Student Handbook - Conduct Code


Hearings

The accused and the complainant will receive written notice of the charges, including date and location of the reported incident(s); the type of hearing that will take place; the date, time and location of the hearing; the hearing procedures that will be followed; and copies of written statements and other pertinent information that will be given to the Judicial Body. This notification may be personally delivered or placed in the accused and complainant’s on-campus mailboxes at least forty-eight (48) hours prior to the scheduled hearing. In the event a hearing is scheduled during a break, notice will be sent by certified mail. The student charged may waive the right to this notice.

If an accused student fails to appear at the designated time, fails to reschedule with the Dean of Students, or withdraws from College prior to the resolution of the case, a decision may still be rendered and an appropriate sanction may be assessed based on the available information. A hearing may be postponed upon written request to, and at the discretion of, the Dean of Students.

General Matters

The accused and the complainant may have an advisor who is a full time employee of the College (faculty, administration, or staff) or student, who is not an attorney or parent/legal guardian, present at the hearing. Advisors are not permitted to participate directly in any hearing. Neither the accused nor the complainant may be accompanied by legal counsel (whether a practicing attorney or not), parents or legal guardians. 

  • Notes may be taken by the participants in the hearing solely for personal use. There will be a single verbatim audio recording of the hearing which shall be the sole property of the Dean of Students Office. This recording will be available only for review by the accused and, in the case of sexual misconduct changes, the complainant or the College in the office of the Dean of Students for the purpose of review in connection of an appeal.  The recording will be maintained for a period of four (4) months from the date of appeal period has lapsed or an appeal decision has been rendered whichever is later. 
  • Where and as determined by the Judicial Body to be appropriate in extraordinary cases, the Judicial Body will make reasonable accommodation out of concerns for personal safety or well-being of any of the participants in the process while taking into account the opportunity to hear and question witnesses.

Hearing by the Judicial Hearing Board, the Student Conduct Board, or the Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board

  • The Judicial Hearing Board is composed of two (2) to five (5) faculty, two (2) to five (5) students, and the chair, a Senior Student Affairs Administrator who will have a vote. The two (2) to five (5) faculty members and the two (2) to five (5) student members of the Judicial Hearing Board will be appointed by the Vice President of Student Affairs. The recording secretary of the Judicial Hearing Board will be elected annually by the members of the Judicial Hearing Board. 
  • The Student Conduct Board is composed of nine (9) students and the Director of Student Conduct, who will be present throughout the hearing and the deliberations of the Student Conduct Board, but who will not have a vote.  The nine (9) student members of the Student Conduct Board will be appointed by the Student Forum through a procedure to be determined by that organization.  The chairperson, the vice chairperson, and recording secretary of the Student Conduct Board will be elected annually by the members of the Student Conduct Board. If the chairperson is unable to preside at a hearing, the vice-chairperson will serve in his/her stead.
  • The Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board shall be composed of fifteen (15) students, who have been initiated into a fraternity/sorority with Full Recognition from Union College.  Three (3) of these members must be Executive Board Members representing the three (3) governing councils.  The Board Chair responsibilities will rotate between these three (3) members each Academic Year unless other needs arise.  The remaining twelve (12) members of the Board shall be selected by the outgoing Board Chair and the Director of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs through an application and review process.  The Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board will hear cases of alleged chapter violations of the Student Conduct Code and/or Fraternity and Sorority Policies.  The Director of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs will be present throughout the hearing and deliberation process of the Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board but is not permitted to vote.  Members of the Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board will serve as volunteers who are trained in FERPA, confidentiality, procedures, and applicable policies and rules of the College.
  • The Judicial Hearing Board, Student Conduct Board and the Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board have been given the responsibility by the College Administration to adjudicate Proscribed Conduct; however, the Judicial Hearing Board will adjudicate cases involving an alleged violation of the Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment Policy, and the Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board will primarily adjudicate cases involving Greek organizations involving allegations of violation of the Greek Recognition Policy and the Social Events with Alcohol Policy. Their purpose is to ascertain the facts of individual cases and make recommendations to the College administration for ultimate disposition. Hearings before the Judicial Hearing Board, the Student Conduct Board, and the Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board need not conform to requirements of criminal or civil procedure and/or proof. The intent of the procedure is to provide the accused with a fair hearing before his/her peers, to give him/her or the spokesperson of the organization the opportunity to respond to any charges, and to give the accused the opportunity to ask questions of the complainant or witnesses in order to clarify statements presented during the hearing. Within this framework, the Judicial Hearing Board, the Student Conduct Board, and the Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board may conduct the hearing and make necessary adaptations to fit particular circumstances.
  • The Judicial Hearing Board chair, one (1) faculty member and one (1) student member constitute a quorum for conducting a hearing. Student Conduct Board advisor and five (5) student members constitute a quorum for conducting a hearing. The Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board advisor and three (3) student members shall constitute a quorum for conducting a hearing.
  • Quorum: The Judicial Hearing Board chair - one (1) faculty member and one (1) student member constitute a quorum for conducting a hearing. The Student Conduct Board – the Director of Student Conduct and five (5) student members constitute a quorum for conducting a hearing. The Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board – the Director of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs and five (5) student members shall constitute a quorum for conducting a hearing.
  • At the Judicial Hearing Board, Student Conduct Board, or the Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board Hearing, the chairperson will present the charges and call upon the person bringing the charges to offer information. The accused is responsible for presenting his or her own case and may make a written or verbal statement. The accused, the chairperson, and complainant have the right to present witnesses from the campus community. The accused, the complainant, and any witnesses will be subject to questions from the Student Conduct Board or Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board. The accused may question witnesses and the complainant in order to clarify statements during the hearing. The complainant may question witnesses (see definition of “witness”) and the accused in order to clarify statements during the hearing. 
  • Findings of fact and disposition of the charge(s) will be determined by a majority of members present at a hearing of the Judicial Hearing Board the Student Conduct Board or the Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board. A brief summary of the findings will be submitted by the panel chairperson to the Dean of Students or designee, who shall not be bound by the recommendations) in determining sanctions.

