Young adults attending college in Wyoming have started a path toward a degree that they can use as a solid foundation to build a bright future. Nevertheless, there are bumps in the road that students may face during their time on campus. Mistakes happen sometimes; stressful class loads, peer pressure, and other obstacles may lead students to face misconduct allegations.
Disciplinary boards seek to address code of conduct violations with a fast-paced grievance process that leaves a student's academic future threatened by a suspension or an expulsion. Without proper assistance, students have a fleeting chance of remaining in school, upending their future careers.
Students and their parents sometimes wait until the intimidating grievance process is complete before retaining professional help. Regardless, you can obtain comprehensive relief that gets you back in class to continue your studies and keep your permanent record clean.
Appealing Disciplinary Sanctions
When Wyoming college and university disciplinary boards levy sanctions like suspension or expulsion for academic misconduct or other code of conduct violations, the student has the right to appeal. Students may consult their school's code of conduct to educate themselves on the appellate process's rules and regulations. If not, the school administration will inform the student of their right to appeal when the disciplinary body has determined responsibility for the alleged misconduct.
The codes of conduct at institutions of higher education in Wyoming will detail the limited circumstances under which students can file appeals to challenge a disciplinary board's decision. The University of Wyoming explains that students can file requests for appeals for the following reasons:
- Due process: The investigative or hearing phases did not follow the procedures outlined in the school's code of conduct. The appeals board will also review allegations of bias or conflict of interest from anyone involved during the grievance process.
- Incorrect conclusion: The Hearing Officer(s) decision failed to be supported by a preponderance of the evidence or was "arbitrary and capricious."
- New evidence: Evidence that emerges following the decision from the sanctioning body must have been undiscoverable during the review process and unknown to the accused.
Some colleges and universities in Wyoming may also allow students to appeal on the grounds of excessive punishments. An appeals board will consider if the sanctions are unreasonable based on the facts of the case and the disciplinary board's determination of responsibility.
Students have limited time to file appeals once the school administration decides to suspend or expel them. The timeframe can range from as many as 15 days to as little as two days, but it varies from school to school. The University of Wyoming provides students five business days to file an appeal, whereas Sheridan College allows a timeframe of 15 business days.
When you retain a professional college dismissal advisor, they will help you review your school's appeals guidelines to ensure that you do not miss the opportunity to challenge the decision to suspension or expulsion. For instance, the University of Wyoming states that students who "elect a judicial conference" before the hearing phase are "admitting responsibility for the alleged misconduct" and waive their rights to "further hearing(s) or appeals."
Once the appellate hearing concludes and the members have deliberated, they will notify the student of their decision, usually within two days. The conclusion from the appeals board will:
- Affirm the findings or sanctions
- Alter or lessen Sanctions are lessened or altered
- Refer the matter back to the disciplinary board
- Reverse the punishments
- Dismiss the charges
All decisions rendered by the appellate authority are final. If a student does not have their suspension or expulsion overturned, the termination of their academic career can leave them overwhelmed. They may not know where to turn for help and pack up to leave school without a defense.
They may also be asking themselves:
- Could the sanctions be proven excessive given the misconduct findings?
- Has new evidence emerged that was unavailable during the investigation or hearing phases?
- How can infringements on due process be proven?
- Was there any conflict of interest or bias from the disciplinary board members?
Students are ill-prepared to manage these situations, especially when their primary concern is schoolwork and preparing for their future careers. Hiring a college dismissal advisor will assure you that you are familiar with all facets of the appeals process. They will give you the confidence to face your Wyoming college or university with robust defense.
Separation from Studies
Wyoming school administrations may remove a student from campus to protect their public reputation, academic or otherwise. At Central Wyoming College, if a student does not complete two-thirds of their credit hours, they risk losing their federal financial aid eligibility. Even if a student or their parents can afford the semester costs without the help of financial aid, a college or university will not allow them to enroll as it alters the college's federal aid eligibility.
Some institutions of higher education exercise the authority to suspend students temporarily. The University of