6.0 Student Conduct and Community Standards

The College’s Code of Conduct describes misconduct which adversely affects the College’s pursuit of its educational objectives or interferes with the rights of another person.  The Code governs all activities on the College premises and at College functions both on and off campus.  It also applies to certain off campus behavior.

6.1       Violations

6.1.1    Aiding and Abetting
Attempting, encouraging, assisting, abetting, conspiring, hiring, or being an accessory to any behaviors prohibited herein shall be considered a violation of the College’s rules, regulations, policies, and standards of conduct to the same extent as if a student had engaged in the prohibited conduct him/herself.

6.1.2    Alcohol Policy
The College of Mount Saint Vincent seeks to uphold all local, state and federal statutes regarding the use, sale, service or manufacture of alcohol. Students under the age of 21 are not permitted to possess, purchase, or sell, nor are they at any time permitted to consume, alcoholic beverages on College of Mount Saint Vincent property or at College of Mount Saint Vincent sponsored events.  Students 21 years of age and over are legally permitted to purchase alcohol and to consume alcohol in areas designated for this use. Use of alcoholic beverages and possession of open containers of alcohol is prohibited in all public areas of campus buildings, and campus grounds, unless expressly approved by a professional member of the Student Activities staff in conjunction with the Dean of Students, or the senior administrator of a respective division of the College.

Violations of the College’s alcohol policy include, but are not limited to:

  • Possession, use, or distribution of alcohol by underage persons.
  • Students who remain in a location where alcohol is being consumed illegally are, by their presence, implicated in the illegal activity.
  • Disorderly conduct due all or in part to being under the influence of alcohol.
  • Provision of alcohol to underage persons.
  • Possession of an open alcohol container in a public area regardless of the individual’s age.
  • Possession of Four Loco or other banned beverages.
  • Possession or use of bulk containers on campus including, but not limited to, kegs, beer balls, beer pong tables or any other object that could be used to promote drinking (i.e. shot glasses, funnels).

The College reserves the right to take and discard any and all items, that in its sole discretion, contribute to the use and misuse of alcohol when found on its premises.

The College expects that all of its students, whether on or off campus, will abide by the College’s regulations concerning alcohol and other drug use. When a student engages in conduct off-campus that violates the Colleges regulations concerning alcohol and drug use and such violation results in behavior which, in the College’s sole judgment, is destructive, abusive, or detrimental to the College in any way, the College’s conduct process shall apply and such matters will be processed accordingly.

6.1.2.1 Alcohol Violation Sanctions
The College imposes the sanctions listed below when adjudicating alcohol policy violations.  Each incident is reviewed on a case-by-case basis. For students found responsible, sanctions are imposed according to the severity of the incident and the student’s past disciplinary record.  In incidents involving a violation of the College’s alcohol policy where the student is under the age of 21, parents can expect to receive a letter from the College.

  • Parental Notification
  • Written Warning
  • Disciplinary Probation
  • Contributory/Community Service
  • Alcohol and/or other AOD Workshop
  • Counseling Referral
  • Loss of Residence Hall Visitation Privileges
  • Suspension of Residence Life Privileges
  • Permanent Loss of Residence Life Privileges
  • Suspension from the College

6.1.2.2. Medical Amnesty Policy
Please refer to Section 5.8 of the Handbook for the Medical Amnesty Policy.

6.1.2.3  Alcohol and Social Events
Social activities within the College community are an important aspect of the educational experience.  The Mount’s many non-alcoholic events have proven that the presence of alcohol is not a necessary ingredient for enjoying them.  The College’s alcohol policy is intended to encourage responsible attitudes and lawful choices. Illegal or unauthorized use of alcoholic beverages on campus by groups or individuals is grounds for disciplinary action. To assure compliance with New York State law, permission to use, sell or serve alcohol at student social events is given only after review and on an individual event-by-event basis.

Permission for the use of alcoholic beverages at student functions may be granted by a professional member of the Student Activities staff in conjunction with the Dean of Students.  Additional information, including specific criteria and conditions for such permission is available from the Student Activities staff.  The following regulations pertain to all approvals:

  • College funds including student activities fees cannot be used to purchase alcohol.
  • Proof of age must be shown before a person is served or sold alcohol.
  • Intoxicated persons may not be served alcohol.
  • Non‑alcoholic beverages must be available at the same location as alcoholic beverages.
  • Food must be available at the same location as alcoholic beverages.
  • College approved security personnel must be present at all times during events at which alcohol is served.
  • At social functions where alcoholic beverages are provided by the sponsoring organization, licensed bartenders must be supplied by the College’s Dining Services.
  • Advertisement for any event at which alcoholic beverages will be served shall not mention the availability of alcoholic beverages.
  • Alcohol should not be used as an inducement to participate in campus events.
  • Publicity for any event must not make reference to the amount of alcoholic beverage (such as number of kegs) available.
  • Consumption of alcoholic beverages is permitted only within the approved area designated for the event.
  • Alcohol may not be used at membership recruiting functions (i.e. departmental clubs, special interest clubs, etc.).

