Student Conduct: Process
Types of Hearings:
If a student is alleged to have violated a provision of the Student Code of Conduct, he or she will be referred to the Office of Judicial Affairs. A student may be asked to attend either a formal hearing or an informal meeting. If a formal hearing is scheduled, the student has certain rights which are outlined in the Student Code of Conduct section of the Student Handbook. Additional copies of these rights are available in the Office of Judicial Affairs. If a student is scheduled for an informal meeting, he or she will be contacted to set up an appointment at a convenient time. Students may speak to the hearing officer privately or with others who were charged with the same violation. If a student chooses to speak privately with the hearing officer, the student should make that request when the meeting is being scheduled and an individual meeting will be held. The purpose of an informal meeting is to determine whether the student accepts responsibility for the alleged violation(s) and to discuss the incident as well as the student’s rights and responsibilities as an Eastern Connecticut State University student. If found responsible, an appropriate sanction will be ordered at that time. Students will be asked to sign a Disciplinary Agreement outlining the charges and the sanctions. A student may rescind the agreement and proceed to a formal hearing by providing notice within twenty-four business hours from the date the agreement is signed.
The Student Code of Conduct contains definitions of general disciplinary penalties including Expulsion, Suspension, Disciplinary Probation, Disciplinary Warning, Residence Hall Separation, Residence Hall Probation and Residence Hall Warning. Within these broad categories, the hearing officer may impose additional sanctions, including but not limited to personal essays, community service, parent notification, and other appropriate sanctions.
Persona Non Grata (PNG):
A non-student who is charged with a violation of university policy will be sent a letter informing him that s/he is considered Persona Non Grata or PNG from the Eastern campus. A student at Eastern will be afforded a hearing (or informal meeting) before any sanction is imposed. PNG status means that the individual is not permitted in designated areas on the Eastern campus. Violation of this sanction will result in the individual’s arrest and possible prosecution for criminal trespass.
The Community Restitution Program at Eastern is distinctly different from and should not be confused with the Community Service Program. The purpose of Community Restitution is to offer a student who has been involved in violation of University polices the opportunity to give back to the community, through meaningful voluntary service that the student would not otherwise be performing. Students who are ordered to complete a certain number of hours of Community Restitution will be advised that the work may be done on campus or, at the hearing officer’s discretion, at other locations off-campus with pre-approval of the location.
Alcohol and/or Drug Assessment:
Students who have been found responsible for violating the Eastern restrictions against alcohol or drugs may be required to meet with the Coordinator of the Office of Substance Abuse Prevention, Counseling and Psychological Services, or to complete an on-line alcohol program.
As one of the ways the University has implemented to work more closely with parents/guardians is through a parental notification policy. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) permit colleges and universities to inform the parents/guardians of students under the age of 21 when a student is found in violation of university alcohol or drug rules. The Judicial Affairs Office may notify parents/guardians of students less than 21 years of age when a student is found responsible for violations of the University’s alcohol and/or drug policies. This notification will typically be done verbally or in writing. If the parent(s) are present at the student conduct proceeding or if it is known that the parent(s) are aware of the incident, the University may not send a notification letter as these circumstances meet the notification standard. Eastern Connecticut State University will continue to encourage students found responsible for violations to also inform their parents of the incident and the subsequent consequences. Students who are emancipated have the responsibility to provide the Judicial Affairs Office with the necessary documentation prior to a finding of responsibility in order for parental notification to not occur. This is the sole responsibility of the student and a lack of appropriate notification from the student will result in the notification being sent to the permanent address. Although the University will not contact parents/guardians of students who are 21 years of age or older, we will certainly encourage them to do so on their own.
Depending on the circumstances of the violation(s), sanctions other than those listed above may be imposed. The University reserves the right to impose sanctions not delineated herein as is appropriate.
Penalties for Failure to Complete Sanctions:
When a student is ordered to complete sanctions, the sanctions will have to be completed by a certain date. Students are advised that failure to complete sanctions will result in further sanctions being ordered. Generally, a student who fails to complete sanctions will have a “hold” placed on his/her official student record. The student will then be prohibited from registering for classes, participating in add/drop, and residing on campus until the sanction is completed. If the student is a residential student, she/he will be required to reapply for housing at that time.