Cause for Disciplinary Proceedings
Any action by one or more individuals, whether students or non-students, that interferes with the orderly operation of the College or violates college rules/policies will be the cause of disciplinary action and/or possible arrest by authorized peace officers. A student convicted by civil authorities for any crime committed on campus shall be subject to automatic suspension from the College. All student rights and privileges are revoked at the point of suspension.
Operational Procedure-Discipline Policy
Any alleged violation of College rules and regulations should be brought to the attention of the Vice President, Educational Services (VPES), who will make an investigation into the matter. The investigation shall include a discussion or an attempt to discuss the case with the student. Upon completion of the investigation, the VPES will determine the course of action to be followed. The options include:
- Dismiss the allegation as unfounded.
- Disciplinary settlement with the accused without any further deliberation.
- Consultation with additional administrators/faculty before determining disciplinary settlement with the accused student.
- Referral of complaint to the College Discipline Committee for its determination of the innocence or guilt of the accused student and its recommendation for punitive measures, if found guilty.
College Discipline Committee
The College Discipline Committee is convened to dispose of matters relating to student disciplinary cases deemed serious enough by the Vice President, Educational Services (VPES) to require a consensus regarding the action to be taken. The College Discipline Committee also is the means through which a student may appeal a decision made by the VPES.
The student must submit written notice of appeal to the VPES within 10 working days of the disciplinary settlement. (Note: A working day is defined as any day the College is open for business.) The composition of the College Discipline Committee is as follows:
- VPES, Chairperson
- Four faculty members or professional staff personnel
- One male student-at-large
- One female student-at-large
The Committee meets only on call of the Chairperson.
At the hearing before the College Disciplinary Committee, the respondent shall be given an opportunity to be heard in defense of the charge or charges against him/her, and will be able to present such other evidence or witnesses as the respondent feels necessary. Likewise, the College may present similar witnesses and testimony to support the charges pending against the respondent. A respondent whose case is brought before the College Discipline Committee is entitled to certain fundamental rights which include:
- Written presentation of charges and written notice of hearing;
- A list of witnesses;
- Opportunity to review the nature of the evidence;
- Opportunity to exercise his/her right to be represented by a counsel of his/her choosing;
- Opportunity to ask questions of witnesses; and
- Opportunity to have a copy of a recording of the hearing.
The College Discipline Committee need not hold such hearings in public if, in the judgment of the Chairperson, an open hearing would be detrimental to the student or disruptive to the operation of the College.
All respondents brought before the College Discipline Committee shall receive due process prior to disposition of sanction or disciplinary action, as follows:
- Notification of the allegation(s) and possible sanctions;
- Notification as to how their alleged actions violated college policy;
- Opportunity to meet with the College Discipline Committee and hear the evidence to be applied as justification for academic sanctions and/or disciplinary action;
- Notification as to the recommendation to be made by the College Discipline Committee; and
- Opportunity to appeal the application of academic sanction and/or disciplinary action (as outlined above).
Discipline Committee Hearings
The hearing is informal and the Chairperson shall provide reasonable opportunities for witnesses to be heard. Legal rules of evidence do not apply to hearings before the College Discipline Committee. The committee may admit evidence that is considered commonly accepted by reasonable men in the conduct of their affairs.
Committee members may freely question any witness.
The Committee shall proceed generally as follows during the hearing:
- VPES reads the complaint and reviews the respondent’s rights.
- VPES presents the College’s case.
- Respondent presents his/her defense.
- VPES and the respondent present rebuttal evidence and arguments.
- Each side summarizes its case.
- The Committee will discuss and vote on the issue of whether or not there has been a violation of College rules and policies. If the Committee determines there has been an infraction of College policies, the Committee will determine an appropriate penalty. All members of the College Discipline Committee shall have an equal opportunity to vote in all matters brought before the Committee. Each vote shall have equal value; a simple majority will determine the outcome of all matters voted upon. Deliberation and voting are conducted in closed session with only committee members present.
- VPES informs the respondent of the decision of the Committee and of the penalty, if any. If a respondent fails to comply with a notice of hearing, the VPES may proceed with the hearing in the respondent’s absence.
- If the respondent rejects the hearing decision, he/she shall within ten (10) working days of the receipt of the decision or return date of certified letter to the College notify the VPES of his/her intent to appeal the grievance to the President of the College. The grievant must submit a formal letter of appeal of the hearing decision in writing to the VPES. (If an appeal letter is not received by the VPES within the ten  day time period, any corrective action specified in the decision shall be taken and the case will be recorded as closed by the VPES with notification sent to respondent.)
- The President is the final institutional authority on discipline cases. The President must issue a decision within ten (10) working days after the receipt of the appeal by the grievant. No new information may be introduced unless the parties can show cause as to why it was not introduced at the initial hearing.
The VPES and/or the College Discipline Committee may impose one or more of the following penalties for a violation of College rules and regulations:
- Reprimand - This may take the form of a written and/or oral admonition from the Vice President, Educational Services.
- Disciplinary probation - This indicates that further violations may result in suspension. Disciplinary probation may be imposed for any length of time up to one calendar year. The student shall be automatically removed from probation when the imposed period expires.
- Withholding of transcript or degree - This penalty is imposed upon a student who fails to pay a debt owed the College or who has a disciplinary case pending final disposition. The penalty terminates on payment of the debt or final disposition of the case.
- Restitution - Restitution is reimbursement for damages to or misappropriation of property. Reimbursement may take the form of appropriate service to repair or otherwise compensate for damages.
- Suspension of rights and privileges - Suspension of rights and/or privileges is an elastic penalty which may impose limitations or restrictions to fit the particular case.
- Denial of degree - Denial of degree may be imposed on a student found guilty of scholastic dishonesty and may be imposed for any length of time up to and including permanent denial.
- Suspension from the College - Suspension from the College prohibits, during the period of suspension, the student on whom it is imposed from being enrolled in or from registering for any credit or noncredit scholastic work at or through the College. Additionally, it prohibits the student from entering the College campus except in response to an official summons.
- Not Eligible for Re-Admission - This penalty is equal to suspension, or in some cases expulsion. This penalty may apply to persons not registered in the College at the time the penalty is imposed.
- Expulsion from the College - Expulsion is permanent severance from the College.
- Referral to Authorities - Provide authorities with information.