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email policy and defining university business
How does your institution define “university business” if you use that language in your email policy? Our current policy reads as such:
Expectations of Use:
3. Only the university provided e-mail account is to be used when conducting university business over e-mail.
- Students will be provided an e-mail account as part of their enrollment. Student e-mail services may be outsourced.
- Faculty, staff and student workers must request, in accordance with the Access to Information Technology Resources and Systems policy, a university managed e-mail account if they will be using e-mail for communication as part of their employment.
- Vendors providing operational support services under contract to the university must use an approved account when communicating with the university through e-mail.
We had a faculty member recently challenge this. See their comments below.
When I read the email policy, a serious question came up where it states that “only the university provided e-mail account is to be used when conducting university business over e-mail."
My concern is that "university business" is not defined. While it may be obvious in most cases, there are some gray areas such as those regarding faculty and areas of scholarship (publications). Also, if a faculty member needs to be contacted off hours or when access to a university provided email might not be practical or timely, a personal email address might often be used. In summary, a faculty member is a contract employee whose duties are somewhat defined and expected, but may have related responsibilities that are not university business per se, but might involve the university or other university employees.
AVP IITS & Information Security Officer
Farmville, VA 23909