Policy Details

Date of Last Update

Approved By
  • Senior Leadership Team

Responsible Office
University Development


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Privacy Policy

SLT 8.5

  1. Policy Statement
  2. Procedures

Policy Statement

Grand Valley State University maintains a database (Millennium) of biographical and gift/pledge information about alumni and friends in accordance with the general needs and expectation of the university community. The information contained in this database is intended exclusively for purposes related to Grand Valley State University programs.

It is the desire of Development Services to support the ongoing activities of Grand Valley State University by providing assistance for programs, communication and events that bring together the expanding orbit of constituents of the university. In order to provide the best possible service to those with legitimate needs for such information, and at the same time maintain the confidentiality of the information entrusted to us by our constituents, the following policies have been developed. These policies were approved in 2007 by the Vice President for Development and now apply to every request for information and to direct access to the Millennium System. 


Organizations that may request information 

The following organizations and individuals may request information from the Millennium database:

Grand Valley State University affiliated organizations and constituent groups, in support of approved activities, including:

  • Office of Alumni Relations
  • Constituent groups approved by the Office of Alumni Relations
  • University Development 
  • Other administrative units 
  •  Academic units
  •  Athletic programs
  • Office of Career Planning

In cases of dispute about whether an organization has a legitimate affiliation with the University, the final decision will rest with the Vice President for Development or the Director of Development Services as the Vice President’s designee.

  • Other colleges and universities seeking the location of alumni with degrees from both Grand Valley State University and the requesting institution
  • Law enforcement agencies and student loan agencies
  • Agencies that assist Development Services in locating Grand Valley State University’s alumni

Any other requests will be forwarded to that person whose information is sought so that they can decide whether or not to contact the requestor. No information will be released for those records coded “No Contact” indicating the alumnus or alumna has requested no university contact. The same rule will apply to records coded Confidential.

All requests for information from members of the media must be referred to University Communications. 

Information that may be released

The following information may be released from the Millennium database:

  • “Public information,” which is limited to:
    • Full name
    • Degree(s) and date of degree(s) awarded by Grand Valley State University
    • Major field of study
    • Class year

“Public information” will be provided only to those requestors identified above.

Federal law severely restricts the amount of information that may be released on current students. Therefore, no information on students will be released based on data maintained in Millennium. All requests for information on current students should be forwarded to the Registrar’s Office.

Information provided to volunteer alumni constituent groups would be limited to those alumni who are affiliated with the requesting group.

In addition to public information, request from the University Development, Alumni Relations, administrative, academic, or athletic units of Grand Valley State University and central administration may be provided the following information:

  • Employment
  • Student activities
  • Alumni activities
  • Family members
  • Degrees obtained from other institutions
  • Miscellaneous comments, awards and text
  • Gift and pledge data
  • Selected biographical attributes

Acceptable use of information

The following statements specify the acceptable internal uses of information from the alumni database:

1. Development Services will make available information from its database for the support of approved, university-related activities.

2. Approved activities include:

a. Alumni Relations
b. Fundraising
c. Public Relations
d. Governmental relations
e. School/department communications to alumni/constituents
f. University-sanctioned research
g. Grand Forum
h. Student recruitment

3. Information maintained in Millennium is not available for release for nonrelated commercial or political purposes.

4. If the information provided will result in the preparation of lists or directories that are to be published in book, magazine, newsletter, electronic media or other forms for general distribution among alumni groups, prior to publication each individual who might be included must be provided the opportunity to indicate in writing the wish to be excluded.

5. Requestors of data from Millennium may contract to services of outside vendors (e.g. data processing consultants, direct mail firms, marketing and merchandise firms, etc.) to process and/or distribute information obtained from Millennium. In these cases:

a. The vendor must agree to use the information only for the purpose intended by the university client. The sale or transfer of the information by the vendor is strictly prohibited.
b. If the project in question results in the publication of directories or lists as identified above, the procedures outlined must be followed prior to publication.
c. The vendor must ensure the prompt return of and university-owned computer tapes or electronic software provided in fulfillment of the contract.
d. The university client or the vendor agrees to pay any costs associated with systems programming or special data processing that might be required beyond the normal capabilities of the Millennium computer system.
e. In all cases involving the use of outside vendors or contractors, the absolute confidentiality of the information provided from the Millennium database is the responsibility of the requestor.

6. Formats available for distribution of information: Information may be obtained in the form of lists, labels, computer tapes, diskettes, and downloads by authorized university representatives in support of approved activities as noted above. It is the responsibility of the unit requesting information to maintain the absolute confidentiality of that information as specified in this policy statement.

7. Privacy Statement attachment: A privacy statement will be attached to any of the information provided to requestors of data from Millennium stating the following: The enclosed (attached) data is for the sole use of the requestor and may contain confidential and privileged information. Any unauthorized review, use, disclosure or distribution is prohibited. Responsibility for the absolute confidentiality of the information provided is the responsibility of the requestor.

8. Compliance with these policies: Failure to abide by any of the policies stated within this document may result in denial of access to information contained in the Millennium database. Request for reinstatement to access to this information must be approved by the Vice President for Development or a designee and must include written assurance of future compliance with these policies.

In cases of dispute about what constitutes an approved activity, the final decision will rest with the Vice President for Development or the Director of Development Services as the Vice President’s designee.

Statement of database access policies

Direct access to Millennium is restricted by the Millennium Security policies and procedures as well as the university’s Conditions of Use Information Technology Services Policy.