Key to UB Student Handbook

2020-2021

Chapter Five: Student Conduct

PREAMBLE/PHILOSOPHY

Consistent with its mission, the University imposes discipline and sanctions in accordance with its Code of Conduct to protect the health, welfare, safety and educational opportunities of the University community and to prepare students for their post-collegiate life in an increasingly globalized society. The University’s student conduct system emphasizes the development of each individual’s acceptance of his or her own personal and social responsibilities through the following core beliefs:

  • Understanding of the varying backgrounds of all those that make up our community and respecting the differences that bring a richness to the fabric and culture of the university;

  • Respect for oneself and others, recognizing the intrinsic value of each UB community member and respecting them as individuals;

  • Responsibility for our personal choices so that we do not cause harm, whether in words or action, to those around us.

The University seeks to provide an education-based approach to discipline. The student conduct system and appeals processes are designed to maintain an atmosphere within the University community that is conducive to academic pursuits. Severe disciplinary action, e.g. separation, is only invoked for serious or repeated offenses which adversely impact member(s) of the University community or jeopardize the University’s mission.

DEFINITIONS

Alleged Student (or Respondent) - Any person alleged of violating this Code of Community Standards.

Appellate Board - Any person or persons authorized by the University Student Conduct Officer to consider an appeal of a Community Standards Hearing Board’s determination as to whether a student has violated the Code of Community Standards or of the sanctions imposed by the Student Conduct Administrator.

Code of Community Standards – This applies to students, wherever located, including those enrolled on satellite campuses, enrolled in online courses, and studying abroad. All students at the University of Bridgeport are subject to the provisions of the Code of Community Standards and the laws of the United States, the State of Connecticut, and their local ordinances.

Community Standards Hearing Board (“CSHB” or “Hearing Board”) - Any person or persons authorized by the University Student Conduct Officer to determine whether a student has violated the Code of Community Standards and to recommend sanctions that may be imposed when a rules violation has been committed.

Complainant - Any person who submits a charge alleging that a student violated this Code of Community Standards. When a student believes that they were a victim of another student’s misconduct, that victim/survivor will have the same rights under this Code of Community Standards as are provided to the Complainant, even if another member of the University community submitted the charge itself.

Faculty Member Any person hired by the University to conduct classroom or teaching activities or who is otherwise considered by the University to be a member of its professoriate

May - is used in the permissive sense.

Member of the university community - Any person who is a student, faculty member, University official, or any other person employed by the University. A person’s status in a particular situation shall be determined by the University’s Student Conduct Officer (USCO).

Organization - Any number of persons who have complied with the formal requirements for University recognition.

Policy - The written regulations of the University as found in, but not limited to, the Code of Community Standards, Housing/Meal License, any of the University’s catalogs, Key to UB, any of the University’s college handbooks, the University’s web page(s), and the computer use policies.

Shall - is used in the imperative sense.

Student - All persons who meet one or more of the conditions listed below:

  • are taking courses at the University of Bridgeport, either full-time or part-time,

  • are pursuing undergraduate, graduate, or professional studies,

  • withdraw or graduate after allegedly violating the Code of Community Standards,

  • who have a continuing relationship with the University, even if they are not officially enrolled for a particular term,

  • have been notified of their acceptance for admission

  • are living in University residence halls, although not enrolled at the University;

  • have not yet received their degree.

Student Conduct Administrator (SCA) - A University official authorized on a case-by-case basis by the University Student Conduct Officer to determine if a violation of the Code of Community Standards has occurred and to impose appropriate sanctions.

University official - Any person employed or contracted by the University to perform assigned administrative or professional responsibilities.

University premises - All land, buildings, facilities, and other property in the possession of, or owned, used, or controlled by, the University or on adjacent public or private property.

University Student Conduct Officer (USCO) - That person designated by the University to be responsible for the administration of the Code of Community Standards. The Assistant Director of Residence Life or designee shall serve as the University Student Conduct Officer.

INTERPRETATION AND REVISION

Questions regarding interpretation or application of the Code of Community Standards shall be referred to the University Student Conduct Officer or their designee for determination. The Code of Community Standards shall be reviewed every year under the direction of the University Student Conduct Officer but may be updated at any time by the University. The University Student Conduct Officer shall develop rules and policies for the student conduct system and Community Standards Hearing Board procedures consistent with the provisions of the Code of Community Standards.