6.1.3    Computer Use/Appropriate Use Policy

6.1.4    Copyright Procedures and Information

6.1.5    Destruction or Attempted Destruction of Property
No student shall intentionally or negligently damage, attempt to damage, or participate in the damage of property belonging to the College, its students, employees, officers or organizations or that of any individual or organization visiting or passing through the College campus. Acts of vandalism are a violation of this policy. Tampering with or misuse of doors or emergency phones is a violation of this policy.

6.1.6    Dishonesty
No student shall furnish false information to or knowingly make a false accusation against any College official, faculty member, student, or office.

No student shall alter, or enter any false information on any official document including, but not limited to identification cards, grade change forms, academic transcripts, admissions applications, evaluations or course withdrawal forms possess, or sell any parking decal, ID card, key, or official College document or property issued by the College to or for another individual.  Lending ID cards is prohibited, and cards may be confiscated.

No student shall tamper with the election of any College recognized student organization, counterfeit, forge or provide false information or fail to provide current information for the purpose of defrauding the College of Mount Saint Vincent or other parties is prohibited.

6.1.7    Disorderly or Disruptive Conduct
Conduct that a reasonable person would view as substantially or repeatedly interfering with the normal functioning of a class, clinical setting, internship setting, residence hall or other setting is prohibited. Such conduct includes, but is not limited to, repeatedly leaving and entering a classroom without authorization, making loud or distracting noises, persisting in speaking without being recognized, or resorting to physical threats or personal insults. Students are responsible to comply with a request from a professor, instructor, supervisor, or other official regarding appropriate behavior.  Additionally, conduct that interferes with, impairs, or obstructs the orderly conduct, processes and functions of the College or which may adversely and  unreasonably impinge on the legitimate interest of others is prohibited. Such conduct includes, but is not limited to, excessive noise, public intoxication, loud or indecent conduct, interference with the ability of others to enter, use, or exit any College facility, service, or activity, intentionally interfering with the freedom of expression or movement of others, interfering with College activity such as teaching, research, recreation, meetings, and public events, physical violence, causing reasonable apprehension of harm, or threat of violence against oneself or any member or guest of the College. This prohibition extends to off-campus conduct that, in the College’s sole judgment, is detrimental to its mission and interests.

6.1.8    Drug Policy
The possession and/or use of narcotics or drugs is prohibited, except for those medically prescribed, properly used, and in the original container. The distribution and/or sale of narcotics or drugs are prohibited. Off-campus possession, use, distribution, or sale of narcotics or drugs is inconsistent with the College’s policies and goals, and is prohibited. The College reserves the right to invoke the College’s Student Conduct process to the extent that off-campus drug use leads to behavior that in the College’s sole judgment is destructive, abusive, or detrimental to the College’s mission and interests. Any and all types of drug paraphernalia including, but not limited to, bongs, pipes, hookahs, water pipes, or any items modified or adapted so that they can be used to consume drugs, are not permitted on College property. Drugs and drug paraphernalia will be confiscated when found on College property. Students who are knowingly present where illegal substances are kept, are in the company of person, knowing said person is illegally in possession of a controlled substance are, by their presence in violation of this Code of Conduct. A violation of this policy is grounds for separation from the College.

Violations of the College’s drug policy include, but are not limited to:

  • Possession, use or distribution of drug or drug paraphernalia.
  • Students who remain in a location where drugs are present are, by their presence, implicated in the illegal activity.
  • Disorderly conduct due all or in part to being under the influence of drugs.
  • Sharing, distributing or using prescription drugs not prescribed for the user.

6.1.8.1  Drug Violation Sanctions
The College imposes the sanctions listed below when adjudicating drug policy violations.  Each incident is reviewed on a case-by-case basis. For students found responsible, sanctions are imposed according to the severity of the incident.  Repeated violators are subject to more severe sanctioning.  In all incidents involving a violation of the College’s drug policy parents will receive a letter from the College.

  • Parental Notification
  • Written Warning
  • Contributory / Community Service
  • Disciplinary Probation
  • Alcohol and/or other AOD Workshop
  • Counseling Center Referral
  • Suspension of Residence Life Privileges
  • Permanent Loss of Residence Life Privileges
  • Permanent Loss of Residence Hall Visitation Privileges
  • Suspension from the College
  • Expulsion from the College

Students found responsible for the sale, manufacture and or distribution of illegal drugs will be suspended or expelled from the College and possibly be referred to external authorities. By federal law, students convicted of such charges face revocation of all federal financial aid.

The College cannot and will not protect any person who may break these laws and be apprehended by civil authorities.  New Federal regulations permit judges to revoke student aid to anyone prosecuted and convicted of a drug offense.

6.1.8.2 Medical Amnesty Policy
Please refer to Section 5.8 of the Handbook for the Medical Amnesty Policy.

6.1.9    Failure to Comply
No student shall fail to comply with any appropriate directive, identify him or herself, or fail to show respect to security personnel, residence hall staff , other College officials or law enforcement officers in the performance of their duties or fail to comply with any disciplinary conditions imposed by an authorized College official or group.  A $50 fine will be assessed to any student who fails to comply with a disciplinary sanction.

