Student Code of Conduct
View the full Student Code of Conduct in the drop-downs below or by downloading a printable version.
The Lebanon Valley College Student Code of Conduct defines the expectations of community membership that students and recognized student organizations (RSOs) are held accountable to and outlines the process and procedures the College will use when responding to alleged violations of these expectations, also called Community Standards.
The Student Code of Conduct exists to promote an environment conducive to the College’s mission: “Lebanon Valley College educates students for lifelong success through exceptional liberal-arts based undergraduate programs and professional graduate programs that are delivered in an engaging and supportive academic and co-curricular environment.” When student behavior interferes with the College’s ability to carry out its mission, the College will work with involved Lebanon Valley College community members, in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct, to address the matter.
The Student Code of Conduct supports the mission of the College by holding students accountable for violating the College’s Community Standards. The Student Code of Conduct and process aims to facilitate education, reflection, development, service to self, and service to the Lebanon Valley College and broader community.
The resolution process outlined in the Student Code of Conduct is designed to protect the Lebanon Valley College community while simultaneously challenging students and RSOs to examine their behavior and their impact on others. The resolution process is intended to be fair, equitable, and just to all parties involved and to comply with the College’s legal responsibilities.
Lebanon Valley College approaches student conduct as an educational experience, focused on student learning through self-reflection, personal responsibility, individual growth, and remediating harm. Our goal is to encourage students to be positive contributors to their current and future communities.
While there is a tendency to compare the student conduct process to the legal process, the College’s resolution processes outlined in this code are designed with an educational purpose and guiding principles. Because this code is not a criminal process, the general rules of criminal law and criminal procedures do not apply.
The Student Code of Conduct applies to all Lebanon Valley College students and RSOs as follows:
- When on College premises;
- When involved with off-campus programs, activities, and events related to or sponsored by the College; and
- When privately off-campus.
Alleged off-campus student code violations that have or could have a direct, detrimental impact on the College’s educational functions, its community members, or the local municipalities, may be resolved through the student conduct system, regardless of any actions that may be brought in civil or criminal court systems. If a student is charged in both legal and student conduct jurisdictions, the College will proceed with its internal review according to its own schedule.
All Lebanon Valley College students are required to report arrests and/or convictions that occur off campus. This includes, but is not limited to, situations that occur over breaks and summer months. Reports should be made in writing via College-issued email to the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students, email@example.com.
The College retains conduct jurisdiction over students for any misconduct occurring while the individual is a student. This jurisdiction is not affected by leave of absence, withdraw, or graduation. If sanctioned, a hold may be placed on the student’s ability to re-enroll, obtain official transcripts, engage in any College-related activities or functions and/or graduate. All sanctions must be satisfied prior to re-enrollment eligibility.
The College also reserves the right to dismiss any student(s) whose conduct is detrimental to the College’s mission.
If a student withdraws from the College prior to the adjudication of the alleged violations of College Policy, those charges must be adjudicated prior to the student returning to the College. In addition, the student is prohibited from being on campus pending resolution of the allegations.
Groups or organizations formally recognized by the College (RSOs) are subject to the same regulations as individual students. Any RSO may be held accountable for the actions of any of its members if the misconduct is related to the living group or organization. Individuals within the RSO may also be held accountable when the group faces charges for a violation.
Lebanon Valley College reserves the right to revoke admission to admitted or deposited students for fraud, misrepresentation, violation of College standards, or for other serious violations committed by a student prior to enrollment at Lebanon Valley College. The Vice President of Enrollment Management along with the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee will handle such situations.
The College may withhold a student’s diploma for a specified period of time if that student has student conduct charges pending, or the student was found responsible for violating policy and the student conduct body or the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee assigns this as a sanction. The student may also be denied participation in graduation while charges are pending or as a sanction. In addition, the College may withhold a student’s transcript if the student has student conduct charges pending, or if the student was found responsible for violating policy and is assigned this as a sanction.
Any member of the College community (student, staff, and faculty) may report a complaint under this code against a student or student group.
College-issued electronic mail (email) is the official means of communication for all matters related to the student conduct system. If an individual does not have an active College email account at the time of the communication, official communication will be directed via first-class mail to the last address on file with the Registrar’s Office unless the individual and College have agreed otherwise.
Authority and Roles
The Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students serves as the College’s designee for the general oversight of student conduct and discipline matters. Specific responsibility for the administration of discipline and conduct matters is generally delegated to the Associate Dean of Student Affairs. The Associate Dean of Student Affairs may further delegate responsibility to other administrative staff. The College may also engage third-parties to assist in addressing conduct matters. The Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students has final authority in all matters related to student conduct and discipline.
The College Title IX Coordinator coordinates compliance with Title IX and responds to reports of Title IX Sexual Harassment, as defined in the College’s Title IX Sexual Harassment Policy. Allegations that fall within the definition of Title IX Sexual Harassment are addressed through that policy and not through the procedures defined in the Code of Conduct. Allegations of harassment that do not fall within the definition in the Title IX Sexual Harassment Policy may be addressed through this Code of Conduct.
Advisor: a chosen representative (often a member of the College community) who serves as a support person for the respondent or complaint before and during a hearing; the advisor may not speak during the hearing. The advisor may only communicate with their student and may not address the conduct facilitator or the conduct board. The advisor must not be a party or witness at the hearing. The advisor must not be an attorney or lawyer.
