SMS Text Policy
All members of the Benedict College community, including prospective and current students.
SMS text messaging is an efficient and effective way of communicating with current and future members of the campus community. Benedict College will only send text messages to users who opt-in to receive text messages. All who opt-in will have the opportunity to easily opt-out at any point by changing their communication options related to SMS text messaging. Those who opt-out will be marked as such and will not receive future text messages unless they opt back in.
Benedict College recognizes that text messaging can be a highly effective means of communication, but the College is also aware of the need to protect users’ data and limit what information may be sent via text. Benedict College will follow all guidelines for FERPA, The Privacy Act of 1974 and the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. No information in violation of these laws may be sent via text. The College allows users to opt-out of 3rd party SMS text-messaging apps at any time by initiating a STOP message. The College is committed to protecting user data to ensure positive communication experiences.
Guidelines and Procedures
Benedict College has implemented an SMS Text-Messaging Permission Form to manage the opt-in or opt-out of users for text messaging. Users should visit the College’s IT webpage and click the SMS text-messaging link to verify their cell phone number is correct and to opt-in or opt-out of different message categories. All new students applying to Benedict College are automatically opted-in when submitting an admission application.
(Please note: If a student does not want to receive text messages, they can reply to a text message with STOP, or visit the IT webpage to opt-out. These guidelines and procedures must be followed by each department/office responsible for sending SMS text communications).
There are currently six different text-messaging categories.
- Academic Messages – Users may receive messages about advising, tutoring, class scheduling, academic support services, etc.
- Student Affairs – Users may receive messages about student affairs related to resources and programming.
- Finance – Users may receive messages about payments, student financial aid and scholarships.
- Information Technology – Users may receive messages about Helpdesk work orders and possible security issues with their accounts.
- Enrollment Management – Users may receive messages related to admissions information, registration, and enrollment information.
- Emergency Notifications – Users may receive messages related to campus emergencies.
Students can expect to receive:
- Guidelines for student success and support
- Reminders of important dates and deadlines
- Inquiries for providing assistance
Students can respond with:
Due to privacy laws, such as FERPA, certain information may not be able to be discussed via text messages (such as grades, GPA, etc.). If the conversation evolves to the need to discuss sensitive information, the student may be asked to check their email account.
Email remains the official form of communication
Text messaging will be utilized to enhance communication. Email to a user’s college email account is and will remain the official form of campus communications. Students should check their Benedict email account on a regular basis for official and important
Frequency of SMS text communications
Participating departments will send an average of one to two text messages per month. During key times, such as registration, text messages may be sent more often.
Original Issue Date: October 2023