JURISDICTION

University Policies apply to conduct occurring on University premises, at University-sponsored activities, and to off-campus conduct that adversely affects the University community and/or its objectives. The Policies apply to all conduct by a student, even that occurring during an academic term when the student is not enrolled at the University. Moreover, the University retains jurisdiction to administer discipline with respect to any student conduct (occurring while the individual was a student) even if:

  1. The student subsequently graduates, withdraws, takes leave, or is otherwise absent from the University, and

  2. The University does not learn of the conduct until after the student leaves the University, as described above.

The Code of Community Standards shall apply to a student’s conduct even if the student withdraws from school while a disciplinary matter is pending. The University may take any action it deems necessary to maintain a safe environment, and to protect its community and community members under all circumstances. The University may withhold the award of a degree and/or the privilege of participating in graduation(s) while a disciplinary action is pending.

Cases of alleged violations of the Code of Community Standards will be reported to the University Student Conduct Officer. Matters of academic dishonesty will be addressed by the Academic Grievance Procedure (See Chapter Two).

The University Student Conduct Officer shall decide, on a case by case basis, whether the University shall apply the Policies to student conduct occurring off campus. This determination is made at their sole discretion and/ or in consultation with the Title IX Compliance Officer or Deputy Title IX Compliance Officer, where appropriate.

Students who violate civil and/or criminal law also violate the University Policies, thereby subjecting them to University disciplinary action and, in some cases, arrest and/or legal proceedings through the legal system. The University may impose sanctions irrespective of civil and/or criminal determinations arising from the same incident. The University generally applies a different standard than the legal system as it seeks to maintain a safe, supportive and educationally conducive environment for all University community members regardless of the legal system’s findings.

University proceedings may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with, or following civil or criminal proceedings off campus. The University will not amend determinations or sanctions imposed under the Code when charges arising out of the same facts are dismissed, reduced, or resolved in favor of or against the defendant. When a student is charged with a violation of federal, state, or local law, the University will not offer or support special consideration based on student status. If the alleged offense is also being processed under the Code of Community Standards, the University may advise off-campus authorities of the relevant University Policies and related information. The University seeks to cooperate with law enforcement and other agencies where appropriate (e, g, violations of law occurring on campus and rehabilitation conditions imposed on student-defendants following a court determination, so long as those conditions do not conflict with University rules or sanctions). Individual students and other members of the University community, acting in their personal capacities, remain free to interact with governmental representatives as they deem appropriate.

DISCRIMINATION, HARASSMENT, SEXUAL MISCONDUCT, AND RETALIATION

The University is committed to providing an educational environment free from discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. The University strictly prohibits sexual misconduct, sex and gender based violence or harassment, including, but not limited to, discriminatory harassment, sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, and/or sexual exploitation. Additionally, the University prohibits as well as complicity in the commission of any prohibited act and retaliation against a person for the good faith reporting of prohibited conduct, by any member of the University community against any person. Although these types of prohibited conduct violates the University's community standards, such violations will be reported, investigated and resolved, including the imposition of appropriate discipline, under the University's Policy on Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, and Retaliation (see Chapter Six).

UNIVERSITY STUDENT CONDUCT PROCESS

Filing a report/complaint

Any member of the University community, Campus Security, Federal, State, or local authorities may file a complaint against a student for alleged violations of the Code. A written complaint describing the Policy violation shall be submitted to the University Student Conduct Officer or Campus Security (as a formal complaint). A complaint should be submitted immediately after the alleged incident, preferably within thirty (30) calendar days. Please refer to the University’s Policy on Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, and Retaliation (Chapter Six) for options for reporting sexual assault and other prohibited conduct in violation of that Policy.

Investigatory Process

Upon review of the initial report/complaint, the University Student Conduct Officer shall (a) decide to serve as the Student Conduct Administrator, or (b) assign a different administrator to serve as Student Conduct Administrator to investigate and adjudicate the case. Alone or in collaboration with other University authorities, the Student Conduct Administrator may conduct an investigation to determine if the charges have merit. Upon determining that the charges have merit, the Student Conduct Administrator shall begin the formal conduct process as outlined below.

