Aerial view of the east bank campus, including Comsotck and Yudof halls

Student Conduct Process

If a Housing & Residential Life professional staff member, after reviewing incident reports and/or police reports, determines that our Community Behavioral Standards have allegedly been violated, you will receive a notification letter describing the alleged violation(s). You will be asked to attend an Administrative Conference with the RD/ARD to attempt to informally resolve the matter. Should you wish to dispute the decision made during the informal resolution, you may request a subsequent formal hearing with a board of your peers or the Coordinator of Student Conduct.

For a more complete understanding of expectations and disciplinary procedures, review the Student Conduct Code. Copies are available from the Office for Community Standards.

Administrative Conference

The administrative conference takes much less time and preparation than a formal hearing. Additionally, an administrative conference can feel less stressful and allow students to acknowledge mistakes they may have made with minimal negative attention. It allows for a candid, educational conversation with a professional staff member who can either dismiss the charges if inaccurate or help challenge the student to take responsibility for their actions and, when charges are accurate, learn how to better live within a community.

During an administrative conference, you will meet with the RD/ARD to review the incident reports and discuss the incident. You will be asked if you are responsible for the alleged violation and be given the opportunity to discuss your perspective on the incident. Based on the information presented, the RD/ARD will make a decision. If you are found responsible, a sanction(s) will be imposed. An administrative conference can be advantageous to students for several reasons.

In accepting the outcome of an administrative conference, a student is agreeing to informally resolve the allegation without going through the full disciplinary process. Because of its fair, non-threatening, and educational manner, the administrative conference is frequently used by students to resolve complaints. As this is an informal resolution process, the student has the option to accept or reject the decision. If a student chooses to decline the decision, that student must do so in writing within three business days of receiving a decision. If a student does not request a formal resolution within three business days, the administrative conference resolution becomes official. Should the student wish to have a formal hearing, the written request form for a formal hearing can be obtained from your RD/ARD and must be presented to the RD/ARD, who will then forward the request to the Coordinator of Student Conduct.

Formal Hearing

An accused student may request a formal hearing at any time in the student conduct process. Generally, a student only requests a hearing when the student and RD/ARD cannot reach agreement about the facts or severity of an incident and, therefore, cannot informally resolve the incident. A hearing must be conducted as part of the formal resolution. Whenever possible, a Student Conduct Board serves as the hearing body in formal hearings. When a Student Conduct Board is not available, the Coordinator of Student Conduct or designee serves as the hearing officer. The Student Conduct Board or Coordinator of Student Conduct strive to complete hearings within two weeks of the student’s request for a hearing, (not including periods when the University is not in session). The Student Conduct Board will not hear cases the first four weeks of school, over breaks, or during finals week.

Student Conduct Board Hearing

The Student Conduct Board (SCB) is a peer board that will resolve a complaint against a resident in a structured setting that permits the full presentation of evidence and witnesses. This educational and developmental process will permit discussion of the alleged behaviors and enable the board to arrive at a decision beneficial to the resident and the residential community.

Hearings are formal and are recorded to provide an accurate and complete record should an appeal be filed. The “Complainant” (presenter) for each case is usually the RD/ARD. The “Respondent” (resident) has the opportunity to present evidence and witness(es). Both parties and the board will have the opportunity to question evidence and testimony of witnesses. All hearings are confidential and all notes made during any meeting will be given to the Coordinator of Student Conduct.

The board will decide, In a closed deliberative session, whether the resident is responsible or not responsible for the allegations based on a preponderance of evidence and by a majority vote. Any sanctions (described in "Disciplinary Sanctions") may be imposed by the board and will be decided by a majority vote.

A procedural advisor/advocate for the accused resident is permitted. The procedural advisor’s role is to provide support and advice during a formal hearing. Advisors/advocates for residents may present evidence for the resident, but the resident is expected to speak on his/her own behalf for any questions directed toward him/her. An attorney cannot serve as an advisor in Conduct Board hearings. At any time during the hearing, should either the Conduct Board or the advisor/advocate make a determination that the meeting is becoming too adversarial, and consequently not meeting the intended goals of an educational/developmental process; either party may adjourn the meeting and refer the complaint to the Coordinator of Student Conduct for resolution.  If necessary, a language interpreter or interpreter for the hearing impaired can assist the resident. 

Disciplinary Sanctions

Housing & Residential Life’s sanctions are official actions at the University. Failure to comply with sanctions that are imposed by the Housing & Residential Life conduct system, or with specific conditions related to the safety and security of any person or property while a case is pending may result in immediate removal from the residential community.

The following sanctions, or any combination of them, may be applied to any individual resident or group of residents, for violations of Housing & Residential Life’s Community Behavioral Standards.

Administrative Action

The actions listed below are administrative decisions that are afforded to Housing & Residential Life as a function of each resident’s contract with University housing. As a result of these actions being contractual agreements, they are not subject to disciplinary appeal.

1. Non-Disciplinary Warning

In instances of less serious deviations from Housing & Residential Life's Community Behavioral Standards, a non-disciplinary warning is issued to inform the student of the policy at hand and formally warn about the consequences of continuing such behavior in violation of HRL's community standards.

2. Sanction Review

Sanction Reviews are done monthly by conduct officers to evaluate a student’s completion of assigned sanctions. If a student has failed to complete the assigned sanctions by the due date, additional sanctions are assigned, which may include relocation or contract termination if deemed appropriate. Sanction Reviews cannot be appealed.

3. Reassignment (Administrative Move)

Housing & Residential Life Staff has the authority to reassign a student when deemed necessary. Housing & Residential Life reserves the right to reassign a student to a different room/apartment based on, but not limited to, change in room designation, safety and security concerns, or consolidation.

4. Interim Suspension

Notification to the student that their contract has been suspended until a decision can be made by a judicial authority such as the Coordinator of Student Conduct, the Assistant Director of Residential Life, or the Office for Community Standards.

Appeal and Referrals

If a resident is not satisfied with the process or outcome of a formal hearing, an appeal may be filed. To appeal a disciplinary decision, a student found to have violated Housing & Residential Life’s Community Behavioral Standards must submit a notice of appeal to the Provost’s Appeal Secretary within five (5) weekdays of receipt of the original disciplinary decision. [Address: Provost's Appeal Secretary, 234 Morrill Hall, 100 Church Street, SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455.] The student would then be provided with an additional five (5) weekdays for submission to the Provost’s Appeal Secretary of a written statement specifically identifying the ground(s) for the appeal, explaining why the ground(s) for appeal are met, and providing any supporting documentation.

Some complaints of an extremely serious manner are forwarded to the Office for Community Standards (OCS) for adjudication rather than going through process outlined above. These cases will be forwarded to OCS at 211 Appleby Hall, 128 Pleasant St. SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455; (office: 612-624-6073) (fax: 612-626-2298).  If such a referral is made, you can expect to receive a communication from OCS to notify you that alleged violation(s) of the Student Conduct Code are pending. You should read that communication carefully and comply with all instructions therein.