Appellate Officer: any person or persons authorized by the vice president of student affairs and dean of students or designee to consider an appeal from a student conduct body’s determination that a student has violated the Student Code of Conduct or from the sanctions imposed by the student conduct body.
Campus Conduct Board: a trained group of students, faculty, and administrators that hear violations of the Student Conduct Code involving individual students and RSOs. One member of the Campus Conduct Board will be the non-voting chairperson.
College: Lebanon Valley College.
College Business Days: Any day on which the College is open for business. This term excludes Saturdays, Sundays, College holidays, and any days on which the College is closed due to emergency (e.g., snow days, etc.).
College Official: includes any person employed by the College performing assigned administrative or professional responsibilities.
Complainant: any person who submits a student conduct complaint alleging that a student violated the Student Code of Conduct. A member of the College’s administration may take on the role of the Complainant.
Faculty Member: includes any person hired by the College to conduct classroom activities.
College Premises: includes all land, buildings, facilities, and other property in the possession of, or owned, leased, used, or controlled by the College.
Member of the College Community: includes any person who is a student, faculty member, College official, or any other person employed by the College.
Policy: defined as any written and published regulations of the College as found in, but not limited to, the Housing Agreement, the Student Handbook, and the College Catalog.
Preponderance of Evidence: standard of proof needed to find the respondent responsible; when the evidence persuades the student conduct body that the alleged violation more likely took place than did not.
Recognized Student Organization (RSO): Any number of persons who have complied with the formal requirements for College recognition. A College organization is any fraternity, sorority, athletic team, or student organization/club.
Respondent: the student or organization charged with a violation of the Student Conduct of Conduct. The president and one other officer represent the respondent in cases involving a RSO.
Student: Includes all individuals taking courses at the College, both full time and part time. Individuals who are not officially enrolled for a particular term but who have a continuing relationship with the College or who have been notified of their acceptance for admission are considered students.
Student Conduct Code: the set of standards, rules, and regulations that define community expectations and prohibited conduct for Lebanon Valley College students.
Student Conduct Facilitator: a College official authorized by the Associate Deans of Student Affairs to investigate complaints, facilitate meetings and hearings, and to impose sanctions on students found to have violated the Student Code of Conduct. Student conduct facilitators include, but are not limited to, Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students, Associate Deans of Student Affairs, Director of Residential Life, members of the residential life staff, and/other student affairs/College personnel as deemed appropriate.
Visitor: a person authorized or permitted to be on campus but who is not a student or employee of the College.
Every student engaging in the student conduct process has the right to:
- Receive written notice of the charges.
- Be presumed not responsible until proven responsible.
- Challenge the objectivity of any Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board member.
- Present evidence and witnesses relevant to the charge.
- Review alleged complaint/allegation.
- Be assisted by any advisor they choose (generally a member of the College community).
- Decline to appear at the hearing with the understanding that the case will be considered in their absence.
- Receive notification of student conduct decision and findings of the hearing.
- Request an appeal of student conduct decisions and sanctions.
This Code does not modify or detract from any rights otherwise afforded under federal or state law.
The Community Standards outlined in this code articulate behaviors that are prohibited or unacceptable because they do not align with the values central to Lebanon Valley College: kindness, community, and relationships.
Students, Recognized Student Organizations (RSOs), and visitors are expected to abide by all community standards in the Student Code of Conduct. It is every student’s responsibility to be familiar with the policies and procedures in this code and all published College policies. Ignorance of a published policy will not exempt a student or RSO from the accountability that results from violating it.
Prohibited conduct includes:
A. Alcohol & Drugs
- Alcohol: Violates the College’s alcohol policy.
- Illegal Drugs: Possesses or uses illegal drugs or narcotics. Illegal drugs are defined by federal, state, and local law.
- Drug Paraphernalia: Possesses drug paraphernalia.
- Illegal Drug Distribution: Manufactures, shares, furnishes, distributes, sells, exchanges, or offers to sell illegal drugs, narcotics, or drug paraphernalia.
- Over the Counter Medication: Misuses over-the-counter medications, prescriptions, and/or other legal materials or substances in such a way to cause or result in disorderly or disruptive conduct.
B. Harassment, Harming, & Disruptive Conduct
- Harassment: Engaging in repeated, severe, or pervasive actions directed towards a specific individual, group, or entity with the intent or effect to disturb or alarm. This includes, but is not limited to, conduct in person, or delivered by indirect means including notes, phone calls, and use of social media and other electronic media.
- Harming Behavior: Engaging in any act that results in the infliction of pain, injury, or damage to any person or property by willful and deliberate means. This offense includes (a) assault, (b) attempted assault, or (c) behavior which may result in injuries to oneself or others. Harmful conduct also includes intentional conduct that inflicts, or attempts to inflict, harm upon any person, including, but not limited to, actual or threatened unwanted physical contact, or the knowing or reckless exposure of others to a contagious or infectious disease.
- Threatening Conduct: Engages in conduct that is reasonably understood to intimidate or create fear of the infliction of pain, injury, or damage to property. This includes, but is not limited to, conduct in person or delivered by indirect means including notes, phone calls, use of technology, and social media or other electronic media.
- Protected Class Discrimination: Engages in discrimination or another violation of the Student Code of Conduct intentionally and where the conduct is motivated by a trait protected by law, such as a person’s race, sex, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status, or any other trait protected by law.
