FAQs for Student Conduct (Students)
Last updated on December 21st, 2021 at 12:05 pm
Q. Where can I learn more about the student conduct process?
A. The complete Student Code of Conduct with full information about procedures and protocols can be found here.
Q. How was The Student Code of Conduct created?
A. The Student Code of Conduct was made with community wide input. It was reviewed and endorsed by the Student Government Association and the Faculty Senate before receiving final approval from the College’s administration.
Q. How can I file a report alleging student misconduct?
A. Any member of the college community can submit an incident report here. Reports will be seen by officials at Westchester Community College. In all reports, you may chose to withhold your identity and report anonymously.
Q. How am I notified of charges and the date, time, and location of my conduct meeting?
A. Students will receive written notification from the College if they are being charged with a violation(s) to The Student Code of Conduct. Students will receive notifications to their MyWCC email. Notifications may also be sent to student’s home mailing addresses, via text message, or delivered to them on campus from a College official.
It is the responsibility of all students to regularly check their MyWCC emails and keep current contact information on file with the College. Claiming that you did not receive notification of the Hearing because you failed to notify the College of any address, phone, or other contact information changes is not acceptable grounds for an appeal or a meeting extension.
Q. How does the College provide due process to students in the conduct process?
A. The College’s procedures provides students with a notice of the charges against them and affords those students the right to a conduct meeting, in which they can contest the charges, make statements, present evidence, call witnesses and ask questions. The procedures also provide for an appeal.
Q. What are the types of conduct meetings I can be called into?
A. There are two primary types of conduct meetings: Administrative Conference and Hearings.
An Administrative Conference is a one-on-one meeting between a student respondent and a Student Conduct Officer. They are held for lower level violations to the Student Code of Conduct in which the student respondent may be facing a sanction of a Warning or Probation.
A Hearing is conducted in a formal manner and conducted by two to three Hearing Officers. They are generally held for higher level violations to the Student Code of Conduct when a student respondent is facing a sanction of suspension or expulsion, but may also be held at the discretion of the College for lower-level violations. The conduct process also has special procedures for Hearings involving cases of Non-Title IX Covered Acts of Sexual Violence/Sexual Assault.
Complete information about all student conduct meetings can be found in The Student Code of Conduct which can be found here
Q. How is the determination made if I am responsible or not responsible for the charges brought against me?
A. The College uses a preponderance of evidence standard to determine if a student is Responsible or Not Responsible for the charges brought against them. After weighing the evidence presented, if it is determined to be more likely than not that a student violated the Code of Conduct, they must find them responsible. Likewise, if the Conduct Officer feels it is more likely than not, that the student did not violate the Code of Conduct, they must find them not responsible.
Q. How are sanctions determined in a student conduct meeting?
A. Sanctions for violating the Student Code of Conduct are based on a variety of factors, including: (1) the student’s academic transcript; (2) the student’s conduct history; (3) an impact statement submitted by the student respondent (if applicable); and (4) other relevant mitigating and aggravating factors, which can include, but are not limited to: the severity of the violation, the violation’s impact on the college and local community, and the number of violations a student was found Responsible for in that case.
Q. What happens if I do not attend my conduct meeting?
A. Per The Student Code of Conduct, if a student respondent does not attend a conduct meeting, the conduct meeting will generally happen in absentia, meaning without them present.
Q. I have current criminal charges pending, why is the College still pursuing its own charges?
A. The two processes are separate and distinct. The criminal court system determines guilt or innocence in violations of criminal or civil law. The criminal court system lies outside the college’s purview, and does not influence the college’s determination of Student Code of Conduct violations. While they often run on parallel tracks, the principle of due process does not require campus disciplinary proceedings to be postponed until related criminal matters are settled, and thus the imposition of college discipline need not await the outcome of criminal proceedings.
Q. On what grounds can an appeal be heard?
A. An application for appeal must meet at least one of the three standards to be considered: (1) procedural error; (2) new evidence; (3) or severity of the sanction.
Q. Can someone accompany me in my conduct meeting?
A. For an Administrative Conference, generally no other participants are allowed into the meeting unless the Student Conduct Officer feels it is in the best interest of the proceedings to do so. On the rare occasions others are allowed to come in, they may not speak or participate in the proceedings.
For a Hearing, students can have one support person accompany them into a Hearing, but the support person will have the limited purpose of providing support, advisement and guidance. A support person may not directly address the Hearing Officers, question witnesses, or otherwise actively participate in the student conduct process, but may speak privately with the advisee during the proceedings. Support persons who do not follow these guidelines will be removed from the conduct proceedings and not be allowed to be readmitted. A support person must be a full-time employee of the institution, except in cases of sexual violence/misconduct, when a student respondent/reporting individual can bring anyone of their choosing.
Q. What happens if I do not complete the sanctions that have been assigned to me?
A. Students who do not complete sanctions assigned to them will have a hold placed on their student account, preventing them from registering from classes, obtaining an official transcript, etc. The College also reserves the right to charge a student with a further violation of the Student Code of Conduct for failing to complete assigned sanctions.
Q. The question I have was not addressed here. Where can I get the answer?
A. If you still have additional questions or need further assistance, you can contact the Office of Student Life at email@example.com, 914-606-7857.