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Student Code of Conduct

Anna Maria Student Handbook

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Code of Conduct

Preamble

As an academic community centered in the Catholic Tradition, Anna Maria College expects all members of the college community to act in a responsible and ethical manner and to uphold the values, rules, and regulations of the College. The principles of individual honor, integrity, responsibility, and respect for the rights of others are essential to student conduct in both academic and student affairs life.

Statement of Student Rights and Responsibilities

In exercising the rights below, students are expected to maintain maturity and civility. No right specified here is meant to be construed as enabling students to infringe upon the individual rights of others or of the community as a whole.

A. student has the right:

  1. To an education, to organize his/her personal life and behavior, and to pursue individual activities, except when those activities interfere with the rights of others or violate College, local, state, or federal policies.
  2. To the presumption of student innocence and genuineness by the Faculty, Administration, and staff in all disciplinary processes.
  3. To the protection of fundamental fairness in the administrative and disciplinary process as provided for in this code of conduct.
  4. To impartial advice from one person within the College community during all aspects of the discipline process. The advisor’s role will be limited to consultation with the advisee.
  5. To the expectation and preservation of privacy, to the extent possible, in the investigation and hearing procedure of any administrative or disciplinary process.
  6. To have access to a clear appeals process.

Standards of Conduct

Standards of Conduct

The purpose of providing a list of possible misconducts is to give students general notice of behavior that is expected and behavior that is prohibited by the College. The Standards of Non-Academic Conduct are not written with the specificity of a criminal statute and are not intended to be interpreted with the specificity of a criminal statute. Any student found to have committed or to have attempted to commit the following misconduct is subject to the disciplinary sanctions outlined in Section II.

Allegations of harassment or discrimination because of sex or alleged acts of sexual violence, assault or misconduct will generally be handled initially under AMC’s Title IX Policy. However, AMC reserves the right to initiate proceedings or seek discipline or dismissal under this Code of Conduct for actions, while not found to violate AMC’s Title IX policy, nonetheless, may or do violate this Code of Conduct.

