Jon is the Founder and President of the Student Advocacy Organization. He studied at Providence College and the University of Pennsylvania, graduating magna cum laude with degrees in Biology and Health Policy. Jon has extensive knowledge of the College’s handbook policies. Having interned at both the Office of the Public Defender and the prestigious law firm Hinckley, Allen and Snyder, LLP, Jon has been able to assist PC students not just throughout College disciplinary proceedings, but with criminal charges in the court system as well.
Vin serves as Legal Counsel for the Student Advocacy Organization. Vin received both his undergraduate and law degree from Boston College. He has practiced as an attorney for over two decades and currently serves on the board of directors for nonprofit organizations such as United Cerebral Palsy of Rhode Island and is the past chairman of the board of the Brain Tumor Society in Boston.
In addition to the executive board, the SAO has a team of eight judicial advisors and a member of the Providence College faculty who serves as moderator. The SAO also enjoys a working relationship with several administrators on campus who may be queried regarding particular elements of proceedings or asked to serve as a resources for clients.
The Student Advocacy Organization was founded by Providence College junior Jon Dooley in August 2009 with the hopes of communicating to all students that there will always be someone to advocate for them while they are on campus. Disciplinary proceedings can affect a students’ standing at the College, but more importantly, can greatly impact opportunities for their future. Jon realized that many of his peers really never got the most out of their proceedings when written up. Most students do not read the Student Handbook until it’s too late, and by not completely knowing and understanding their rights, students can become greatly disadvantaged throughout the entire disciplinary process.
Having witnessed many of his peers experience the disciplinary system, Jon saw need for significant improvement to ensure that disciplinary proceedings are as consistent as possible with both the Providence College motto of “Veritas” or “Truth” and the values such as community and integrity that students learn every day while attending PC. Jon recognized the need for the “learning experience” aspect of proceedings to be enforced, which he believes to be far more important than a system that renders sanctions without compassion. Multiple offenses, particularly with alcohol violations, may be indicative of legitimate problems, which need to be resolved with more compassionate responses instead of futile reflection papers, monetary fines or one-time alcohol awareness meetings.
With this in mind, Jon established the SAO in hopes of promoting student rights and fostering a greater sense of awareness among his peers. Through the formation of the SAO, Jon hopes that no student will go without assistance, should they have any type of conflict while at Providence College. Learning how to advocate for oneself is an integral skill that students can carry on into the real world after graduation. All Providence College students should know that regardless of their situation, there will be someone to stand in their corner readily available to advocate for them.