Lebanon Valley College governs its student body through the use of an extensive Student Conduct Code. The Code itself is located within the College's student handbook. The purpose of the Code is to provide a safe and secure learning environment for students. The Code lists a number of actions a student can take that will be classified as violations. Students who are found responsible for violations will have sanctions imposed upon them by the College.
Any member of the College can file charges against a student. Following the charges being filed, the matters will be investigated to see if the student can be held responsible. Once formal charges are made, the person who initiated them will be known as the "complainant," while the student who is being accused of a violation will be known as the "respondent."
Resolution of Student Conduct Code Charges
The College offers early and alternative forms to resolve Student Conduct Code charges. The respondent can admit to the violation and accept sanctions at any stage in the process. Contrarily, the student can deny the alleged violations and move to a hearing. At times, conflict mediation may be used, however, all parties must agree to do so.
Lebanon Valley College Hearing Procedure
Hearings will take place in front of the Judicial/Student Conduct Body. The hearing body will both lead and decide upon the hearing.
At the start of a hearing, the hearing body will be introduced, and the charges will be presented to the respondent, who will make a response, similar to a plea, to the charges. Next, the complainant will make their introductory remarks. After this, the complainant will present their information and will be questioned by the hearing body. The complainant will then present their supporting witnesses, who will also be questioned by the hearing body. After this, the respondent's phase begins. The respondent will make their introductory remarks. After this, the respondent will present their own information, and they will be questioned by the hearing body. After this, the respondent's supporting witnesses will be presented and then questioned by the hearing body. At any point, if it is deemed necessary, the hearing body can assign new charges as evidence is brought forward. After the presentation phases have finished, the complainant can make their final statement, followed by the respondent making their final statement. Finally, the hearing body will deliberate and decide if the student is responsible for a violation, and if so, what sanctions to assign.
Students are entitled to an advisor of their own choosing. The provisions in the Code recommend a College community member, however, there is no reason that this person should not be an attorney. An attorney will be able to provide students with the support they need in a hearing. On top of this, an attorney will be able to provide insight into methods of argument construction and evidence presentation that can be used at a hearing to secure a better outcome.
Lebanon Valley College Appeals
Should a hearing result in an unfavorable outcome, students have 5 business days from receiving the original decision to make an appeal. Appeals are due by 4:30 pm on the 5th business day, or they will not be accepted. All letters of appeal must be submitted to the Vice President of Student Affairs. The grounds for appeal are inappropriate sanctions, procedural error, or new information.
If you or your student is currently facing disciplinary action from Lebanon Valley College, contact attorney Joseph D. Lento today.