Office of the Dean of Students

Office of the Dean of Students


The Office of the Dean of Students primary responsibility is to enhance the quality of student life outside of the classroom. The Office of the Dean of Students collaborates with many departments within Student Affairs and the academic division to help students integrate their out of classroom experiences with their academic learning. We encourage every student to take advantage of the leadership development opportunities, co-curricular programming, diversity initiatives, and volunteer services that the Division of Student Affairs has to offer.

The Office of the Dean of Students is also concerned about the moral and ethical development of our students. We expect our students to play an active and respectful role in community life at Fairfield University and adhere to University Code of Conduct. We help students make responsible decisions through peer mentor programs, one-on-one meetings with agents of the Dean's office, and creative, educational programs.

The dean and staff are also responsible for coordinating policies and procedures concerning student conduct and the conduct process. The Office of the Dean of Students oversees:


On behalf of the Office of the Dean of Students, I would like to welcome you to Fairfield University. Fairfield University is a great institution and I want to encourage you to take part in the many enriching and exciting educational opportunities that are available to you as a Fairfield University student. Jesuit institutions such as Fairfield University view learning as a dynamic experience, one that takes place within the unique interplay between curricular and co-curricular experiences. Along those lines, the Office of the Dean of Students is just one of many offices within the Division of Student Affairs that is here to assist you in making those important connections and succeeding in all your endeavors on campus. That is our commitment to living and learning, and to you, the students of our school.

The Student Handbook applies to all students of Fairfield University. In addition to the policies, procedures, and residency and meal plan agreements contained herein, this Handbook provides a wealth of information about services and resources available to you. When you enroll at Fairfield University, your enrollment implies that you accept and agree to comply with the entire contents of the Handbook, and that you agree to be bound by all policies, procedures, and agreements set forth herein. For that reason, you should read and familiarize yourself with this Handbook and make use of it over the course of the academic year. The Student Handbook may be revised from time to time during the course of the academic year. Any such revisions will be posted to the online version of the Student Handbook.

Fairfield University is your school, your community, and your home. When we speak of a Fairfield education, we often make reference to the concept of a holistic learning process. We are interested in students’ needs, well being, and formation both within and outside the classroom and you will see collaborative practices and programs that support this interest. Additionally, my office is committed to the holistic development of all students in a manner consistent with Jesuit ideology, which seeks to develop men and women who know themselves, advocate for others, and are invested in serving the broader community. We expect students to respect each other and the community in which they now belong. In addition to promulgating the code of conduct and many other policies contained in this Handbook, the Office of the Dean of Students serves informational functions as well. As I often say to students, if you have a question and are not sure where to go for an answer, the Office of the Dean of Students is generally a good place to start!

Over the next academic year, I encourage you to make the most out of your Fairfield University education by embracing our diverse community. Your presence and contributions to our community are what make Fairfield such a special place. I look forward to making your acquaintance either at Orientation or at Fall Welcome. May you have a most successful and engaging year.


Karen Donoghue
Associate Vice President and Dean of Students

Contact Information

Barone Campus Center, 4th floor
Main Number: (203) 254-4211
Fax: (203) 254-4014

Meet Our Staff


Karen Donoghue

Associate Vice President and Dean of Students

Office of the Dean of Students



William Johnson

Associate Dean of Students

Office of the Dean of Students


Staff Profile, Berger

Allison Berger

Assistant Dean of Students

Office of the Dean of Students



Fr. Michael J. Doody, S.J.

Director of Restorative Counseling

Office of the Dean of Students


Staff Picture, Fain

Caroline Fain

Program Assistant

Office of the Dean of Students


Staff Picture

Madeline Minerly

Program Assistant

Office of the Dean of Students


Staff Picture, Sherwood

Rita Sherwood

Administrative Assistant

Office of the Dean of Students


Student Code of Conduct

Fairfield University holds high expectations of how we live and interact with one another, as the successes and failures of each member of our community shape our institution. Respect for self and respect for others, both within and outside the University community, lie at the heart of our standards of conduct. Students are held accountable for their behavior both on and off campus as a necessary part of our community life. The Student Code of Conduct process

Be Safe

At Fairfield University, we are committed to providing a learning environment free of sexual misconduct. If you or a friend are a victim of sexual misconduct, please know you are not alone, and it is not your fault. There are many resources available to you, both confidential and non-confidential.

Bias Response Team

The Fairfield University Bias Response Team grew out of the President's Institutional Diversity Council (PIDC). The Bias Response Team is a new mechanism/remedy under our Non-Discrimination and Harassment Policy. The primary goal of the Bias Response Team is to provide education and awareness as a means of responding to certain types of bias-related discrimination within the Fairfield community.

Case Management Committee

College can be a very stressful time. For some students, it can be extremely overwhelming to handle the pressures of both academic and personal life. At Fairfield University, we recognize some students will need help as they cope with the demands of college life. The Office of the Dean of Students is an available resource for faculty, students, and parents when dealing with students of concern.


The Family Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) provides for the confidentiality of student educational records. Fairfield University may not disclose information in a student's educational record to anyone, without the permission of the student, unless disclosure is permitted by an exception set forth in FERPA, 20 U.S.C.A., Sec. 1232 et seq.

If a student would like to grant permission to Fairfield University officials to disclose and/or discuss contents contained in education records at Fairfield University they must complete and sign a release.


As parents, it is important for you to be aware of issues your student may face while in college. All parents, especially first-year parents, are invited to participate in monthly webinars on topics of interest.

Selected Communications

The Office of the Dean of Students frequently sends messages to students, faculty and staff via e-mail, campus mail, or U.S. mail.

Student Achievement Awards

During the final weeks of the academic year, the University will recognize members of the senior class who have made an impact during their four years at Fairfield University.

Student Handbook

This handbook contains many of the policies and procedures for students at Fairfield University. In addition, this handbook contains information about Fairfield's history, mission, and culture, as well as a number of the services and resources which are available to students.

Veteran Student Services

From their service to our country, veterans bring a wide range of experiences to both their academic pursuits and to the overall Fairfield University student body.

From admission, to financial aid, to assistance in transitioning into college, we’re available to support all our veterans and help them achieve their educational goals.

Gender Inclusive Resources

Fairfield’s vibrant community welcomes all people, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, ability/disability status, religion, and tradition. Fostering inclusion and understanding across the many human differences that often divide and marginalize, the Fairfield community is united in its reverence for the human dignity of every person. We recognize that viable solutions to enduring problems emerge when people with diverse backgrounds and skills work together with mutual respect, toward common goals.

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