CODE FOR STUDENT RIGHTS, RESPONSIBILITIES AND CONDUCT
Harford Community College is an academic community and all members and visitors share the duty and responsibility of securing and maintaining the freedom to learn within that academic community. Freedom carries responsibilities; chief among these is respect for rights and values of others. In order to provide and preserve this freedom on the HCC campus and at College-sponsored and College-supervised functions, this Student Code was developed by a committee of students, faculty, staff, and administrators. Within the College community, individuals are accorded respect in a learning environment free from discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, veteran, sexual orientation, marital status or any other characteristic protected by law or by the policies and practices of HCC. All students are expected to exhibit and to practice professional behavior and model good citizenship when participating in all instructional settings, including during classroom instruction, field experiences, internships, athletic and cultural events, co-op assignments, and other related College endeavors. Such behavior includes but is not limited to appropriate dress, oral and written remarks/statements and general conduct, as well as the off-site use of social networking sites and other computer-aided communications, per rules and regulations of the College or off-campus site.
The College faculty and staff recognize their role in developing this sense of responsibility through example and guidance. Additionally, every student is presumed to have sufficient maturity, intelligence, and concern for the rights and values of others to preserve the standards of the academic community. This Student Code outlines clear expectations of students as members of the College community, the kind of unacceptable behavior that may result in disciplinary action, and sanctions and disciplinary proceedings utilized when the Student Code is not observed.
When used in this Code:
- "Administrative Conference" provides the opportunity for the Student Conduct Official or designee and the Respondent to review the alleged violation(s), provide an explanation of the disciplinary process, review the Respondent's history at the College, review the Respondent's account of the situation and any relevant facts, and discuss the options for resolution.
- "College" means Harford Community College and, collectively, those responsible for its control and operation.
- "College community" means the College and all persons who are Students, Instructors, and employees of the College.
- "College official" means all College employees and authorized Public Safety representatives for the College.
- "Complainant" means the person who reports an alleged violation of the Student Code.
- "Electronic Communication" means a communication transmitted by means of (a.) an electronic device, including but not limited to a telephone, cellular phone, computer, or pager, and/or (b.) the internet or any social networking or social media websites. This includes the transmission of photographs and audio files.
- "Instructor" means any person hired by the College to conduct educational activities. In certain situations, a person may be both "student" and "Instructor" and is subject to the rights and responsibilities of both.
- "May" is used in the discretionary sense.
- "Medical evaluation" means a medical or mental health assessment completed by a qualified physician or psychologist approved by HCC indicating the student's ability to safely participate in activities at the College.
- "Records" are those records directly related to a student and maintained by the College or by a party acting for the College. Where appropriate, student records subject to federal educational records privacy laws will be identified as such.
- "Registered Student Organization (RSO)" means a group of students who participate in an organization which is officially recognized by Student Activities.
- "Respondent" means a student charged with violating this Student Code.
- "Shall" is used in the mandatory sense.
- "Student" includes:
- persons who have applied for enrollment;
- persons who have been admitted to HCC but who have not yet enrolled;
- persons who are registered for credit and non-credit courses on a full-time or part-time basis;
- persons who are between any consecutive semesters, terms, or summer sessions for which they are enrolled;
- persons who stop attending after allegedly violating the Student Code;
- persons who are not officially enrolled for a particular semester/term but who have had a continuing relationship with the College.
- "Student Conduct Review Board (SCRB)" is the group of College persons that is convened to review and take action on cases referred by the Student Conduct Official.
- "Student Conduct Official" means the Student Conduct and Intervention Specialist or her/his designee who is authorized to impose sanctions upon any student(s) found to have violated the Student Code and refer cases to the SCRB.
- "Team" means a group of students participating in organized athletic activities who are officially recognized by College Athletics.
- "Title IX Coordinator" is the person who oversees compliance with Title IX regulations.
- "Work day" means a day when the College is open and does not include weekends or holidays when the College is closed.
- The Student Code and all College policies, procedures, practices or related rules and regulations apply to conduct that occurs on campus, at all College-sponsored and College-supervised functions regardless of location, and to off-campus conduct that adversely affects the College, the College Community, and/or the pursuit of the College's objectives. As noted herein, the mere fact that conduct occurs off campus and/or after hours when classes are in session does not remove such conduct from the scope of this Student Code, particularly where such conduct has a negative impact upon teaching and learning within the College.
- All students are subject to the Student Code.
- All persons, including family members of students, and other guests of students, are required to abide by all College policies, procedures, practices, and related rules, regulations, and laws, while on- or off-campus at all College-supervised and all College-sponsored functions.
