Student Conduct System

Student Conduct System

The Student Conduct System of UVa-Wise is designed to support the purpose and mission of the College. A fundamental premise of the System is that students are expected to act responsibly, as outlined in the Code of Conduct, so that each student has the opportunity to grow intellectually, spiritually, physically and socially.

 

Code of Conduct

Purpose  The Student Conduct System of UVa-Wise is designed to support the purpose and mission of the College.  A fundamental premise of the System is that students are expected to act responsibly so that each student has the opportunity to grow intellectually, spiritually, physically and socially.  The System also is designed to encourage accountability by stressing the relationship inherent between individual action and consequences.  The System is intended to be educational in nature, rather than punitive.  The principles of fairness and reasonableness serve as foundations for the System, using a preponderance of the evidence to determine responsibility.

All student conduct violations accumulate during a student’s time at the College.  Student conduct records are maintained for a minimum of seven years from the most recent hearing/sanction date to facilitate compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act.

 

Structure  The Student Conduct System of UVa-Wise is comprised of:

A. Administrative settlements

Administrative settlements (in lieu of a hearing) may be offered to residential students for alleged minor offenses in the residential community including, but not limited to, Health and Safety, noise, and visitation violations.  Administrative settlements will be conducted by the Director of Residence Life or designee. The student may choose a hearing rather than sign an Administrative Hearing Form.  If a student chooses to accept an administrative settlement, there will be no opportunity for appeal.

B. Hearings 

Hearings will be arranged to adjudicate all offenses not handled by administrative settlements. All hearings are closed to the public and only those individuals with a legitimate role in the hearing will be permitted to attend or participate.

The Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator will assign each case to a hearing (administrative or Student Conduct Board).  Every effort will be made to consider the individual circumstances of each case to determine which type of hearing would best serve the student and the College in the student conduct process.  Factors weighed in determining whether a case is heard by an administrative hearing or a Student Conduct Board hearing include, but are not limited to:  need for expediency, severity of the alleged offense, sensitivity of the case, and student conduct history of the charged student.

1. Administrative hearings 

a)  Administrative hearings will be provided when, in the judgment of the Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator, there is a clearly demonstrated need to conduct an administrative hearing.  Examples include cases involving alleged misconduct at the beginning or end of an academic semester when the Student Conduct Board cannot be convened or due to the expediency that may need to be exercised as a result of the severity of the alleged offense.

b)  The Director of Residence Life, the Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator, the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct, and/or their designees may conduct administrative hearings.

2. Student Conduct Board hearings
The Student Conduct Board shall conduct hearings and be composed of five members.  A minimum of three Board members, not including the Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator, is necessary for quorum to conduct a hearing.  The Board shall meet regularly to hear cases.

Board membership shall consist of the following:

a)  Three on-campus students nominated by the Director of Residence Life and approved by the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct;

b)  Two off-campus students nominated by the Student Government Association and approved by the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct; and

c)  The Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator shall serve as advisor to the Board.  He/she participates in discussions, but does not vote. The student Chair shall be elected by the student membership of the Board.

d)  Two alternates may also be selected, one from on-campus and one from off-campus using the process as described above.

e)  Members must be in good academic and social standing with the College.

f)  Board members shall serve for one year and are eligible for re-nomination.

C. Appeals process

1. For all decisions except suspension or expulsion:

a)  All student conduct hearing decisions may be appealed in writing to the appropriate party within 48 hours of the decision and must state just cause for the appeal.

1) Decisions made by the Director of Residence Life may be appealed to the Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator.

2) Decisions made by the Student Conduct Board or the Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator may be appealed to the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct.

b) The student may or may not be granted an appeal. If the student is granted an appeal, the hearing will be completed within seven (7) business days of receipt of the appeal request.

2. For suspension and expulsion appeals:

a)  Unless the original decision is rendered by the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct, the student has the right of two appeals.

1)  The first appeal would be heard by the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct (and/or designee) and the second appeal would be heard by the Chancellor (or designee).

2)  If the student is suspended or expelled by the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct, the student may appeal only to the Chancellor (or designee).

b)  Requests for first appeal must be initiated in writing to the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct (or to the Chancellor (or designee) if suspended/expelled by the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct) by the student within 48 hours of the decision and must state just cause for the appeal.  Upon review of the appeal request, the student may or may not be granted a hearing.  If the student is granted a hearing, it will be completed within seven (7) business days of receipt of the appeal request. If a hearing is granted, it may be audio recorded and maintained as part of the student conduct record.

c)  Requests for second appeal are only available to those students who had a first appeal hearing with the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance & Conduct (and/or designee).  This appeal request must be initiated in writing to the Chancellor (or designee) by the student within 48 hours of the first appeal decision and must state just cause for the appeal.  Upon review of the appeal request, the student may or may not be granted a hearing.  If a hearing is granted, it may be audio recorded and maintained as part of the student conduct record.

 

Sanctions  Any of the following sanctions, or combinations of sanctions, may be imposed for a Code of Conduct violation.  All sanctions are noted in a conduct record.  Disciplinary action other than those outlined below may be taken as the situation warrants.  Failure to abide by the imposed sanction may result in additional charges.

