Student Conduct System
The following is the Student Conduct System for alleged violation of the University Code of Conduct related to non-academic matters. This system applies to all students of the University with the exception of the Law School, which has its own conduct system specific to preparation for the legal profession. However please note: for all schools (including the Law School), the Sexual Misconduct Policy and Procedures applies in sexual misconduct situations. Though the University Code of Conduct applies to faculty, administrators, and staff, as well as to students, the conduct system outlined here applies only to students. The Student Conduct System is an independent educational process and does not function like the separate legal or judicial processes on the municipal, state, and federal levels.
Conduct Involving Non-Academic Matters
When a Code of Conduct violation is alleged, the process is observed as follows:
- A student accused of violating the Code of Conduct shall be notified of the alleged violation(s) and shall have the opportunity, within a reasonable amount of time, for a hearing to discuss them. This hearing is the student’s opportunity to present his or her full and final version of the facts and shall consist of a meeting between the accused student and the Dean of Students or a designated hearing officer. The only participants in the hearing are the accused student and the hearing officer except for those situations in which a Residential Life staff member is assigned to accompany the student during the hearing (see below). In keeping with the Recording policy in the University Regulations, notes may be taken by the student or hearing officer and the hearing will not be recorded or transmitted by the hearing officer or the student. Waiver of the right to a hearing by refusal or failure to appear will not impede the student conduct process and judgment will be made based on the available information and may result in additional conduct violations for failure to comply.
- An accused student shall be free from student conduct sanctions pending the conclusion of his or her hearing, except in cases of refusal or failure to appear or where the Dean of Students determines that the health, safety and/or well-being of the community or of the accused student is endangered by that student’s presence on campus. In these cases, the Dean of Students may take appropriate interim measures, including, but not limited to, temporary suspension of the accused student.
Response to Alleged Violations
Any member of the University community may, within a reasonable amount of time after alleged misconduct, file a report with the Dean of Students Office or designates such as Office of Residential Life staff, Resident Directors, or Resident Assistants or via the Department of Public Safety against a student for alleged violation of the Code of Conduct. The Dean of Students Office may also initiate a student conduct investigation on behalf of the University. The Dean of Students, or his or her designate, will usually undertake a preliminary investigation to determine whether the situation can be handled informally by mutual consent without the initiation of student conduct proceedings.
In instances where the Dean of Students or his or her designate determines that a student conduct hearing shall be initiated, the Dean of Students or his or her designate will notify the accused student of the specific alleged violation(s), and will schedule a hearing.
Students are encouraged to share the names and contact information of any relevant witnesses (not character references) and must do so prior to or during the hearing.
A student may waive the right to a hearing, in which case the alleged violation(s) will be handled in the student conduct process in his or her absence and may result in additional conduct violations for failure to comply.
Role of the Dean of Students and/or Designated Hearing Officer
- Ordinary student conduct cases are those which do not involve suspension or expulsion from the University or dismissal from housing as possible sanctions. Serious student conduct cases are those in which suspension or expulsion from the University or dismissal from housing are possible sanctions.
- The Dean of Students may designate other administrative officials to act as hearing officers for ordinary student conduct cases, including cases in which the possible sanction is university disciplinary probation and for serious student conduct cases in which the possible sanction is dismissal from housing.
- The Dean of Students hears serious student conduct cases in which the possible sanction is suspension or expulsion from the University. In some instances, and depending on information gathered in the conduct process, a conduct process initiated by one hearing officer may be referred for hearing or sanctioning to another.
- In all serious cases, students will be assigned a Residential Life staff member to accompany them during the hearing itself, unless the student declines. Also, in cases heard by staff other than Resident Directors, students may request or may be assigned a Residential Life staff member to accompany them during the hearing itself. The Residential Life staff member does not participate in the conduct process but attends to provide any needed support to the student during the conduct process. Important Note: in all cases of alleged sexual misconduct, an Administrative Support Person ASP is assigned to both the complainant and respondent and has additional duties as described in the Campus Assault and Relationship Education and Sexual Misconduct Policy and Procedures sections of the Student Handbook.
- It is standard for students to be assigned a Hearing Officer that works on the campus of the college in which they are enrolled. In rare instances and at the sole discretion of the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs or the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, a hearing officer located on another campus may be assigned to hear a case.
- In serious cases heard by the Dean of Students, students are entitled to request a different hearing officer. A different hearing officer may be assigned solely at the discretion of the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs or the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs. Requests for a change of Hearing Officer in cases assigned to the Dean of Students must be made to the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs/Associate Vice President for Student Affairs (email@example.com, 718-817-4750) at least two business days in advance of the scheduled hearing or no later than two business days after issuance of the Hearing Letter. In cases of sexual misconduct, both the complainant and the respondent are entitled to request a dfferent hearing officer. These requests must be made to the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs/Associate Vice President for Student Affairs (firstname.lastname@example.org/718.817.4750) at least two business days after the issuance of the hearing or notification letter. The request to change Hearing Officer is considered only in rare and pressing circumstances and must therefore be accompanied by a specific and significant reason such as demonstrable conflict of interest.
Conduct Involving Academic Matters
Allegations of academic dishonesty or plagiarism are handled by individual faculty members according to the guidelines established by their individual schools and colleges of the University. Students who wish to obtain information regarding these procedures should contact the office of their academic dean. Please review the Academic Integrity section contained in this Handbook.