- If allegations of possible discrimination, bullying (including cyber-bullying as addressed in item U.), sexual violence, or harassment, including sexual harassment or harassment based upon a student's protected status (e.g., race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, veteran, sexual orientation, marital status or any other characteristic protected by law or by the policies and practices of the College) are raised, the Student Conduct Official will inform and involve the Chief Human Resources Officer and the Title IX Coordinator, or their designees, who shall have the right to participate throughout any resulting proceedings relating to such allegations.
- The College prohibits the enrollment of any student or any person who is listed on the National or Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services Sex Offender Registry or with the Harford County Child Advocacy Unit. Students who are placed on such registries are expected to inform the College of such placement as soon as they become aware of their status. A student who withholds such information from the College shall, upon discovery, be promptly withdrawn from all classes and subject to disciplinary action.
IV. Rights and Responsibilities
- Freedom of Assembly
The College guarantees to students the rights to free inquiry, expression, and assembly while on campus or while attending College-sponsored or College-supervised activities, subject to requirements of this Student Code and those governing the use of College facilities and grounds. The College reserves the right to determine the time, place, and manner of any such assembly or demonstration so as to insure the peace and safety of its campus, while at the same time respecting the right of free speech of its students. While the College cannot anticipate that every assembly of students is planned in advance, Students who expect to engage in peaceful assembly or demonstration on campus must file a "Student Free Speech and Peaceful Assembly Form" with the
Office of Student Activities. This form should be filed at a reasonable time in advance of the expected event so as to allow the College to take appropriate action to insure the peace, safety, and order of its campus. Advocacy of any cause and peaceful assembly and demonstration are permitted within the College subject to the following regulations:
- Order and safety of persons and property must be maintained;
- Instruction and other normal operations of the College must not be interrupted;
- Movement and passage of persons and vehicles must not be interrupted;
- Activities may not be of an illegal, violent, threatening, obscene, or hazardous nature.
- Freedom of Expression
In instructional settings, Students shall have the right to express any views pertinent to the subject matter of the course in which they are enrolled; however, the Instructor shall always be the sole judge of the relevancy of subject matter and shall always have authority over the conduct of the instructional session. Students are responsible for meeting the standards of any course for which they are enrolled. Where there are disputes having to do with the learning process, the Instructor, by virtue of training, education, and experience, is the leader and manager of that process, whose decision shall be given appropriate deference by the College.
- Freedom of Association
Students are free to organize and join organizations and groups to promote any legal purpose, whether it is religious, political, educational,
recreational, or social.
Registered Student Organizations (RSO) may invite speakers to campus provided that they follow the requirements for use of HCC facilities, and provided that the event is compatible with the policies of the College, with prior approval of the Coordinator of Student Activities and the RSO's advisor. The RSO must make clear to the academic and larger community that sponsorship of guest speakers does not necessarily imply approval or endorsement of the views expressed either by the sponsoring group or the institution.
Registered Student Organizations and Teams may be charged with violations of this Student Code. A Registered Student Organization and its officers and members of a Team and its captains and players may be held collectively and individually responsible for violations of this Student Code by those associated with the Registered Student Organization or Team, where there is evidence that such violations were committed with the consent or encouragement of the Registered Student Organization's leaders or officers or the Team's captains.
The College is committed to a policy against legally impermissible, arbitrary, or unreasonable discriminatory practices. All groups, including the administration, faculty, student government, and programs sponsored by the College, are governed by this policy of nondiscrimination. The College's policy on nondiscrimination is to comply fully with applicable law.
V. Prohibited Conduct
Students found to have committed or attempted to commit any of the following types of misconduct are subject to disciplinary action. This list of violations is intended to provide students with general notice of the types of behavior prohibited by this Student Code, and it is not meant to be an all-inclusive list of every possible violation.
