All enrolled students have a University of Saint Mary email account. It is imperative that all students utilize this account.  This is the primary means by which USM will communicate with you outside of the classroom.  As such, students are responsible for checking this account and for any information distributed by this means. 

Violation of these policies will be governed by the University’s Student Conduct Disciplinary Procedures.

University of Saint Mary Electronic Transmission of Information Policy

The provision of the university-owned electronic mail system is for the members of the University of Saint Mary community. 

The university will make reasonable efforts to maintain the effective operation of its electronic mail systems.  Users are advised, however, that these systems and other free electronic mail packages, for example Gmail, downloaded to the university-owned network and student-owned computers should in no way be viewed as a secure medium for the communication of confidential or sensitive information.  Users of electronic mail services are on notice that even though sender and recipient may have discarded or deleted their copies of an electronic mail record, retrievable back-up copies of electronic mail records may exist. 


Although the university does not routinely monitor information transmitted, stored, received, or retrieved electronically on the university’s computers and the resources it makes available, including, among other things, electronic mail, it retains the right to do so.  There is no expectation of privacy in any information transmitted, stored, received, or retrieved electronically on the university’s computers and the resources it makes available, including among other things electronic mail. Use of any university computer or other electronic resource made available through the university constitutes consent to a search and disclosure as described in this policy. 

The university may search, retrieve, or view any information or data entered, transmitted, received, stored, or retrieved on its computers and the resources it makes available in connection with, among other things: 

  • maintenance or improvement

  • monitoring for viruses and other destructive computer programs

  • investigation of violation of university policy

  • investigation by an authorized law enforcement or federal, state, or local agency

  • where otherwise required by law

  • when authorized by the president or the academic dean of the university.


Prohibited uses of the university-owned network or student-owned workstations accessing the university-owned network include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Any use that infringes upon the intellectual property rights of others.  This includes sending copies of documents in violation of copyright laws, including inclusion of the work of others into electronic mail communications in violation of copyright laws.

  • Capture and “opening” of electronic mail not addressed to the recipient except as specifically authorized by the president or the academic vice president of the university to diagnose and correct the delivery system.

  • Use of electronic mail to harass or intimidate others, including harassment on the basis of race or color, sex or gender, national origin or ethnic origin or ancestry, disability, religion or creed, age, sexual orientation, veterans status, or citizenship or intending citizenship status, or to interfere with the ability of others to conduct university business.

  • Downloading, displaying, printing, creating, saving, or transmitting materials that use obscene, threatening, or disrespectful language, are pornographic, advocate illegal or violent acts. 

  • For personal financial gain, gambling, or advertising.

  • Use of electronic mail systems for any purpose restricted or prohibited by law or regulation or by university policy.

  • “Spoofing”, i.e. constructing an electronic mail communication so that it appears to be from someone else.

  • “Spamming,” i.e. sending a large amount of electronic mail to a particular site or workstation sufficient to harass individuals, down servers or otherwise effectuate “denial of electronic mail service” to the campus or any other site.

  • “Snooping,” i.e. unauthorized access to the electronic files or electronic mail of others for the purpose of satisfying idle curiosity, with no substantial university-related purpose.

  • Attempting unauthorized access to electronic mail or attempting to breach any security measures on any electronic mail system or attempting to intercept any electronic mail transmissions without proper authorization.

  • Knowingly exporting, importing, or downloading a virus on to the university or any other computer system.

  • Any use that interferes with the proper functioning of the University’s information technology resources.

  • Any use that interferes with the ability of others to make use of the University’s computer and electronic media resources.

It is against USM policy to use electronic media, such as voicemail, electronic mail, internet, or other means of electronic communications to send harassing, annoying, or obscene messages, messages that infringe on the privacy of another person or violates any university policy, any theft of electronic material for private usage (e.g. cable splicing, etc.), any fraudulent activity including any misrepresentation, or any other inappropriate use of electronic media. 

Social Media Policy

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines to students regarding their use of social media.  Social media are internet-based platforms that are highly accessible to others where individuals can generate content and engage in social interactions.  Social media platforms are constantly evolving and include, but are not limited to, Twitter, Facebook, blogs, Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc.

Students at USM are expected to adhere to the following social media guidelines:

  • Use common sense. Remember that little, if anything, is private when posted on social media and you are ultimately responsible for what you post and any consequences that may arise from such postings, whether such consequences are in the personal, professional or academic realm.

  • Think first, post second.  Any conduct that could get you in trouble with the University if social media was not involved can also result in disciplinary action when social media is being utilized.  For example, threatening or sexually harassing another student via Twitter or Facebook can subject you to University discipline just as if you engaged in such conduct in person.

  • Protect confidential, sensitive, and proprietary information.  If you are in a healthcare program that requires placement at clinical agencies, HIPAA guidelines must be followed and you must avoid posting or otherwise disseminating protected health information or other identifiable information related to patients.

  • Respect copyright and other intellectual property rights of others.

  • Do not use the University’s logos without prior written permission.

  • Do not use the University’s name to promote a product, cause, opinion, business, or political party or candidate.

  • When identifying yourself as a student of University of Saint Mary, avoid claiming or implying that you are speaking on behalf of the University.

  • Cyberbullying and cyberstalking will not be tolerated at University of Saint Mary.

Violations of this policy will result in a review of the incident by University officials and may include action under the Student Conduct Disciplinary Procedures.  

Revised:  08/05/2014