Adjudication of Cases

Level I Cases: Level I Cases address minor violations of University Policies or violations of the Rules and Regulations. A Student Conduct Administrator will be named by the Student Conduct Officer or his/her designee and they shall notify the student(s), in writing, of the date/time/location of an Administrative Hearing where all charges will be alleged.

At the Administrative Hearing, if the student(s) take responsibility for the alleged charge(s), the Student Conduct Administrator will issue sanction(s) to the student(s). Sanctions issued through an Administrative Hearing are final and may not be appealed.

If the student(s) do/does not accept responsibility for the alleged charge(s) or fail(s) to attend the required meeting, the Student Conduct Administrator will make a determination, based on all evidence and issues sanction(s) if appropriate. Sanctions issued under this process are subject to appeal as outlined in the Appeal Process.

Level II Cases: Level II Cases address more severe violations of the Code of Community Standards. For Level II Cases, the Student Conduct Officer or his/her designee shall be the Student Conduct Administrator. In Level II Cases, the Student Conduct Administrator shall issue a Notification of Charges Letter to the alleged perpetrator, informing him/her of the charge(s) and the date/time of the required meeting to discuss the reported incident. Should the student(s) take responsibility for the alleged charge(s) or not attend the required meeting; the Student Conduct Administrator shall adjudicate the case through an Administrative Hearing and issue a sanction to the student(s). Sanctions issued through an Administrative Hearing are final and may not be appealed. If the student(s) do/does not accept responsibility for the alleged charge(s), a Community Standards Hearing Board (the “Hearing Board”) shall be convened to hear the case through the Hearing Board Process, as described below.

Information Regarding Community Standards Hearing Board Hearings

Notification of Charges and Scheduling of Community Standards Hearing:All charges shall be presented to the Respondent in written form. The Hearing Board shall schedule a hearing between five (5) days and 15 days after the student receives notice of the charges, unless waived by the student. These deadlines may be extended at the discretion of the Student Conduct Administrator. Parent(s) and/or legal guardians of dependent students under the age of 21 (at the time of the alleged offense) may also be notified of pending charges at the discretion of the SCA in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Notice of a hearing will be sent via email to residential and off-campus students via the University- provided email account. A letter sent to an address (home, permanent, or otherwise) provided by the student, which is received by the student’s parents or their legal guardian(s) shall also constitute proper service. It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that their mailing address is current and accurate in the University’s student data system.

Community Standards Process - Upon request, both the Respondent and Complainant may be assigned a Community Standards Process Assistant. This assistant, as designated by the University Student Conduct Officer, shall offer the student the ability to attend an optional informational session during which the student can view all documentation related to the complaint, receive instruction regarding the student’s rights and obligations under the disciplinary process, and confirm the forum in which the case will be heard.

Community Standards Hearing Board Members- The Hearing Board is composed of faculty/administration members from across the University community. Members of the Standards Hearing Board receive substantial training, on an annual basis, regarding their duties as a board member.

Community Standards Hearing Guidelines - Hearings shall be conducted by a Hearing Board according to the following guidelines except when otherwise stated:

  1. Community Standards Hearings shall be conducted in private.

  2. The Complainant(s) and the Respondent(s) may be assisted by an advisor of their choice, at their own expense. The advisor cannot act as an attorney. The Complainant and/or the Respondent are responsible for presenting his or her own information, and therefore, advisors are not permitted to speak or to participate directly in a hearing. A student should select an advisor who is available at the scheduled date and time of the hearing, because delays will not be permitted due to scheduling conflicts of an advisor.

  3. The Respondent, and his/her advisor, if any, shall be allowed to attend the Community Standards Hearing (with the exception of deliberations). Admission of any other person to the hearing shall be at the discretion of the Hearing Board and/or its Student Conduct Administrator.

  4. In a hearing involving more than one Respondent, the Student Conduct Administrator, in his or her discretion, may permit the hearing concerning each student to be conducted either separately or jointly.

  5. The Respondent, the Complainant and the Student Conduct Administrator may offer witnesses to support their respective positions. The parties must identify all witnesses at least two week days before the hearing. The University will seek to arrange named witnesses (who are members of the University community) to attend, if reasonably possible. Witnesses will answer questions from and provide information to the Hearing Board. The Hearing Board shall have sole discretion to determine what information it considers.

  6. Pertinent records, exhibits, and written statements may be considered by the Hearing Board at the discretion of the Student Conduct Administrator. The Respondent shall be permitted to respond to the charges in a written or oral statement of reasonable length.