  1. Oral Reprimand  An oral statement to a student that he or she is violating or has violated institutional rules.  No admonition shall be entered as a permanent part of a student’s record unless issued by an appropriate student conduct body.
  2. Written Reprimand  Notice in writing that continuation or repetition of  inappropriate conduct within a period of time stated in the warning may be cause for more severe disciplinary action.
  3. Forced Change of Residency  Requires the movement of the student from one residence hall area to another.
  4. Removal from Campus Housing Requires the student to vacate campus housing by a designated time.
  5. Trespass Warning  The student is prohibited from visiting or returning to a part or all of any designated area of campus.  If the student returns, he/she is subject to arrest and additional student conduct action.
  6. Fines  An appropriate fine may be levied for policy violations or damages incurred.  Note — all fines are billed to the student’s UVa-Wise account and may be paid at the Cashier’s Office.  Students may request from the Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator an assignment for campus working arrangements at the minimum wage rate to satisfy the fine; upon completion of the hours, the fine will be credited to the student’s account.
  7. Restitution  Reimbursement for damage to, or misappropriation of, property, or damage or harm to any person or the College.
  8. Community Restitution Assigned service and/or participation in educational programs or projects in the College community.  There will be a $25.00 per hour fee billed to the student’s account for community restitution hours not completed by the assigned deadline.
  9. Loss of privileges  Restriction or loss of the benefit of use of College equipment, programs, and/or extracurricular activities.
  10. Disciplinary Probation  Exclusion from participation in leadership opportunities and/or privileged or extracurricular College activities as set forth in the notice of probation for a period not exceeding one year from the hearing/sanction date.
  11. Minimum Sanctions Applicable for Alcohol Violations

    • First Offense –  A $100 fine, 15 hours of mandatory community restitution, and probation for six months.  See also #6 & #8 above.
    • Second Offense – Minimum $150 fine, 30 hours of mandatory community restitution, and probation for one year.  Students may additionally be required to complete a community-based alcohol or counseling program, with suspension until written notification of successful completion of the community-based program is received by the Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator. See also #6 & #8 above.
    • Third Offense – Suspension or Expulsion
    • NOTE:  Discretion may be used in applying sanctions in cases where violation is of such a nature to warrant additional or more severe actions.
  12. Minimum Sanctions Applicable for Drug Violations

    • First Offense –  A $150 fine, 24 hours of mandatory community restitution, and probation for one year.  See also #6 & #8 above.
    • Second Offense – Suspension or Expulsion
    • NOTE:  Discretion may be used in applying sanctions in cases where violation is of such a nature to warrant additional or more severe actions.
  13. Interim Suspension  Temporary suspension by an official of the College for a designated period of time.  Students who are interim suspended are judged to be disruptive in conduct to the educational mission and/or pose a substantial threat to the health or safety of themselves or others.  An interim suspension is made pending a hearing on the alleged offense.
  14. Suspension  Exclusion from classes (including online) and other privileges or activities or from the College, as set forth in the notice of suspension, for a definite period of time. Students that are suspended are trespassed immediately from all College property, classes (including online) and College-sponsored events without prior approval from Campus Police. A disciplinary hold will be placed on the student’s record. 
  15. Expulsion  Termination of student status for an indefinite period of time.  Students that are expelled are trespassed immediately from all College property, classes (including online) and College-sponsored events without prior approval from Campus Police. A disciplinary hold will be placed on the student’s record.

NOTE:  Student Athletes involved in the Conduct process need to also contact the UVa-Wise Assistant Director of Athletics for Internal Operations for Compliance and Student Athlete Service at 276-376-3436 for NCAA eligibility advisement.

 

Rights of students in student conduct hearings  Students have the following rights:

  1. To written notice of all charges against the student at least 48 hours prior to a scheduled hearing. UVa-Wise email is the official communication method used for conduct communications.
  2. To be presumed not responsible until proven responsible.
  3. To plead responsible or not responsible.
  4. To refuse to answer questions that tend to be self-incriminating.
  5. To present witnesses and/or evidence.  Submit names to the Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator at least 24 hours in advance of the hearing.
    • Material witnesses are those possessing direct knowledge of the case under consideration.
    • Character witnesses speak to their knowledge of the student outside of the alleged incident.  The student may present two character witnesses at a hearing.
  6. To be accompanied by an advisor in the hearing. An advisor may have no other role in the hearing (such as witness).  An advisor may only provide the student assistance and support.  An advisor may not speak or otherwise participate in the hearing.  Violation of these limitations may result in the removal of the advisor from the hearing.  Submit name to the Clery Compliance & Student Contact Administrator at least 24 hours in advance of the hearing.
  7. To a separate hearing upon request when multiple students are charged.
  8. To face the accuser (The College may act on behalf of the accuser.).
  9. To subsequent appeal(s) as outlined in the appeals section of the Student Conduct System.
  10. To waive any of the above rights, provided it is done of the student’s own free will and in writing.

 

Expectations of students in student conduct hearings  Student expectations include:

  1. To give truthful testimony (not construed to violate Right #4 above). Providing false information is a violation of the Code of Conduct.
  1. To inform approved witnesses on your behalf of the date, time and place of the hearing, and to ensure that they appear at the hearing.
  1. To bring all information pertinent to your case available at the time of the hearing.
  1. To appear at any proceedings in which notice was given. Note: The hearing will proceed even if the student chooses not to attend.

 

Hearings procedures   The hearing procedures for the Student Conduct Board will generally be as follows:

  • The chair will introduce self, the other Board members, and the Advisor.
  • The accused student will introduce self.
  • The accused student will be asked to enter a plea (responsible or not responsible) for charges.
  • The case will be discussed. The complainant and the accused will be given the opportunity to call witnesses and each may ask questions of any witnesses.
  • The Board will meet in closed session to determine responsibility, and any resulting sanctions. The Board will use the preponderance of evidence (i.e. more likely than not) standard.
  • The hearing will be reconvened and the accused will be informed of the decision and, when applicable, the right to appeal.

Page last revised – August 2018

For more information about the Student Conduct System or the Student Conduct Board, please contact Clery Compliance & Student Conduct Administrator Stephanie Shell at 276.376.3451 or stephanie.shell@uvawise.edu.