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Policy VI-5.01

UMGC Rule on Public Records Containing Sociological Information

Policy Category Policy No. & Title Policy Owner Version No. Effective Date Review Cycle Last Reviewed
VI Administration *VI-5.01 UMGC Rule on Public Records Containing Sociological Information VP & General Counsel v.3 Oct. 1, 2022 Every 5 years Apr. 3, 2007

I. Policy Statements

Maryland’s Public Information Act grants the public a broad right of access to government records. The General Provisions Article,  §4-330, however, of the Annotated Code of Maryland, provides that if "the official custodian has adopted rules or regulations that define sociological information..., a custodian shall deny inspection of the part of a public record which contains sociological information". In accordance with the Maryland Public Information Act and  the General Provisions Article §4-330, the University hereby adopts this policy which defines sociological information as any of the following information maintained by the University about a student, employee, donor, or other individual participating in a University program or event or using University facilities:

A. Scholarship, stipend, and financial aid records of individuals or their families;

B. Records about an individual's personal history, age, family, race, national origin, creed, color, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, ethnic background, ancestry, physiology, religion, academic achievement, attendance in classes or employment, gender identity or expression, genetic information, veteran status, or physical or mental ability;

C. Family history; identity of relatives, emergency contacts or representatives;

D. Medical or psychiatric status, condition or history;

E. Background check information;

F. Social security number;

G. Date of birth;

H. Credit card and other banking information;

I. Personal addresses, personal phone numbers, personal electronic mail address and personal social media account information;

J. Information regarding marital status, domestic partnerships, dependents, or relatives, to include related employment benefits elections;

K. Information regarding employment status, including, but not limited to,  disciplinary records and records related to an application for employment; job evaluation, seniority rating, merit rating; appointment, promotion, tenure action; demotion, transfer, layoff, termination; training and professional development;

L. Applicant information for admission, scholarships, employment or awards, including those of applicants who were either not selected/admitted or chose not to matriculate;

M. Class or employment attendance information;

N. Military status;

O. Driver’s license number;

P. State residency status or classification;

Q. Immigration status, passport and visa numbers;

R. Religious preference, membership and attendance;

S. Personal relationships, beliefs and values;

T. Any information obtained through employment coaching or surveys;

U. Health insurance and other benefit program information;

V. Financial information, including income (excluding state salary), assets, and liabilities;

W. Donation and donor information, such as gift agreements, communications, contact information, for individuals who have made charitable donations of goods, services, money or anything else to the University;

X. Student education records of a deceased student;

Y. Program participation and community experiences and activities;

Z. Records not related to the transaction of State business;

AA. Records which contain political opinions, philosophical beliefs, and club/union membership;

BB. Unique biometric data and biometric information, including an individual’s physiological, biological, or behavioral characteristics, including an individual’s deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), that can be used, singly or in combination with each other or with other identifying data, to establish individual identity;

CC. Internet or other electronic network activity information, including browsing history, search history, wireless network location data and information regarding an individual’s interaction with an internet website or application; and

DD. Institutional identification number assigned to each applicant, student, or employee (e.g. Workday ID, Employee ID, UID number) and photograph.

The University shall deny access to the public record, or portion thereof, containing sociological information. In addition, access to student records also is guided by the University's Policy on Disclosure of Student Records and the Family and Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

II. Related Policies and References

A. UMGC Policy 210.14 Disclosure of Student Records

*formerly Policy 055.00