The Catholic University of America

Frequently Asked Questions

Who do families contact in the case of a family emergency (i.e. death or serious illness) and need to get in touch with a student?

In cases of an emergency, family members should contact the Dean of Students Office and notify one of the staff members of the situation. The Dean of Students Office will then take the necessary measures to go about contacting the student.

I am feeling homesick, depressed, anxious, nervous and upset. Where can I go?

If you are having issues adjusting to campus or life, or are dealing with other personal problems, the staff members of the Dean of Students Office are a great resource for support. You can schedule a meeting with one of the deans either by phone or walk-in.

I am having trouble with my roommate. What should I do?

The first step in dealing with roommate conflicts is going to your Resident Assistant (RA). If your RA is unable to resolve the issue, then they will assist you in getting in contact with your Area Coordinator (AC) or Dean of Students staff member.

How do I take an academic leave from the university?

Click here to go to the academic leave page.

How do I permanently withdraw from the University?

Click here to go to the permanent withdrawal page.

I am having trouble academically. Who can I talk to?

Students offer find themselves struggling academically and are unsure to whom they can speak with on-campus. There are numerous resources available for students; first and foremost, the student can contact their professor with any specific questions for that particular class. Students can also get in contact with their academic advisor who can assist them on a broader level. The Center for Academic Success is an office on campus that's sole purpose is to help students with their academic lives at CUA. CAS offers workshop sessions throughout the semester to benefit students with better note taking skills, time management, etc. CAS also offers tutoring services for students who need support with individual classes. All of this information is available on CAS' website; cited above.

I am having a medical emergency. What do I do?

If you are experiencing an immediate medical emergency, contact the Department of Public Safety at 202-319-5111. Public Safety offices will be able to get the necessary medical assistance to you. If you are experiencing an on-going and/or serious medical issue (i.e. hospitalization, long term illness, etc.), contact the Office of the Dean of Students at 202-319-5619. Staff members in the Office of the Dean of Students can assist you with developing a plan for managing the impact of the medical issue on your campus life. You should also personally notify your professors if you have missed and/or expect to miss any classes; your professors are in the best position to discuss how absences from class will affect your class performance.

Where do I go to pay a judicial fine? How can I pay it?

If you are issued a monetary judicial sanction, you can pay the fine with Cardinal Cash on your Cardinal Card in the Dean of Students Office. Cardinal Cash is the only accepted form of payment. You can add Cardinal Cash to your account at the Cashier window, located on the first floor of Leahy, or electronically via the Cardinal Card website.

Can I receive a letter from the Dean excusing me from class?

The Office of the Dean of Students assists students who may be having a difficult time in their courses, understanding that students may miss class due to illness or family issues that occur during the semester.

Students who have missed an extensive number of classes for the reasons noted above or due to chronic illness or personal crisis should feel comfortable meeting with a DOS staff member to discuss the impact of their absences on class performance. Typically, a staff member in the Office of the Dean of Students will meet with a student to discuss his/her specific situation; the staff member may also refer the student to other campus resources as necessary.

The student is responsible for communicating directly with his/her instructor when he/she realizes the need to be absent and is also responsible for contacting each instructor to arrange for completion of required work, including missed assignments and exams.

Authority for excusing absences rests with the teacher who may request that the student obtain authentication of absences considered unavoidable.

The Office of the Dean of Students does not provide verification or proof of the legitimacy of the reason for an absence for non-critical or non-emergency situations.

Emergency Absence Notification to Instructors

The Office of the Dean of Students serves as a contact resource by providing instructors with notification of class absences in critical and emergency situations, such as hospitalization, serious illness, and serious injury of the student or death of an immediate family member. The class absence notifications from the Office of the Dean of Students are strictly informational and advisory, and are not intended to verify or provide proof of the legitimacy of the absence.

What if I need a disciplinary background check for law school, medical school, etc?

Submit the appropriate background check form to the Dean of Students Office via mail or fax.

Mail to:

620 Michigan Ave, NE
353 Pryzbyla Center
Washington, DC 20064

Fax to: 202-238-2043

The Associate Dean of Students will perform the background check and inform the institution of any relevant information. Allow ample time for the check to be completed. The process typically takes 3-5 business days.