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OM 7.16.0 Procedure When there is a Death in the Clarkson Community

About This Policy

Effective Date: July 1989
Last Updated: April 2007
Responsible University Office: Human Resources
Responsible University Administrator: Chief Inclusion and Human Resources Officer

Policy Contact:

Human Resources


The University wishes the campus community to be able to express its sympathy for the death of an employee or former employee, someone close to an employee or friend of the University.

Anyone who hears of a death in the Clarkson community, i.e., trustee, former trustee, former president, faculty, professor emeritus/a, honorary degree recipient, staff, retired staff, student, current or former officer of the Alumni Association, special "friend" of the University, and the spouses and children of any of these individuals, should notify the President’s Office immediately.

The President's Office will see that a note of sympathy goes to the family.

The President's Office will arrange for the flags in front of Downtown Snell Hall, Woodstock Lodge and the Cheel Campus Center to be lowered to half-staff if the deceased is a trustee, former trustee, former president, current employee or student of the University, or a professor emeritus. If the funeral is in Potsdam, the flag will remain lowered until the funeral. If the funeral is out of town, the flag will be lowered for a day. In the case of spouses and children of the above individuals, the flag will not be lowered.

The President’s Office will also notify Marketing/Communications, Development, Alumni Relations, Human Resources, and Advancement Services.

In the case of trustees, former trustees, former presidents, and their spouses, the President's Office will decide on the appropriate expression of sympathy. If flowers are to be sent to places of worship or funeral homes, the President’s Office will order a University spray (gold and dark green). In the case of alumni, the Alumni Relations Office will order a similar spray.

It is the University’s intention and practice to distribute via campus e-mail notices of death for all employees and former employees automatically, and to distribute notices of death for nonemployees, including employee family members, upon request. Employee and department assistance is requested in notifying Marketing/Communications (Director of News Services or Director of Media Relations) of death notices to pay proper respects, as follows:

  1. Death of an Employee or Former Employee Announcements of the death of an employee or former employee are made by e-mail to the campus automatically, unless the family wishes otherwise. The employee’s department, Human Resources or the President’s Office will supply (via e-mail) basic information: the employee’s full name, title, where they were living at time of death, when they worked at Clarkson (if former employee), and the department they worked in to Marketing/Communications. Marketing/Communications will gather information on funeral home, calling hours, funeral and memorial contributions, and will write and distribute the campus announcement. 
  2. Death of a non-employee, including a family member of an employee or former employee, or other people close to an employee or the University. Announcements of the death of a non-employee are made by e-mail on request of an employee or department. The employee or department will supply (via e-mail) to Marketing/Communications the name of the deceased and his or her relationship to an employee (or to the University), plus the details on the funeral home, calling hours, funeral and memorial contributions. Marketing Communications will then write and distribute the campus announcement.

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July 1989

Editorial Revision September 1991, April 1992

Editorial Revision December 1996

April 2004

Revised April 2007