schneider G095 and G097
Westville Campus: Campus Police Building, Room 101
Contact: (219) 989-2222 / (219) 989-2222 or Emergency: 911

PNW Food Pantry
Hammond Campus: Schneider Avenue Building 52-54
Westville Campus: Located in the former Dark Room in the Library Student Faculty (LSF) building.

PNW Accessibility Center
Hammond Campus: Student Union and Library Building (SULB), Room 341
Westville Campus: Technology Building (TECH), Room 101
Contact: (219) 989-2455

Community Resources

The Caring Place
Valparaiso, IN
24-Hour Hotline: (219) 464-2128

The Crisis Center, Inc.
Gary, IN
24-Hour Hotline: (800) 519-0469

Haven House Family Advocacy Center
Hammond, IN
24-Hour Hotline: (219) 931-2090

St. Jude’s House Family Shelter
Crown Point, IN
24-Hour Hotline: (800) 254-1286

Stepping Stone Shelter for Women, Inc.
Michigan City, IN
24-Hour Hotline: (866) 879-4615

Foodbank of Northwest Indiana
Merrillville, IN (Various locations for food pantries & soup kitchens)
Phone: (219) 525-4043

Food Assistance Availability Map
Locations throughout Indiana
Contact: dial 2-1-1 or (866) 211-9966

PNW Student standing with their parent

Resource Guides

The Deans of Students Office has created resource guides to assist parents, supporters, faculty and staff.

Parents and Supporters Guide

Faculty and Staff Guide