STUDENT CODE OF CONDUCT POLICY 5.3.2
The College makes every effort to maintain a safe and orderly educational environment for students and staff. Therefore, when, in the judgment of College officials, a student’s conduct disrupts or threatens to disrupt the College community, appropriate disciplinary action will be taken to restore and protect the sanctity of the community.
Students are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with generally accepted standards of scholarship and morality. The purpose of these standards is not to restrict student rights but to protect the rights of individuals in their academic pursuits.
The following regulation sets forth offenses for which disciplinary proceedings may be initiated. Violation of one or more of the following code provisions may result in one of the sanctions described in Procedure 188.8.131.52 - Discipline and Appeals Procedures for Academic-Related Violations and/or Procedure 184.108.40.206 - Discipline and Appeals Procedures for Non-Academic Related Violations.
- Academic-Related Violations
- Plagiarism - The intentional theft or unacknowledged use of another’s work or ideas. Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to: a) paraphrasing or summarizing another’s words or works without proper acknowledgment; b) using direct quotes of material without proper acknowledgment; or c) purchasing or using a paper or presentation written or produced by another person. If a student is uncertain about what constitutes plagiarism, he/she should discuss with the class instructor.
- Cheating - Using notes or other material on an exam or class work without permission from the class instructor; receiving information from another student during an exam; obtaining a copy of an exam or questions from an exam prior to taking the exam; submitting someone else’s work as one’s own; or having someone take one’s exam and submitting it as his/her own.
- Aiding Acts of Academic Dishonesty - Providing information to another student and knowing, or reasonably should have known, that the student intends to use the information for cheating or other deceptive purposes.
- Violations of Normal Classroom Behavior - Not complying with reasonable rules issued by an instructor, causing disruption in the classroom or being disrespectful to classmates or the instructor. The conduct must be objectively severe or pervasive enough that a reasonable person would agree that the conduct is disruptive or disrespectful not based on content or viewpoint discrimination.
- Non-Academic Related Violations
- Theft and Property Damage - Students shall not steal or damage College property or another individual’s property. Students who are caught stealing or damaging said property will be required to make restitution and may be eligible for civil or criminal prosecution as well as College discipline.
- Trespass to Property - Students are trespassing if in an unauthorized area of the College campus; present on the College campus after closing hours (without permission); or remaining on the College campus after having been directed to leave by a College official.
- Drugs and Alcohol - Unlawfully possessing, using, being under the influence of, manufacturing, dispensing, selling or distributing alcohol, illegal or unauthorized controlled substances or impairing substances at any College location. For more specific information, see Policy 5.3.5 - Students - Alcohol and Drugs on Campus. In addition, students may not use tobacco of any form or e-cigarettes on campus or at any College-affiliated activities or events.
- Lewd and Indecent Behavior - Students shall not engage in lewd or indecent behavior, including public physical or verbal action or distribution of obscene material based on reasonable community standards. The conduct must be objectively severe or pervasive enough that a reasonable person would agree that the conduct constitutes lewd and/or indecent behavior.
- Mental/Physical Abuse - Students shall not mentally or physically abuse any person on the College premises or at a College-supervised function, including verbal or physical actions which threaten or endanger the health or safety of any such persons.
- Assault - Students shall not assault or threaten to assault another person for any reason whatsoever. Assault includes a demonstration of force, unlawful physical touching or striking.
- Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence. Students shall not engage in sexual harassment and/or sexual violence. For more specific information and definitions of prohibited activities, consult Procedure 220.127.116.11 - Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence.
- Unlawful Discrimination. Students shall not engage in unlawful discrimination. For more specific information and definitions of prohibited activities, consult Procedure 18.104.22.168 - Unlawful Discrimination.
- Communicating Threats - Students shall not verbally, in writing, through a third party or by any other means threaten to physically injure another person or that person’s child, sibling, spouse or dependent, or willfully threaten to damage the property of another.
- Bullying - Students shall not intimidate or threaten with harm any other individual. Bullying is defined as any pattern of gestures or written, electronic or verbal communications, or any physical act or any threatening communication that takes place on the College premises or at any College sponsored function that: (a) places a person in actual and reasonable fear of harm to his or her property; or (b) creates, or is certain to create, a hostile environment by substantially interfering with or impairing a student’s educational performance, opportunities or benefits or a College’s employee’s ability to perform the essential functions of his/her job.
