Clarion University of Pennsylvania treats Title IX and sexual misconduct cases with a higher degree of seriousness than standard instances of misconduct. Instances of sexual misconduct are dealt with using the University's Disciplinary Procedures. The University retains a special set of disciplinary proceedings for cases of sexual misconduct that requires deeper investigation and scrutiny than standard conduct violations.
Clarion University Disciplinary Process
The University begins its sexual misconduct disciplinary process once a complaint is filed with the appropriate office. For instances of sexual misconduct, complaints will be handled jointly with the Office of the Title IX Coordinator and the University's Office of Student Affairs. When a complaint is filed against a student, the student that initiated the report will be known as the "complainant," while the student facing allegations will be known as the "accused student." Once the complaint is filed, the Office of Student Affairs will launch an investigation into the matter. During the investigation phase, the University may impose certain interim measures on the alleged offender, such as temporary relocation or even the enactment of a No Contact order to prevent interaction between the complainant and the accused student; an interim suspension may also be imposed in certain instances.
Once the investigation phase is complete, the University will follow the same process for standard misconduct proceedings, with some appropriate measures taken to reflect the gravity of the situation. A University Conduct Board will be assembled by a representative from the Office of the Title IX Coordinator. Resolutions will be reached through a hearing. At hearings, the complainant and respondent will both be given an opportunity to provide evidence, witness testimony, and a time for arguing their case. Hearings will proceed according to the discretion of the University Conduct Board, however, both parties are guaranteed adequate time for their respective arguments.
Students facing allegations of sexual misconduct are entitled to the presence of an advisor at their hearings and throughout the University's Title IX investigation. Sexual misconduct allegations are incredibly serious and can carry consequences that may affect a student's professional and academic career in the long term. For this reason, it is of utmost importance for a student to select an attorney to serve as advisor throughout these hearings. An attorney acting as an advisor will be able to protect a student's rights and interests throughout the hearing process. Attorneys can also instruct students on methods of evidence presentation, witness examination, and argument construction. These courtroom-tested skills can greatly influence the outcome of a student's hearing. In addition to this, an attorney will be able to guide students through any adverse consequences beyond the University's control that may stem from the initial reporting.
Clarion University Appeals
In the event of an unfavorable outcome, students are entitled to a chance at an appeal. Appeals must be submitted within 72 business hours of the decision. The grounds for appeal are new evidence, error in procedure, or a claim that the decision was not made according to the evidence presented.