- Failure of students to possess HCC student identification card; failure to furnish said identification upon the request of a College official; or forgery, alteration, or misuse of said identification (including possessing and/or using or attempting to use another student's ID card). Failure of non-credit students to possess photo identification or failure to furnish said identification upon the request of a College official, or a forgery, alteration, or misuse of said identification;
- Failure to comply with directions of College officials acting in the performance of their duties;
- Intentionally providing false information to a College official or on any College application, transcript, or other record; forgery, alteration or misuse of any College record, regardless of when the College learns of such forgery, alteration or misuse. Thus, if at any time the College learns that information provided to its admissions office in support of an offer of admissions is materially false, the College retains the right to expel a student promptly upon receipt of such information (including possessing and/or using or attempting to use another student's ID card);
- Academic dishonesty, such as:
- Cheating, which includes but is not limited to knowingly using or attempting to use: (a) any form of unauthorized assistance in taking quizzes, tests, or examinations, (b) any unauthorized materials, equipment, devices, information, sources, or study aids in carrying out any assignment; and (c) behavior specifically prohibited by the Instructor in the course syllabus or class discussion;
- Fabrication, which means intentional and unauthorized falsification or invention of any information or citation in any assignment or academic exercise;
- Facilitating academic dishonesty, which means knowingly helping or attempting to help another to commit an act of academic dishonesty;
- Plagiarism, which includes but is not limited to knowingly representing the work of another as one's own; or
- Copyright infringement, which means copying or downloading the work of another and distributing or displaying to others without the creator's permission, unless such copying is determined to be permissible fair use within the meaning of the Technology, Education and Copyright Harmonization Act of 2002 ("The TEACH Act");
- Obstructing or acting in a manner disruptive or disturbing to the normal educational functions of the College, administration of the College, disciplinary procedures, or other College activities;
- Participating in an on-campus or off-campus demonstration, riot, or activity that disrupts the normal operations of the College, adversely affects the College, and/or infringes on the rights of other members of the College community; and leading or inciting others to disrupt scheduled and/or normal activities on the HCC campus and at College-sponsored and College-supervised functions;
- Obstructing or restraining the movement and passage of persons and/or vehicles;
- All forms of violence; threatening behavior; verbal/non-verbal harassment; physical abuse; verbal abuse; bullying (including cyber-bullying, which is described in item
T.); harassment based upon race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, veteran, sexual orientation, marital status or any other characteristic protected by law or by the policies and practices of HCC; stalking; coercion; and/or other conduct that threatens or endangers the health or safety of any persons;
- Stealing, concealing, defacing, damaging, or misusing College property; or any property associated with a College activity; or the property of a member of the College community or campus visitor; or unauthorized possession of College property;
- Unauthorized entry to or use of College and off-campus properties, including the failure to leave any of the buildings or grounds after being requested to do so by a College official or College Public Safety officer;
- Attending an instructional session without properly registering or
without the express permission of the Instructor, or bringing unregistered
visitors, including children, to an instructional setting;
- Leaving a child for whom you are responsible (ages 12 and under) unattended
at anytime while on campus or at a College-sponsored or College-supervised
Possession, consumption, sale, and serving of alcoholic
beverages on campus or at any College-sponsored or College-supervised
activity, except as expressly permitted in writing by the College;
- Sale, distribution, use, or possession of illegal drugs or controlled dangerous substances as defined by Maryland law except as expressly permitted by law;
- Being under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs;
- Gambling, disorderly conduct, or lewd or obscene conduct or expression;
- Possession or use of firearms, explosives, or any other dangerous or deadly weapon, or dangerous chemicals on campus or at any College-sponsored or College-supervised function, except as expressly permitted in writing by the College. An instrument designed to look like a weapon, which is used by a student in a manner that harms, threatens, or causes fear to others, is included within the definition of weapon;
- Tobacco use in all areas of the campus, including parking lots and personal vehicles;
- Using electronic or other devices to audio or video record any person, while on HCC campus or at College-supervised or
College-sponsored activities, without his/her prior knowledge or effective consent. This prohibited conduct includes secretly taking pictures of
another person in a locker room or restroom and tape recording or filming classroom activities, including lectures without the Instructor's
permission and lectures shall not be republished or posted without an Instructor's consent;
- Failure to comply with the College's Computer Use Guidelines, which are available at the Library, the
Office of Student Activities, and the College website, including utilizing any electronic device for the purpose of engaging in any form of academic
misconduct or illegal activity such as file sharing that violates copyrights, downloading copyrighted materials such as music or movies, and
engaging in bullying activities or other harassment via campus computers or campus network that adversely affect fellow students, faculty members, and
- Bullying and cyber-bullying: All HCC students have the right to an educational environment that is safe, appropriate for academic achievement, and free from any form of harassment. Accordingly, as used in this Student Code, "bullying, harassment, or intimidation" means intentional conduct, including unwanted verbal, physical, or written conduct or an intentional Electronic Communication that creates a hostile educational environment by substantially interfering with a student's educational benefits, opportunities, or performance, or with a student's physical or psychological well-being and is:
- motivated by an actual or a perceived personal characteristic including race, national origin, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, ancestry, physical attributes, socioeconomic status, familial status, or physical or mental ability or disability; or,
- threatening or seriously intimidating; and,
- occurs on College property, at a College activity or event; or,
- substantially disrupts the orderly operation of the College.
Additionally, no student may use any form of Electronic Communication for the bullying, harassment or intimidation of another member of the College community, regardless of whether the Electronic Communication originates on or off HCC's campus.
- No student may recklessly or intentionally participate in, do an act or create a situation that subjects a student to the risk of serious bodily injury for the purpose of an initiation into any student organization, regardless of whether such organization is sponsored by HCC.
- Violation of any College policy, rule, or regulation.
- Violation of any federal, state, or local law.
