Conduct hearings are closed. Once a hearing has begun, entering and leaving the hearing is to be restricted by the Chair in order to maintain the objectivity and privacy of the proceedings. All non-academic discipline hearings will be informal and strict rules of evidence shall not apply. The student(s) in question shall be notified, in writing, of the alleged charge(s) and of the date, time, and place of the hearing. Every effort will be made to set up a hearing within seven (7) working days after an incident occurs; however, factors – such as holiday breaks, end of academic term, on-going investigation, etc. may prevent the College from meeting this guideline. Consult the Sexual Misconduct Policy for procedures dealing with issues of sexual misconduct.
The student in question may seek assistance from an advisor who must be a member of the Hendrix community (faculty, staff, or student) of the student’s choosing. A College Conduct Hearing is an internal conduct proceeding; therefore, the advisor may not be an attorney or anyone outside of the Hendrix community. The advisor may assist the student in question in preparation of his or her complaint, be present during the hearing, assist the student during the hearing, and may address the hearing body at the pleasure of the chair of the hearing body.
Responding to the Charge
For each charge, a student will be asked to enter a plea of Responsible or Not Responsible.
If the student in question accepts responsibility in a minor complaint, an appropriate College official will determine an appropriate sanction for the violation. If the student in question accepts responsibility in a major complaint, the student may choose to have his/her meeting with the College Conduct Council or Administrative Hearing Officer to determine an appropriate sanction. By pleading responsible, the student in question is waiving his or her right to appeal the merits of the allegation or any procedural matters. However, students may appeal based on severity of sanctions.
Not Responsible Pleas
If the student in question does not accept responsibility, a hearing is scheduled. In minor complaints, the student in question has a choice of having the case heard by a Peer Conduct Hearing Panel or an Administrative Hearing Officer. In major complaints, the College Conduct Council will be convened. From this point on the student in question is assumed not-responsible concerning the charges which have been leveled against him or her. It is the responsibility of the College or complainant to provide convincing evidence.
Student’s Rights in the Process
The student in question and the complainant have the right to:
- Be charged with a specific violation of College standards or policies in order to adequately prepare his/her case. Notice of the hearing will be electronically mailed or delivered via campus mailbox to the student(s) three (3) days prior to the hearing. During the hearing phase of the proceedings, it is the right of the student to only answer the charges with which he/she has been charged.
- Be present at the hearing. However, if either or both the student in question and complainant fail to appear at the hearing after being properly notified, the hearing may be held in their absence and a decision rendered accordingly, based on evidence presented.
- Present evidence by witness, or by signed written statement if a witness is unable to attend the hearing. It is the responsibility of the student in question and the complainant to notify their witnesses of the date, time, and place of the hearing. If witnesses fail to appear, the hearing may be held in their absence. Evidence must be pertinent to the charges in question. Evidence is generally restricted to written reports and witness testimony. Students must be granted access to all written materials concerning their complaint at least three (3) days prior to the hearing.
- Bring an advisor to the hearing. The advisor (who must be a current member of the Hendrix community – faculty, staff, or student) may not participate in examination of witnesses or presentation of materials or information to the hearing officer/board. The advisor’s role is limited to providing advice and consultation to the student who is charged with a policy violation.
- Question all witnesses present at the hearing.
- Be informed of the conduct outcome within two (2) working days of the decision of the hearing board.