Community Standards Program
Residence hall and University Apartment policies are governed by the Community Standards Program.
- Mission of the Community Standards Program
The Office of Residence Life is obligated to respond in an educational manner to issues which affect members of the residence hall community. We have a responsibility to intervene where behaviors within the residence hall community impede, contradict, or are inconsistent with:
- standards set by the residence hall community
- the academic mission of the University
- contractual agreements made between the student and the University
The Office of Residence Life is committed to developing residence hall communities, which challenge and support the total development of the student. Our desire is to provide a residence hall environment that is comfortable and conducive to learning and personal growth. As members of the residence hall community, we accept certain rights and responsibilities. Being caring members of the residence hall community means working toward the development of a civil environment which is purposeful and just.
The primary objectives of the residence hall system of community standards are:
- to respond to and address the cause of inappropriate behavior in order to further students' development and enable them to become a positive contributor to the community
- to discourage inappropriate behavior from recurring in the future
- to provide resources and/or sanctions which will support student learning
The foundation of the Residence Hall System of Community Standards is comprised of several student development principles which support the growth of the total student. These principles include:
- Support of the Individual - Students who meet with Residence Life staff for violating community standards will be treated as individuals and in a fair and supportive manner. Through staff interactions, students will feel that their individual contributions to the community are valued and respected.
- Support of Community Development - The Residence Life Community Standards Process will positively impact the development of residence hall communities which embody certain essential values and characteristics including: civility, diversity, equality, respect for rights, property, and safety of others.
- Educational Foundation - The Community Standards Process will be supportive of the intellectual and moral development of each student.
- Developmental Approach to Community Standards - Interactions and sanctions will appropriately challenge and support students as they struggle through personal stages of development.
- Overview of the Community Standards Process
When a student is alleged to have violated a residence hall policy, s/he must meet with a Residence Life staff person. There are three potential outcomes to this meeting:
- Student found not responsible - the student states that s/he was not involved in the reported incident and the staff person agrees. The student is then found not responsible and no sanction is assigned.
- Student found responsible - the student admits that s/he was involved in the reported incident. The staff person agrees. At this time, the student will be granted an administrative hearing with an area coordinator/assistant director of Residence Life. The student can bring witnesses and the hearing officer will, in all likelihood, call witnesses. The hearing officer will then make a decision, which is final. If the hearing officer finds the student responsible for the behavior, s/he will assign a sanction.
- Administrative Hearing - the student states that he/she was not involved in the reported incident, but the staff person disagrees. At this time, the student will be granted an administrative hearing with an area coordinator/assistant director of Residence Life. The student can bring witnesses and the hearing officer will in all likelihood call witnesses. The hearing officer will then make a decision, which is final. If the hearing officer finds the student responsible for the behavior, he/she will assign a sanction.
- Community Standards Sanctions
Sanctions can be administrative or educational in nature. In some cases, both types of sanctions will be assigned to a student.
A verbal acknowledgement that community standards and/or expectations have been disregarded.
Letter of Concern:
A written acknowledgement that community standards and/or expectations have been disregarded.
Contract review is implemented when a student has either seriously breached a community standard or has repeatedly engaged in inappropriate behavior. This initiative is for a specified period with the understanding that any further breach of community standards during the time specified may result in an extension of the contract review or termination of a student's residence hall contract.
Change of Room Assignment:
Student is moved from current room assignment to another residence hall location. This may be a temporary or permanent change of assignment.
Restitution refers to requiring a student to pay for damages or misappropriation of property. In the case of damage, destruction, defacement, theft, or unauthorized use of property, restitution to the University or the individual affected may be required through financial payment or community service. Failure to make restitution may lead to an additional sanction.
Loss of Privilege:
Loss of privilege refers to the withdrawal of the use of a service, participation in an activity, or other withdrawal of privileges consistent with the inappropriate behavior.
An administrative directive refers to a behavior act or obligation a student must fulfill or abide by for a specific period of time. An example of this may be requiring a student to not initiate contact with a particular individual or individuals in person, by telephone, electronic mail, voice mail, in writing, by friends on his or her behalf, or by any other means. Disregarding a directive from a University official will result in a more severe sanction.
Interim Residence Hall Contract Suspension, Cancellation, or Reassignment:
This sanction requires a student to immediately leave the residence hall community or move to a temporary new room assignment for a specific period of time pending other administrative action or medical evaluation. Any student who disregards an interim Residence Hall contract suspension, cancellation, or reassignment may be subject to indefinite contract termination and/or other University conduct action. This sanction will be implemented for one or more of the following reasons:
- To ensure the safety and well being of members of the residence hall community
- To ensure the student's own physical or emotional safety and well being
- To ensure normal operation of the residence hall community
Refers to a student being separated from the University housing program by revoking a student's residence hall contract. The housing contract may be terminated temporarily or permanently.
Educational initiatives are related to specific behaviorthat is of concern to the residence hall community. Examples include:
- Writing a reflection paper
- Attending and/or presenting a workshop
- Creating a bulletin board
- Writing a newsletter article