- Disorderly Conduct and Disruption - Students shall not obstruct or disrupt any teaching, research, administration or disciplinary proceedings, or other College activities, including public service functions, and other duly authorized activities on or off College premises. Students shall not occupy or seize, in any manner, College property, a College facility or any portion thereof for a use inconsistent with prescribed, customary, or authorized use. Students shall not participate in or conduct an assembly, demonstration or gathering in a manner which threatens or causes injury to person or property; which interferes with free access to, ingress or egress of College facilities; which is harmful, obstructive or disruptive to the educational process or institutional functions of the College; hold rallies, demonstrations, or any other forms of public gathering without prior approval of the College based on reasonable time, place and manner restrictions; remain at the scene of such an assembly after being asked to leave by a representative of the College staff.
- Possession of Weapons - Students may not have a weapon of any kind, including but not limited to, a knife, stun gun or any firearm in their possession on campus or at any College-affiliated activities or events except handguns as allowed by N.C.G.S. § 14-269.4. Handguns are permitted under these circumstances: a) the person has a concealed handgun permit that is lawfully issued; b) the handgun is in a closed compartment or container within the person’s locked vehicle; c) a person may unlock the vehicle to enter or exit the vehicle provided the handgun remains in the closed compartment at all times; and d) the vehicle is locked at all times.
- Tampering with Fire Alarms - Setting off a fire alarm or using or tampering with any fire safety equipment, except with reasonable belief in the need for such alarm or equipment.
- Gambling - Students may not gamble on campus or at any College-affiliated activities or events.
- Traffic Violations - Violation of College regulations regarding the operation and parking of motor vehicles.
- Providing False Information - Students shall not present to the College or its employees false information as part of an investigation, inquiry, hearing or in other matters related to College activities; neither may a student knowingly withhold information which may have an effect on their enrollment or their status with the College.
- Disobedience / Insubordination - Failure to comply with instructions of College officials acting in performance of their duties and failure to adhere to the terms of any discipline action.
- Financial Impropriety - Financial impropriety such as failure to pay College-levied fines, failure to repay College-funded loans, misuse or failure to properly account for club or student organization funds, or the passing of worthless checks, drafts or orders to College officials.
- Public Laws - Violations of any federal, state or local laws occurring while on campus may lead to legal actions as well as College discipline. Violations of federal, state or local laws occurring off campus may result in disciplinary action if the student’s continued presence on campus constitutes a threat to the safety and order of the campus.
- Failure to Report Criminal Activity - Failure to inform the College, in writing, within five (5) days after he or she is convicted for violation of any federal, state, or local criminal drug statue or alcoholic beverage control statute where such violation occurred while on a College location. For more information, see Policy 5.3.5 - Student Alcohol and Drugs on Campus.
- Unauthorized Access to College Records - Students may not access, view, copy or change official College records without expressed authority to do so.
- Animals on Campus - Students may not have an animal of any kind on campus. This includes animals left within a vehicle. Services animals are permitted and any student with a service animal should report the use of a service animal to the College’s Disability Services Coordinator. For more information regarding service animals, see Policy 5.4.5 - Service Animals and Other Animals on Campus
- Improper Use of the College Network/Technology - Students are prohibited from engaging in any activities prohibited under Policy 7.2 - Internet and Network Acceptable Use.
- Violation of Policies and Procedures - Students are expected to be familiar with the College’s policies and procedures. Students may be disciplined for failure to follow the College’s policies and procedures.
- Hazing - An act which endangers the mental or physical health of a student or which destroys or removes public or private property for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with or as a condition for continued membership in a group or organization.
- Smoking and/or using other forms of tobacco products, including electronic cigarettes or other vaping device anywhere on College premises or in College vehicles.
Adopted: April, 2020
DISCIPLINE AND APPEAL FOR ACADEMIC VIOLATIONS PROCEDURE 22.214.171.124
The Instructor is responsible for implementing student discipline procedures for academic dishonesty. The College is committed to providing an excellent educational experience for all students. Academic integrity is an essential component to this level of education. The academic penalty for academic-related violations should be clearly stated by the instructor in each course syllabus and reviewed at the beginning of the first class meeting.
