You enrolled at the University of Texas at San Antonio to open doors for your future. You work hard in your courses to make sure that you have what you need to be successful for a long, satisfying career. You've done well, and you've accomplished a lot—which made it all the more surprising when you learned that your school is pursuing an academic misconduct investigation against you.
If this seems frustrating and confusing, that's because it likely is. However, it's not trivial. This is something that you need to deal with—now. Why? If your alleged actions result in disciplinary notes on your transcript or even weightier discipline like suspension or expulsion, your future (whether immediate or more far-flung) could become a lot more difficult than it needs to be. At the Lento Law Firm, we're here to make sure that you don't have to experience that.
Let's talk about what types of actions fall under the umbrella of ‘academic misconduct' as well as your strategies for working towards a successful outcome.
What Constitutes Academic Misconduct at the University of Texas at San Antonio?
The Student Code of Conduct at UT - San Antonio delves deep into the types of actions that your university may deem punishable.
In particular, section 203 of the Code of Conduct defines your school's concept of ‘Scholastic Dishonesty.' This section says that ‘scholastic dishonesty' can refer to any form of plagiarism or cheating that violates the school's policies. These may include:
- Falsifying academic records
- Any act which gives the alleged perpetrator an unfair academic advantage
- Providing false or misleading information to receive an extension
- Helping another person form an academically dishonest act
- Attempting an academically dishonest act (even if that act is unsuccessful)
If a teacher or one of your peers suspects you of this type of action, they can report you to the university.
What Happens After an Academic Misconduct Allegation at the University of Texas at San Antonio?
The university will take some time to learn as much as is possible about your alleged misconduct. This may involve reviewing materials you have submitted for your classes, talking to your peers and teachers, and examining your past history of conduct. After the university comes to a determination about what happened (often based on little evidence, or just evidence which makes your misconduct seem more likely than not), they will move to recommend disciplinary action for your case.
The type of discipline that the university recommends should fit the crime, but it's entirely up to the officials adjudicating your case to act as they see fit. According to the student code of conduct, any of the following disciplinary actions are possible:
- A written or verbal disciplinary warning
- Withholding of your grades, your transcript, or your degree
- Expulsion with a bar against readmission
- Educational programs
- Revocation of your degree
- Suspension of your rights and privileges as a UT - San Antonio student
- Failing grades for the assignments in question
If you disagree with the university about the severity of the recommended consequence or with the decision it has made, you do have the opportunity to appeal within a short time frame. However, you only have one chance to do so—so it's best to reserve this action for occasions in which you have a strong basis for doing so. Your legal advisor can help you make this decision.
The above punitive measures may seem like they're enough. However, these do not even scratch the surface of the real consequences of your alleged actions. If your reputation as a UT - San Antonio student is marred due to this situation, you may find that doors close for you that may previously have been open. We don't want you to experience that type of unfair, future-ruining consequence. That's why, even though it may seem like a lot, now is the time to hire a professional to help you deal with your alleged misconduct.
Why do I need a student defense attorney?
A student defense advisor will be able to help you with myriad different parts of your defense, from preparing strategic, persuasive documents to determining whether you have the basis for an appeal. Your school will also be likely to take you more seriously if you have legal counsel—and will also hew more closely to its own policies. This can help protect your rights during the disciplinary process.
Most of all, it's key to make sure that you have a professional, empathetic, and loyal advisor on your side. UT-San Antonio might offer you a school advisor, but this is a bad idea. You need someone with targeted expertise in this niche, and vast experience building the type of defense that you need.
When You Need a Strong Defense, Give the Lento Law Firm a Call
Academic misconduct violations can ruin your future. This isn't an exaggeration. When future employers, schools, scholarship opportunities, and other entities see that you have a disciplinary note on your academic record, they may hesitate to offer you the opportunities that you deserve.
That means that you need to take action now to fight your academic misconduct allegations before they go too far. This can feel like quite an uphill battle. You'll have to make a persuasive case at hearings, through investigations, in statements, and more. Hiring an experienced attorney to help you work towards a favorable outcome will make all of the difference for you.
Joseph D. Lento can help give you the edge you need to protect your future now. He has spent years helping students coast to coast as one of the best academic misconduct attorneys in the nation. You need assistance with the investigation and adjudication of your case, so schedule a consultation by calling the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686.