- Disorderly Conduct: Engages in conduct that:
- intentionally or recklessly creates a hazardous or physically offensive condition;
- causes reasonable persons to fear for their safety or the safety of another; or
- disrupts the normal practices, processes, and functions of the College or the local municipalities.
- Indecent Conduct: Participates in intrusive, lewd, obscene, or indecent conduct.
- Hazing: Violates the College’s Antihazing Policy. Participates in hazing, defined as an act which endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student, or which destroys or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in, a group or organization. The expressed or implied consent of the student will not be a defense. Any violation of the Pennsylvania anti-hazing law or the College’s New Member Program Practices and Regulations will also be a violation. Report a hazing incident here.
- College Operations: Intentionally obstructs the administrative or academic operation and functions of the College.
- Obstruct the Conduct Process: Tries to influence the impartiality of a Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board member before or during any student conduct hearing, interferes with the orderly conduct of the hearing, or interferes with any investigative process that may lead to a formal student conduct hearing including withholding relevant information from College officials.
- Safety Hazard: Creates or helps to create a safety hazard; knowingly violates safety, security, or emergency regulations/procedures or interferes with the safe and clean environment of others; demonstrates behavior or engages in activities that endanger the safety or well-being of oneself or others; tampers with, misuses, or damages safety equipment.
- Weapons: Possesses or uses dangerous weapons. This includes, but is not limited to, guns, knives, martial arts’ devices, percussion weapons, bows and arrows, ammunition, clubs, firecrackers, fireworks, other explosives, or any other devices used aggressively.
- Pets: Grants access to and/or keeps pets in College buildings or on College grounds without prior approval by the associate dean of student affairs and/or their designee.
D. Failure to Comply
- Responsibility for Visitors: Fails to inform their visitors of the need to conform to the rules and regulations of the College.
- Condone Violation: Being present during any violation of the Student Code of Conduct and/or College policies in such a way as to condone, support, or encourage that violation.
- Violate Policies: Violates College policies, rules, or regulations published in hard copy or available electronically on the College website. This includes all COVID-19/pandemic-related policies, procedures, and guidelines as established by the College.
- False information: Knowingly providing false information or misrepresents information in any manner to the College. This includes all matters of record and transactions with the College.
- Failure to Comply: Fails to comply with the reasonable request of or fails to show respect to any member of the College community acting in performance of their duties and authority.
- Refuse ID: Fails to identify, or falsely identifies, oneself when requested by a member of the College community acting in the performance of their duty and authority.
- Failure to Respond: Refuses to respond to a reasonable oral or written request (whether hardcopy or electronic) to report to a College official or a representative employed on behalf of the institution.
- Violate Law: Violates any federal, state, or local laws.
- Failure to Report Citation: Failure to accurately report any off-campus arrest or citation by any law enforcement agency for any crime to the College within 72 hours. RSO leadership is also required to report if a member is arrested or cited as a result of any actions or behaviors taking place at or arising from an RSO-sponsored event. Reports should be made to Student Affairs regardless of the final disposition.
E. Theft, Misuse, & Damages
- Theft: Purposefully and without the consent or authorization of the owner, removes or has in their possession any property of the College or of another person.
- Destroy Property: Tampers with, misuses, damages, defaces, or destroys property owned by others or the College, without permission.
- Organization Funds & Property: Misuses College or student organization funds or property.
- Abuse of Computing Facilities: Uses College computing facilities and resources to send obscene or abusive messages including recordings and live streams.
- College Documents: Forges, alters, takes possession of, gives possession of, duplicates, or uses documents, records, keys, passwords, or identification without consent or authorization of appropriate College officials.
- Computing & Telecommunications Operations: Participates in computer abuse or any violation of the acceptable use policy for computing and communications.
- Unauthorized Recording: Participates in any unauthorized use of electronic or other devices to make an audio or video recording and/or to broadcast live streaming of any person while on College premises without their prior knowledge, or without their effective consent when such a recording/streaming is likely to cause injury or distress. This includes, but is not limited to, surreptitiously taking pictures of another person where there is a reasonable expectation to privacy.
- Unauthorized Entry: Trespasses, conspires, or engages in unauthorized entry.
- Social Media: Violates the student social media policy.
Note: The list of acts of misconduct that constitute violations of the Student Code of Conduct is not all-inclusive and can be amended at any time.
Lebanon Valley College believes strongly in providing a fundamentally fair and impartial student conduct process. To that end, both the complainant and respondent student or RSO will receive reasonably specific advanced notice containing a description of the alleged acts of misconduct under the Student Code of Conduct, including time, date, and place of occurrence and rules of conduct allegedly violated to allow the respondent the opportunity to properly prepare a response.
Lebanon Valley College also believes in providing students with multiple pathways to resolution including, but not limited to: meetings, mediations, informal resolutions, and formal hearings.
When a formal hearing is appropriate, the College allows the complainant and respondent the right to question each other, the right to question witnesses against them, the right to present evidence, the right to call their own witnesses, the right to have an advisor present for support, the right against self-incrimination, and the respondent’s right to appeal a student conduct decision.
Procedural modifications (e.g., the use of a screen during a hearing; and/or utilizing appropriate remote appearance technology) may be granted at the discretion of the Associate Dean of Student Affairs provided the measures are consistent with fundamental fairness.