VI. Student Code Procedures
- Filing a Complaint: Any member of the College community may file a complaint against any student for violation of the Student Code. The complaint should be filed online via the
Report Form for Code of Conduct Violation on OwlNet as soon as possible after the event, preferably within ten (10) work days of the incident giving rise to the Complaint. Anonymous complaints will not be processed. If a complaint involves an act of cyber-bullying, the Complainant is encouraged to retain any digital records or files containing the offensive material, and if possible, its information about its origin, which should be submitted as an attachment to the online Report Form for Code of Conduct Violation for investigation and follow up.
- Investigation: The Student Conduct Official will investigate the allegations through interviews and documentation, including examination
by HCC's IT department of digital information provided to him/her, in order to determine if there is a reasonable basis to believe that a violation may
have occurred. If there is no basis for the Complaint, it will be dismissed. If the case is not dismissed, then the Student Conduct Official
will proceed with an Administrative Conference.
- Notification: If after an investigation the Student Conduct Official, based on reasonably reliable information, believes the Respondent may have violated one or more provisions of the Student Code, the Student Conduct Official shall issue written notice to the Respondent. The notice will be sent to the Respondent via his/her College email account, via a personal email address provided to the College, or via certified mail to his/her address of record when necessary. Notice will be provided at least two (2) work days prior to the Administrative Conference. The notice will describe the alleged violation(s), directions for the Respondent to schedule a meeting, and consequences for failing to respond to the notice.
- Administrative Conference: The Student Conduct Official, who may be assisted by another College official, shall conduct an Administrative Conference with the
Respondent. This conference is the opportunity to review the alleged violation(s) and evidence against the Respondent (including the identity of
and any witnesses and the substance of their statements), provide an explanation of the disciplinary process, review the Respondent's history at
the College, review the Respondent's account of the situation and any relevant facts, and discuss the options for resolution.
- Failure to Comply: Failure to attend the Administrative Conference will result in an additional violation (i.e., failure to comply with directions of College
officials acting in performance of their duties), and/or may result in a decision about the Complaint and sanction without the Respondent's input,
and/or a dean's hold will be placed on the Respondent's account. The dean's hold will prevent the Respondent from further records and registration
transactions with the College. A Respondent who has been charged with an alleged violation(s) and who withdraws from the College or stops attending
before the disciplinary process is completed will be required to complete the disciplinary process upon re-enrollment to the College or before
obtaining any education records, including transcripts.
- Violation of Law:
- The Department of Public Safety may charge or arrest students and/or report possible violations of the law to appropriate
legal authorities. The College may advise off-campus authorities of the existence of the Student Code and how such matters will be handled
internally within the College community. The College will cooperate fully with law enforcement authorities and other agencies in the enforcement of
civil or criminal law on campus and in the conditions imposed by criminal courts for the rehabilitation of student violators.
- College disciplinary proceedings may be instituted against a student charged with
violation of any federal, state, or local law which is also a violation of this Student Code. Proceedings under this Student Code may be carried out
prior to, simultaneously with, or following civil or criminal proceedings on- or off-campus. The outcome of the criminal proceedings will have no
bearing on the HCC disciplinary proceedings.
- Decision: In cases that are not referred to the Student Conduct Review Board, the Student Conduct Official will decide if it is more likely than not that a student committed the alleged violation or determine that there was no violation.
If the Student Conduct Official decides that a violation of the Student Code has occurred, s/he will also decide the appropriate sanction. The
severity of the violation, prior disciplinary history, and other relevant circumstances will be considered in determining the appropriate resolution.
In cases involving allegations of discrimination or Title IX violations, the Director of Human Resources and Employee Development and/or Title IX
Coordinator will be part of the decision making process.
- No violation: The student will receive written notice that s/he is found not responsible, no further action is needed, and no official disciplinary file will be maintained.
- Found Responsible: The Student Conduct Official will notify the student of the sanction in writing. An appeal of the decision may be made to the Vice President for Student Affairs and Institutional Effectiveness, or designee, in writing within ten (10) work days of the date of the email or letter notifying the Student of the decision, and, if applicable, any sanction.
- Referral to the Student Conduct Review Board: In cases where the Student Conduct Official determines that the alleged violation, if proven, may appropriately result in a sanction of suspension, expulsion, revocation of admission, credit or degree, or withholding a degree, the case may be referred to the Student Conduct Review Board (SCRB) for deliberation and determination of resolution. The referral to the SCRB will be in writing and shall include a statement of the alleged violation, as well as a brief statement of the facts concerning each violation.
