Academic Misconduct Advisor at University of North Carolina Wilmington

The University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) held its first commencement in 1949 and joined the prestigious UNC System in 1969. UNCW has upheld rigid academic values from the start, espousing a “commitment to excellence, student-centered learning experiences, diversity, innovation and community engagement.”

Any alleged violation of academic dishonesty can compromise your future at UNCW. Suffering academic sanctions could also compromise your professional future. Attorney-advisor Joseph D. Lento will pursue a resolution that preserves your reputation and aspirations.

Examples of Academic Misconduct at UNCW

Students at UNCW are bound to a Student Academic Honor Code. This code contains the UNCW Honor Pledge, which reads:

“As a student at The University of North Carolina Wilmington, I am committed to honesty and truthfulness in academic inquiry and in the pursuit of knowledge. I pledge to uphold and promote the UNCW Student Academic Honor Code.”

Section I-3 (A) of the UNCW Student Academic Honor Code states explicitly that “No form of academic dishonesty is tolerated in our community.” This section also details the two primary forms of misconduct, which are:

  • Cheating, defined as “deception implying that work in fulfillment of course or degree requirements represents a student's own level of knowledge when it actually does not.”
  • Plagiarism, which the UNCW Honor Code describes as “the copying of language, phrasing, structure, or specific ideas of another and presenting any of these as one's own work, including information found on the internet.”

The Student Academic Honor Code cites specific examples of cheating and plagiarism, but most university students know academic dishonesty when they see it.

Should you face an allegation of academic wrongdoing, the pressing question is whether you committed the offense. If you did commit the offense, your attorney-advisor will seek the most lenient possible outcome. If you did not commit the offense, your college misconduct advisor will work to clear you of alleged wrongdoing.

Who Handles Allegations of Academic Dishonesty at UNCW?

UNCW's chain of custody for allegations of academic wrongdoing starts with a professor. A professor may suspect academic misconduct or receive notice from a third party. In either instance, the professor must notify the Office of the Dean of Students “immediately.”

The presiding faculty member and the Office of the Dean of Students will meet. During this meeting, they will discuss:

  • The veracity of allegations against you
  • Proposed sanctions
  • How to protect your rights throughout the adjudication process
  • Whether the faculty member, Office of Dean of Students, or Student Academic Honor Board shall hear your case

If you have been found guilty of a prior academic offense, the Student Academic Honor Board will handle your latest case by default.

Important Note: It may be in your interest to retain an advisor's help no later than this point in the adjudication process. You will soon face decisions that could affect your long-term future.

The Adjudication Process at UNCW

The adjudication process at UNCW can vary drastically based on whether you admit to or refute the allegations against you.

Should you admit to wrongdoing (do not do this until you have retained an attorney-advisor), then your professor may propose a “private resolution.” The UNCW Academic Honor Code notes that a professor's sanctions should be consistent with the alleged offense.

Should you dispute the allegations against you, the professor may either refer your case to the Dean of Students or drop the allegation against you. If the professor refers your case to the Dean of Students, you will receive a summons to a meeting with the Dean of Students' Office.

Your interactions with the Dean of Students' Office may include:

  • Written correspondence related to the allegation against you
  • A pre-hearing interview, at which time you may request that your case be heard by the Dean of Students or instead by the Student Academic Honor Board
  • A formal hearing

The Office of the Dean of Students has the right to refer your case to the Student Academic Honor Board, even if you request that the Dean of Students hear your case. An attorney-advisor can accompany you to any hearings that you must attend.

What to Expect from Academic Hearings at UNCW

Section I-6 of the UNCW Student Academic Honor Code details the administrative hearing process. Should the Office of the Dean of Students hear your case, you will:

  • Receive notice of your hearing date
  • Be permitted to review the evidence against you (if possible, sanctions include suspension or expulsion)
  • Attend the hearing, which is closed to the public
  • Be allowed to respond to witness testimony and present your witness testimony
  • Present any evidence and information that supports your case

Your lawyer may argue your case for you, though you may need to participate in some capacity (such as providing firsthand testimony). A decision from the Dean of Students “will normally be determined immediately” following the hearing.

A Student Academic Honor Board hearing may be procedurally similar to a hearing with the Office of the Dean of Students. However, a panel of students and faculty will hear your case and render a decision.

You may also appeal any decision against you. Attorney-advisor Joseph D. Lento will handle the appeals process.

What Sanctions Do You Face?

Section I-10 of the Student Academic Honor Code states that “The sanction of disciplinary probation is typical for a first Honor Code offense, although the sanction of suspension may be assigned.”

You could face expulsion if the Board or Dean of Students considers your conduct to be egregious. Any formal sanction—even the simplest of reprimands in your student file—may negatively impact:

  • Your standing at UNC Wilmington
  • Your attractiveness as an internship candidate
  • Your future job prospects
  • Your professional fulfillment
  • Your future earning power
  • Your quality of life

A finding against you may also expose you to harsher sanctions for alleged academic wrongdoing in the future. Do not risk these sanctions by trying to fight an allegation of dishonesty on your own.

Hire Academic Misconduct Advisor Joseph D. Lento Today

Attorney Joseph D. Lento and his team fight for students like you on a regular basis. They understand that universities have vast resources and that schools take academic integrity extremely seriously. You deserve your due process. Joseph D. Lento and his team will advocate for you, accompany you to hearings, and complete any necessary appeal.

Call the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686. You can also submit your case online.

Contact Us Today!

If you, or your student, are facing any kind of disciplinary action, or other negative academic sanction, and are having feelings of uncertainty and anxiety for what the future may hold, contact the Lento Law Firm today, and let us help secure your academic career.

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