6.1.10  Fire Safety / Fire Drills / Fire Equipment
No student shall misuse or abuse fire safety rules/equipment by setting a fire, tampering with fire safety and/or fire-fighting equipment, or starting or reporting a false fire alarm by any means of communication. Students who fail to vacate College buildings during fire drills or other emergencies are subject to disciplinary action.  Any student who deliberately disrupts the educational or social activities of the campus by means of false fire alarm, bomb threats, or other similar actions will face immediate suspension, possible expulsion, as well as prosecution under applicable laws.  A $100 fine will be assessed to any student found responsible for tampering with fire safety equipment.

6.1.11  Gambling
Students are expected to abide by the federal and state laws prohibiting illegal gambling. Gambling for money or other things of value on campus or at College sponsored activities is prohibited except as permitted by law. Such prohibited activity includes, but is not limited to, betting, wagering on, or selling pools on any athletic event; possessing any card, book or other device for registering bets; knowingly permitting the use of one’s premises or one’s telephone or other electronic communications device for illegal gambling; knowingly receiving or delivering a letter, package, or parcel related to illegal gambling; offering, soliciting or accepting a bribe to influence the outcome of an athletic event; and involvement in bookmaking or wagering pools with respect to sporting events.

6.1.12 Harassment – General
The College of Mount Saint Vincent affirms the right of every student to be respected in his or her person, and to be subject to no form of harassment or pressure that interferes with the calm pursuit of education. The College of Mount Saint Vincent is guided by the precept that in no aspect of its practices or programs should there be disparate treatment of persons because of race, creed, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation or disability or other irrelevant factor. This principle is expected to be observed in the instruction, employment, admission, housing and education of students, including co-curricular programs. This policy encompasses the goal that all members of the community are able to work study and socialize free from harassment. CMSV will not tolerate actions or words, which a reasonable person would regard as harassing or provocative. Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken against those found to have committed serious harassment, up to and including expulsion from the College.

Violations of this policy include, but are not limited to, use of derogatory names; use of words or actions to place another person in reasonable fear of his/her personal safety or of harm to personal property; conduct intended to unreasonably annoy or disturb; exhibiting, distributing, posting, or advertising publicly offensive or indecent or abusive matter concerning any person or groups of persons, inappropriately directed laughter; inconsiderate or demeaning jokes; or anonymous notes or phone calls.

6.1.13 Hazing
Hazing in any form is prohibited. Hazing is defined as any action or situation which recklessly or intentionally endangers mental or physical health or involves the forced consumption of liquor or drugs for the purpose of initiation into or affiliation with any group or organization regardless of the individual’s willingness to participate. Groups and individuals accused of such offenses are subject to disciplinary action. The penalty for visitors who violate this policy is immediate ejection from the campus. The penalty for student or staff violators range up to and including expulsion from the College. Any organization which authorizes such conduct is subject to the suspension or revocation of recognition to operate on campus. All such penalties shall be in addition to any penalty pursuant to criminal law or any other laws to which a violator, group, or organization may be subject.

6.1.14 Key Duplication / Use or Possession of Master Key
The College prohibits unauthorized possession, duplication, or use of keys or master keys to any premises or unauthorized entry or use of College premises or property.

6.1.15 Physical Violence or Threatened Violence
No student shall use physical force or violence upon any student, employee, or officer of the College or anyone visiting or passing through the College campus. An expressed or implied threat of violence is a violation of this policy. No student shall engage in any form of violence directed toward another person or group of people. Responding to violence with violence is also a violation of this policy.

6.1.16 Posting
Fliers and posters may be hung throughout the campus on approved bulletin boards only. All materials for posting must be stamped prior to distribution by the Office of Student Activities and Student Leadership. Advertising, both inside/outside of buildings, electronic/print, and on/off campus, for parties or events may not refer to or promote alcoholic beverages, drugs, or tobacco products. Any materials of an explicit sexual nature are prohibited as well as materials that may be viewed as demeaning or degrading to a person or group of persons. It is the responsibility of the individual or group to remove postings once the event has passed.

6.1.17 Projectiles
No student shall throw or cause to be projected any object or substance that has potential for damaging or defacing College or private property or causing personal injury or disruption. Dropping any item, or causing any item to be dropped from a window, is a violation of this policy.

6.1.18 Residence Hall Regulations and Policies
Violation of the residence hall regulations and policies as stated in Terms and Conditions of Room and Board and in this Handbook are considered violations of the College’s Student Code of Conduct.

6.1.19 Sexual Misconduct Policy

6.1.20 Smoking
All College buildings are designated smoke-free. There are no exceptions to this rule. Smoking inside any building, including residence hall rooms, is a violation of College policy. This ban includes, but is not limited to, use of cigarettes, cigars, pipes, hookahs, e-cigarettes, vaping devices and/or smoking paraphernalia inside any building. Smoking is prohibited in College owned vehicles. Smoking is permitted on campus only in smoking shelters located across campus.

6.1.21 Theft or Attempted Theft
No student shall steal, attempt to steal, or assist in the theft of the property or services, whether by means of taking, deception, misappropriation, or misuse.

6.1.22 Trespassing
Any person, who enters, attempts to enter, remains in a private room or office, enters a restricted area or refuses to leave an area as directed by a College official and any unauthorized person shall be considered trespassing. A person who has been banned from campus must have written authorization from an appropriate College official before coming onto campus for any reason or be subject to arrest for trespassing.