- Files and Records:
- Complaints will result in a disciplinary file in the name of the Respondent, which shall be voided and expunged if the Respondent is found not responsible for the charges. The files of Respondents found guilty of any charges against them will be retained as a disciplinary record for three years from the date of the incident. In cases of expulsion, all documents related to the violation shall be maintained permanently. The disciplinary file includes notice of charges, evidence of the charges, notice of administrative conference date and/or student conduct review board date, notice of sanctions, copy of complaint, appeal correspondence, and transcript of hearing (if applicable). The disciplinary file will be maintained in accordance with Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act ("FERPA") guidelines. A Student shall have the right to appeal the placement of information in his/her record pursuant to the rights afforded the Student under ("FERPA"), specifically 20 U.S.C. Section 1232g(a) (2). This means the right to contest the information being placed in his/her student record through an appeal to the Registrar, which shall be limited to the issue of whether the contested record is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the privacy rights of the student. Also in accordance with FERPA, students (or parents, as the case may be) shall have the opportunity to insert into such record(s) a written explanation regarding the content of such record(s).
- The College may release information to parents or legal guardians of a Student under age 21 when the College determines that the Student has violated any local, state, or federal laws or campus policy regarding the use of alcohol or other drugs.
- The College may disclose the decision of disciplinary proceedings to the victim(s) when a Student is found responsible for a crime of violence or non-forcible sex offense. The disclosure will include the name of the Student, the violation committed, and any sanction imposed by the College against the Student who committed such violation.
- The College may report general discipline information or disclose records of disciplinary proceedings to parents or legal guardians of dependent Students (within the meaning of the federal Internal Revenue Code) for any Student Code violation.
VII. Disciplinary Hearing Guidelines
- Student Conduct Review Board Composition and Purpose
- The Student Conduct Review Board (SCRB) is convened to review and take action on cases referred by the Student
Conduct Official. The SCRB shall be composed of five (5) voting members chosen from and by the College Advisory Council, consisting of: one (1)
full-time instructional faculty, two (2) full-time students, one (1) administrator, and one (1) staff person. The SCRB shall elect its own
Chairperson who must be a College employee. The Coordinator of Student Activities serves in an ex-officio capacity as the administrative
coordinator and record-keeper of the SCRB. The SCRB must have five (5) members in attendance to conduct the hearing, unless the student waives
this requirement, in which case as few as three (3) members may be in attendance in order to conduct a hearing.
- After the hearing, the SCRB shall determine (by majority vote) whether the Respondent has violated
each section of the Student Code that the Respondent is charged with
violating. This determination shall be made on the basis of whether it is
more likely than not that the Respondent violated the Student Code. Once
the SCRB determines whether the Respondent violated each section of the
Student Code he/she is charged with violating, it will (by majority vote)
choose one of the following actions: (1) dismiss the case or (2) return the
case to the Student Conduct Official for assignment of a sanction or (3)
assign a sanction. The SCRB's decision shall be submitted in writing to the
Student Conduct Official and the Respondent within ten (10) work days from
the conclusion of the hearing.
- Disciplinary Hearing Timeframe
- If the Student Conduct Official decides it is appropriate to refer
the case to the SCRB for review and action, such referral shall be made in
writing within five (5) work days of the Administrative Conference.
- The hearing shall be held within twenty (20) work days after the Student
Conduct Official's referral to the SCRB, unless the Respondent consents to
additional time. The parties shall receive written notice of the date at
least five (5) work days in advance of the hearing. Either the Student
Conduct Official or the Respondent may request a change in the date of the
hearing, which request may be granted for good cause.
- Where a Respondent has been charged with multiple violations arising out of a
single occurrence or a series of related offenses, a single hearing may be
held on all violations. A Respondent may request a consolidated hearing of
multiple violations of an unrelated nature within five (5) work days of the
hearing notification date. Where more than one Respondent is charged with a
violation arising out of a single occurrence or out of connected multiple
occurrences, or the same facts, a single hearing may be held for all
Respondents charged. Respondents may request that their case be
consolidated with others, or separated from others, within five (5) work
days of the hearing notification date. The Student Conduct Official shall
have five (5) work days to respond to any requests about the consolidation
or separation of cases, and the Coordinator of Student Activities
(ex-officio of the SCRB) shall make the final determination regarding
consolidation or separation of cases five (5) work days thereafter. A
Respondent who requests consolidation or separation of cases shall have
consented to an extension of the time by which the hearing will be held,
and the hearing will be held within ten (10) work days of the final
decision of the Coordinator of Student Activities.
- Disciplinary Hearing Procedures
- At the hearing, the members of the SCRB shall designate a Chairperson, who shall rule on evidentiary questions (in
consultation with other members of the SCRB) and who shall make other determinations regarding the conduct of the proceedings, as noted below.
- Hearings shall be conducted in private. Students may not waive the private nature of such hearings, but the SCRB has the sole discretion to
allow a hearing to be opened at the Student's request. The decision denying such request shall be final.
- The Student Conduct Official shall present the case to the SCRB. The Student Conduct Official may appoint a
staff member to act as his or her designee in the matter, who shall have
the same authority as the Student Conduct Official.