These procedures only apply to academic-related violations, outlined herein and defined in Policy 5.3.2 -Student Code of Conduct. For non-academic violations, see Procedure 126.96.36.199.
- SANCTIONS FOR VIOLATIONS
The following sanctions may be imposed for academic violations:
- Re-complete the assignment;
- Additional course work;
- Loss of credit for the assignment; or
- Loss of credit for the class.
- Temporary removal from the classroom. More serious violations will be referred to and be addressed by the Student Code of Conduct Officer.
- INSTRUCTOR’S INVESTIGATION AND DETERMINATION
- INSTRUCTOR’S INVESTIGATION
An instructor suspecting an incident of an academic-related violation shall follow these steps to address the concern:
- The instructor suspecting the alleged violation shall first present concerns to the student and provide an opportunity for the student to explain or refute the concerns.
- The student will be allowed to comment on the evidence or to present evidence to clarify the issue in question.
- Based on the evidence presented and the student’s comments, the instructor shall determine whether or not an academic-violation has occurred. This determination will result in one of the following findings:
- An academic-related violation did not take place and the issue is resolved.
- An act of academic dishonesty did occur in the instructor’s opinion.
- INSTRUCTOR’S DETERMINATION
The instructor will communicate his/her findings via email to the student’s official College email address within five (5) business days of the initial meeting with the student. If an email address is not available, the instructor shall send his/her written findings to the student’s mailing address on record with the College. The findings must contain, with specificity, the evidence supporting the instructor’s determination. The instructor shall also inform the student of the imposed academic sanctions. The sanction will remain in place unless modified or overturned on appeal.
- APPEAL PROCEDURES
- A student who disagrees with the instructor’s decision may appeal to the instructor’s immediate supervisor. This appeal must be submitted in writing within three (3) business days of receipt of the instructor’s decision and describe, with specificity, why the student believes the instructor’s findings to be in error.
- The academic supervisor will conduct an “on the record review” examining the instructor’s written findings and student’s written appeal. The academic supervisor may require the student, the instructor and any other necessary party to provide additional documents as needed, including written statements, or provide written clarification to submitted documents.
- After considering the evidence presented, the academic supervisor, in consultation with the Vice President, Academic Affairs will affirm, modify or overturn the instructor’s decision.
- The academic supervisor will inform the student via the student’s official College email address of the decision within ten (10) business days of the receipt of the student’s appeal. If an email address is not available, the instructor shall send his/her written findings to the student’s mailing address on record with the College.
- The academic supervisor and Vice President’s decision is final and reported to the Student Code of Conduct Officer.
Adopted: April, 2020
DISCIPLINE AND APPEAL FOR NON-ACADEMIC VIOLATIONS PROCEDURE 188.8.131.52
The Student Code of Conduct Officer (“Conduct Officer”) is responsible for implementing these Procedures.
These Procedures apply to non-academic violations defined in Policy 5.3.2 - Student Code of Conduct. For academic-related violations, see Procedure 184.108.40.206 - Discipline and Appeal for Academic Violations. For issues regarding sexual harassment and sexual violence, see Procedure 220.127.116.11 - Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence and for issues related to other forms of unlawful discrimination, see Procedure 18.104.22.168 - Unlawful Discrimination.
- SANCTIONS FOR VIOLATIONS
The following sanctions may be imposed for non-academic violations:
- Verbal Warning. Oral notice that continuation of specified conduct may be cause for more severe disciplinary action.
- Reprimand. Written communication which gives official notice to the student that any further disciplinary offense will carry heavier penalties because of this prior infraction.
- Disciplinary Probation. Disciplinary probation results in loss of good standing and becomes a matter of record. While on disciplinary probation, the student will not be eligible for initiation into any local or national organization and shall not receive any College award or other honorary recognition. The student may not occupy a position of leadership or responsibility with any College or student organization, publication or activity. This sanction prohibits the student from officially representing the College or participating in any extracurricular activities including intramural competitions. Disciplinary probation will be in effect for not less than two (2) semesters including the current semester. Any further disciplinary offenses while under disciplinary probation will result in the student’s immediate suspension.
