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VI - Disciplinary Proceedings

In this Section
Dean's Inquiry | Disciplinary Proceedings | Sanctions | Table of Contents

VI-A DEAN'S INQUIRY

A dean's inquiry occurs when the name of a student comes to the attention of the Dean of Students' staff as someone who may be involved in, or may have been a witness to, a violation of the Code of Student Conduct.

  1. The student(s) will be notified of the nature of the inquiry and of the disciplinary process. The inquiry does not necessarily lead to formal charges, but is part of the initial fact-finding phase of the disciplinary process. The student(s) will be asked questions about the incident. Other persons may be present at the Dean of Students' discretion.
  2. Based upon the information collected, the Dean of Students or the Dean's designee decides whether disciplinary action is warranted for the student(s)' alleged violation of the Code. If so, the student(s) will be charged with one or more violations of the Code of Student Conduct. The Dean or the designee will then render a judgment in the case or have the matter referred to the Hearing Committee on Discipline and Disorders.
  3. a. If the student(s) agrees with the judgment, the case is considered resolved. A letter to this effect will be sent to the student(s) and placed on file in the Dean of Students Office and the Office of the Vice President for University Outreach and Student Affairs.
    b. If a student does not agree with the judgment, he or she may appeal the decision to the Hearing Committee on Discipline and Disorders.
  4. Cases recommending suspension or expulsion go directly to the Hearing Committee on Discipline and Disorders.

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VI-B HEARING COMMITTEE ON DISCIPLINE AND DISORDERS

The Hearing Committee on Discipline and Disorders has two functions in disciplinary proceedings:

  • It holds initial hearings in all cases of suspension and expulsion and in those referred to it by the Dean of Students or Vice President for University Outreach and Student Affairs.
  • It hears appeals of the results of dean's inquiries.

The disciplinary process is an administrative and not a criminal proceeding, therefore, there is no need to define prohibited conduct or the hearing procedures with the specificity required in criminal law. In general, a student or organization shall be entitled to a proceeding that is fundamentally fair and that shall comply generally with the following. Strict adherence to the rules is not required.

The Committee shall consist of six members selected in the spring to serve for the following academic year and who may also be selected for successive   terms. The president shall select a person to serve as chair. The membership shall be:

  • two undergraduate students selected by the Student Senate from full-time students in good standing who will be juniors or seniors during their term and who are not members of the Student Senate;
  • one graduate student nominated by the Dean of the Graduate School/Provost from full-time graduate students in good standing;
  • two faculty members selected by the Faculty Senate from full-time faculty who are not members of the Faculty Senate;
  • one member selected by the Administrative Council;
  • a chair selected by the president.

Corresponding alternates shall be selected at the same time and in the same manner.

  1. No Committee member shall sit in review of a case in which he or she previously has been involved.
  2. The heads of the appropriate governance bodies shall fill permanent or temporary vacancies as they occur.
  3. A quorum consists of five members with decisions being made by the majority of those present and voting.
  4. The chair shall vote only in case of a tie.
  5. Hearing Committee on Discipline and Disorders recommendations of suspension or expulsion are forwarded to the president for review and action.

Note: Violations of other regulations, e.g., Fraternity and Sorority Recognition Policy, will be referred to the appropriate body.