In all matters, and as necessary, Lebanon Valley College reserves the right to start resolution proceedings without a formal report or participation by the complainant.
Initiation of Referral
Any member of the campus community may file a complaint by completing an incident report form, available in the Center for Student Engagement or by contacting the Office of Student Affairs: firstname.lastname@example.org.
There is no time limit for submitting a report unless it is otherwise specified. We recommend that an incident report be submitted as soon as possible after the incident. All incident reports/referrals must be in writing.
Entry of the arrest of a student into a police blotter and/or notification by local law enforcement/criminal justice agencies is considered sufficient documentation to refer the student to the College’s student conduct system.
Refer to the College’s Title IX Sexual Harassment Policy for information on reporting matters of sexual misconduct.
Where a referral indicates a possible Student Code of Conduct violation, the Associate Dean of Student Affairs or designee will identify all relevant information to determine if sufficient information is present to warrant further action. If the Associate Dean of Student Affairs or designee determines that insufficient information is present, the referral will be dismissed. There will be no appeal of this dismissal decision.
When appropriate and agreeable to the parties and any designated College official, violations of the Student Code of Conduct may be resolved through informal means, including mediation, instead of a formal hearing.
If mediation is implemented, all parties in the conflict must agree to the process as an option to resolving their dispute. Mediation, when chosen to settle conflict, must precede the student conduct process. The student conduct process, however, remains an option should mediation prove unsuccessful.
Once an agreement has been finalized and signed, the option of bringing a charge through the student conduct process is open to either party who becomes convinced that a term of the agreement has been breached by a participant in that agreement.
Notification of Referral for Investigation
In the event a formal investigation is required, the Associate Dean of Student Affairs or designee will provide a written notice to all parties and will appoint a College Community Member or a third party to conduct the investigation. The Office of Campus Safety will also be party to investigations of alleged violations of College policy. The purpose of the investigation is to gather information about the alleged violation and determine whether there is enough evidence to present charges. The investigator has the authority to question parties and request written statements. If a student does not provide a statement, the investigator’s notes from any conversation may be used. After the investigation is complete, the Associate Dean of Student Affairs or designee will notify the respondent of the status of their case. If it is the opinion of the Associate Dean of Student Affairs or designee that insufficient information is present, the referral will be dismissed. There will be no appeal of this dismissal decision.
Once a referral has been submitted and reviewed for applicability for resolution under this code, there are two formal processes that may be applied: a Conduct Meeting or an Administrative Hearing. These processes are outlined below.
In most cases where a code violation has been alleged, the Associate Dean of Student Affairs or designee will invite the student, in writing, to a Conduct Meeting. Typically, these are situations where the respondent takes responsibility for the violation, the information is relatively straightforward, and/or there are no complicating factors. The Conduct Meeting will be facilitated by a Student Conduct Facilitator designated by the Associate Dean of Student Affairs.
Written notice of the Conduct Meeting will include:
- the date, time, and place of the Student Conduct meeting;
- a brief summary of the referral, including the time, date, place, and brief description of the alleged act(s) of misconduct;
- the specific violations of the Student Code of Conduct pending against the respondent;
- statement of student rights and responsibilities; and
- the name and contact information of the Student Conduct Facilitator.
During the Conduct Meeting, the respondent will receive additional information about the student conduct process, including information relating to: student rights, the range of potential sanctions for the charged violation(s); and resolution options available through the conduct process. The respondent will also be afforded the opportunity to inspect and review all relevant information.
If a respondent fails to attend their Conduct Meeting, the matter will be heard in their absence.
During the meeting, the Student Conduct Facilitator may determine that the information presented at the meeting warrants an additional charge or change from the charges originally presented. The Respondent will be notified verbally of the change in charges or additional charges. The Respondent will be given the opportunity to continue the meeting or reschedule the meeting to allow time to reflect on the additional charges.
If the respondent accepts responsibility for the charge(s), the Student Conduct Facilitator will determine the appropriate sanctions. If the respondent denies responsibility for the charge(s), the Student Conduct Facilitator will determine if the respondent violated or attempted to violate the charged community standard violation according to the preponderance of the evidence standard.
In some cases where the respondent denies responsibility, the case may be referred to an Administrative Hearing.
Cases involving more serious violations of the code, repeat violations, complicating factors, denial of responsibility by the respondent, and/or situations that could result in suspension or expulsion can be resolved through an Administrative Hearing. The Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students, or designee, will decide when a case is appropriate to be resolved through an Administrative Hearing. Administrative Hearings can be facilitated by a single Student Conduct Facilitator or a Campus Conduct Board. The Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students, or designee, will decide whether a Student Conduct Facilitator or a Campus Conduct Board will be used.
The following steps are a general outline of how hearings are conducted. The College reserves the right to amend this process as necessary.
Burden of Proof: The College bears the burden of establishing any charged violation of this Student Code of Conduct. The respondent does not have the burden to prove that a violation did not occur. A respondent may decide not to share their side of the story or may decide not to participate in the hearing or an investigation. None of these decisions shifts the burden of proof away from the College.
Standard of Proof: In all Student Code of Conduct processes, the College is responsible for establishing any charged violation by a preponderance of the evidence standard. This means the College must show that it is more likely than not that the alleged violation of the Student Code of Conduct occurred.
Participants: Participants at a hearing include the complainant, respondent, fact-finder(s) (Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board), advisors, and witnesses.
