Appeals

APPEALS

An administrative hearing or conference decision may be appealed in writing by the Respondent and/or Complainant within five (5) calendar days of the decision. The appeal may not be heard if, in the judgment of the administrator hearing the appeal, the contents of the appeal letter fall outside the criteria for an appeal (please see criteria below). In such a circumstance, the decision of the Student Conduct Administrator is final.

If the administrator designated to hear the appeal decides to hear the appeal based on the contents of the appeal letter meeting the established criteria below, the determination will be made based on a preponderance of the information. The appeal outcome may include an upholding of the preceding decision and sanctions, a change to the finding, a change to the sanction, or the matter may be referred back to the Student Conduct Administrator for a re-hearing.

Criteria for Appeal

The Respondent or Complainant may appeal a decision on the following bases:

  1. Unreasonable Sanction: To determine whether the magnitude of the sanction(s) imposed was unreasonable for the violation of policy for which the student was found responsible;
  2. Procedural Error: To determine procedural error or absence of conformity with prescribed procedures during the investigative stage or any stage of the process (including an error during the hearing) preventing either the Complainant or Respondent a reasonable opportunity to prepare and present information to the investigator; and/or
  3. New Information: To determine if new information which was not available at the time of the investigative process could have affected the outcome of the case.

Appealing a Conference Outcome

The Director of Student Rights and Responsibilities typically hears appeals in cases determined by a Student Conduct Administrator in a conference. The Director of Student Rights and Responsibilities may delegate or defer to the Vice President of College Life and Dean of Students or designee in the event that they are significantly involved in the investigation or hearing process. The decision made by the Director of Student Rights and Responsibilities or designee is final.

Appealing an Administrative Hearing Outcome

The Vice President for College Life and Dean of Students or designee typically hears appeals in administrative hearings. The decision made by the Vice President of College Life and Dean of Students or designee is final.

CONDUCT RECORDS

All resolution proceedings, whether informal or formal, are conducted in compliance with the requirements of FERPA and College policy. Records that document the incident or any form of an investigation are conduct records of the College. Students wishing to review their records may request a copy from Student Rights and Responsibilities. No information will be released from such proceedings except as required or permitted by law and College policy without the student’s permission.

Other than College expulsion, resolution outcomes will not be made part of the student’s permanent academic record, but will become part of the student’s conduct record:

  1. Conduct records are maintained by the College Life Office.
  2. Conduct records will be retained for seven years after graduation or withdrawal. Students who are suspended will have a notation on the transcript for the duration of the suspension. Students who are expelled will have a permanent notation on the student’s transcript

Information and disciplinary records are generally not released to third parties without the student’s written consent. There are three common exceptions:

  1. The College may release information to parents without student consent when deemed appropriate and when not prohibited by FERPA or other applicable laws. The College’s complete FERPA policy may be found in the Student Handbook.
  2. Information and/or records may be produced in response to a subpoena, warrant, or court order.
  3. The College may release information to officials of another institution where a student seeks to enroll or where the student is already enrolled for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer.

Students seeking to transfer to other schools or participate in off-campus study programs may also be asked for permission to release their conduct records. Graduate schools, medical schools, law schools and some governmental agencies may also request disclosure of student conduct records.