  7. All procedural questions are subject to the final decision of the Student Conduct Administrator.

  8. After the Hearing Board hears all information deemed pertinent, the Hearing Board shall determine (by majority vote if the Hearing Board consists of more than one person) whether the Respondent has violated University Policy as charged.

  9. The Hearing Board’s determination shall apply a “preponderance of the evidence” standard, determining whether it is “more likely than not” that the Respondent violated the Code of Community Standards.

  10. All hearings will be prompt, fair, and impartial.

  11. A student may submit a challenge regarding the impartiality of any member of the Hearing Board before the hearing commences. The Student Conduct Administrator will decide the merit of the challenge, thereby determining whether the member at issue should be removed.

  12. If the Hearing Board cannot be convened, the University Student Conduct Officer or his/her designee may choose an appropriate alternative to the Hearing Board.

  13. The foregoing policies and procedures pertaining to the Hearing Board may be modified at the sole discretion of the Student Conduct Administrator and/or Hearing Board Chairperson. University Policy is interpreted and enforced in an academic community which is often very different than a court of law (e.g. high likelihood of pre-existing relationships, proceedings are not criminal in nature, and the University process seeks to be educational (where appropriate)).

  14. If a Respondent does not appear for the hearing, information shall be presented and considered in his absence, and sanction issued where appropriate.

Recording of Hearing: There shall be a single verbatim record of hearings before the Hearing Board. Deliberations shall not be recorded. The record shall be the property of the University. Unauthorized recordings by participants in the Hearing Board proceedings and/or meetings with a Student Conduct Administrator are not permitted.

Notification of Community Standards Hearing Board Decision: Upon completion of deliberations, the Hearing Board shall notify, in writing, the Student Conduct Administrator of its findings on each charge and corresponding sanctions (if applicable). The Student Conduct Administrator shall issue a formal Notification of the Hearing Board Decision, in writing, to the Respondent(s) including whether the Hearing Board found the Respondent(s) “Responsible” or “Not Responsible” for the alleged violations and any associated sanctions (if applicable).

VIOLATIONS OF THE CODE OF COMMUNITY STANDARDS

Students violating the following, non-exhaustive list of misconduct and prohibited behaviors are subject to the disciplinary procedures found in this Code and any related fines and/or sanctions:

ACADEMIC DISHONESTY - Any act of academic dishonesty, which shall be handled through the Academic Grievance Procedure. This includes, but is not limited to, cheating, plagiarism, or other forms of academic dishonesty (Chapter Two),

ALCOHOL – (A) The possession, use or distribution of alcohol while under the age of 21; B) public intoxication; (C) possession, use or distribution of alcohol while in the presence of individuals under the age of 21; or (D) any other violation of the University’s alcohol policy as stated in the Key to UB.

ARREST OR CRIMINAL SUMMONS – Any arrest or criminal summons for violating any Federal, State or Local ordinance is actionable under the Student Code of Conduct regardless of the location of the violation.

ASSAULT – (A) Any attempted or actual physical contact with another person that is intended to cause physical injury, whether or not serious injury results.

COMPUTER MISUSE - This includes, but is not limited to, (A) plagiarism of programs, misuse of computer accounts, unauthorized destruction of files, creating illegal accounts, disruptive behaviors on the computer; (B) unauthorized access to computer systems, telephone systems and cable TV systems; (C) unauthorized entry into a file to use, read or change contents or for any other purpose or unauthorized transfer of a file; (D) unauthorized possession or use of another individual’s identification and/or password; (E) use of the University’s computer systems to interfere with the work of another student, University employee, or the normal operation of the University in any capacity; (F) sending obscene or abusive messages; (G) violating copyright laws; and/or (H) otherwise failing to comply with the University Computer Usage Policy (Chapter 6).

DISORDERLY CONDUCT – (A) Conduct that (i) is disruptive, lewd, or indecent, (ii) results in a breach of peace, or (iii) aids, abets, or procures another person to breach the peace on University premises or at functions sponsored by, or participated in by, the University or members of the academic community; (B) conduct causing inconvenience and/or annoyance which includes any action which can reasonably be expected to disturb University operations (C) to interfere with or infringe upon the privacy, rights, privileges, health or safety of members of the University community; (D) acting in such a manner which interferes with, hinders or endangers members of University Administration/Staff, Campus Security or emergency responders in the performance of their duties.

