Pennsylvania University Student Suing School After Failing Required Class Twice

Published May 13, 2015

A Pennsylvania university nursing student is suing the school after failing a required course twice, saying anxiety and depression made it difficult for her to concentrate.

Jennifer Burbella claims her Misericordia University professor did not do enough to help her pass a class on adult health patterns.

Burbella said the professor gave her a distraction-free environment and extra time for her final exam when she took the class the second time, but did not respond to telephoned questions as promised, giving her even more stress.

Burbella said she started to break down in tears because of the lack of help.

She said the Catholic university gave another disabled student better accommodations and that her treatment violated a federal disability discrimination law.

The Citizens’ Voice reports Burbella is seeking more than $75,000 in damages.

A Misericordia spokesman told the paper it does not comment on pending litigation.

Burbella entered the university’s nursing program in 2010 and struggled toward a bachelor’s degree in nursing because of her conditions, the lawsuit says, and experienced great anxiety due to social and academic challenges and family medical issues.

After failing the first time, Burbella says the university forced her to re-take the class in a summer session that began four days later, causing “great trepidation.”

Misericordia, located outside Scranton, has an undergraduate enrollment of about 3,200 students.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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Categories: Lawsuits