Chatham University

Chatham University Student Honor Code Procedure

Reviewed and Approved: October 2016

  1. Preamble

    The following Procedure pertaining to Student Honor Code matters are hereby adopted in order to insure that:

    1. the requirements of procedural due process in student honor code proceedings will be fulfilled by the University
    2. the immediate effectiveness of the student honor code and sanctions may be secured for all students in Chatham University
    3. the procedures shall be definite and determinable within Chatham University. Student conduct involving harassment or discrimination and sexual misconduct are governed by General Procedure for Discrimination and Grievances and Title IX Complaint/ Grievance Policy and Procedure
  2. Confidentiality

    The right to confidentiality of all students will be respected, insofar as possible. Retaliation against individuals bringing complaints of misconduct is specifically prohibited.

  3. Definitions

    As used in these rules, the following definitions shall apply:

    1. Primary Administrative Officer. As used in these procedures, the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students is the Primary Administrative Officer. The Primary Administrative Officer may appoint designee(s) who are responsible for the administration of these student honor code procedures, provided all such appointments are made in writing.
    2. Student. A person having once been admitted to the University who has not completed a course of study and who intends to or does continue a course of study in Chatham University. For the purpose of these rules, student status continues whether or not the University's academic programs are in session.
    3. Faculty, Staff and Student Panel. A panel of faculty, staff and students appointed by the Vice President for Student Affairs / designee. In making this annual appointment, the Vice President for Student Affairs may utilize student governing boards, academic deans, faculty and students to make recommendations.
    4. Upon the request of the suspected student, a student will be selected from the Faculty, Staff and Student Panel to be a member of the Student Honor Code Committee. Not more than one student will serve on the Student Honor Code Committee.
    5. Student Honor Code Committee. Student Honor Code Committee, refers to the body on campus which is authorized to conduct investigations and to make determination as to whether the alleged violations occurred and to recommend sanctions. Faculty, staff and students, selected from the Faculty, Staff and Student Panel, are requested to be on the Student Honor Code Committee.
  4. Sanctions

    Sanctions for Violations of Student Honor Code
    Upon a final determination that a student or organization has violated the Honor Code, the Student Honor Code Committee and/or the appropriate University official may impose the following sanctions, either individually or in combination for any offense.

    1. Written Warning: The appropriate institutional official issues written notification to a student that continuation or repetition of specified conduct may be cause for further disciplinary action.
    2. Probation: A written reprimand for violation of specified regulation(s). Probation is imposed for a designated period of time in cases of serious violations of the Honor Code and includes the probability of more severe disciplinary sanctions if the student is found to be violating any institutional regulation(s) during the probationary period. Probation can be restriction from participation in an activity on campus and can lead to recommended suspension or expulsion from the University if violated.
    3. Loss of Privileges: The restriction of a student's or student organization's privileges for a specified period of time. This restriction may include, but is not limited to, denial of the ability to participate in campus events or traditions, denial of the use of facilities, denial of parking or visitation privileges, or denial of student organization privileges such as funding.
    4. Restitution: The compensation for loss, damage or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement
    5. Monetary Fine: Fines may be assessed at times when appropriate with the fine amount being determined by the board or appropriate institutional official. Fines may also be assessed for failure to complete sanctions.
    6. Discretionary Sanctions: Work assignments, service to the University or other related discretionary assignments. Specific educational objectives are to be identified prior to imposing such a sanction.
    7. Attendance or Participation: this requires that an individual attend or participate in an educational endeavor such as a workshop, series of educational sessions, mediation or counseling.
    8. Residence Area Suspension: This requires a separation of the student from resident living for a specified period of time. This is imposed when it is determined that a student(s) has been disruptive or destructive to herself or the larger residential community. Conditions for readmission to residency may be specified.
    9. Residence Area Expulsion: This imposes permanent separation of the student from resident living at the University. Such a sanction should be utilized when it is determined that a student will continue to be disruptive to the residential community or when a violation is so severe that it merits permanent removal so as to offer a safe and secure living environment.
    10. Interim Residence Area Suspension: If at any time a residential student's presence in the residence halls or apartments is considered to present an issue of safety to the individual or the larger community, an immediate determination may be made by the vice president for student affairs to remove the student from residency pending a student conduct review.
    11. Creative Sanction: The Student Honor Code Committee or University official may determine an alternate sanction as long as the severity of the sanction is, in its view, commensurate with the severity of the Honor Code violation.
    12. Behavioral Contract: This details a contractual agreement between the student and the Conduct Board that outlines conditions for his/her behavior while involved in a specific area of campus life. This can include mandatory professional assessments, restriction of use of University facilities and parental notification. Should a behavioral contract be broken, the board may recommend more severe sanctions.
    13. University Dismissal: An involuntary separation of the student from the institution for misconduct. It is less than permanent in nature and does not imply or state a minimum separation time.
    14. University Suspension: Separation of the student from the University for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified.
    15. University Expulsion: Permanent separation of the student from the University.
  5. Records Retention

    Student conduct records shall be maintained for five years after University action is completed.

