Code of Student Conduct
Article VII: Judicial Policies
IV. Medical Exception
1. Student misconduct charges may be filed by any member of the college community. Charges shall be prepared in writing and directed to the student conduct coordinator responsible for the administration of the college judicial system. Normally, this may be accomplished by filing a report with public safety, completing and filing a residence hall incident report, or submitting a photocopy of an official police report. Any charge should be submitted as soon as possible after the event takes place.
2. The student conduct coordinator will determine the disposition of the charges and may decide among the following options:
a. The charges have no merit.
b. The charges have merit and may be administratively settled by mutual consent of the involved parties on a basis acceptable to the student conduct coordinator. Such disposition shall be final, and there shall be no subsequent proceedings.
c. The charges have merit and are appropriate for hearing by the appropriate judicial body. These include:
1) Staff Hearing: Most cases arising from policy violations in the residence halls and honor houses. Generally heard by area coordinators or other professional members of the residence life staff.
2) Informal Administrative Hearing: Cases heard by one of the associate deans.
3) Formal Administrative Hearing: Cases heard by a panel of faculty and staff.
d. The charges have merit but are not appropriate for hearing and will be handled administratively by other means.
a. Informal Administrative Hearing (case is heard by an associate dean).
b. Administrative Hearing.
The following process generally shall apply to a student in any college disciplinary proceeding.
1. Written notice of the charges shall be provided to the affected student whenever formal action upon such charges is initiated. If possible, notice is to be given within 60 class days of the alleged violation and at least five class days in advance of the date set for the hearing, with sufficient particularity as to the facts that the student may reasonably investigate the charge and prepare his/her defense. Generally, hearings shall be held not more than 15 class days after the affected student has been noticed. Deadlines and time limits may be extended at the discretion of the student conduct coordinator.
2. The complainant and the accused shall be permitted to appear in person and provide witnesses, statements or other evidence. The complainant and the accused shall be permitted to suggest to the judicial body persons who he/she believe should be questioned by the judicial body and questions which he/she believes should be asked of those persons. (The complainant and the accused should notify the person or the chair of the judicial body hearing the case of the names of his/her suggested witnesses at least 24 hours prior to the hearing date.) The judicial body shall have authority to determine which witnesses it shall call, which questions shall be asked, and which documents or other tangible evidence shall be considered. Generally, all questioning of witnesses shall be done by members of the judicial body. The judicial body shall, in making its determinations as to which evidence to admit and consider, give consideration to factors such as justice, fairness, efficiency, avoidance of unnecessary duplication of evidence, and other goals it deems appropriate.
3. The complainant and the accused must notify the person or the chair of the judicial body hearing the case of the names of his/her suggested witnesses at least 24 hours prior to the hearing date.
4. Written notification of the results of any disciplinary hearing shall be sent within five class days of that hearing, unless that period is extended by the Dean of Students.
5. Appeal requests shall be based on the criteria outlined in the Appeals section.
6. Hearings shall be conducted in private and shall not be open to members of the college community or members of the community at large, unless permission to attend is granted both by the judicial body and the Dean of Students. At all times the judicial body and the Dean of Students shall have authority to determine whose presence at a hearing shall be permitted or not permitted.
7. In hearings involving more than one student, the chairperson of the judicial body, at his/her discretion, may permit the hearings concerning each student to be conducted separately.
8. The complainant and the accused have the right to be assisted by an adviser of their choice. Guidelines for advisers are:
a. Advisers must be a current member of the St. Olaf College community or an immediate family member.
b. The purpose of the adviser is to support a student in the judicial process. Advisers should be chosen for their ability to understand the circumstances, assist a student with the process of preparing for a hearing, and guide the student through the actual hearing.
c. Advisers may confer with the student involved, but they do not actively participate in the hearing. The complainant and/or the accused is responsible for presenting his/her own case and, therefore, advisers are not permitted to speak or participate directly in any hearing before a judicial body.
d. Advisers do not represent the student. That is, information will be directly communicated to, released to, or accepted from involved students, not advisers. All information concerning any case may be made available to advisers with the written permission of the involved student.
10. After the hearing, the judicial body shall determine (by majority vote if the judicial body consists of more than one person) whether the student has violated the Code of Student Conduct. In determining the outcome, each alleged violation shall be considered separately.
a. The judicial body's determination shall be made on the basis of whether it is more likely than not that the student violated the Code of Conduct (a preponderance of the evidence). Rules of evidence as in a court of law, however, shall not apply.
b. Any expense incurred in the judicial process is the responsibility of the individual student who incurred the expense.
12. An accused student may voluntarily waive his/her right to appear before a judicial body for a hearing. However, if properly noticed of the date, time and location of the hearing (per Article VII, B, 1) failure of the accused to appear shall not result in the cancellation or postponement of the hearing. The hearing will be held in the absence of the accused student, unless such absence is excused by the Dean of Students.
13. An accused student may also waive their rights concerning the timing of hearings in agreement with the student conduct coordinator.
14. Except in the case of a student charged with failing to obey the summons of a judicial body or college official, no student may be found to have violated the Code of Student Conduct solely because the student failed to appear before a judicial body. In all cases, the evidence in support of the charges shall be presented and considered, even if the charged student fails to appear.
1. Students who choose to violate college policies can expect consequences to follow. The following are examples and definitions of specific sanctions that may be imposed upon any student found to have violated the Code of Conduct. Other sanctions may be imposed or deemed appropriate in certain circumstances.
Level I (First-time, less serious violations):
- Warning - a notice in writing to the student that the conduct is violating or has violated the Code of Conduct or community standards.