Respondent/Complainant: Both the complainant and respondent are expected to appear at a hearing. However, if a complainant or respondent fail to attend a Student Conduct hearing or Campus Conduct Board hearing, the Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board reserves the right to dismiss the matter or to proceed with the hearing. If a respondent fails to appear, the hearing may be conducted in their absence.
Witnesses: The respondent and the complainant will submit the names of all witnesses who will appear at the hearing, and any other evidence to the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee no less than two College business days prior to the hearing. Each party is entitled to review all witness lists and any other evidence prior to the hearing. Witnesses are only allowed into the hearing during their period of testimony or when called to answer questions. The Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board reserves the option of limiting the number of witnesses providing statements at a hearing for redundancy and/or relevancy at their discretion. The Respondent and the Complainant are responsible for ensuring their witnesses appear at the appropriate date, time, and place of the hearing. Witnesses are individuals who were present during or have direct knowledge of the alleged misconduct. Character witnesses are not permitted. Failure to give truthful testimony before a Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board, is a violation of the Student Code of Conduct and may result in student conduct action.
Advisors: The complainant and the respondent have the right to be assisted by any advisor they choose (generally a member of the College community). The complainant and/or the respondent is responsible for presenting their own case and, therefore, advisors are not permitted to speak or to participate directly in any hearing. An advisor cannot be any other party in the matter (i.e., witness, complainant, respondent, etc.).
Fact-finders: It is the duty of the Student Conduct Facilitators and Campus Conduct Board members to keep all proceedings confidential. It is the responsibility of Student Conduct Facilitators and Campus Conduct Board members to disqualify themselves whenever they feel they cannot hear the dispute impartially and without prejudgment of the specific case. If a member refuses to disqualify himself or herself and a party objects, the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee will determine whether the member must withdraw. A written rationale must be presented to the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee at least three College business days hours prior to the hearing.
Both the complainant and respondent have the right to challenge the designation of a Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board member for cause. Cause is defined as personal bias or prior involvement with parties or circumstances surrounding the matter. A challenge to a Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board member for cause must be presented to the Associate Dean of Student Affairs in writing no later than three College business days before the scheduled hearing.
Evidence: Only evidence that is admitted during the hearing will be considered in determining responsibility in the matter.
The College is not bound by formal rules of evidence. Evidence or information that may not be admissible in a court of law may be admissible in a conduct hearing or as part of an investigation. The Student Conduct Facilitator or the Chairperson of the Campus Conduct Board will decide what information is admissible as part of a hearing.
Court documents, including affidavits of probable cause, preliminary hearing transcripts, and other relevant court and public records, may be utilized at a student conduct hearing given their inherent reliability, even when the person that prepared them is not available to testify or answer questions.
If the Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board determines that key evidence is missing, the hearing may be continued to a later time to accommodate the presentation of such evidence at the hearing.
Procedural modifications (e.g., the use of a screen during a hearing; and/or utilizing appropriate technology as necessary to ensure that the complainant(s) and respondent(s) are in separate locations) may be granted at the discretion of the Associate Dean of Student Affairs or designee as long as they are requested and consistent with fundamental fairness. A party wishing to request a procedural modification should do so at least two College business days prior to the scheduled hearing time.
Outline for Hearing Proceedings
The goal of a College proceeding is to arrive at a fair and impartial decision that ensures the rights, freedoms, and safety of all members of the Lebanon Valley College community while protecting the special educational interests of the College.
Hearings generally follow, but are not required to strictly adhere to, the format outlined below:
The Associate Dean of Student Affairs will provide the Complainant and/or Respondent with written notice of the hearing at least five College business days prior to the scheduled hearing time. The hearing notice will contain a statement of:
- the date, time, and place of the hearing;
- a statement of the date, time, place an alleged acts of misconduct; and
- a statement of the specific charges pending against the respondent.
While every effort will be made to schedule the hearing at a time convenient for all parties, final scheduling authority rests with the Associate Dean of Student Affairs. The Associate Dean of Student Affairs also has the authority, when hearings involve more than one respondent, to have the respondents heard separately.
To begin the hearing, the matter is introduced by the Student Conduct Facilitator or chairperson of the Campus Conduct Board.
This includes an introduction of all the parties participating in the hearing and a statement of the charged violations. An overview of the hearing procedures will be presented. A statement of rights and responsibilities, which include an expectation of truthfulness, will be made. The Student Conduct Facilitator or chairperson of the Campus Conduct Board is delegated the authority to exercise control of the hearing and to rule on questions of procedure.
The complainant(s), when available, will state the information from the referral.
The respondent presents information favorable to their position.
The complainant(s) may then call any witnesses to offer information supporting the referral.
The respondent may then call any witnesses in defense of the respondent’s position.
At this point, the Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board members may begin questioning both the complainant(s) and respondent(s). Witnesses may be recalled for questioning (at the discretion of the Student Conduct Facilitator/Campus Conduct Board) during this period. The complainant(s) and respondent(s) also have the right to question each other and all witnesses. At the discretion of the Student Conduct Facilitator or the chairperson of the Campus Conduct Board, questions from both the complainant(s) and respondent(s) to each other and/or to the witnesses may be directed to the Student Conduct Facilitator or the chairperson of the Campus Conduct Board. The Student Conduct Facilitator or chairperson will then restate the questions to the appropriate parties.