DRUGS – (A) The manufacture, distribution, sale or offer for sale of any illegal drugs or narcotics including barbiturates, hallucinogens, amphetamines, cocaine, opium or other opioids, heroin, marijuana, THC-infused edible goods or any other substance not chemically distinguishable from them except as authorized by medical prescription; (B) using, possessing or knowingly being in the presence of illegal drugs; (C) using, possessing or knowingly being in the presence of drug paraphernalia as defined in the Key to UB (Chapter Six); or (D) the manufacture, distribution, sale, offer for sale or misuse of any prescription medications; or (E) any other violation of the University drug policy as found in the Key to UB (Chapter Six).

FAILURE TO COMPLY – Nonfulfillment or violation of (A) any University policy, rule or safety regulation published in hard copy or available electronically on the University website or other electronic formats; (B) any sanction, restriction or condition imposed as the result of a previously held disciplinary hearing; (C) violation of any of the University's safety policies and procedures; (D) directions or requests by a University official and/or law enforcement officer, including requests for identification; (E) maintaining correct address and telephone information with the Office of the Registrar and the Department of Residential Life; or (F) the University’s Tobacco Policy (non-smoking policy found in Chapter Six).

FIRE SAFETY – (A) Misuse of or tampering with fire safety equipment, including, but not limited to, the unnecessary discharge of fire extinguishers, intentionally setting off a false alarm or altering a fire detection device in any way; (B) intentionally or unintentionally setting fire to any property of the University, of another person or of your own.

FRAUD - Any intentional misrepresentation of fact (by action or concealment) to obtain or attempt to induce another to surrender a right, benefit, or property

GAMBLING - Gambling in any form, as defined by Connecticut Statutes.

HARASSMENT/BULLYING - (A) Attempted/acts of intimidation or any conduct which threatens to cause physical harm or emotional distress to persons or damage to their property, (B) attempted or actual intimidation of persons involved in a University disciplinary proceeding or persons in authority, (C) engaging in a course of action which attempts to denigrate or ridicule an individual; (D) causing harm to the reputation of any student or University official that are defaming in nature; (E) (i) verbal abuse, (ii) coercion, or (iii) directly/indirectly threatening and/or other conduct which threatens or endangers the health and/or safety of any person, or reasonably causes an individual to be fearful for his/her wellbeing; (F) making, sharing or distributing audio, video or written communication relating to any person without his/her prior knowledge, without his or her effective consent, or when such material is likely to cause injury or distress.; or (G) discriminatory harassment defined as violence, threats, intimidation, or treatment targeting an individual based upon his or her perceived race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, sex, gender identity or expression, or other status is protected by law and will be addressed under the University’s Policy on Sexual and Gender-based Interpersonal Violence and Harassment (see Chapter Six).

HAZING - As defined by Connecticut State law, including, but not limited to, any activity expected of someone that humiliates, degrades, risks emotional and/or physical harm, endangers mental or physical well-being, or destroys or removes public property for the purpose of initiation, admission to, affiliation with or continued membership in a group or organization. The express or implied consent of the victim(s) will not be a defense. Apathy or acquiescence in the presence of hazing is also a violation of this rule.

MISREPRESENTATION – (A) Providing false, malicious or misleading documentation or information to University personnel or during a University process including a Hearing Board; (B) influencing or attempting to influence another person to commit an abuse of the Student Conduct system; (C) false reporting of an emergency, including misuse of the LiveSafe system; (D) misuse of University documents or services including, but not limited to, forging, transferring, altering or otherwise misusing any student fee card, identification card, course registration material, or other University document or record whether in electronic or other format.

RESIDENCE HALL RULES AND REGULATIONS – Failure to follow any published rule/regulation related to the residence hall community as published in Chapter 4 of The Key to UB and the housing contract. (A) Failure to follow the guest visitation policy including, but not limited to, hosting an unauthorized overnight guest. (B) Failing a Health and Safety Inspection including, but not limited to, the presence of prohibited items in a campus residential space. (C) Violation of Courtesy and/or Quiet Hours in a campus residence. (D) Failure to follow any published rule/regulation related to living in the residential community. (E) Violations by a student’s guests, for which the student shall be considered fully responsible whether or not the resident is present at the time of the violation.