- Restitution. Restitution is paying for damaging, misusing, destroying or losing property belonging to the College, College employees or students. Restitution may take the form of financial payment or appropriate service to repair or otherwise compensate for such damages.
- Withholding Academic Records and/or the Right to Register. Withholding transcripts, diplomas or the right to register or participate in graduation ceremonies is imposed when a student’s financial obligations are not met or the student has a disciplinary case pending final disposition.
- Temporary Suspension. Temporary suspension is the exclusion from all College property and all College activities pending the resolution of a disciplinary proceeding.
- Disciplinary Suspension. Discipline suspension is the exclusion from all College property and all College activities for a specified period of time. This sanction is reserved for those offenses warranting discipline more severe than disciplinary probation. A student under disciplinary suspension must receive specific written permission from the Vice President before returning to campus. Disciplinary suspension appears on the student’s academic transcript.
- Expulsion. Expulsion is dismissing from the College. The student may be readmitted to the College only with the approval of the President. Expulsion appears on the student’s academic transcript.
- Group Probation. Group probation is given to a College club or other organized student group for a specified period of time. If group violations are repeated during the term of probation, the charter may be revoked or activities restricted.
- Group Restriction. Group restriction is removing College recognition during the semester which the offense occurred, or for a longer period (usually not more than one other semester). While under restriction, the group may not seek to add members, hold or sponsor events in the College community or engage in other activities as specified.
- Group Charter Revocation. Revocation is the removal of College recognition for a group, club, society or other organization for a minimum of two (2) years. Re-charter after that time must be approved by the President.
In addition to the above stated sanctions, the College may require counseling. The student may be required to attend one or more counseling sessions with a licensed professional counselor. The student may be required to complete counseling before returning to the College after a period of suspension or expulsion. The student must provide written documentation from the licensed professional that the requirement has been met. Additionally, if required by the Conduct Officer, the student must also provide a statement from the licensed professional that the student is able to return to class based on his/her professional judgment. The student may be referred to the College’s licensed professional counselor at no charge or elect to use his/her own licensed professional counselor and bear the cost.
- IMMEDIATE REMOVAL FROM CAMPUS
If an act of misconduct threatens the health, safety or well-being of any member of the academic community and/or seriously disrupts the function and good order of the College, an instructor/staff member will immediately notify any College Vice President who will immediately meet with the student and direct the student to cease and desist such conduct and advise the student that failing to cease and desist will result in an immediate removal from campus. If the student(s) fails to cease and desist, or if the behavior is such that the student(s) needs to immediately be removed from campus, the College Vice President may then immediately have the student(s) removed from campus.
The College Vice President invoking the removal shall notify the Conduct Officer in writing of the student involved and the nature of the infraction as soon as possible but no more than one (1) working day following the incident. Upon receipt of the College Vice President written notice, the Conduct Officer shall meet with the student as soon as possible to allow the student to present his/her side. If, in the Conduct Officer’s opinion, the student behavior threatens the health, safety and well-being of the College community, the Conduct Officer shall place the student on temporary suspension pending the outcome of the disciplinary matter. Temporary suspension may be imposed only: (a) to ensure the safety and well-being of members of the College; (b) to ensure the student’s own physical or emotional safety and well-being; or (c) if the student poses a direct threat of disruption or interference with the normal operations of the College.
- DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURES
In order to provide an orderly system for handling student disciplinary cases in accordance with due process and justice, the following procedures will be followed:
- Behavior Incident Report
Any College employee or student may file written charges with the Conduct Officer against any student or student organization for alleged violations of the Student Code of Conduct. The individual(s) making the charge must complete and submit a Behavior Incident Report within five (5) business days of the incident given rise to the alleged violation.
- Investigation and Determination
The Conduct Officer shall conduct an investigation into the charges and allegations. Within ten (10) business days after receipt of the incident report, the Conduct Officer shall complete his/her investigation of the charges and shall meet with the student (or student representative(s) on behalf of a student organization), present the results of the investigation and provide the student (or student representative(s)) with an opportunity to present his/her side. After discussing the alleged violation with the student, the Conduct Officer may act as follows:
- Drop the charges;
- Impose a sanction; or
- Refer the student(s) to a College office or community agency for services.
All disciplinary actions should be progressive in nature and should take into account the totality of the situation; however, depending on the severity of the infraction, even first time offenses could result in suspension or expulsion.
