Student Conduct Process
Student Conduct System Description
Violations of Walsh University policies and procedures involving students will most often result in a fact finding investigation. Accordingly, students either directly involved with the alleged violation and/or those students indirectly involved and able to provide information leading to the resolution of the case may receive a written “Notification of Hearing” from a University official(s). The written notification will contain a brief description of the alleged violation in which the student is required to attend a scheduled conduct appointment with the official (within five business days from the date of the summons) to discuss the conduct process, particulars of the charges, and resolve the allegations. This time frame may change in serious cases, at the discretion of the Chief Conduct Officer, Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students or his/her designee.
Conduct Conference Process
1. Notification of Conduct Conference
Students either directly involved with the alleged violation and/or those students indirectly involved and able to provide information leading to the resolution of the case may receive a written notification from a University official(s). The written notification may be sent to the student’s residence, University mailbox, or may be communicated through the student’s Walsh University e-mail account. Please be advised that a student’s failure to respond to a written summons notification is considered a serious violation within itself and such failure to respond will entail an automatic conduct sanction levied against the student. Should a student fail to respond or elect not to respond, the Hearing Officer will then move forward with the case in the student’s absence. In such instances, decisions made regarding sanctions, Conduct Board referral or other appropriate sanctions cannot be appealed and are not subject to arbitration. Extenuating circumstances (i.e. documented medical emergency) will be reviewed by the Chief Conduct Officer a case-by-case basis.
2. Conduct Conference
The student has the opportunity to discuss his/her level of involvement in the incident with the Hearing Officer.
a. If the student and the Hearing Officer agree on the level of involvement and sanctions, the student will sign a Conduct Agreement form.
b. If an agreement on the level of involvement is not reached, the case will be referred to the Student Life Conduct Board (see step 4).
c. If an agreement on the level of involvement is reached but an agreement is not reached on the sanctions, the student may elect to use the Arbitration process (see step 3).
d. The Hearing Officer may, with any case, consult with the Chief Conduct Officer who, in his/her discretion, may determine that the case is best resolved by an Administrative Hearing or Conduct Board and refer the case immediately to that entity. This will most likely occur with cases of a serious nature (i.e., theft, assault, etc.), repeat offenders, or students already assigned sanctions.
Arbitration is used in the conduct process once both the Hearing Officer and student agree on the level of the student’s involvement in an incident but do not agree on the sanctions. In order to reach a resolution on the matter, both parties must submit their own recommendation to the Chief Conduct Officer (C.C.O.) or his/her designee who will review and choose an appropriate course of action. The written recommendations must be received by the C.C.O. within three (3) business days from the date of the original judicial conference.
Should the recommendation not be provided with in this timeline, the C.C.O. or his/her designee shall render a decision which is final. In the arbitration process, the C.C.O. must select one or the other conduct recommendations. This will hopefully encourage both parties to be reasonable in their recommendations, knowing that if either offers a recommendation leaning toward either extreme (too harsh or too lenient), their recommendation will most likely be disregarded. Supporting materials and statements in support of either recommendation should be submitted to the C.C.O.. If deemed necessary or if requested by either party, the C.C.O. can schedule a hearing with either or both parties before reaching a decision. Once the Chief Conduct Officer or his/her designee has reached a decision, the decision shall be communicated to all parties involved. The parties involved should be aware that the end result of such an arbitration process cannot be appealed.
4. Conduct Board
The Conduct Board is used in the conduct process when the student and Hearing Officer cannot agree on the level of involvement in an incident or at the discretion of the Chief Conduct Officer. If the alleged infraction occurs during a time when a Conduct Board has not yet been selected or trained, or at such a time that it is a burden for the Conduct Board members to convene (finals week, break periods, etc.), the C.C.O. or his/her designee will hear the case and render a decision.
All conduct proceedings including the Arbitration Process and Conduct Board shall remain confidential unless authorization is provided by the student. Outcomes may become a part of a student’s record and in such cases will be bound by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.
Student Life Conduct Board
The membership of the Student Life Conduct Board consists of a one Student Affairs staff member or the Conduct Hearing Officer, one Resident Assistant, two students and one faculty/staff member. The senior staff member shall serve as chairperson and will be a non-voting member of the board, except to break a tie. In the event that a board cannot be assembled with the above representation, the Chief Conduct Officer or his/her designee will appoint members from the Walsh Community. The Chief Conduct Officer, with verified approval from the Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students, reserves the right to reassign Student Life Conduct Board cases as an Administrative Hearing if the Conduct Board is unable to convene or the circumstances of the case warrant.
An administrative hearing is a formal hearing conducted by the Chief Conduct Officer (C.C.O.) or his/her designee. The C.C.O. or his or her designee will conduct the hearing with the student and review all of the information to make a determination of responsibility, and assign or recommend the appropriate disciplinary action.