RETALIATORY ACTS – Any intimidating or threatening actions, harassment or physical harm against an individual who is (A) reporting a violation of the Code of Community Standards; (B) assisting someone with reporting a violation; or (C) participating in any manner in an investigation or resolution of a violation.

SEXUAL MISCONDUCT – See Policy on Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, and Retaliation (Chapter Six).

THEFT – Depriving the University or another person of their property.

TRESPASSING/UNAUTHORIZED ACCESS – Unauthorized or attempted entry into any part of a University owned, contracted or managed property, including, but not limited to, unauthorized possession or duplication of any University key.

UNAUTHORIZED USE OF UNIVERSITY NAME - Using without permission or authority the name, insignia or representative symbol of the University by an individual or group.

VANDALISM - Damage to, misuse of, removal of, or destruction of (i) University-owned or University- managed or (ii) property of another person without proper authorization.

WEAPONS - A) Possession of firearms, explosives, ammunition or other weapons or items that could be considered to be a weapon or dangerous instrument; B) replicas of weapons, or items that could reasonably be considered to be weapons or be mistaken for weapons; or C) misuse of any item, even if legally possessed, in a manner that harms, threatens or causes fear to others. For more information on the Policy of Guns, Replicas of Guns and Other Weapons, please see Chapter Six.

FORMAL RECORDS

Discipline File Record-Keeping

The Student Conduct Officer maintains disciplinary files on all cases.

Removal of Discipline Files

When a student is awarded their degree, s/he can apply to the Dean of Students to expunge their disciplinary record, except for instances of residence hall separation, suspension, expulsion or revocation or withholding of a degree (the “Exceptions”).

The Exceptions aside, sanctions may be expunged from the student’s confidential record up to seven years after final disposition of the case. The Dean of Students reserves the right to refuse such a request. Suspension and dismissal records shall be permanently retained as official records, unless the student is readmitted and successfully completes a degree, at which point the record may be removed seven years beyond the date of readmission. Expulsion records shall not be removed from the official files. Any records kept beyond these limits for statistical purposes will not be considered or released as official disciplinary records.

Persons wishing to have their disciplinary records removed should write to: The Dean of Students, 244 University Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06604, deanofstudents@bridgeport.edu.

SANCTIONS

The following sanctions may be imposed upon any student found to have violated the Student Conduct Code:

  1. Deferred Suspension – The student’s behavior warrants suspension, but due to mitigating circumstances, the student is allowed to mature and/or the student has demonstrably learned from the experience. Any further violations of University rules or regulations will result in automatic suspension or expulsion. The student may not represent the University in any extra- curricular activity, run for, or hold office in any student group or organization.

  2. Deferred Loss of Housing – The student’s behavior warrants removal from housing, but due to mitigating circumstances, the student is allowed to mature and/or the student has demonstrably learned from the experience. Any further violations of University rules or regulations will result in automatic removal from on campus housing.

  3. Disciplinary Probation – A written reprimand for violation of specified regulations. Probation extends for a designated period of time and includes the likelihood of more severe disciplinary sanctions if the student violates any institutional policies during the probationary period.

  4. Disciplinary Warning – A written notice to the student for a current or prior violation of the Code or other institutional rules. Minor violations may also include some penalty, work experience, or other sanction(s).

  5. Dismissal – Separation from the University for an indefinite period of time for a minimum of two years. The Dean of Students or his/her designee, in his/her sole discretion, may permit readmission if the student satisfies all readmission criteria and obtains clearance to his/her satisfaction. Readmission will not be considered until after two years from the date of dismissal.

  6. Expulsion – Permanent separation of the student from the University. The student is barred from all University premises. Clearance to return may be granted only by the President or Provost.

  7. Fines – Fines established and published before the disciplinary incident may be imposed.

  8. Interim Suspension – The Dean of Students or his/her designee may suspend a student for an interim period pending disciplinary proceedings or medical evaluation. Such interim suspension may become effective immediately without prior notice whenever there is evidence that such action is necessary for the safety of the University community or the student.

  9. Loss of Privileges – Denial of specified privileges for a designated period of time. This may include, without limitation, having guests, visiting other parts of campus, attendance of certain campus activities, etc.