The Conduct Officer shall provide the student with his/her written decision and instructions governing the appeal process. Such notice shall be given in person or sent to the student’s College email address or mailing address of record.
- DISCIPLINARY APPEAL PROCEDURE
- Appeal to the Disciplinary Review Committee
A student who disagrees with the Conduct Officer’s decision may request an appeal before the Disciplinary Review Committee (“Committee”). This request must be submitted in writing to the Conduct Officer within three (3) working days after receipt of the Conduct Officer’s decision. The Conduct Officer shall refer the matter to the Committee together with a report of the nature of the alleged misconduct, the name of the complainant, the name of the student(s) against whom the charge has been filed, and the relevant facts revealed by the Conduct Officer’s investigation. The Conduct Officer’s decision is not tolled pending an appeal.
- Committee Composition
Membership of the Disciplinary Review Committee shall be composed of the following:
- Three faculty/staff members appointed by the President.
- Three student members appointed by the Student Government Association and approved by the President.
- One administrator appointed by the President to serve as Committee Chairperson who will vote only in case of a tie.
At least two faculty/staff members and two students plus the Chairperson must be present in order for the Committee to conduct business.
Committee members will serve one (1) year from the beginning of fall semester through summer semester with replacements appointed by the President or SGA if necessary.
- Committee Hearing Procedures
- Pre-Hearing Procedural Responsibilities of the Conduct Officer- The Committee must meet within ten (10) working days of receipt of the student’s request for a hearing. At least five (5) working days prior to the date set for the hearing, the Conduct Officer shall send notification to the student(s) with the following information:
- A restatement of the charge or charges.
- The time and place of the hearing.
- A statement of the students’ basic procedural rights.
- A list of witnesses that the Conduct Officer or designee plans to present.
- The names of the Committee members.
At least two (2) days prior to the hearing, the student(s) will provide the Conduct Officer with a witness list.
- The following due process rights shall apply to the Committee hearing:
- The right to produce witnesses on one’s behalf.
- The right to request, in writing, the President to disqualify any member of the Committee for prejudice or bias. (The request must contain reasons). A request for disqualification, if made, must be submitted at least three (3) working days prior to the hearing. If such disqualification occurs, the appropriate nominating body shall appoint a replacement to be approved the President.
- The right to present evidence.
- The right to know the identity of the person(s) bringing the charge(s).
- The right to hear witnesses on behalf of the person(s) bringing the charge(s).
- The right to testify or to refuse to testify without such refusal being detrimental to the student.
- The following hearing procedures shall apply:
- Hearings before the Committee shall be confidential and shall be closed to all persons except the following:
- The student(s)
- Committee Members
- Conduct Officer, or designee
- Witnesses shall only be present in the hearing room when giving their testimony.
- The Conduct Officer, or designee, shall present evidence and witnesses to support his/her decision. Committee members may ask questions to the witnesses.
- The student(s) will then have an opportunity to present evidence and witnesses. Committee members may ask questions to the witnesses.
- Each side will have an opportunity to make a short, closing argument. The hearing will be audio recorded. Recordings will become the College’s property and access to the recordings will be determined by the Committee Chairperson. All recordings will be filed in the office of the Conduct Officer. The Chairperson shall establish the record at the close of evidence.
- Upon completion of a hearing, the Committee shall meet in closed session to affirm, reverse or modify the Conduct Officer’s decision.
- Committee decisions shall be made by majority vote.
- Within two (2) working days after the hearing, the Chair shall notify the student(s) and Conduct Officer, in writing, with the Committee’s decision.
- The decision of the Committee is final.
- Student Voluntary Withdrawal
If a student is accused of violating the Student Code of Conduct and voluntarily withdraws prior to the conclusion of the disciplinary matter , disciplinary proceedings will continue, sanctions imposed will be implemented and the student will not be allowed to re-enroll at the College. For students who withdrew prior to a determination regarding alleged misconduct that threatened the health, safety or well-being of any member of the academic community and/or seriously disrupted the function and good order of the College, in addition to other reasonable re-entry restrictions, the student must provide proof from a psychiatrist or licensed psychologist, at the student’s expense, that the student no longer poses a direct threat.
Adopted: April, 2020