 

 Standard of Proof

In order to determine that the student has violated the Student Conduct Code, a majority of the Judicial Hearing Board, Student Conduct Board or Fraternity and Sorority Conduct Board members present at hearing must conclude that by a preponderance of the evidence a violation has occurred. A “preponderance of evidence” means a finding that it is more likely than not that a violation occurred. The Chairperson of the Student Conduct Board does not vote unless it is necessary to break a tie vote.

 Sanctions

Following the hearing, the accused and, in the case of sexual misconduct change, the complainant will be notified in writing that based on the information presented:

  • Proscribed Conduct has been found and sanctions imposed; or
  • The charges have been dropped; or
  • A violation did not occur.

This notification shall be mailed to the accused student’s local address or delivered personally within ten (10) days of the hearing date. If the Judicial Body determines that a violation has taken place, a copy of this letter will be kept in the accused student’s judicial file in the Office of the Dean of Students.

Upon a finding of Proscribed Conduct, the sanctions, including, but not limited to, those listed below may be imposed by the Dean of Students or designee. Particular sanctions are not necessarily associated with particular violations, and more than one of the sanctions listed below may be imposed for any single violation. A student’s history of inappropriate behavior and the nature or severity of an incident may be considered in determining appropriate sanctions. If judicial sanctions are not fulfilled by the sanctioned student, more serious judicial sanctions may be imposed, including Suspension from the College.

  • Campus Service: Requirement that an accused student complete a specified number of hours working on campus.
  • Community Services: Requirement that the accused locate and become a long term participant in an organization or project which provides service to the surrounding community. Particular information will be provided by the Hearing Officer.
  • Educational Programs: Requirement that the accused take part in an required educational program on or off campus. The Judicial Body may require the student to participate in an online educational program that addresses particular issues.
  • Expulsion: Permanent separation from the College including loss of student status; reinstatement or readmission is not possible.
  • Fine: Requirement to pay a monetary fine.
  • Interim Restrictions: Imposition on an interim basis of any sanction or sanctions listed in this Section.
  • Loss of Privileges: Denial of specified privileges for a designated period of time. These may include loss or housing privileges or opportunity to participate in term abroad, or in sports.
  • Member of the College Community:  A matriculated student or a student currently on leave or a full-time employee of the College.
  • Parental Notification: Parent(s) and/or legal guardian(s) of dependent students may receive notification of judicial sanctions incurred by their son/daughter in response to violations of designated policies and specified judicial sanctions.
  • Physical Restrictions: A directive given to an accused student that does not permit him/her/them to be in specified locations on College Premises.
  • Probation:  The next violation is likely to result in Suspension or Expulsion
  • Residence Reassignment: Relocation to another living space on campus.
  • Residence Termination: Removal from campus housing.
  • Restitution: Monetary reimbursement to the College, an individual, or an organization for repair or replacement of property damaged, stolen or misappropriated.
  • Suspension: Separation from the College community for a defined period of time, usually no fewer than two (2) Academic Terms. Additional stipulations or conditions for reinstatement may be assigned. Reinstatement is contingent upon a positive administrative review. A student under suspension is not allowed to transfer in credit for courses taken at other institutions during the defined period of time of the suspension.
  • Suspension with Academic Delay: The student will be suspended from the College, but the commencement of the suspension will be deferred and the student will be permitted to remain enrolled in classes until the end of the term. However, if the student fails to comply with any interim restriction which may be imposed during the deferral period (e.g., fails to comply with a “no contact” directive), violates the Student Conduct Code while in the deferral period and is found responsible, or fails to complete the assigned sanctions by the given deadline(s), the student will be immediately suspended.  During the deferral period, the student is not considered to be in good standing with the College and may not represent the College on any athletic team other than intramurals, hold an office in any student organization registered with the College, represent the College in any extracurricular activity or official function, or participate in any study abroad program.
  • Withholding the Granting of a Degree or Revocation of a Degree: Action by the College to withhold or revoke a student’s degree.
  • Written Warning: Written notification given to a student that continued or repeated inappropriate behavior may result in more formal judicial action. A letter of written warning is kept in the student’s Judicial File.