6.1.23 Utterance of Threats
No student shall utter threats by any means of communication, including but not limited to threats of physical abuse of any student, employee, officer of the College, or organization or anyone visiting or passing through the College campus, or threats to destroy College property or the property of others.

6.1.24 Violation of Federal, State, or Local Law
Violations of federal, state, or local law on or off campus are considered a violation of this policy.

6.1.25 Weapons
No student shall keep, use, possess, display, or transport any rifle, shotgun, handgun, pellet or BB gun, stun gun, dangerous knives, billy club, make shift weapons, or any item which has been modified or adapted so that it can be used as a weapon, martial arts weapons, decorative swords, or any other lethal or dangerous devices capable of casting a projectile by air, gas, explosion or mechanical means on any property or in any building owned or operated by the College or in any vehicle on campus. Realistic facsimiles of weapons are also prohibited on campus. No student shall use or possess hazardous items/substances such as fireworks, ammunition, smoke bombs, explosives or any hazardous substances.

6.2 Student Code of Conduct Process

The well-being of a community is harmed by misconduct of its members. Whether minor or major, misconduct cannot be disregarded if all members of the community are to be respected, safe, and secure. For that reason, the student disciplinary process is an integral part of our academic community. Consistent regulations, policies, procedures, and their enforcement are ingredients of any community in which students can live and learn successfully.

Disciplinary authority for all non-academic matters has been conferred by the President of the College upon the Dean of Students, who has the responsibility of administering this policy. Any question of interpretation shall be referred Dean of Students. The Dean of Students can delegate this authority to College administrators to serve in the capacity of Student Conduct Officers. In cases where students or student organizations contest the charges, the Student Conduct Officer may convene, and delegate authority to, the Student Conduct Board for adjudication.

In all disciplinary cases, principles of fair practice will prevail. Fair practices require that students be informed of the nature of the charges against them, that they be given an opportunity to refute the charges, that the College not be arbitrary or capricious in its actions or decisions, and that there be provision for appeal of any decision.

Disciplinary cases and their outcomes, including any subsequent sanctions or penalties, are recorded in the Dean of Students. If a student is expelled from the College for disciplinary reasons, it is noted on the student’s transcript.

6.2.1 Jurisdiction
Cases of alleged violations of the College’s Student Code of Conduct are handled through the College’s Student Conduct Process for the following:

  • Full-time or part-time Undergraduate College students,
  • All recognized student organizations,
  • Graduate, and/or School of Professional and Graduate Studies students,
  • Behaviors occurring on and off campus.

If a student withdraws from the College after engaging in conduct that may violate any provision of the College’s Student Code of Conduct but before the alleged violation has been adjudicated through the Student Conduct Process, their record will be placed on hold and the student shall not be permitted to return to the College until the case has been adjudicated. In such cases, at the sole discretion of the College, the Student Conduct Process may continue with sanctions imposed in the student’s absence.

If a previously enrolled student is not currently enrolled and is alleged to have engaged in conduct that violates the College’s Student Code of Conduct, depending upon the nature of the alleged violation, the previously enrolled student may not be permitted to re-enroll in the College until the Student Conduct Process is followed and a final determination is made in his/her favor. In such cases, at the sole discretion of the College, the Student Conduct Process can be followed and sanctions imposed in the student’s absence.

If a prospective student is alleged to have engaged in conduct that violates the College’s Student Code of Conduct, depending upon the nature of the alleged violation, the prospective student may not be permitted to enroll or re-enroll in the College until the Student Conduct Process is followed and a determination made in his/her favor. In such cases, at the sole discretion of the College, the Student Conduct Process can be followed and sanctions can be imposed in the student’s absence.

If a student engages in prohibited activity on behalf of or while participating in their student organization, both the student and the student organization may be charged with a violation(s) of the Student Code of Conduct.

Students will be held accountable for the behaviors of their guests through the Student Conduct Process. Student hosts must escort their guests at all times while on campus. Students are responsible for the behaviors of their guests at all campus locations and events.

No student is approved for graduation until all Student Conduct Process proceedings have been completed.

6.2.2 Disciplinary Records
The College will retain physical disciplinary records for one year after the graduation of the student or one year after the expected graduation for inactive students. The College reserves the right to keep records for a longer period of time if deemed necessary. In cases of expulsion, the College will retain records indefinitely. In cases involving violations of the Cleary Act and Sexual Misconduct violations, the College will retain records indefinitely. The College may disclose to law enforcement authorities the final results of a disciplinary proceeding against a student found in violation of a College policy, rule, regulation or standard of conduct involving any crime of violence or a non-forcible instance of sexual misconduct. In such cases, the College will only release the name of the student found in violation, the violation committed and any sanctions imposed on the student.

6.2.3 Violations of the Law and College Policy
College disciplinary action may be instituted against a student charged with a violation of the law that is also a violation of a College’s Student Code of Conduct. The College Student Conduct Process will proceed without regard to pending civil or criminal litigation or criminal arrest. Such proceedings may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with, or following civil or criminal proceedings. Because the College reserves the authority to require different and/or higher standards of conduct than may be required by law, the College’s Student Conduct Process will not be subject to challenge on the ground that external charges or litigation involving the same incident have been dismissed or reduced.