  1. Violation of AMC policy published in hard copy or available electronically on the AMC website.
  2. The intentional physical harm or injury to oneself, or the intentional, or attempted, or threat of physical harm to others, or the assault or battery, sexual assault, harassment, stalking, or hazing of another member of the College community.
  3. Verbal, written, or electronically transmitted (including but not limited to phone and/or computer) abuse, threats, intimidation, bullying, harassment, stalking, coercion, and/or other conduct which threatens, has the intent to cause fear in, has the intent to cause substantial emotional distress to, has the intent to control, or endangers the health or safety of any person.
  4. Bias incidents, hate crimes, and/or other actions which are committed against a person or property that are motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender’s bias against an individual or group because of the individual or group’s actual or perceived status as protected by law.
  5. Possession of firearms, explosives, incendiary devices, ammunition, pepper spray, mace, stun-gun, other weapons, and/or dangerous chemicals on AMC premises or at AMC sponsored events and/or use of any such item, even if legally procured, in a manner that harms, threatens, or causes fear to others.
  6. The intentional unsanctioned use of, abuse, destruction, misappropriation, or vandalism of the private property of other members of the community or of college property, including but not limited to physical property, computer files and/or an individual’s identification and/or password(s); theft of property and/or services; knowingly possessing stolen property; and/or taking property of another without consent, even with an intent to return the property.
  7. Unauthorized possession, duplication, or use of keys to any AMC premises; or unauthorized entry to or use of AMC premises. Except in case of emergency, entering upon, crossing or using rooftops or stairwell roofs, using windows as a means of ingress or egress, and/or scaling the exterior of any building.
  8. The intentional disruption or obstruction of legitimate College operations or activities.
  9. The intentional unsanctioned use of, abuse, obstruction, destruction, misappropriation, or vandalism of the CCTV surveillance system.
  10. The violation of the Anna Maria College alcohol policy.
  11. The violation of the Anna Maria College drug policy
  12. The violation of any other College policies, published in hard copy or available electronically on the AMC website including, but not limited to those on computer use, hazing, on-campus living, sexual harassment, non-discrimination, and/or Campus Dining Hall Policy.
  13. The inability or unwillingness to carry on student responsibilities.
  14. The apparent violation of any Federal, State or local law.
  15. Failure to comply with the direction of AMC administrators or law enforcement officers acting in the performance of their duties and/or failure to identify oneself or one’s guests to these persons when instructed to do so. Use, sale, or possession of false identification on college property or at Anna Maria sponsored events.
  16. Setting off false alarms or making other false emergency reports, misusing or tampering with college emergency equipment, interfering with emergency personnel in the conduct of their duty.
  17. Falsifying, altering or forging any official college records or documents and/or employing official College documents or records for purposes of misrepresentation.
  18. Conduct which occurs on college property, at college sponsored activities, and off campus if it adversely affects the Anna Maria College community and/or the pursuit of the College’s mission or objectives.
  19. Conduct that is disorderly, lewd, or indecent; breach of peace; or aiding, abetting or procuring another person to breach the peace on college property or at functions sponsored by the college, or in which the Anna Maria College community participates.
  20. Any unauthorized use of electronic or other devices to make an audio, video, or digital record of any person while on Anna Maria College premises without his/her prior knowledge, or without his/her effective consent when such a recording is likely to cause emotional distress to the subject(s) of the recording. This includes, but is not limited to, surreptitiously taking pictures of another person in a facility or area where privacy is assumed (gym locker room, restroom, and residence hall room). The storing, sharing, and/or distribution of such records by any means is prohibited.
  21. Providing information to individuals involved in gambling activities concerning varsity athletics competition; or participating in any gambling activity that involves varsity athletics or amateur athletics, through a bookmaker, a parlay card or any other method employed by organized gambling.
  22. The intentional abuse of the Conduct Code System, including, but not limited to: the failure to obey the summons of a College administrator; falsification, distortion, or misrepresentation of information; influencing or attempting to influence a witness or member of the Conduct Code System; failure to comply with sanctions; or any other actions that interfere, disrupt, or violate the procedural and substantive standards of the Code of Conduct and Conduct Code System.
  23. Failing to instruct guests as to College or residence hall rules and policies.
  24. Threatening or endangering the health or safety of animal(s).
  25. Retaliation, either directly or indirectly through others, against any individual involved in a disciplinary complaint or proceeding.

Enforcement

  1. The Conduct Code Administrator and the Vice President for Student Affairs have jurisdiction over the enforcement and administration of all violations of Standards of Conduct. The Conduct Code Administrator and the Vice President for Student Affairs may appoint a designee in his/her place at any time as appropriate.
  2. The College reserves the right to administer the Student Code of Conduct and proceed with the discipline process even if the student withdraws from the College, is no longer enrolled in classes, or subsequently fails to meet the definition of a student while a disciplinary matter is pending.
  3. Students continue to be subject to city, state, and federal laws while at the College, and violations of those laws may also constitute violations of the Student Code of Conduct. In such instances, the College may proceed with disciplinary action under the Student Code of Conduct independently of any criminal proceeding involving the same conduct and may impose sanctions for violation of the code even if such criminal proceeding is not yet resolved or is resolved in the student's favor.

Jurisdiction

The Student Code of Conduct applies to the on-campus conduct of all students and recognized student organizations.

The Student Code of Conduct also applies to the off-campus conduct of students and recognized student organizations in direct connection with:

  1. Academic course requirements or any credit-bearing experiences, such as, but not limited to, internships, clinical placements, practicums, field trips, study abroad, or student teaching;
  2. Any activity supporting pursuit of a degree, such as taking a class and/or engaging in research at another institution;
  3. Any activity sponsored, conducted, or authorized by the college or by student organizations including, but not limited to, athletic events, trips, conferences, seminars, and leadership trainings;
  4. Any activity that causes destruction of property belonging to the college or members of the college community or causes harm to the health or safety of members of the college community;
  5. Conduct which adversely affects the college community and/or the pursuit of its mission or objectives;
  6. Sexual harassment that causes significant disruption of the educational process of the community or an individual; or
  7. Any activity in which a police report has been filed; a summons or indictment has been issued; or an arrest for a crime of violence has occurred. 