  6. Policy and Procedures

    1. Preliminary Procedures. The Primary Administrative Officer/Designee(s) shall investigate any reported student misconduct before initiating formal conduct procedures and give the student the opportunity to present a personal version of the incident or occurrence. The Primary Administrative Officer/Designee(s) shall utilize the preponderance of the evidence standard in deciding whether or not to initiate formal conduct procedures and in deciding whether or not to offer an informal disposition. The Primary Administrative Officer/Designee(s) may discuss with any student such alleged misconduct and the student shall attend such consultation as requested by the Primary Administrative Officer/Designee(s). The Primary Administrative Officer/Designee(s), in making an investigation and disposition, may utilize student governing boards, academic deans, faculty and students to make recommendations.
    2. Informal Dispositions. The Primary Administrative Officer/Designee(s) shall have the authority to make a determination and to impose appropriate sanctions and shall fix a reasonable time within which the student shall accept or reject a proposed informal disposition. Student must receive this in writing. A failure of the student either to accept or reject within the time fixed may be deemed by the University to be an acceptance of the determination. If the student rejects informal disposition it must be in writing and shall be forwarded to the Student Honor Code Committee. The Primary Administrative Officer/Designee(s) may refer cases to the Student Honor Code Committee without first offering informal disposition. This informal procedure should take place no more than three weeks after the occurrence of the alleged misconduct.
    3. Student Honor Code Committee Procedure and Disposition
      1. The Committee shall be appointed by the Vice President for Student Affairs/Designee(s) and shall have the authority to investigate, to make determination as to whether the alleged violations occurred and to recommend sanctions.
      2. The Student Honor Code Committee will consist of at least two but not more than three members. A lead member will be selected to convene the committee to investigate, proceed with disposition procedure and recommend sanctions.
      3. The Vice President for Student Affairs shall appoint a panel of faculty, staff and students, to be known as the Faculty, Staff and Student Panel. Upon written request of the suspected student before the Student Honor Code Committee, made at least seventy-two (72) hours prior to the investigation, the Chair of the Committee shall appoint from the Faculty, Staff and Student Panel not more than one student to sit with the Student Honor Code Committee. When a student from the Faculty, Staff and Student Panel serve as members of the Committee, they shall have the same rights as other members of the Committee.
      4. General Statement of Procedures. A student accused of violating the Student Honor Code is entitled to a written notice and a formal investigation and disposition unless the matter is disposed of under the rules for informal disposition. Student conduct proceedings are not to be construed as judicial trials and need not wait for legal action before proceeding; but care shall be taken to comply as fully as possible with the spirit and intent of the procedural safeguards set forth herein.
      5. Notice of Investigation. At least seven business days prior to the Student Honor Code Committee Investigation, or as far in advance as is reasonably possible if an accelerated resolution process is scheduled with the consent of the suspected student. The Primary Administrative Officer/Designee(s) will send a letter to the accused student with the following information:
        1. A description of the alleged violation(s) and applicable policies.
        2. A description of the applicable procedures.
        3. A statement of the potential sanctions/remedial actions that could result.
        4. The time, date and location of the investigation. If any party does not appear at the investigation, the investigation will be held in their absence. For compelling reasons, the investigation may be rescheduled.

        This Notice of Charges letter will be made in writing and will be delivered minimally via campus email system.

        Any request to reschedule the investigation shall be made in writing to the Primary Administrative Officer, who shall have the authority to reschedule the investigative hearing if the request is timely and made for good cause. The Primary Administrative Officer/Designee(s) and the accused student of the new date for the hearing. If the suspected student fails to appear at the scheduled time, the Committee may hear and determine the matter.

        Upon conclusion of the investigation, the Student Honor Code Committee shall make a determination as to whether the alleged violation/s occurred and recommended sanctions. The suspected student will be notified, in writing, of the outcome of the matter. The Student Honor Code Committee must complete this disposition by ten work days, after the date of the investigation.

      6. Right to Appeal

        If the student is not satisfied with the decision of the Student Honor Code Committee, she or he may appeal, within one work week, to the President of the University/designee. The student will submit a written statement detailing a personal version of the incident or occurrence, her or his response to the informal procedure, the formal investigation and her or his response to the determination and the recommended sanction/s. These materials should be submitted within ten work days, following the date of notification of the formal investigation. After review of the written materials and possible conferences with involved parties, the President/designee will make a final determination within one week of the request for appeal. This decision is final.