During the hearing, the Student Conduct Facilitator or chairperson of the Campus Conduct Board may determine that the information presented at the hearing warrants an additional charge or change from the charges originally presented. The Respondent will be notified verbally of the change in charges or additional charges. The Respondent will be given the opportunity to continue or reschedule the hearing.
After the questioning is completed, both the complainant(s) and respondent(s) can make a summary statement. The complainant(s) proceeds first in making the summary statement.
The hearing is ended. At this point the Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board and chairperson go into a private session to determine whether the respondent is “responsible” or “not responsible.” In matters where a Campus Conduct Board is used, a simple majority of the board members hearing the matter is needed to establish a finding of “responsible.”
If a decision of “responsible” is reached, the Student Conduct Facilitator or Campus Conduct Board will make a recommendation of sanctions and stipulations. The Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee makes the final determination of sanctions and stipulations based upon the nature of the violation.
Past violations of the Student Code of Conduct will be factored into the determination of the sanctions and stipulations but will not be considered in establishing whether a respondent is “responsible” or “not responsible” of the current charges.
A written decision letter will be issued including the findings and rationale on the charge(s). Absent extenuating circumstances, the written decision will be issued as expeditiously as possible but in no event later than 15 College business days after conclusion of the hearing. The decision letter will include factual findings and rationale for the decision and present a complete description of the sanctions and stipulations, if any. Information about appeal criteria and procedures will be outlined as well.
All hearings conducted by a Campus Conduct Board are recorded. Other types of hearings or meetings may be recorded at the discretion of the Student Conduct Facilitator. All records are property of the College. Any additional video, audio, stenographic, or photographic recording of any hearing is prohibited.
Both the complainant and respondent will be allowed to schedule an appointment to listen to the recording of a hearing they were a party to.
The College recognizes the impossibility of anticipating every circumstance under which the student conduct authority of this College must be exercised. The College also recognizes the possibility that compelling circumstances may require that certain procedures normally afforded students may be suspended. To facilitate the prompt adjudication of a campus student conduct matter under such circumstances, the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee will hold an administrative hearing. The student’s procedural rights will remain in effect and an appeal resulting from the administrative hearing will be handled by the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee.
Students who receive a sanction should realize that the following principles apply in the determination of sanctions:
- Sanctions ordinarily are increased for subsequent offenses although the most severe sanction can be applied even in the case of the first offense if such sanction is warranted by the seriousness of the circumstances.
- The respondent’s past student conduct record is reviewed in determining a sanction.
- The readiness of the person to consider and abide by the Student Conduct Code is taken into consideration.
More than one of the following sanctions listed may be imposed on any student found to have violated the Student Conduct Code:
Disciplinary Warning: A written statement to the student expressing disapproval of conduct.
Disciplinary Reprimand: A written statement to the student, expressing vigorous disapproval of conduct and that continuation or repetition of similar misconduct may be cause for more severe sanctions. Special conditions may be part of this sanction to assist the student in corrective action. If permitted under FERPA, parent(s) or guardian(s) may be notified of this sanction.
Disciplinary Probation: A written statement to the student indicating that they will retain conditional status for a specific period of time because their behavior is in flagrant or repeated violation of College standards. Probation is for a designated period of time and may include the probability of suspension or expulsion from the College if the student is found to be violating any College policy during the probationary period. Loss of privileges may be included with this sanction, such as participation in co-curricular activities, i.e., clubs, organizations, athletic activities. If permitted under FERPA, Parent(s) or guardians may be notified of this sanction.
Loss of Privileges: Denial of specific privileges for a designated period of time. Denial of privileges may include, for example, denial of the right to represent the College in any way, denial of the use of facilities, denial of parking privileges, denial of participation in co-curricular activities and College employment, denial to hold a leadership position, loss of financial aid for a designated period of time, suspension from an athletic team or performing group, loss of housing lottery privileges, loss of housing privileges, or loss of pledging privileges.
Cease and Desist Order: A cease and desist order can be imposed for an interim period pending hearing by the associate dean of student affairs or their designee as a measure to de-escalate a potentially volatile situation between a student and any other party. When imposed as an interim measure, a Cease and Desist Order is not a sanction and does not reflect a finding of responsibility. Continuation of a cease and desist order may be included as part of a student conduct sanction after a finding of a responsibility
Restitution: A written directive to replace or make specified compensation for property of the College or of another person that was damaged, destroyed, or misused.
Fines: The College reserves the right to assign fines in addition to taking student conduct action.
Community Service/Discretionary Sanctions: Community service involves service projects within Lebanon Valley College or the greater community, work assignments or other discretionary assignments approved by the Associate Dean of Student Affairs.
Counseling/Assessment: To assist the student in developing better problem-solving skills and coping mechanisms, counseling may be required. This sanction typically addresses issues involving anger management, domestic violence, relationships, or alcohol and other drugs. A student whose level of intoxication is such that it is potentially life threatening, requires medical attention, involves injury, or results in property damage may be required to pay for private, off-campus assessment and be required to follow the recommendations of the assessments. Failure to attend mandatory counseling sessions, or to participate in good faith in counseling sessions, may result in imposition of additional sanctions.
Residence Hall Probation: Residence Hall Probation is a warning that further violations of the Student Conduct Code may result in suspension or expulsion of housing privileges, loss of residence hall choice, loss of housing lottery privileges, or loss of off-campus privileges. A student may be reassigned to another room or residence hall while on residence hall probation. The student may also be placed on weekend residence hall suspension. (The student is not allowed on campus or allowed to participate in College events from 5 p.m. on Friday until 5 p.m. on Sunday.)