Record Keeping

Records of all informal and formal procedures shall be kept as outlined under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA). Records shall be kept in a confidential manner as provided by in law. In no instances shall these records be available to individuals outside the College, except if required by law and with the approval of the President of the College.

Complaints

  1. Any member of the college community may file a complaint against a student for allegedly violating the Standards of Conduct. All complaints shall be prepared in writing sent via the complainant’s college email account and directed to the Conduct Code Administrator. All complaints must contain the identity of the complainant, the identity of the accused, the date of the incident, and the circumstances involved.
  2. Upon receipt of the Complaint, the Conduct Code Administrator will determine if the alleged conduct may constitute a violation of the Standards of Student Conduct. If so, the case will proceed for disciplinary action.
  3. Written reports regarding the incident (not limited to the complainant’s report), witness statements, witness interviews, relevant date and time stamped video security surveillance clips, and/or access card reader information are among the materials that may be consulted/used by the Conduct Code Administrator (or his/her designee) and/or appeals administrator (or his/her designee) at any time in the disciplinary process.

Disciplinary Action

Upon determining that there is sufficient evidence that a violation may have occurred, the Conduct Code Administrator (or his/her designee) can initiate any of the following:

  1. A conversation between the Conduct Code Administrator and the accused student(s) which results in the student(s) accepting responsibility for their actions.
  2. A Mediation conducted by the Conduct Code Administrator or his/her designee with the complainant and the accused student(s).  Mediation is never an option in a case where sexual violence has been alleged.
  3. A full investigation.

Disciplinary Meeting

A student accused of a violation(s) of the Student Code of Conduct has the right to a disciplinary meeting with the Conduct Code Official.  The student will be notified of this meeting through his/her AMC email account.  It is the responsibility of the student to check his/her AMC email and respond in a timely manner to the Conduct Code Official’s notification of the disciplinary meeting.

The Conduct Code Official may conduct a disciplinary meeting in the absence of the accused student if the student does not attend the meeting or fails to schedule a meeting within the required timeframe. A student who did not attend his/her disciplinary meeting when notified by the Conduct Code Official forfeits his/her right to appeal unless the student has been charged with sexual harassment and/or the sanctioning results in the student’s dismissal, expulsion or suspension from the College and/or dismissal, expulsion or suspension from the residence halls. 

In the case where the respondent has been charged with sexual harassment, the complainant has equal opportunity to have a meeting with the Conduct Code Official through the process above.

Right to an Advisor

 At any stage of the disciplinary process, the complainant and/or the accused student have the right to be assisted by an advisor he/she chooses, at his/her own expense (if any). The advisor must be a member in good standing of the College community and may not be an attorney. As it is the complainant’s and/or the accused student’s responsibility to participate directly in the discipline process, the advisor’s role is limited to consultation with the advisee. Advisors are not allowed to speak to nor interact directly with any Conduct Code official or designee.   A student should select as an advisor a person whose schedule allows attendance at the scheduled date and time for the discipline meetings(s) because delays will not normally be allowed due to the scheduling conflicts of an advisor.