The Respondent shall
be responsible for presenting his or her own case and may be accompanied by
an advisor, who is there for consultation and support, but is not permitted
to present the case, argue, or question witnesses. Any costs incurred by
any party for disciplinary proceedings shall be the responsibility of the
party incurring such costs.
- The Student Conduct Official, the
Respondent, and the SCRB shall have the right to present witnesses. The
College will arrange the attendance of the Complainant. The College shall
make reasonable efforts to arrange the attendance of other possible
witnesses who are members of the College community, if identified by the
Student Conduct Official and/or Respondent at least two (2) work days prior
to the SCRB hearing. Witnesses will be expected to provide information to,
cooperate fully with, and answer questions from the SCRB. Questions may be
suggested by the Respondent and/or Student Conduct Official to be answered
by each other or by other witnesses, which should be submitted to the SCRB
in advance of the hearing. Additional questions which are elicited by
virtue of the testimony being presented to the SCRB may be submitted during
the hearing by either the Respondent and/or Complainant to the SCRB's
Chairperson, who shall have the discretion to present such questions to
witnesses, but who alone shall present questions, rather than the parties.
- Pertinent records, exhibits, and written statements (including
student impact statements) may be accepted as information for consideration
by the SCRB at the sole discretion of the Chairperson. Where computerized
or other digital evidence is to be presented, the SCRB shall provide
appropriate audiovisual or computer hardware in order to examine such
- There shall be a single verbatim record, which shall
be in the form of an audio tape recording, of all hearings before the SCRB.
Deliberations, however, shall not be recorded. The recordings and other
hearing materials presented during such hearings, as well as the resultant
decision, shall remain the property of the College and will be maintained
in accordance with FERPA guidelines, as applicable.
- All procedural questions relating to student discipline, including the conduct of any disciplinary hearing, are subject to the final decision of the ex-officio (Coordinator of Student Activities).
- The SCRB may accommodate concerns for the personal safety, well being, and/or fears of
confrontation of the Complainant, Respondent, and/or other witnesses during the hearing by providing alternative means of presenting the testimony of
such witnesses, including but not limited to: separate facilities, the use of a visual screen, and/or permitting the participation of witnesses by
telephone, videophone, closed circuit television, written statement, or other means, as determined in the sole judgment by the Student Conduct
Official or his/her designee to be appropriate.
- An appeal of a SCRB decision may be made to the Vice President for Student Affairs and Institutional Effectiveness, or designee, in writing within ten (10) work
days of the date of the email or letter notifying the Student of the decision and, if applicable, any sanction. An appeal shall be limited to a
review of the full report of the SCRB for the purpose of determining whether its decision was supported by the evidence and was not arbitrary.
An appeal may not result in a more severe sanction for the Respondent than that meted out by the SCRB in its decision or by the Student Conduct
Official. The Vice President shall take one of the three following actions: (1) uphold, (2) revise, or (3) dismiss, the sanction imposed by the SCRB or
Student Conduct Official. The decision of the Vice President shall be final.
The following formal disciplinary actions may be imposed upon Students. More than one of the sanctions below may be imposed for any single violation.
- WARNING: Notice, orally or in writing that a Student is violating or has violated institutional regulations.
- EDUCATIONAL PROJECT: This sanction requires a Student to complete a specific educational assignment as determined by the Student Conduct Official or his/her designee.
- CAMPUS AND/OR COMMUNITY SERVICE: This sanction requires a Student to perform a specified number of service hours. The Student Conduct Official or his/her designee shall determine the specific assignment.
- RESTITUTION: Reimbursement for loss, damage or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary material replacement.
- FINES: Previously established and published fines may be imposed.
- DISCIPLINARY PROBATION: Written notice that continuation or repetition of conduct found wrongful, during a designated period of time not exceeding one year, will be cause for more severe disciplinary action such as suspension or expulsion.
- LOSS OF PRIVILEGES: The Student is excluded from participation in privileged or extracurricular institutional activities, including intercollegiate athletics, registered student organizations, access to campus facilities, and loss of campus employment opportunities.
- SUSPENSION FROM COURSE(S): Separation of the Student from participation in particular course(s) for a period of time not to exceed one semester.
- SUSPENSION FROM THE COLLEGE: Separation of the Student from the College for a specified period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified.
- EXPULSION FROM THE COLLEGE: Permanent separation of the Student from the College.
- REVOCATION OF ADMISSION, CREDIT, AND/OR DEGREE: Admission to, credit earned, or a degree awarded from the College may be revoked for fraud, misrepresentation, or other violation of College standards in obtaining the degree, or for other serious violations committed by a student prior to graduation.
- WITHHOLDING DEGREE: The College may withhold awarding a degree otherwise earned until the completion of the process set forth in this Student Code, including the completion of all sanctions imposed, if any.