  1. Initial Hearing Procedures
    The following procedures shall be followed when a disciplinary hearing is convened:
    1. The student will be informed, in writing, of the reasons for the proposed disciplinary action at least seven (7) calendar days in advance of the hearing. The written notice shall include:
      1. a statement of the charges;
      2. a list of all known witnesses and a description of the known evidence in support of the charges;
      3. a statement of the time and place of the hearing; and
      4. a copy of these hearing procedures.
    2. A student who fails to appear or to participate in a hearing after proper notice will be deemed tobe responsible for the charge(s) pending against him or her and will be subject to the sanction levied by the Hearing Committee on Discipline and Disorders.
    3. The student has the right to be assisted in his or her defense by an adviser of his or her choice. The
      adviser may be present but may not participate as an advocate in the proceedings.
    4. Only those persons having a role in the hearing shall be permitted to attend.
    5. Technical rules of evidence applicable to civil and criminal courts are not applicable. All matters upon which the decision may be based must be introduced into evidence at the proceedings before the Committee. Its decision must be based solely upon such matters.
    6. The burden of proof shall rest upon the person(s) bringing the charge.
    7. The student charged will be given the opportunity to testify and to present evidence and witnesses upon his or her behalf. He or she shall have an opportunity to hear and question adverse witnesses, as will the Panel. In no case will the Panel consider statements against a student unless the student has been advised of their content and of the names of those who made them.
    8. There will be an audio recording of all hearings.
  2. Appeals of Dean's Inquiries
    1. Appeals of a Dean of Students' or the designee's decision to the Hearing Committee on Discipline and Disorders must be submitted in writing to the Vice President for University Outreach and Student Affairs within 10 calendar days from the date of the letter notifying the student of the original decision. Grounds for appeal must be included in the request. Appeals shall be forwarded to the chairperson of the Committee.
    2. Appeals shall be decided only upon the record of the original proceeding and the written appeal submitted by the student, unless the Committee deems it necessary to seek additional information.
    3. The Hearing Committee on Discipline and Disorders may take the following actions, with deference generally given to the Dean of Students.
      1. Affirm the finding and the sanction imposed by the Dean of Students.
      2. Affirm the finding and reduce, but not eliminate, the sanction. Sanctions may only be reduced if found to be grossly disproportionate to the offense.
      3. Remand the case to the Vice President for University Outreach and Student Affairs. This may occur if specified procedural errors were so substantial as to effectively deny the student a fair hearing, or if new and significant evidence became available which could not have been discovered by a properly diligent person before or during the original proceeding. The decision of the Vice President for University Outreach and Student Affairs on remand shall be final and conclusive.
      4. Dismiss the case. This may occur if the original decision is held to be arbitrary and capricious.
  3. Status of Student Pending Final Action
    Pending action on the charges, the status of a student should not be altered, or his or her right to be present on the campus and to attend classes suspended, except for reasons relating to his or her physical or emotional safety and well-being, or for reasons relating to the safety and well-being of students, faculty or University property.

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VI-C SANCTIONS

The following may be imposed upon students or organizations for violation of the Code of Student Conduct:

  1. Disciplinary reprimand: a written warning that further misconduct may result in more severe disciplinary action (generally given in cases of minor misconduct). A copy of this warning is kept in the student's disciplinary file.
  2. Disciplinary probation: a letter of probation is placed on file with the Dean of Students and in the Office of the Vice President for University Outreach and Student Affairs indicating that further violations may result in suspension or expulsion from the University. Forfeiture of privileges or other sanctions may be enacted by the Dean of Students or the Vice President for University Outreach and Student Affairs (given for a specified period of time and for serious misconduct).
  3. Restitution: the student is required to pay for damages resulting from a violation of this code.
  4. Disciplinary suspension: given for extremely serious misconduct when it is believed that the student should be removed from the University for a specified period of time. Upon readmission, the student is placed on disciplinary probation for a minimum of one semester. A letter may be sent to parents and notice is sent to the dean of the appropriate school and the department chair or the Interdisciplinary Engineering and Management director. (Suspension requires administrative review and approval by the President and may be altered, deferred or withheld.)
  5. Disciplinary expulsion: given for extremely serious misconduct when it is the judgment of the University that the student should never be permitted to reenter the University. A letter may be sent to parents and a notice is sent to the dean of the appropriate school and the department chair or the Interdisciplinary Engineering and Management director. (Expulsion requires administrative review and approval by the President and may be altered, deferred or suspended.)
  6. Other sanctions: instead of, or in addition to, sanctions appearing in 1 through 5, other penalties may be imposed. These could include suspension from University housing, denial of driving privileges, fines, and/or assignment to work or research projects that benefit a charitable or nonprofit institution, including the University.
  7. Parental notification: when a student under the age of 21 has violated campus regulations regarding alcohol or drug use for a second time, or in a manner that is considered particularly dangerous or risky for the student or others, parents or legal guardians will be notified of the violation, disciplinary sanctions, and recommendations for appropriate action. This represents an effort to recognize parents as partners in the educational process, and the University encourages parents to discuss the situation with their student before the student faces potentially more serious repercussions. A letter will typically be sent to parents at the student's legal address on file with the University. In the case of dangerous or risky situations, a student affairs administrator may call the family. The University encourages families to discuss such matters together, and find positive and creative means for preventing further problems.

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