Decision

Upon concluding the investigation, the Conduct Code Administrator’s determination shall be made on the basis of whether it is more likely than not that the accused student violated the Student Code of Conduct. This is the “preponderance of evidence” standard.  The Conduct Code Administrator may do the following:

  1. Dismiss the complaint
  2. Take no further action (no notification given)
  3. Find that a violation occurred then impose appropriate sanctions

Sanctioning

The following sanctions (alone or together) may be imposed by the Conduct Code Administrator and the Vice President for Student Affairs (or their designees) upon any student found to have violated the Student Code of Conduct:

  1. Dismissal: The student must leave the college and/or residence hall and is not eligible for readmission. Students who are dismissed from the college will be banned from the college property and any college sponsored activities.  Students who are dismissed from the residence halls will be banned from entering any AMC residence hall or being on adjacent property.  There are no refunds of tuition, room and board, or other fees for a student dismissed from the college and/or residence hall.
  2. Expulsion: The student must leave the college and/or residence hall and must reapply to the college in order to be readmitted. While under expulsion, the student may have restrictions placed upon him/her as to access to college property and/or college sponsored events. The Conduct Code Administrator may approve or deny the application for re-admittance. The sanction is for at least for one academic year. There are no refunds of tuition, room and board, or other fees for a student expelled from the College and/or residence hall.
  3. Suspension from the College: The student must leave the college and the sanction is in effect for no less than the remaining portion of the semester and no more than one academic year. While under suspension, the student may have restrictions placed upon him/her as to access to college property and/or college sponsored events. The student must reapply in order to be readmitted. The Conduct Code Administrator may approve or deny the application for re-admittance. There are no refunds of tuition, room and board, or other fees for a student suspended from the college.
  4. Residence Hall Suspension: The student must leave the residence halls for a period of time set in the sanction. While under residence hall suspension, the student will be banned from the residence halls and adjacent property.  There are no refunds for room and board for a student suspended from the residence halls.
  5. Behavior Contract: conditions that must be in place for the student to continue as an Anna Maria College student and/or to retain residency. Violation of the Behavior Contract will usually lead to suspension, expulsion, or dismissal from the college and/or residence hall. Students on Behavior Contract are not allowed to represent the college in any leadership capacity including, but not limited to, employment by the Residence Life Department, varsity athlete, Orientation Coordinator or Leader, SGA executive board, club/organization/class officer, employment by the Admissions Office, AMC Phone-a-Thon worker, or college committee.
  6. Disciplinary Probation: The sanction implies that the student’s standing at the college and/or in the residence hall is in jeopardy for the specified period of probation and that further violations will result in suspension, expulsion, or dismissal. A student on Disciplinary Probation may not be allowed to represent the college in any leadership capacity including, but not limited to, employment by the Residence Life Department, varsity athlete, Orientation Coordinator or Leader, SGA executive board, club/organization/class officer, employment by the Admissions Office, AMC Phone-a-Thon worker, or college committee.
  7. Written Reprimand: a warning which goes into the student’s disciplinary file
  8. Verbal Reprimand: a warning
  9. Restitution: including, but not limited to, the replacement value of items damaged, stolen, and/or used without authority.
  10. Payment of Fine.
  11. Assigned work for the college: hours are given and must be completed within a time frame or a fine and/or suspension is instituted.
  12. Educational Assignment: research of an assigned topic and completion of a college quality paper or other medium such as bulletin board, brochure, or presentation.
  13. Parental, Club/Organization Advisor and/or Coach Notification
  14. Suspended Sanction: sanction is assigned and then “put on hold” pending certain conditions
  15. Such other actions as the College within reason may deem appropriate.

Interim Sanctioning

If the Conduct Code Administrator (or his/her designee) has reasonable cause to believe that a student's presence on college property or at a college sponsored event poses a potential risk of harm to the health or safety of self, others and/or property, the student may be immediately suspended from all or any portion of college property and banned from off-campus College sponsored activities. This temporary suspension will remain in effect until an administrative decision is made about the interim sanction.

The student may, if no decision about the interim sanction has been rendered within five (5) working days of the imposition of the suspension, petition the Vice President for Student Affairs for reinstatement. The petition must be in writing, and must include supporting documentation or evidence that the student does not pose, or no longer poses, a potential risk of harm to the health or safety of self, others and/or to property.  All interim sanctions remain in effect during the petition.

Reservation of Rights

The College reserves the right to remove at any time any student or person whose conduct or academic standing it regards as unacceptable in a community of scholars and students.

