Tips Regarding Nepotism in the Classroom

Purdue University has an Anti-Nepotism Policy, per Executive Memorandum C-37, 21 July 1995, concerning nepotism for persons who have employment status.

The Purdue University Nepotism Policy states that, “Employment opportunities with the University are not and should not be based upon or influenced by family relationships.  In addition, the University maintains policies guarding against employment relationships from which nepotism may arise.”

Who the Anti-Nepotism Policy Applies to

Whereas this policy does not apply to students and faculty relationships in the classroom, the Office of the Dean of Students has the following tips regarding students who are attending classes or labs, etc. that are taught by those who are considered family members, or relatives.

“Family members” are defined as those who are spouses, parents or siblings, grandparents, grandchildren, uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces, and cousins; this includes those who are related by blood or by marriage.

Likewise, the Office of the Dean of Students issues the following statement about students being taught in the classroom by relatives:

Teaching one’s relatives makes it difficult for one to be objective in one’s treatment of the relative.  It is for this reason that it is strongly discouraged.

Further, faculty who finds themselves in this predicament, to avoid the appearance of impropriety, should take one of the following actions:

  1. Work with department head to transfer student to another section of the same class, or
  2. Work with the department head to have student take an Independent Study with a different professor, or
  3. Work with department head for other options

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