  10. Other Sanctions – Other sanctions may be imposed as determined by the University, including without limitation anger or stress management training, sexual harassment sensitivity training, restitution, work/research assignment or project, community service, or other restrictions. For any substance-abuse discipline, the student may be required to receive counseling (on or off campus) or complete an online educational program related to alcohol and/or substance abuse prevention.

  11. Residence Hall Separation or Relocation – The student may be barred from the residence halls or a specific residence hall, for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return, or permanent separation from the residence hall system. Conditions for readmission may be specified. Student may not run or hold an office in any hall group or organization.

  12. Restitution – Compensation for loss, damage, or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement.

  13. Revocation of Admission and/or Degree – Admission to or a degree awarded from the University may be revoked for fraud, misrepresentation, or other violation of University policies in obtaining the degree, or for other serious violations committed by a student prior to graduation.

  14. Suspension – Separation from the University for a maximum of two years. The Dean of Students or his/her designee, in his/her sole discretion, may permit readmission if the student satisfies all readmission criteria and obtains clearance to his/her satisfaction. Suspensions may be imposed in several ways, including without limitation: admitting or not disputing the charges presented at an administrative hearing, to University Student Conduct Officer, or the Title IX Compliance Officer or Deputy Title IX Compliance Officer.

  15. Withholding Degree – The University may withhold awarding a degree otherwise earned until the completion of the process set forth in this Code of Community Standards, including the completion of all sanctions imposed, if any.

Where a Hearing Board determines that a student and/or group or organization has violated the Code, the Hearing Board shall recommend sanction(s) to the Student Conduct Administrator who is responsible for the formal assignment of sanctions. The Student Conduct Administrator is not limited to sanctions recommended by members of the Community Standards Hearing.

The University Student Conduct Officer and/or Student Conduct Administrator reserve the right to impose sanctions that may not fall into one of the above categories. The University Student Conduct Officer and Student Conduct Administrator may also consider any past disciplinary record of the alleged when making a decision.

More than one of these sanctions may be used for any single violation. Other than University expulsion or revocation or withholding of a degree, disciplinary sanctions shall not be made part of the student’s permanent record, but shall become part of the student’s disciplinary record.

Where both Respondent(s) (or group or organization) and Complainant(s) claim to be the victim, the procedural records and sanctions imposed (if any), shall become part of the education records of both the Respondent(s) and the Complainant.

The following sanctions may be imposed upon groups or organizations:

  1. Those listed above for students.

  2. Loss of selected rights and privileges for a specified period of time.

  3. Deactivation and/or loss of all privileges, including without limitation University recognition for a specified period of time.

Nothing in this section limits the authority of the Dean of Students or his/her designee (whether designated by the Dean of Students or otherwise appointed to act in his/her absence) to suspend or otherwise sanction students on an immediate and/or emergency basis where s/he reasonably believes that such action is necessary or desirable to preserve the health, welfare, safety, and educational mission of the University.

SUMMARY ACTIONS/INTERIM SUSPENSION

In certain circumstances, the University Student Conduct Officer, or their designee, may impose a University suspension or residence hall separation prior to a hearing before a Hearing Board. Interim suspension may be imposed only:

  1. To ensure the safety and well-being of members of the University community or preservation of University property;

  2. To ensure the student’s own physical or emotional safety and well-being; or

  3. If the student poses an on-going threat of disruption to, or interference with, the normal operations of the University.

During the interim suspension or residence hall separation, the student shall be denied access to the residence halls and/or to the campus (including classes) and/or all other University activities or privileges for which the student might otherwise be eligible, as the University Student Conduct Officer or the Student Conduct Administrator may determine to be appropriate.

The interim suspension or residence hall separation does not replace the regular process, which shall proceed on the normal schedule, as described earlier in this Chapter.

Sample infractions of University policies and their possible sanctions:

Offense Possible Sanctions

Attempted or threat of non-sexual physical assault on a student, faculty member, staff member, or Security Officer

Deferred Suspension to Expulsion

Interim COVID-19 Policy

Disciplinary probation, loss of campus housing, to expulsion

Fire Safety Violations including, but not limited to, possession of candles, burned or unburned, halogen, torchier lamps

Disciplinary Warning, $50.00 fine, to removal from housing

Damage of University property

Progressive discipline and restitution

Failure to comply with University personnel, including Campus Security, including, but not limited to, failing to comply with a request for identification , providing false identification, misuse of university ID card

Progressive discipline, monetary fines

Fighting

Suspension to Expulsion

Harassment or Intimidation (of a non-sexual nature)

Disciplinary Warning to suspension

Violation of the university weapons policy, including, but not limited to, possession and/or use of a weapon, or replica of a weapon, object which might reasonably be mistaken for a weapon, ammunition, etc.

