Academic Student Religious Observance Policy

Policy Type: 

I. Policy Title Student Religious Observance Policy

II. Who Does This Policy Affect?

All HFC students and faculty

III. Purpose

The College has a longstanding commitment to diversity, nondiscrimination, and inclusiveness, and to supporting its students in accordance with state and federal laws and regulations. As part of this commitment, all faculty are encouraged to make reasonable efforts to assist students in fulfilling religious observances and to avoid negative academic consequences, unless such student accommodation would create undue hardship upon the academic instruction.

IV. Policy Statement

An accommodation request imposes responsibilities and obligations on both the College and the student requesting the accommodation. Students must advise their instructor of religious observance conflicts. HFC faculty are expected to reasonably accommodate students sincerely held religious beliefs, as long as such accommodation does not cause an undue hardship.

As a public institution, Henry Ford College does not observe religious holidays. But as an institution committed to diversity and inclusion, the College requests faculty to make reasonable efforts to accommodate students sincerely held religious observances that conflict with academic obligations. Any reasonable accommodation should not result in an undue burden on the College and its academic standards and obligations.

Students must recognize that when their religious observances conflict with their academic obligations, students are responsible for completing all work required during the accommodation observance as determined by their instructor and the College.
It is recommended that each academic School develop/review procedures to address student religious accommodation requests.

V. Definitions

  1. A "reasonable accommodation” is any change in an academic course (lecture/lab/clinical) or program of study with respect to the way tasks or responsibilities are customarily done that enables a student to observe their religious practice or belief without creating undue hardship.
  2. A "religious practice or belief" is a practice or observance that includes moral or ethical beliefs as to what is right and wrong and that is sincerely held with the strength of traditional religious views.
  3. “Undue hardship” occurs when granting a requested accommodation would require significant expense or difficulty for the College or would result in the inability of the student to perform an essential function in their course/program of study. The determination of undue hardship is dependent on the facts of each individual situation.

VI. Responsible Party for Policy Interpretation/Review

Vice President Academic Affairs

VII. Related Documents

Equal Education and Employment Opportunities and Non-Discrimination -
Student Complaint Procedures -
EEOC Regulations -

VIII. Policy History:

a. Policy Adopted by Board: October 17, 2022

This policy supersedes and replaces any and all policies related to this subject

Adopted Date: 
Monday, October 17, 2022
Board Approved