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Student Services

As a small institution serving mature, working adults, WISR does not provide special student services associated with more traditional universities, such as a counseling center or job placement office.

However, as a part of the teaching-learning process, WISR faculty regularly give students personal assistance with such matters as career planning, setting personal learning goals, and evaluating their impact on other life decisions. Faculty refer students to other students, alumni, adjunct faculty members, Board members, and others in the community who may be able to help them think through career decisions, find volunteer learning opportunities, and seek jobs.

Student Housing

The Western Institute for Social Research is an institution established for mature adults who are actively engaged in the work of the communities where they live. WISR does not provide dormitories, and assumes no responsibility to find or help students find housing. Indeed, housing is not readily available near WISR’s location, and one bedroom apartments can cost $2,000 to $3,000 per month, or more, to rent. Furthermore, students are not required to live in close proximity to WISR, or even in Northern California. Sometimes, students who are visiting from a distance may receive informal suggestions from faculty regarding nearby hotels that they may wish to investigate as possible places to stay. Students visiting WISR are typically able to find good accommodations for between $120 and $150 per night.

Career Development and Networking

At WISR, career development and networking is integrated into the entire learning process. However, the assistance with Career Development and Networking does not include job placement, nor is anything stated here (in the catalog and on the WISR website) meant to imply that students should expect job placement assistance, or any guarantees of job placement. Read more.

Information about:  WISR Career Center

Sexual Assault Victim Information

All sexual harassment or assault incidents are to be reported immediately to the WISR President John Bilorusky (510-601-8164) or to WISR Board and Faculty Member Vera Labat (510-237-8254). In an emergency, dial 911 for immediate attention.

Student Rights and Responsibilities: Attendance, Probation, Dismissals, Appeals and Grievance Procedures

Attendance, Probation, Dismissals, and Appeals

Since WISR faculty are committed to helping all students succeed, and because of the thoroughness of our admissions counseling process, no student at WISR has ever been dismissed. However, a faculty adviser could recommend review of a student’s persistent lack of academic progress, or persistent failure to participate in mentoring sessions with an academic advisor, to WISR’s Board of Trustees, or to a designated subcommittee of the Board, and the Board could, as two options, 1) put the student on academic probation with certain conditions to be met to avoid dismissal, or 2) dismiss the student. All actions taken by faculty members, Graduation Review Boards, or subcommittees of the Board are subject to appeal by the student to the WISR Board of Trustees. Such appeals may request reevaluation of credits awarded, graduation decisions, dismissals, or any other decision bearing on the student’s learning and academic progress. Decisions of the Board of Trustees, made after reviewing the relevant evidence, are final.

Student Rights: Grievance Procedures

A student may lodge a complaint (grievance) by communicating verbally or in writing to any instructor or administrator. Any such person contacted shall attempt to resolve the student’s complaint immediately. Oral and written complaints will be accepted by the Institute in any form. When submitted in writing, a simple, specific statement about the issue to be resolved should be sufficient.

If a student complains verbally and the complaint is not resolved within a reasonable time, and the student again complains about the same matter, the President of the Institute shall advise the student that the complaint must be submitted in writing. If a student complains in writing, the President of the Institute shall, within ten days of receiving the complaint, provide the student with a written response, including a summary of the Institute’s investigation and disposition of it. However, if the President is the subject of the complaint, the Chair of the Board, or a core faculty member designated by the Chair of the Board, will lead an investigation and provide the student with a written response as noted above. If the resolution requested by the student is rejected, the reasons for the rejection shall be explained.

Grievances not resolved by agreement between the student and the President of the Institute may be submitted to the WISR Board of Trustees for a final decision by the Institute.

Any questions or problems concerning this institution that have not been satisfactorily answered or resolved by the Institute should be directed to the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education, by calling (888) 370-7589 [toll-free] or by completing a complaint form at www.bppe.ca.gov