Edinboro University of Pennsylvania treats violations of its sexual misconduct policy very seriously. Much like standard behavioral violations, sexual misconduct allegations will be adjudicated through the University's Judicial Affairs Office. Sexual misconduct violations go through the following process, which is somewhat similar as that for standard student misconduct violations, with certain differences in manner of investigation and adjudication.
The process begins when a report of sexual misconduct is filed with office of the Title IX Coordinator. The person who initiates the report will be known as the "complainant," while the student facing allegations will be known as the "respondent." The investigation will be done by a designated individual chosen by the Vice President of Student Affairs. Respondents may find themselves facing certain interim measures, such as temporary relocation, suspension, or prohibition from interacting with the complainant. After the investigation phase has concluded, there will be a hearing held to determine responsibility.
Hearings are held by the University Judicial Board. The process begins with the chairperson of the board opening the hearing. The chairperson will allow the respondent a chance to acknowledge the violations they are facing. Any violations not acknowledged at this time will undergo the hearing procedures. The complainant will then present their case and supporting witnesses. The respondent can question the witnesses, however, no direct questioning of complainant will be allowed. The Judicial Board will also conduct questioning at this stage. Following this, the respondent can present their case and supporting witnesses. The respondent will then be questioned by the complainant and the judicial board. After this, the complainant and respondent will make their closing remarks. Finally the Judicial Board will go into deliberations. Decisions will be made using the standard of "a preponderance of evidence."
Students are entitled to the presence of an advisor of their choosing at hearings and throughout the University's Title IX investigation. Allegations of sexual misconduct can have far-reaching and very damaging consequences for students. Due to the seriousness of this matter, students should select an attorney to serve as their advisor. An attorney will be able to advise students on methods of argument, evidence presentation, and cross-examination. These courtroom techniques can be incredibly effective in a student's University hearing. In addition, an attorney will be able to provide assistance to students who face additional consequences that may follow the reporting of sexual misconduct at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania.
In the event of an unfavorable hearing outcome, students are entitled to a chance at an appeal. Appeals must be made within 10 calendar days of the mailing of the hearing decision. The grounds for appeal are an error in procedure or interpretation of university code, a claim that the sanction was disproportionate to the offense, or new evidence for consideration. The appeal will be reviewed by an appeals officer, who may decide to have a brief meeting with the respondent to discuss the appeal.