*If you have an immediate concern about your student's safety, please call Campus Security at 626-395-5000 for assistance. Campus Security will contact emergency personnel and guide them to the location if needed. If you are off-campus, please call 9-1-1.
The deans work with families to support their students throughout their Caltech experience. If you are worried about your student's well-being, please contact the office (626-395-6351) to connect with one of the associate deans. Alternatively, you may submit a CARE referral about your student here.
Dean Nye works primarily with juniors and seniors, as well as students registered with Caltech Accessibility Services for Students (CASS). Dean Weyman works with first-year students and sophomores. Resources for Families of New Students
While we will gladly accept any information you may provide, families should familiarize themselves with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, (FERPA), so that they are aware of the restrictions we face in sharing student data. You may find more information about FERPA here.
FAQs for Parents
According to Caltech's Parent, Guardian, and Emergency Contact Notification Policy, Caltech understands and supports a student's right to confidentiality regarding educational records as well as matters related to a student's experience at the Institute. Most communications from Caltech regarding academics, health and safety, advising, enrollment, and policies are directed only to students. However, the Institute does encourage students to share important information with their parent(s) or guardian.
Subject to the allowable exceptions under FERPA, there may be circumstances under which a Caltech administrator makes the determination that notification to parent(s) or a guardian is indicated, and notification may be made without a student's consent. In most cases, when a Caltech administrator determines that involving parent(s) or guardian is necessary, the student will be given an opportunity to make contact in advance of the administrator's communication. Administrators will consider any relevant information which may indicate that notification to parent(s) or guardian may not be appropriate based on individual circumstances. The Institute expects all students to designate an emergency contact who is a parent or guardian or other family member who may be notified in order to address a health or safety emergency, and who is in a position to make decisions on the student's behalf in the case of a medical emergency. An alternate emergency contact also may be identified for other purposes.
Situations that may warrant the involvement of a student's, parent(s), guardian, or emergency contact may include, but are not limited to:
- Concerns about a student under the age of 18. Caltech administrators will initiate communication with the parent(s) or guardian of a minor student in the cases described below, as well as any other concerns about a minor student that may benefit from collaboration with the student's support system.
- Change in enrollment or status of an undergraduate student. A change in the enrollment status of an undergraduate student may occur as a result of disciplinary action, unsatisfactory academic progress, or other factors. If an undergraduate student is separated from the Institute, the parent(s) or guardian will be notified by mail at the permanent address on file.
- Medical emergencies. State law prohibits health care professionals from disclosing medical information to the parents or guardian of a student without the student's explicit consent. In the event a student is incapacitated, unable to communicate, or otherwise cannot make decisions on their own behalf, the Institute will first cooperate with medical providers and then notify the emergency contact, parent(s) or guardian on file as soon as possible.
- Unexplained absence from campus. If it comes to the attention of Caltech administrators that a student is inexplicably absent from campus for more than 24 hours, or there is reason to believe that a student missing for fewer than 24 hours and is in danger, the emergency contact, parent(s) or guardian will be contacted in order to aid in locating the student. Caltech has a Missing Student Policy that guides the response of the Institute and cooperation with law enforcement and other officials.
- Significant disruption to the campus community. The emergency contact, parent(s) or guardian of a student may be notified if the student is behaving in a way that is substantially disruptive to the campus community, there is reason to believe the student is at risk of harming themselves or others, or is placed under arrest or charged with a crime related to conduct on campus.
- Repeated or flagrant violations of the Substance Abuse Policy. Caltech administrators may contact parent(s) or guardian if a student under the age of 21 is found responsible for serious or repeated violations of Institute policy related to the possession, use or distribution of alcohol or drugs. Consideration in these situations will be given to the following conditions: the violation involved harm or threat of harm to self, others or property; the violation involved an arrest in which the student was taken into custody; the violation resulted in or could result in the student being suspended and/or removed from an Institute residence; the student has shown a pattern of violations; the student required urgent medical intervention as a result of consumption of alcohol and/or drugs.
- Student death. In the event of a student death, Caltech administrators will cooperate with law enforcement, the coroner, medical personnel, and any other relevant officials who will provide official notification to the deceased student's next of kin.
There may be additional, unforeseen circumstances when we believe it is in the best interest of the student to notify a parent or guardian. We reserve the right to act in such cases on our own best judgment, framed within the approach to emergency contact and parental/guardian notification stated above.
You know your student better than anyone else. While they will probably become less communicative with you as they integrate into campus life (which is a good thing!), you will likely pick up on signs of trouble if it occurs. If you become concerned about them, you should let us know, so that we can reach out and coordinate support. Signs that you should be in touch with us are:
- Mood or behavior changes
- Changes in personal hygiene
- Social withdrawal
- Excessive absences from class or lab
- Disinterest or disengagement in work
- Increased substance use
- Talking about death, dying, or suicide
- Disruptive behavior
- Aggressive behavior or social media postings
If you have an urgent concern that can't wait until the next business day, but is not an emergency, you may also consult with Counseling Services staff. If you need a consultation after hours, please call the Counseling Services main line, 626-395-8331, and press "2" to be connected with the on-call service. The clinician will ask you some screening questions and provide consultation, and may connect you to a Counseling Services staff member for additional assistance.
Associate Deans: Students Can Use this Link to Make an Appointment
Generally anything, but primarily academic difficulties, family issues, financial concerns, social difficulties, hazing, disruptive behavior
Caltech Accessibility Services for Students: http://www.cass.caltech.edu/
Learning disability, need for accommodations
Center for Diversity: http://diversity.caltech.edu/
Financial Aid: http://www.finaid.caltech.edu
Hixon Writing Center: http://writing.caltech.edu/
For help with any academic writing
Occupational Therapy Services: http://wellness.caltech.edu/services/occupational-therapy
Time management, study habits, motivation issues, sleep concerns
Office of Residential Experience: http://ore.caltech.edu/
Housing or roommate problems, community concerns
Emergency planning and response, escort service
Student Wellness Services: http://wellness.caltech.edu/
Mental or physical health concerns, social difficulties, alcohol and drug issues
Title IX and Equity Office: http://titleix.caltech.edu/
Sexual or Relationship Violence and/or Gender Discrimination