Residential Restriction: Restrictions on access to residence halls and/or specific locations within residence halls during a specified period of time may be enacted. Any consideration of monetary refund is subject to the College’s Title IV refund policy.
Residence Hall Suspension: This sanction involves separation of the student from the residence halls for a definite period of time. The student may reapply for housing after the stated period of suspension. Specific restrictions on access to residence halls during the period of suspension may also be involved. Conditions for readmission may be specific. Any consideration of monetary refund is subject to the College’s Title IV refund policy.
Residence Hall Expulsion: Permanent separation of the student from the residence halls results from Residence Hall Expulsion. Specific restrictions on access to residence halls may be involved. Any consideration of monetary refund is subject to the College’s Title IV refund policy.
Suspension: This sanction results in separation of the student from the College for a definite or indefinite period of time, after which the student may be eligible to return. Readmission is subject to approval and conditions for readmission may be specified. Such separation prohibits the student from being on campus or other College-owned property and attendance at any classes, social events, and activities for a specified period of time. The student will be withdrawn from courses. Any consideration of monetary refund is subject to the College’s Title IV refund policy. The student will not be permitted on campus or other College-owned property. A copy of the written sanction will be sent to the parent(s) or guardian(s).
Disciplinary Expulsion: Disciplinary Expulsion is the permanent dismissal and separation of the student from the College that includes complete and irrevocable termination of the student’s registration. The student will not be allowed to return to the College if they apply for readmission. The student will be withdrawn from courses and Permanent Disciplinary Dismissal is recorded on the student’s transcript. Any consideration of monetary refund is subject to the College’s Title IV refund policy. Parent(s) or guardian(s) will be notified.
Non-Compliance with Sanctions
In cases of non-compliance with sanctions or remedies issued by any campus judicial/student conduct body, the student may be charged with failure to comply or may be suspended until they have complied.
Recognized Student Organization Expectations
All College organizations are expected to:
- Support the mission and goals of the College;
- Ensure that the policies, practices, and actions of the organization uphold the rights and dignity of its members;
- Ensure that the organization activities provide a healthy and safe environment that complements the mission of the College;
- Adhere to all federal, state, and local laws, and the Lebanon Valley College Student Code of Conduct; and
- Actively and adequately support the College’s internal policies and educational programs related to alcohol and other drugs, gender discrimination, sexual misconduct, sexual harassment, sexually inappropriate behavior, and other forms of discrimination and harassment.
Any member of the College community may file a charge that members of a group, acting together, have violated a College regulation, or that the group provided the probable cause for such behavior. The student conduct procedures and the rights of the respondent in an alleged group violation of College conduct regulations are the same as those specified for charges relating to the individual violators of the Student Code of Conduct. The respondent group, through its president or most senior officer, will be entitled to exercise all the rights of an individual who is alleged to have violated a Student Code of Conduct regulation.
Student Organization Disciplinary Sanctions
RSOs will be subject to one or more of the student conduct sanctions listed below when members of the organization, acting as members of the group, engage in unacceptable behavior, or when it can be shown that the organization provided the probable cause for such behavior.
Individuals who join to share common interests and purposes collectively share a common responsibility. They must ensure that individual members, alumni, and guests or groups of members reflect favorably upon their organization. A group cannot ignore or escape its responsibility for the action of its members. The committing of any offenses by a group or a failure of an organizing group to exercise preventative measures relative to violation of the Student Code of Conduct by their members will constitute a group offense. Any group may be held accountable for the action of its members if such activities are related in any way to the group. Individuals may also be held accountable for their actions when their group faces charges for a violation. Moreover, it must be understood that while special interest groups are viewed as worthwhile components of the educational experience, the College will encourage and recognize such groups only so long as the actions of their members are consistent with the College’s mission and expectations.
In addition to the sanctions already listed above, the sanctions listed below may also be used as organizational sanctions. More than one of these sanctions may be imposed for any single violation. Any violation of the Student Code of Conduct by members of a student organization may result in both the organization and individual members involved in the behavior to be subject to student conduct action.
Fines: The College reserves the right to assign fines in addition to taking student conduct action according to the sanctions listed below.
Community Service: Community service involves service projects within the College or the greater community.
Restitution: A written directive to replace or make specific compensation for property of the College or any person that was damaged, destroyed, or misused.
Organization Warning: Organization Warning is for a specified period of time with the understanding that subsequent misconduct will result in additional student conduct action.
Organization Probation: Probation requires that the organization display exemplary conduct during the specified probationary period. Any further violation during the time of probation may result in termination of College recognition as a student organization.
Loss of Privileges: A student organization may lose any or all privileges of a College-recognized student organization for a period of time. Loss of privileges includes, but is not limited to:
- Intramural sports
- Recruitment of members
- Use of College’s or organizational resources, facilities, or services.
- Participation of organization in campus or off-campus events
Organization Suspension: The organization will not be permitted to function on the College campus for a specified period of time. The organization may not function in any manner as an organization during the period of suspension.
