Northeastern University’s Compliance Department

As an institution of higher education and research, Northeastern must adhere to a wide and increasingly complex array of laws, rules and regulations, and is subject to oversight by many government agencies.  The university’s values are defined and communicated through its core policies, which evidence its commitment to operating within the highest standards of integrity and ethics, and to fostering a culture of compliance with legal and regulatory requirements, university policies, and professional conduct.  While each of us is responsible for compliance, the Compliance Department supports, coordinates and helps to implement specific steps to meet that commitment.

Our Mission

The mission of Northeastern University’s Compliance Program is:

  • – To promote ethical choices and conduct by university officials, faculty, staff, and students, by providing a clear context that doing the right thing is a fundamental and expected element of all our undertakings;
  • – To educate and advise the university community as to our obligations under federal, state and local laws and regulations, as well as university policies and procedures that are designed to foster a culture of compliance and ethical behavior;
  • – To create and maintain a framework for “partner” relationships between university constituents and compliance subject matter specialists;
  • – To conduct ongoing assessments of compliance performance, and eliminate, manage, and/or mitigate any identified compliance gaps; and
  • – To coordinate, support, and monitor university-wide compliance efforts, and identify and implement best practices.

Our Role

Primary responsibility for compliance remains within individual departments and offices of the university, for example, the Registrar’s Office, Office of the Provost, Human Resources Management, Public Safety, Athletics, Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion (OIDI) and Enrollment Management and Student Affairs (EMSA).  The Compliance Department reinforces the compliance activities of those administrative units to strengthen existing compliance structures such as the development and updating of policies and procedures; dissemination of compliance information and announcements; training; monitoring; reporting; and taking corrective action where necessary. The Compliance Department also implements and manages the annual Conflict of Interest and Disclosure Process.

We Are a University-Wide Resource

The Compliance Department aims to provide the administration, students, faculty and staff with comprehensible knowledge and resources to promote compliance and minimize risk.  We coordinate and support the university’s compliance efforts, drawing on and working with offices across the university to provide expertise, resources, training, and development of policies, procedures and best practices relating to the hundreds of laws and regulations that apply to the university’s operations. The Compliance Department, reporting through the Senior Vice President and General Counsel, informs the university’s Senior Leadership Team and the Audit Committee of the Board of Trustees on university-wide compliance matters, facilitates university-wide general compliance through training and collaboration with key departments that have compliance as part of their mission, and conducts or assists in regular compliance risk assessment.