- Interim Suspension
retains the authority to impose an interim suspension, prior to a
resolution of the charges against the Respondent, if such action is
necessary to (a.) preserve the safety of persons or property and/or (b.) if
the student poses an ongoing threat of disruption of, or interference with,
the normal operations of the College. During the interim suspension, a
Respondent shall be denied access to the campus and/or off-campus sites
(including classes) and/or all other College activities or privileges, for
which the Respondent may be otherwise eligible, as the Vice President for
Student Affairs and Institutional Effectiveness (VPSAIE) or his/her
designee, may determine to be appropriate. The Respondent will immediately
be notified of the interim suspension and may request an interim suspension
review within two (2) work days of the effective date of the interim
suspension notice. The interim suspension notice will contain instructions
for how to request a review. During the review, the Respondent will be
given an opportunity to demonstrate why his or her continued presence on
campus does not constitute a threat to the campus community or to the
continuance of normal College functions. Following the interim suspension
review, the VPSAIE will make an administrative decision to either continue
or cancel the interim suspension. An interim suspension will remain in
effect until (1) a final decision has been made concerning the alleged
Student Code violation(s), and/or (2) the VPSAIE determines that the
reasons for imposing the interim suspension no longer exist. As part of the
interim suspension process, the Respondent may be required to submit to an
immediate medical evaluation. A Respondent placed on interim suspension
that is unable to complete course work for the semester in which the
interim suspension was issued may be withdrawn and given a grade of "W".
IX. Procedures for Academic Dishonesty and Disruptive Behavior During Instructional Time
- Academic Dishonesty
The administration and faculty take a firm stand and maintain a united commitment in eliminating and preventing academic
dishonesty among Students. Each Instructor must state in writing the consequences of academic dishonesty and Students should have prior
knowledge of the nature of penalties. Before penalties are imposed, there should be clear evidence of cheating. The Instructor is required to notify
the Division supervisor of the violation in writing. If the penalty represents failure in the course or seriously jeopardizes the Student's attainment of a passing grade, the Division supervisor and Instructor must
concur with the penalty, and the Student shall promptly be notified in writing and given the option of appealing the decision to the Vice
President for Academic Affairs, whose decision is final. At any point, the faculty member or the Division supervisor is expected to consult with the
Student Conduct Official concerning the facts of the situation. At minimum, the Student Conduct Official shall be informed if the student is found to
have committed a Student Code violation and may take further action and/or may impose additional sanctions. A Student's educational record may reflect
a finding that the Student engaged in academic dishonesty.
- Disruptive Behavior During Instructional Time
Students are free to pursue their educational goals. Appropriate opportunities for learning in an instructional setting and through on- and off- campus experiences shall be provided by the institution. The College also recognizes that in the learning process there are two parties, the Instructor and the Student, and that the learning process requires active participation on the part of both parties. The College further acknowledges that Students can best learn in an atmosphere free of disruption, distraction, or misconduct. An Instructor thus has the prerogative to suspend a Student from the instructional setting for one instructional session when in the Instructor's judgment such action is warranted in the best and immediate interest of instruction.
If the Student refuses to leave the instructional setting, the Department of Public Safety will be notified and a student conduct violation will result. If the Student does not comply with the Department of Public Safety, law enforcement authorities may be notified. The Instructor will notify the Division supervisor, with a copy to the Student Conduct Official, for record keeping purposes, of the disruptive behavior in writing within twenty-four (24) hours of the incident and will discuss the suspension with the Division supervisor as soon as possible after the action occurs in an attempt to resolve the issue prior to the next instructional session. If warranted, the Division supervisor may assign the Student to another section of the course or provide another instructional format.
If the Instructor and the Division supervisor concur that the Student should not be permitted to continue participating with the instructional activity, the Division supervisor will notify the Student Conduct Official in writing of this recommendation and the Instructor will complete and submit an incident report online via the Report Form for Code of Conduct Violation on OwlNet. The Student Conduct Official will notify the Student and proceed with a Student Code violation complaint against the Student. The faculty member and Division supervisor will cooperate with the Student Conduct Official, who will conduct an administrative conference for the purpose of reaching a resolution. The Student Conduct Official will notify the Student of the sanction in writing, or refer the matter to the SCRB, with a copy to the Division supervisor.
X. Interpretation and Review
- Any question of interpretation regarding the Student Code shall be referred to the Student Conduct Official or his or her designee for final determination.
- Any recommendations for modifications of this Student Code shall be given to the Student Government Association and Student Conduct Official and shall go through the College's governance process for approval before being put into effect.
Adapted from Stoner, II, E.N. (2008). Revising Your Student Conduct Code. In Student Conduct Practice: The Complete Guide for Student Affairs Professionals (pp.
46-70). Sterling, VA: Lancaster and Waryold. Adapted from Stoner, E. (2008). A Twenty-First Century Model Student Conduct Code. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing.
