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Frequently Asked Questions for Students

The student conduct process can seem complicated to a student, especially if this is their first time interacting with the process. If you have received a letter from the Office of Student Conduct you may be confused, concerned, and worried. The Frequently Asked Questions below are meant to help you understand the process better and to help put your mind at ease regarding the process. If you find that all of your questions are not answered on this page, then please contact the Office of Student Conduct with your specific question.

I have a received a letter from the Office of Student Conduct, what should I do now?

The most important action that a student can take upon receiving a letter in their email from the Office of Student Conduct is to open it and read it. They are most likely receiving the letter because the Office of Student Conduct has received information that indicates they may have been involved in an incident that potentially violated university policy. The letter likely details a time and date for an Initial Meeting, and it will also detail any potential violations of policy that are being alleged. 

The initial meeting will allow the student the opportunity to review the information that the Office of Student Conduct has regarding the incident and potential violations of university policy. The student will also get the opportunity to hear about our process, and a hearing officer will work with them to determine the best resolution to the case. After this Initial Meeting, there may or may not be a Formal Hearing at a later date. If a student is curious about how this process works, they should visit this page.

Students should not contact the Office of Student Conduct regarding the specifics of a pending case when they receive a letter. The Office of Student Conduct cares about student privacy and the confidentiality of pending conduct cases. We will not discuss over the phone, or via email, the specific circumstances involving a student's case. These details will be provided when the student meets with a Hearing Officer at the Initial Meeting or Formal Hearing.

What do I need to bring to the meeting?

Students should bring any information that they feel may be relevant to their case to present to the Hearing Officer. It is also important to come prepared to be honest and open about the incident.

Will my parents learn of my pending conduct case?

A student's parents will never be notified of a pending conduct matter. However, after resolution of a conduct case if the student is found responsible for violating the Alcohol policy and is under the age of 21 the student's parents may be notified as a potential sanction for violation of the policy. Parental notification as a sanction may also take place in the event that the student is found responsible for violating the Drug policy. The Alcohol and Drug policies can be found in the Standards of Student Conduct.

What is a sanction?

Sanctions are actions taken by the Office of Student Conduct in response to a finding of responsible with regards to a potential violation of university policy. Sanctions are educational in nature and are meant to help a student learn from their mistakes. Some sanctions may be geared toward at repairing harm that was caused by policy violations. Sanctions will be clearly outlined in the Decision Letter that a student receives and in most cases the student will have two weeks from the time a decision is reached to complete those sanctions.

In every case, a student will receive a combination of two types of sanctions. One will be a Disciplinary Sanction, and another will be an Educational Sanction. The Disciplinary Sanction can range from a Written Warning to Expulsion. There are a number of different Educational Sanctions that a student may receive and the Hearing Officer will take care to assign sanctions that are meant to educate and best support the student.

Am I at risk of Suspension?

Suspension is a potential sanction that a student may receive if the violation of policy is considered to be especially serious by the Hearing Officer. If a student is afraid that Suspension may be an option in their case they should review the "Am I at Risk of Suspension?" flow chart.

If the potential violation also involves an alleged crime could I go through the student conduct process AND be prosecuted criminally?

The student conduct process that the Office of Student Conduct completes can, and often does, run concurrently with the criminal process. It is likely that a student could face criminal charges and potential violations of university policy at the same time.

What happens if I miss the Initial Meeting?

It is the responsibility of the student to check their university email address on a regular basis to ensure that they do not miss important communication from university officials. Should they miss their initial meeting because they failed to read a letter, or simply forgot about their Initial Meeting then the Hearing Officer assigned to their case will add an additional charge of Failure to Comply and will automatically schedule a Formal Hearing for a later date and time. The only accepted excuse for missing a meeting is a doctors appointment and the excuse must be accompanied by documentation from the doctor's office. If a student receives a letter and the scheduled time for their Initial Meeting conflicts with another appointment, the student should contact the Office of Student Conduct before their scheduled Initial Meeting to reschedule their meeting.

What if I do not want to participate in the student conduct process?

Students have the right to refuse to participate in the student conduct process. However, choosing not to participate in the student conduct process may result in an additional charge of Failure to Comply. The Hearing Officer assigned to the students case will still make a decision of responsibility based upon the information that the Hearing Officer has available to them, and if Hearing Officer finds the student responsible for violating a university policy they may still apply sanctions to the student.

Why do I have a hold on my account?

A student most likely has a hold on their account from the Office of Student Conduct because they need to meet with a Hearing Officer, have failed to complete a sanction by the deadline, or failed to attend a scheduled hearing/meeting. If a student is unsure as to the reason for a Student Conduct hold on their account they should contact the Office of Student Conduct.

What happens if I do not complete sanctions assigned to me by the deadline?

A hold will be placed on the students account and the student will be contacted by the Office of Student Conduct informing them that their sanctions are overdue. The student should complete the sanctions as soon as possible upon receiving this letter. The hold placed on the student's account will remain in place until the Office of Student Conduct is notified that the student has complete the assigned sanctions.