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Student Conduct Process FAQs - Students

The following frequently asked questions were compiled based on questions frequently asked of Conduct Administrators by students. The responses are not statements of policy; rather the responses are written in a way to help a student better understand the student conduct process. The OCU Student Handbook, OCU Law School Student Handbook, Student Code of Conduct, Residence Life regulations, the University web page, and Law, Graduate, and Undergraduate Catalogs state official policies and processes and supersede this information. Additionally, Student Conduct Administrators are available to answer any other questions a student may have.

The goal of the student conduct process is to be educational. Consequently, there is no benefit to accepting responsibility and no detriment to denying it. The process allows you to reflect on your behavior and how it may or may not have violated the expectations of our community without any outside influence. If your self-reflection leads you to feel responsible, then you should accept responsibility. If it does not, you should deny. In either case, a hearing will provide you with the opportunity to explain why you accepted or denied.

As you make a decision, you should keep in mind that during a hearing you will be asked to not engage in deceptive behavior. If the Student Conduct Administrator or a Student Conduct Hearing Board finds it more likely than not that you engaged in deceptive behavior during a hearing, you may be charged with violations of the Student Code of Conduct. Accordingly, please be honest when deciding whether or not to accept responsibility.

Following an incident, you will be contacted by the Administrative Assistant in the Dean of Students Office to schedule an Administrative Hearing that is held between you and a Conduct Administrator. Typically, these meetings take place within a week of the incident. Accepting an invitation to an administrative hearing is required.

After an incident, you will participate in an administrative hearing. During the hearing, the Student Conduct Administrator will gather facts and invite you to share your understanding of the incident. The Student Conduct Administrator(s) will represent the OCU community. The Student Conduct Administrator(s) will determine if you are to be charged with a violation of the Student Code of Conduct. If it is determined you are responsible for a violation, you and your Student Conduct Administrator may enter into a negotiated settlement which is a mutually agreed upon resolution of the matter.

A negotiated settlement is a mutual agreement between the Conduct Administrator and the accused student regarding violations of the Student Code of Conduct, Student Handbook, etc., and agreed-upon sanctions. Both the Accused Student and the Conduct Administrator must agree to the settlement in writing for the decision to be valid. The negotiated settlement document will be available for pick up in the Dean of Students Office and must be signed by the student. The student may retain a copy of the negotiated settlement for their records. Negotiated settlements cannot be appealed because they are mutually agreed-upon resolutions.

It is hard to say what your sanctions will be as the response to a violation depends upon the facts of the incident; however, the following sanctions may be imposed upon any student found to have violated the Student Code of Conduct: warning, probation, loss of privileges, fines, AOD fee, alcohol and/or drug assessment, restitution, discretionary sanctions (community service, educational assignments, service to the University, or other related discretionary assignments/sanctions), University housing suspension or expulsion, University suspension, expulsion, revocation of admission and/or degree, withholding degree. More than one of the sanctions listed above may be imposed for any single violation.

In a situation where it is determined that a student's continued presence at the University constitutes an immediate threat of harm to the student, other individuals, and/or university property, the Dean of Students may suspend a student from OCU pending final disposition of the case through the University student conduct process.

An interim suspension means that the student cannot attend classes and must leave university property and remain off university property until a Student Conduct Board hearing is conducted.

In most cases, parents/guardians are not contacted. You are viewed as an adult; consequently, we will work directly with you in resolving your incident. However, keep two things in mind. First, you are free to contact your parents/guardians and discuss the incident at any time. You are encouraged to do so. Though you may be an adult, your parents/guardians can help provide support and guidance. Second, Student Conduct Administrators reserve the right to contact parents/guardians about violations of our Substance-free Campus Policy for both Alcohol and Drugs after your hearing if you are found or accept responsibility and are under twenty-one (21) years of age, particularly if there is a health or safety issue. This is in accordance with Federal privacy law. Alcohol and drugs negatively impact student development; therefore, parents have a right to discuss these choices with you. In those cases, we simply state to parents you were found responsible for an alcohol or drug violation and encourage them to speak with you about it.

A decision reached by the Student Conduct Board or a sanction imposed by the Student Conduct Administrator may be appealed by the accused student(s) or complainant(s) to an appellate board within five (5) classroom days of the notification of the decision. Such appeals shall be in writing and shall be delivered to the Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students or their designee.

If you are found responsible for a violation, it will become part of your student conduct record which is maintained for seven years. Except in certain circumstances, Federal law requires you to first complete a waiver before your student conduct record may be shared externally. Graduate school and job applications will sometimes require you to complete a waiver to be considered. Note, though, your conduct record will not be the sole criteria for determining your suitability as a candidate. Suspensions and expulsions are noted on transcripts; however,unless certain exceptions apply, incident details are not shared without a waiver. Your student conduct record may be shared within the university in certain situations (e.g. you have applied for a leadership position, applied to study abroad, applied for a campus representative job, etc). The advisor or supervisor for a particular organization, program, or job position will ultimately make the decision about your participation or selection; a student conduct record does not automatically bar you. If you are already a member of an organization, program, or job position, it is your responsibility to inform your advisor or supervisor if you are placed on probation, suspended, or expelled.

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