Notification

When appropriate, the student will be notified by the Conduct Code Administrator or designee verbally or in writing. The main means of communication for all aspects of the discipline process is through AMC email. It is the responsibility of the student to check his/her AMC email regularly. 

When the accused student is found in violation of sexual harassment, the College may permissibly disclose to the complainant matters about the sanction that are directly related to the complainant.  When the accused student is found in violation of a crime of violence or non-forcible sex offense, the College may permissibly disclose to anyone the final results of the grievance procedure, which includes the accused student’s name, violations, and sanctions.  This disclosure may be made to anyone.

When the accused student faces allegations of a crime of violence or non-forcible sex offense but has not been found in violation of that conduct, the College may still permissibly disclose the final results of a disciplinary proceeding to the complainant.

Appeal Process

Purpose

The purpose of the appeals procedure is to provide a system of checks and balances in the disciplinary process. The actual facts of a case must always prevail over a “loop-hole” of procedure or policy.

A student who did not attend his/her disciplinary meeting when notified by the Conduct Code Official forfeits his/her right to appeal unless the student has been charged with sexual harassment and/or the sanctioning results in the student’s dismissal, expulsion or suspension from the College and/or dismissal, expulsion or suspension from the residence halls. 

The appeal official shall consider the basis of the appeal, the facts of the incident, and the disciplinary history of the student when rendering a decision. The appeal official may, after a review of appeal, reject the appeal, uphold the original sanction, dismiss the original sanction, modify the decision or sanction, or refer the appeal back to the original hearing official for reconsideration.

Grounds for Appeal

The following shall be considered as grounds for appeal:

  1. Procedural error
  2. Relevant, new evidence unavailable at the time of the discipline meeting
  3. Disproportionate sanction

Identifying the Appeal Official

A student seeking to appeal will be heard by the following official(s):

Title of Original Conduct Code Official Title of Corresponding Appeal Official
Resident Director Director of Residence Life
Director of Residence Life Vice President for Student Affairs
Vice President for Student Affairs College President

Appeal Process:

  1. A student seeking appeal must submit his/her intention to appeal in writing to the original conduct code official (see chart above) within one (1) working day of the issuance of the original decision.  The appeal must be sent via the student’s AMC email. Upon receiving the student’s “intent to appeal”, the original conduct code official will determine what, if any, sanctions will be suspended pending the appeal and will inform the student.
  2. The student will submit his/her formal appeal letter stating the specific ground(s) for the appeal (see above) with supporting arguments and/or documentation in writing to the original conduct code official within three (3) working days of the issuance of the original decision. The original conduct code official will forward the appeal and supporting paperwork to the appropriate parties.
  3. It shall be up to the Appeal Official to hear or dismiss the appeal. If he/she dismisses the appeal, the student shall be notified and the appeal is complete.
  4. If the Appeal Official hears the appeal, he/she will review the appeal, conduct any investigation he/she deems necessary, and will render a decision. The Appeal Official may:
  5. Uphold the decision and sanction (makes no changes)
  6. Modify the decision and/or modify the sanction
  7. Without rendering a decision, return the case to the original Conduct Code Official for his/her reconsideration
  8. The student will be notified in writing of the Appeal Official’s decision through the AMC email system and the appeal is complete.
  9. In the case where the respondent has been charged with sexual harassment, the complainant has equal opportunity to appeal the finding of the conduct code official through the process above.

Clemency After Petition

After the exhaustion of appeal, a student who has been expelled or dismissed from the College may request a reduction in sanction based on presidential clemency. The student must put the request and the basis for the request in writing to the President of the College within three working days of the conclusion of the petition. The President may choose to hear or dismiss the request for clemency. The President’s decision is final and cannot be appealed. The student will be notified of the President’s decision in writing.  In the case where the accused student has been charged with sexual harassment, the complainant has equal opportunity to request the President review the findings as described in this section. 

Administrative Procedures

The Conduct Code Administrator has the authority to establish administrative procedures to carry out the standard of conduct.