6.2.4 The Charge
Any member of the College community can report an alleged violation of the Student Code of Conduct to a member of the Residence Life, Campus Security or Dean of Students staff. The Student Conduct Officer will determine whether the complaint is sufficient for a formal charge to be made or for the complaint to be dismissed. If the complaint is not dismissed, a determination will be made as to the Student Conduct Officer who will process the complaint. It is in the Student Conduct Officer’s sole judgment to proceed with a complaint.
Students alleged to have committed violations of the Student Code of Conduct will receive a notice of charge, which shall state:

  • The nature of the alleged offense stating the place and time of the occurrence.
  • Notification of the obligation to schedule a Pre-hearing Conference by the date designated in the notice of charge letter.

6.2.5 The Pre-Hearing Conference
The Student Conduct Officer shall conduct a Pre-Hearing Conference with the accused student. At the Pre-hearing Conference, the student will:

  • have the conduct process for the College explained
  • have the charges explained
  • be given the opportunity to respond to the charge(s)

The accused student may choose not to contest the charge(s) or to contest the charge(s).

If a student fails to comply with scheduling or attending a Pre-hearing Conference within the prescribed period of time, the facts will be reviewed by the Student Conduct Officer and a decision will be rendered in the student’s absence.

6.2.6 Student Hearings

6.2.6.1 Informal Resolution
An accuser who wishes to file an official complaint within the College’s Student Conduct Process but who does not wish to pursue the formal Student Conduct Process may request a less formal proceeding known as Informal Resolution. Informal Resolution is an adjudicative process; it is not mediation. Informal Resolution provides an opportunity for the accuser to confront the accused in the presence of, and facilitated by, a Student Conduct Officer or Title IX Coordinator, and to communicate his or her feelings and perceptions regarding the incident, the impact of the incident and his or her wishes and expectations regarding protection in the future. The accused will have an opportunity to respond.

Both the accuser and the accused may each choose one member of the College community (faculty, staff or student) to accompany them throughout the Informal process.

The Student Conduct Officer or Title IX Coordinator may elect to be assisted by a member of the Student Conduct Hearing Board.

Informal Resolution cannot result in formal sanctions as described in the Sanctions section of this Handbook. Informal Resolution may, however, result in the Student Conduct Officer or the Title IX Coordinator imposing protective actions agreed upon by the parties. Without such agreement, the Student Conduct Officer or the Title IX Coordinator may impose protective actions based on information derived from the proceedings, taken together with any other relevant information known to the College at the time of the Informal Resolution.

The College or the accuser may, at any time prior to the conclusion of the Informal Resolution, elect to end such proceedings and instead, initiate the formal Student Conduct process. The Student Conduct Officer or the Title IX Coordinator may impose protective actions as deemed necessary until all formal Student Conduct Process procedures are completed including the Appeals Process.

In order to promote honest, direct communication, information disclosed during Informal Resolution will remain confidential while the Informal Resolution is pending, except where disclosure may be required by law or authorized in connection with duties on behalf of the College.

6.2.5.2 Administrative Hearing
In cases where the accused student or student organization pleads in violation, the Student Conduct Officer will proceed immediately to conduct an Administrative Hearing. In the Administrative Hearing the Student Conduct Officer will discuss the specifics of the case, the College’s behavioral expectations, and possible sanctions. The Student Conduct Officer may choose to consult with the Student Conduct Board before imposing sanctions. The student or student organization will be notified of the sanctions in writing. In cases where an Administrative Hearing is held, the accused student or student organization can appeal only on the ground of severity of sanction. See Procedures for Appeal in this section of the Handbook for more information.

6.2.5.3 Student Conduct Hearing
When the accused student or student organization pleads not in violation he/she/it may waive the opportunity for additional time to prepare and proceed immediately to a Student Conduct Hearing. If additional time is not waived, a Student Conduct Hearing will be scheduled such that the timing does not negatively affect the student’s ability to fulfill his/her academic obligations at the College and such that the accused has a reasonable amount of time to prepare the case.

In either case, the accused will have ample opportunity at the Student Conduct Hearing to make any oral or written statements relevant to the case and to identify possible witnesses. The Student Conduct Board will review all available evidence, reserve the opportunity to contact witnesses not present, determine a finding of in violation or not in violation based on the evidence, and in the case of a finding of in violation impose sanctions. The accused student will be notified of the sanctions via their College e-mail. The accused student or student organization can appeal the sanction(s) per the Procedures for Appeal as stated in this Handbook.

6.2.5.4 Student Conduct Hearing Procedures
In cases where the accused student or student organization contest the charges, the Student Conduct Officer will determine who will hear the case; a Student Conduct Officer or the Student Conduct Board, if constituted. Whatever the determination, the process is similar. The accused shall have a fair and timely Student Conduct Hearing. The Student Conduct Hearing will be scheduled such that the timing does not negatively affect the student’s ability to fulfill his/her academic obligations at the College and such that the accused has a reasonable amount of time to prepare the case. The accused will have ample opportunity to make any written or oral statements relevant to the case and identify possible witnesses.