Suspension to expulsion

Possession of alcoholic beverages by minors

Disciplinary warning to expulsion

Setting of a fire and/or tampering with fire safety equipment

Suspension to expulsion and restitution

Throwing items out of rooms or out of windows

Fine and/or suspension

Unauthorized possession of University keys

Progressive discipline, restitution

Vandalism

Disciplinary Warning to expulsion, depending on severity

Verbal or physical abuse (of a non-sexual nature)

Disciplinary Probation, being banned from the Residence Halls, to suspension

Violation of academic honesty policies

See Chapter 2

Violation of the Drug Policy

Warning to expulsion

APPEALS

Level I Cases: Students appealing the decision of community standards the Student Conduct Administrator in Level I cases are to submit, via email to communitystandards@bridgeport.edu within five (5) business days of the decision, their “Letter of Appeal”. The Student Conduct Officer or his/her designee, shall review the letter and all applicable materials to determine the merit of the appeal.

Appeals shall be determined based on the following criteria:

  • To determine whether the conduct process by the Student Conduct Administrator was conducted fairly in light of the charges and information presented, and in conformity with prescribed procedures giving the complaining party a reasonable opportunity to prepare and to present information that the Code of Community Standards was violated, and giving the Respondent a reasonable opportunity to prepare and to present a response to those allegations. Deviations from designated procedures will not be a basis for sustaining an appeal unless significant prejudice results.

  • To determine whether the decision reached regarding the Respondent was based on substantial information, that is, whether there were facts in the case that, if believed by the fact finder, were sufficient to establish that a violation of the Code of Community Standards occurred.

  • To determine whether the sanction(s) imposed were appropriate for the violation of the Code which the student was found to have committed.

  • To consider new information, sufficient to alter a decision or relevant facts not brought out in the original hearing, because such information and/or facts were not known to the person appealing at the time of the original hearing.

The Student Conduct Officer or his/her designee, shall then make a determination if the appeal should be granted or denied. If an appeal is granted, the matter will be reissued to Student Conduct Administrator for additional consideration. If the appeal is denied, the original decision shall be final and binding. During the appeal process, all original sanctions remain in full effect.

Level II Cases: A student who wishes to appeal the decision of the Hearing Board in Level II cases must submit, via email to deanofstudents@bridgeport.edu, within five (5) business days of the decision, his/her “Letter of Appeal” containing statement outlining the reasons for the appeal and relief sought. The Student Conduct Officer, or his/her designee, shall convene an “Appeal Board”.

Except for previously unavailable new information, the appeal record shall be limited to the verbatim record of the Hearing Board hearing and supporting documents. The purpose of the appeal is to:

  • To determine whether the Hearing Board hearing was conducted fairly in light of the charges and information presented, and in conformity with prescribed procedures, such that: (i) the Complaint was afforded reasonable opportunity to prepare and to present information as to the Code violation(s); and (ii) the Respondent was afforded reasonable opportunity to prepare and to present a response to those allegations. Deviations from designated procedures will not be a basis for sustaining an appeal unless significant prejudice results.

  • To determine whether the decision was based on substantial information. In other words, whether there were sufficient facts to establish a Code violation, assuming all facts as accepted and interpreted by the fact finder.

  • To determine whether the sanction(s) imposed were appropriate for the violation of the Code.

  • To consider new information and/or facts not known to the appellant at the time of hearing.

Appeals will only be heard if one or more of the above-listed criteria are satisfied. The Dean of Students, or his/her designee will decide, in each individual case, whether or not to hear the appeal.

Appellate hearings will be scheduled within ten (10) business days of receiving the written request for appeal.

If an appeal is granted by the Dean of Students, the matter shall be sent to Appellate Board to re- open the hearing to reconsider the original determination and/or sanction(s). If an appeal is denied, the matter shall be considered final and binding upon all involved.

Decisions made by the Hearing Board and/or Student Conduct Administrator shall be final, pending the normal appeal process.

Revised 8.16.2021