Loss of Recognition: The group’s status as a recognized student organization will be withdrawn. It will cease to exist and function on the College campus permanently. In the case of fraternities and sororities, the organization’s invitation to affiliate with the College will be revoked and the organization’s headquarters will be notified of the loss of College recognition. The organization may not use the College’s name or its facilities, campus publications, or any of its services. Any duplicitous action or behavior will be considered a violation of the sanction and could result in the dismissal of any/or all members of the organization from the College.
At its discretion, the College may impose interim measures pending the disposition of student conduct charges where the student represents a serious threat to the safety of themselves or others, or to University property. These measures may be delivered verbally and/or in writing. Some examples of interim measures are listed below. A failure to abide by interim measures may result in additional student conduct violations:
Cease and Desist Order: an order directing parties to refrain from engaging in certain conduct, such as contact with one another, or restricting parties from certain locations, as a measure to de-escalate a potentially volatile situation between a student and any other party. When imposed as an interim measure, a Cease and Desist Order is not a sanction and does not reflect a finding of responsibility.
Stayed interim suspension: applies certain non-exclusionary stipulations to ensure the safety and well-being of all students and to safeguard College property pending disposition of the underlying charges. Such stipulations may include, but are not limited to: a directive that the student promptly update the Associate Dean of Student Affairs on the status of any pending criminal proceedings and/or update the Associate Dean of Student Affairs on any ARD progress or dispositions.
There is no right of appeal from a stayed interim suspension.
Interim removal from a College course: removes a student from a particular course prior to a formal hearing being held. This action only applies to the course in question during the interim period and it allows the student to attend their other classes. There is no right of appeal from interim removal from a College course.
Interim residence hall suspension: removes a student from their residence hall prior to a formal hearing being held. This action requires a student to vacate their residence hall immediately and effectively bars them from entering any campus residence hall during their interim residence hall suspension. There is no right of appeal from interim residence hall suspension.
In certain circumstances, the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee may impose a College interim suspension prior to the Administrative or Campus Conduct Board hearing.
Interim suspension may be imposed only: (a) to ensure the safety and well-being of members of the College community or preservation of College property; (b) to ensure the student’s own physical or emotional safety and well-being; (c) if the student poses a definite threat of disruption or interference with the normal operations of the College; (d) if the student has been alleged to have committed a serious crime.
Interim suspension: students will be denied access to the residence halls and/or to the campus (including classes) and/or all other College activities or privileges for which the student might otherwise be eligible, as the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee may determine to be appropriate. A hearing will be scheduled as soon thereafter as practical. In situations where a student is charged with a serious crime, a hearing may be delayed until disposition of the charges by public authority.
The Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee sends written notification of student violations, sanctions, and recommendations to appropriate College officials who might provide counseling or assistance to the student and/or to other College officials having legitimate educational interests. The College will notify parents of violations of alcohol and/or drug policies by students under age 21. Notification of suspension or expulsion is filed with the Registrar’s Office. In cases of suspension, the student’s transcript indicates withdrawal from courses. In cases of expulsion, the student will be withdrawn from courses and Permanent Disciplinary Dismissal will be recorded on the transcript.
A respondent wishing to appeal a student conduct decision should submit their written appeal stating the reasons for such a request to the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee within five (5) College business days of receipt of the original decision. Appeals are due by 4:30 p.m. on the fifth College business day following the original decision. Sanctions are in effect while a case is under appeal.
The College allows one level of appeal review. The decision of the appeal by the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students and/or designee is final. The designated appeal agents are set forth below:
- Appeals of decisions made by the Student Conduct Facilitator will be directed to the Associate Dean of Student Affairs.
- Appeals of decisions made by the Associate Deans of Student Affairs or
- Campus Conduct Board will be directed to the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students.
- Appeals of decisions made by the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students will be directed to the President of the College.
No further appeals are permitted.
If the Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students becomes so involved in the investigation or adjudication of a case such that they feel their impartiality may be compromised, they may defer appellate responsibilities for the case in question to the President of the College or the President’s designee.
An appeal may be sought on the following grounds:
- That a fundamental error occurred in the hearing procedures that unreasonably interfered with the respondent’s rights. Such claims must be specifically described in the written appeal.
- That new evidence or information germane to the matter and not available at the time of the hearing has been uncovered. This evidence must be clearly presented in the written appeal.
- That the sanction imposed was unjust, unreasonable, or inappropriate. The written appeal must clearly explain the reasoning for this appeal.
Student conduct files are kept in the Office of Student Affairs for seven (7) years. These files are considered confidential. The files of students who are expelled, suspended, or have significant disciplinary history may be kept for a longer period of time.
Disciplinary information may also be provided in certain limited circumstances in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (as amended).
Lebanon Valley College reserves the right to amend any administrative policy and academic or student conduct regulations described in the Student Handbook, without giving prior notice to persons who might be affected. Once those amendments are posted online, they are in effect.
The provisions of this handbook are not to be regarded as an irrevocable contract between the College and the students or between the College and the parents of the students. During the academic year, the College reserves the right to change the services, policies, and procedures that are set forth in the handbook as they become necessary. At the date of publication, the information provided in the handbook was as complete and accurate as possible.
Date of Last Revision: August 8, 2022
General Conduct Violations
Complete this form to report alleged violations of the Student Code of Conduct.
Hazing Incident Report Form
Complete this form to report alleged violations of the hazing policy, as outlined within the Student Code of Conduct.
Refer a Student of Concern
Complete this form to refer a student to the LVC Care Team for concerning or worrisome behavior.