After having received notice of the scheduled hearing the accused must appear at the Student Conduct Hearing. If the accused fails to appear at the Student Conduct Hearing, the Student Conduct Officer shall review all available evidence; determine a finding of in violation or not in violation based on the evidence. In the case of a finding of in violation, the Student Conduct Officer will impose appropriate sanctions.

The Student Conduct Hearing is a formal process. The accuser(s) will appear in order to bear witness to her/his/their written complaint. Witnesses may be called to testify by the accuser, by the accused student and/or by the Student Conduct Officer. The Student Conduct Officer/Board may reasonably limit the number of witnesses.

Whenever possible, the accused shall have the right to hear or read all evidence presented at the Student Conduct Hearing.
The accused shall have the opportunity to refute or respond to all charges and all evidence and to call a reasonable number of witnesses on her/his behalf or to submit their statements. However, the accused does not have the right to receive copies of such statements or evidence. The accused does not have the right to confront or cross-examine witnesses. Under rare circumstances, the Student Conduct Officer/Board may determine that the identity of certain witnesses should be withheld.

The accuser and the accused may choose to be accompanied to the Student Conduct Hearing by an advisor of his/her choice. In keeping with the educational goals of the College, the advisor must be a member of the College community. The advisor may advise the accuser or accused during the hearing. However, the advisor may not address the Student Conduct Board or the Student Conduct Officer during the course of the proceedings, question witnesses or participate directly in the hearing proceedings.

Attorneys are not permitted to be present at the hearing except in cases where criminal charges are pending. In such cases, lawyers may advise the accuser or accused during the hearing but they cannot address the Student Conduct Officer/Board during the course of the proceedings, question witnesses or participate directly in the hearing proceedings. In the case of disciplinary proceedings for alleged Sexual Misconduct, both the accuser and the accused may each choose an advisor to accompany them to proceedings before the Student Conduct Board for Sexual Misconduct. The advisor may be a member of the College community, an attorney, or any other individual the parties choose. In cases where an accused or accuser chooses to have an attorney present, the costs associated with the attorney’s services are the sole responsibility of the parties.

If at any time, a party is found to falsify information before the Student Conduct Board, s/he will be charged with a violation of the College’s Code of Conduct.

In all Student Conduct Hearings, unless otherwise specified by the Student Conduct Officer/Board, the accuser, accused, and all witnesses will be called and spoken to individually to give their testimony and will then be excused. In all hearings involving more than one accused student, the Student Conduct Officer/ Student Conduct Board will meet with each student separately. For cases involving allegations of sexual misconduct or sexual assault, the accused and the accuser will be assigned separate waiting rooms at the time of the hearing.

A single verbatim recording will be made of each Student Conduct Hearing, whether the case is heard by a Student Conduct Officer or a Student Conduct Board, not to include the deliberations of the Board.

6.2.5.5 Student Conduct Board
The Student Conduct Board consists of the Chief Justice (an elected member of Student Government), a member of the faculty or an administrative staff person, and one other student representative. The Dean of Students will appoint the faculty or administrative staff to the Board based on the recommendations of the Student Government Association. Student Government will appoint students to the Board. A quorum of three is required to hear a case; two students and a faculty or an administrative staff member.

The Dean of Students or designee serves as advisor to the Student Conduct Board. The advisor is present throughout the proceedings and is responsible for ensuring that College procedures and policies are followed. The advisor is not a member of the Student Conduct Board. An accused may request that a member of the Student Conduct Board recuse her/himself from the case for cause. In the event of a disagreement about such a request, the final determination shall be made by the advisor. A member of the Student Conduct Board may also recuse her/himself from the case for any cause. In either case, an appropriate substitution will be made by the advisor.

6.2.5.6 Conduct Board for Sexual Misconduct
The Conduct Board for Sexual Misconduct consists of three non-student members of the College’s Student Conduct Board. These members are specially selected and trained to appreciate the complexities and legal implications of violations of this policy. This Board follows the same procedures as the Student Conduct Board except where noted in this Handbook.

6.2.5.7 The Determination
Whether the Student Conduct Hearing is conducted by the Student Conduct Officer or by the Student Conduct Board the decision is not delivered at the hearing. All evidence is reviewed and any deliberations take place in private.

In the case of the Student Conduct Board, a vote is taken. An accused is found in violation or not in violation by majority vote. The Dean of Students or a designee is present for all deliberations but does not vote. In cases in which the accused is found in violation, the Student Conduct Board discusses sanction options and recommends sanctions to the Dean of Students or designee. The advisor retains a written record of all charges, pleas, statements, decisions, the verbatim recording and sanction(s) recommendation of Student Conduct Officer/Board.

As soon as possible after the Student Conduct Hearing, and in consideration of the Student Conduct Officer/Board’s recommendations, the Dean of Students or designee determines sanctions in all cases for which the accused is found in violation. The Dean of Students or designee must consider prior disciplinary history and, under rare circumstances, may request additional advisory deliberation on the part of the Student Conduct Officer/Board before the imposition of sanctions. The Dean of Students or designee notifies the student in writing to campus or home address, with a copy by e-mail. In cases involving allegations of sexual misconduct or sexual assault, both the accused and the accuser will be issued results concurrently.