- Completion of an on line alcohol education class.
- Attend an educational program related to the incident.
- Restitution and/or apology to affected persons. Restitution - compensation for loss, damage or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement.
- Behavioral contract - agreement between the student and judicial body with specific statement of expectations.
- Discretionary Sanctions - work assignments, service to the college, or other related discretionary assignments (such assignments must have the prior approval of the student conduct coordinator).
- Fines - previously established and published fines may be imposed. In some instances, appropriate discretionary fines may also be imposed.
- Loss of Privileges - denial of specified privileges for a designated period of time.
- Other sanctions as appropriate.
Level II (Repeated or more serious first-time violations):
- Referral to appropriate college staff.
- Confidential notification of parents, academic advisor, athletic coach, co- curricular program directors, personnel in the International and Off-Campus Studies Office, or others as appropriate.
- Residence hall probation (further violation can result in reassignment of housing).
- Probation - a written reprimand for violation of specified regulations. Probation is for a designated period of time and includes the probability of more severe disciplinary sanctions if the student is found to be violating any institutional regulation(s) during the probationary period.
- Other sanctions appropriate to violation.
Level III (Most serious violations, including but not limited to flagrant violations of policy; abuse of or non-cooperation with college staff; incidents involving threats or violence; or repeated violations of policy):
- Referral to dean of students' office.
- If substance abuse was involved, referral for alcohol screening or assessment.
- Residence hall reassignment, suspension or expulsion. Residence Hall Suspension - separation of the student from the residence halls for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified. Residence Hall Expulsion - permanent separation of the student from the residence halls.
- College Suspension - separation of the student from the college for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified.
- College Expulsion - permanent separation of the student from the college.
- Other sanctions appropriate to violation.
2. Depending on the circumstances, Level I, II or III sanctions may be implemented at any time and in any order.
3. More than one of the sanctions listed above may be imposed for any single violation.
4. One possible sanction not noted above is suspension from co-curricular activities of the college. Generally, but not exclusively, this sanction is employed when dealing with off-campus behavior and/or when students are cited by law enforcement. Suspensions can be of indeterminate length, depending on the severity of the violation. In such instances, students may continue to attend class, labs, and study in the library; they may eat meals in the Cafeteria or Cage, and take care of normal administrative functions related to being a student. However, students fulfilling a co-curricular suspension may not participate in athletics, club or intramural sports, music groups or organizations, clubs or organizations or social events sponsored by the college.
5. Sanctions are cumulative and can carry over from year to year. Students who have specific sanctions which have carried over from the previous year will be notified in their letter of sanction from the college.
6. Other than college expulsion, disciplinary sanctions shall not be made a part of the student's permanent academic record, but shall become part of the student's confidential record. Upon graduation, the student's confidential record may be expunged of disciplinary actions other than residence hall expulsion, college suspension or college expulsion at the discretion of the student conduct coordinator. Cases involving the imposition of sanctions other than residence hall expulsion, college suspension or college expulsion shall be expunged from the student's confidential record four years after the final disposition of the case or one year after graduation from St. Olaf College, whichever comes first.
7. The following sanctions may be imposed on groups or organizations:
a. Those sanctions listed above.
b. The loss of the privilege to live in a college honor house
c. Deactivation: loss of all privileges, including college recognition, for a specified period of time
8. In each case in which a judicial body determines that a student has violated the Code of Conduct, the sanction(s) shall be determined and imposed by the student conduct coordinator. In cases in which persons other than or in addition to the student conduct coordinator have been authorized to serve as the judicial body, the recommendation of all members of the judicial body shall be considered by the student conduct coordinator in determining and imposing sanctions. The student conduct coordinator is not limited to sanctions recommended by members of the judicial body.
Following the hearing, the judicial body and the student conduct coordinator shall advise the accused in writing of its determination and the sanction(s) imposed, if any.
The Dean of Students shall have final authority to determine the appropriateness of sanctions.
The health and safety of students is of great importance to the entire St. Olaf community. The College understands that the potential for disciplinary action may deter students from seeking needed medical assistance, either for themselves or others, as the result of the over-consumption of alcohol. St. Olaf has adopted a limited "exception" program in an effort to address this concern in the first instance where a student over-consumes alcohol and seeks medical attention but otherwise violates no College policies.
Through the College’s Alcohol Medical Exception policy, students needing to be transported to the hospital for the first time as the result of intoxication and/or alcohol poisoning will not face formal disciplinary action, provided that the student has not committed any other violations of the Code of Conduct that warrant disciplinary action.
Previous judicial history, lack of cooperation with College officials, or leaving the hospital without being cleared by medical personnel may limit eligibility for this exception.
Students who are eligible for medical exception will not receive a judicial record for the incident. In lieu of disciplinary action, the student will be required to do the following:
- to meet with a professional staff member of the Dean of Students Office to discuss the incident
- participate in BASICS
- inform the college staff of who provided the student the alcohol and/or drugs used during that incident
- Parents of the student will be notified of the incident – if they were not notified at the hospital.
- Depending on individual circumstances the student may be referred for additional services as needed.
Individuals who make the call to obtain medical assistance for an intoxicated student will not face formal disciplinary actions, provided that they have not committed additional violations of the “Code of Conduct” other than the possession or use of alcohol.
This policy is meant to help students learn through this one-time mistake of over-consumption about their own personal limits without fear of a judicial record. In the event that the student fails to meet with the staff member or chooses not to fulfill the requirements the student may be subject to judicial action.