STUDENT GRIEVANCE PROCESS
The purpose of the General Grievance Process for Students is to provide a clearly stated, timely, and accessible method of recourse to students who feel that a particular action or series of actions on the part of a Harford Community College employee has violated accepted or stated institutional practices and standards. Student grievances appropriate to this policy include, but are not necessarily limited to:
- concerns regarding ethical and professional behavior of employees;
- arbitrary application of current College policies by employees; and
- perceived violations by College employees of accepted rights of students in institutions of higher learning such as the right to free expression and the right to assemble.
This process is intended to be investigative rather than adversarial and is not to be used when the grievance involves an alleged violation of the Student Code of Conduct, Sexual Harassment policy, Nondiscrimination policy, or to appeal other institutional actions/policies which possess their own appeal process. Refer to the HCC College Catalog for these procedures.
Preceding Step 1, a student may consult with one of the Associate Vice Presidents for Student Development or an Academic Dean to clarify the issues involved and identify the appropriate system for redress of the grievance. If the student decides to proceed with the grievance process, he/she must adhere to the following procedures as outlined below. Time limits may be extended by the supervisor with the jurisdiction over the grievance.
Step 1: Within ten (10) work days* of the occurrence of the issue/incident, the student must discuss the issue/incident being grieved with the employee involved to seek resolution.
Step 2: If the student is not satisfied with the outcome of Step 1, the student may proceed with the grievance by completing the "Student General Grievance Form" and submitting it to the employee's immediate supervisor within five (5) work days of completing Step 1.
Step 3: Within seven (7) work days of receipt of the form, and to ensure a full understanding of all perspectives, the supervisor or designee will: (1) discuss the issue with the involved employee and request a written account of the incident; and (2), meet with and discuss the grievance with the student. The supervisor or designee may also call a meeting with other parties to assist in resolution.
Within seven (7) work days of the meeting with the student, the supervisor or designee will inform the student and the employee in writing of the decision.
Step 4: The student may appeal the decision in writing to the immediate supervisor's supervisor within five (5) work days of the immediate supervisor's decision by sending a copy of the completed "Student General Grievance Form" to the immediate supervisor's supervisor.
Step 5: Upon receipt of the written appeal, the supervisor's supervisor will review the matter and make a final decision regarding the grievance, which will be communicated in writing to the student, involved employees, and immediate supervisor within ten (10) work days of receipt of the written appeal. This decision is final and ends the appeal/grievance process for the student.
*A work day is defined as a day when the College is open and does not include weekends or holidays when the College is closed.
Student General Grievance Form
The following form is to be used in the General Grievance Process for Students as noted in the College Catalog and OwlNet. Within ten (10) work days of the occurrence of the issue/incident, the student must discuss the issue/incident being grieved with the employee involved to seek resolution. If resolution is not reached at this level, the student must complete this Grievance Form and submit it to the employee's immediate supervisor within five (5) weekdays. This written documentation allows for clarity and consistency in reviewing each particular situation.
Download a printable version of the Student General Grievance Form (PDF).
STUDENT PRIVACY INFORMATION
Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:
- The right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days of the day the College receives a request for access. Students should submit to the Registration and Records Office a written request that identifies the record(s) they wish to inspect. The College official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the College official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
- The right to request an amendment of the student's education records that the student believes is inaccurate. Students should write the College official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate. If the College decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the College will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
- The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. In order to consent to disclosure, including to parents, students must contact the Registration and Records Office to complete the FERPA release form.
- The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the College to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Ave., S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20202-5920
Exceptions that permit disclosure without consent are:
- To school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the College in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position
(including law enforcement unit personnel); a person or company with whom the College has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, collection agent, or
psychological service); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; organizations conducting studies in order to improve instruction; or a student serving on an
official committee or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.
- To parents of a dependent student as defined by the Internal Revenue Code.
- To persons or organizations providing financial support to the student.
- To a person in response to a lawfully issued subpoena or court order.
- To persons in an emergency in order to protect the health and safety of students and other individuals.
- To other institutions in which a student is seeking to enroll, is already currently enrolled, or has previously been enrolled.
FERPA Directory Information
FERPA allows the College to release student directory information to anyone who requests it unless the student specifically asks that this not be done. Requests to withhold release of information must be submitted in writing to the Registration and Records Office.
Information that HCC considers student directory information includes:
- Student Name
- Academic Honors and Awards
- Program of Study
- Dates of Enrollment
- Full-Time/Part-Time Status
- Degrees/Certificates Awarded
- Participation in Officially Recognized Activities and Sports
The Solomon Amendment is a federal law that mandates that institutions receiving federal funding must give military recruiters access to campus and to lists of students, including personally identifiable student information. The Solomon Amendment supersedes FERPA.
For more information regarding FERPA, please contact the Registration and Records Office at 443-412-2222.