6.2.5.8 Burden of Proof
The determination “in violation” requires “a clear preponderance of evidence” that would lead a reasonable person to conclude that it is more likely than not that the accused student or student organization violated the Student Code of Conduct.

6.2.6 Procedures for Appeal
The appeal process is available only to the accused student or accused student organization that has been found in violation with the exception of cases involving Sexual Misconduct where the appeal process is available to the accuser and the accused. Appeals are heard by a Student Conduct Officer or the Student Conduct Board. Appeal hearings are limited to case related documents and verbatim recordings.

6.2.6.1 Administrative Hearings
In cases where a student or student organization plead in violation they can appeal only on the basis of severity of sanction. If the appeal is upheld, the Appeal Hearing Officer or Appellate Board, if constituted, can amend the appeal.

6.2.6.2 Student Conduct Hearing
Students and student organizations have the right to appeal a decision of in violation whether it has been decided by the Student Conduct Board or a Student Conduct Officer. Any appeal of either a decision of in violation and/or severity sanction(s) or both must be submitted in writing, including a detailed explanation of the basis for the appeal, no more than five (5) business days of the date of the letter informing the student of the outcome of the hearing. In the case of new information, the appeal must be submitted within five (5) business days of when the new information becomes available. Appeal hearings are document hearings only and in the case of a Student Conduct Hearing the verbatim tape recording. Students do not appear in Appeal Hearings.

6.2.6.3 Student Sexual Misconduct Hearing
In cases of Sexual Misconduct, the accuser and the accused have the right to appeal a decision of in violation whether it has been decided by the Conduct Board for Sexual Misconduct or a Title IX Coordinator. Any appeal of either a decision of in violation and/or severity of sanction(s), or both, must be submitted in writing, including a detailed explanation of the basis for the appeal, no more than five (5) business days of the date of the letter informing the accused and the accuser of the outcome of the hearing. In the case of new information, the appeal must be submitted within five (5) business days of when the new information becomes available. Appeal hearings are document hearings only, and in the case of a Sexual Misconduct Board Hearing, the verbatim recording. The accuser or accused do not appear during Appeal Hearings and the appeal results will be shared with both parties concurrently.

6.2.6.4 Reason for Appeal
Severity of Sanctions: Whether the sanctions imposed were appropriate for the violation of the Student Code of Conduct. Specifically, the sanctions imposed are not consistent with those imposed for similar violations that occurred under similar circumstances.

Improper procedure: To determine whether the original hearing was conducted fairly and consistency with prescribed procedures.

New Information: Information that has become available but was not available at the time of the hearing. To consider new information sufficient to alter a decision or other relevant facts not brought out in the original hearing, because such information and/or facts were not known to the student or student organization appealing at the time of the original hearing. In the case of new information, the appeal must be submitted within five (5) days of when the new information becomes available. In cases in which an appeal is requested, a stay of sanctions will normally be granted by the Dean of Students. Sanctions, other than no contact orders, will be held in abeyance pending the outcome of the appeal. However, the Student Conduct Officer reserves the right to deny a stay of sanctions in cases in which he/she deems appropriate.

If the Student Conduct Officer/Board grants an appeal for a reason other than severity of sanction, the matter shall be returned to the original Student Conduct Officer or the Student Conduct Board to allow reconsideration of the original decision. In reopening all cases, the decision of the Student Conduct Officer or the Student Conduct Board regarding sanctioning may not result in more severe sanctioning for the accused, except in cases of alleged Sexual Misconduct where the accuser pursues the appeal.

6.3 Interim Suspension

In certain circumstances, the Dean of Students or a designee may suspend a student from residence and/or from the College pending the outcome of the Student Conduct Process. Interim suspension may be imposed:

  • To ensure the safety and well-being of members of the College community or preservation of College property.
  • To ensure the student’s own physical or emotional safety and well-being.
  • If, in the judgment of the Dean of Students or designee, the student poses a definite threat of disruption or interference with the normal operations of the College.
  • If the Dean of Students, or designee, determines that the interim suspension is in the best interests of the College community.

During the interim suspension, students or student organizations shall be denied access to College housing, attending class and other College activities or privileges for which the student or student organization might otherwise be eligible, as deemed appropriate by the Dean of Students or designee.

In the case of a student organization, the organization’s activities and participation in College events may be limited as specified by the Dean of Students or designee. If appropriate, interim suspension may include the cessation of all activities and the withdrawal of recognition and allocated funding by the College, pending the final outcome of the proceedings.

In cases of interim suspension, the Student Conduct Hearing will be conducted as soon as possible to determine the outcome of the case. A student or student organization on interim suspension can request an opportunity to appear personally before the Dean of Students or designee within five business days from the effective date of the interim suspension to discuss the suspension. This request should be made to the Dean of Students in writing. The decision of the Dean of Students or designee as to whether or not to impose an interim suspension will hold as final.

6.4 Authority of the President of the College

In all matters of student conduct, the President reserves the right to overturn a student conduct decision, including a decision of appeal, if in his/her sole judgment the safety or well-being of a campus community member, the community in general or College property are at risk.

6.5 Sanctions

The following sanctions are typical of what may be imposed. More than one sanction may be imposed for a single violation.

6.5.1 Written Warning
The student or student organization is given a written warning in cases where the violation is minor or a first offense. The student or student organization is warned that further misconduct shall result in more severe disciplinary action.

6.5.2 Disciplinary Probation
Disciplinary Probation is a specific period of time during which the College provides the student or student organization with the opportunity to prove that he/she/it will contribute in a positive manner to the College community. Should a student or student organization violate College policies while on Disciplinary Probation, more severe sanctions will be imposed. Specific restrictions of disciplinary probation can include, but are not limited to prohibiting a student from representing the College in any intercollegiate sports competition, holding any elected or appointed office on the campus and may in some cases be banned from attendance at or participation in organized College functions, whether athletic, social, or institutional, during this period. Other specific restrictions may be added as conditions of probation in individual cases.

6.5.3 Evaluation and Counseling
The student may be referred to the College Counseling Center for evaluation and counseling when the violation is alcohol, other drug, anger, or violence related. A student can be referred for other violations as well.

6.5.4 Restitution
The student or student organization is required to make monetary reimbursement for repair or replacement of property, for services rendered to the College or to other persons, groups, or organizations for a specified amount by a date designated by the Student Conduct Officer.

6.5.5 Monetary Fine
A monetary fine may be assessed for certain infractions.

6.5.6 No Contact Order
An order of “no contact” is a restriction of contact between parties, including direct and indirect contact through intermediaries and/or social media/technology.

6.5.7 Assignment of a Contributory Service or Constructive/ Educational Task
A student is required to complete a task that benefits the individual, campus, or community. Examples include, but are not limited to, performing contributory service, writing reaction or research papers, and attending programs, lectures, or other educational events deemed appropriate by the Student Conduct Officer.

6.5.8 Dean of Students Hold on Records
The enforcement of College policies may necessitate placing a Dean of Students hold on the student’s record. This hold will prevent a student from accessing grades, registering for classes, receiving a diploma and in some instances receiving transcripts.

6.5.9 Notification of Parent or Legal Guardian
The College will inform a student’s parent(s) or legal guardian(s) that the student has been found in violation of the College’s policies on alcohol, other drugs, or violence or separated from the College or the College’s residence halls.

6.5.10 Housing Reassignment
A student is involuntarily reassigned to a new campus location.

6.5.11 Ban from College Residence Halls
A student is prohibited from entering all residence halls or a specific residence hall(s) for a designated period of time.

6.5.12 Loss of Residence Hall Visitation Privileges
The residence hall visitation and guest privileges of the resident student are revoked for a designated period of time. Additionally, the student must sign in and out of his/her assigned residence hall each time the student enters or exits the building.

6.5.13 Suspension of Residence Life Privileges
The student will be suspended from residency when there is reason to believe that a student will continue to have a disruptive influence on the residential community unless or until certain conditions are met. (i.e., attend counseling, rehabilitation, or resolution of a dispute) or when a student has seriously abused his/her privilege of residency. Readmission is usually at the discretion of the Dean of Students in conjunction with the Assistant Dean of Students and/or Associate Director of Residence Life and Housing. The sanction will stipulate a specific time period for the suspension of residency privileges and may include specific requirements must be fulfilled before reinstatement into residence life will be considered. Suspension of residence life privileges means the student must properly check out of his/her room in accordance with existing College procedures within the time constraints established by the Student Conduct Officer. As indicated in the Terms and Conditions of Room and Board, the resident will be liable for the full room charges.

6.5.14 Permanent Loss of Residence Life Privileges
The student will permanently lose residency privileges when there is reason to believe that they will continue to have a disruptive influence on the residential community or when violations are so severe that they merit permanent removal of the privilege of residency. Loss of residence life privileges means the student must properly check out of his/her room in accordance with existing College procedures within the time constraints established by the Student Conduct Officer. As indicated in the Terms and Conditions of Room and Board, the resident will be liable for the full room charges.

6.5.15 Suspension from the College
The student or student organization will be suspended from the College when there is reason to believe that a student or student organization will continue to have a disruptive influence on the College. Suspension is a separation of the student from the College for a specified period of time. A suspended student will be withdrawn from all courses and may not attend classes, take exams, receive grades, maintain a leadership position, or be on College premises without the written authorization of the Dean of Students or designee throughout the entire duration of the suspension period. A suspended student must surrender his/her College-issued identification card to the Dean of Students for the duration of the suspension.

In the case of a student organization, suspension will result in the loss of recognition which includes loss of privileges including, but not limited to, loss of the use of campus facilities and allocated student activity funds, inability to participate in College activities or sponsor official activities. Future recognition is at the discretion of the Dean of Students in consultation with the Director of Student Activities, Leadership and Commuter Life.

6.5.16 Expulsion from the College
The student will be expelled from the College when there is reason to believe that a student will continue to have a disruptive influence on the College community and/or when the nature of the violation is so serious that permanent separation from the College community is in order. Expulsion is permanent. An expelled student shall not be permitted on College property. An expelled student cannot be re-admitted to the College. Any refunds of tuition, fees, room and board are subject to the College’s refund policy as stated in the Undergraduate Student Catalog.

A record of the expulsion is entered and remains on the student’s transcript. In the case of a student organization, the organization will lose its official recognition, allocated funding, and all other privileges.