Lycoming College takes instances of sexual misconduct within its student body very seriously. The College upholds a Sexual Misconduct Policy to address such allegations. The policy defines what actions are considered sexual misconduct in the eyes of the College, as well as what actions the College will take against students who are in violation of the policy. The process used for resolving instances of sexual misconduct is similar to that used for resolving incidents of standard misconduct, however, certain special measures may apply due to the serious nature of these allegations.
Lycoming College Sexual Misconduct Process
When the College receives a report of alleged sexual misconduct from a student, authorities will begin the procedure for investigating and resolving the incident. Throughout the process the student who files the report will be known as the "complainant" while the student facing the allegations will be known as the "respondent." Once the report is filed, the College begins its investigation and determines which resolution method best fits the situation. Because of the nature of sexual misconduct hearings, these instances are generally resolved through a Student Conduct Board Hearing.
Student Conduct Board Hearings
The Student Conduct Board will be assembled with members selected for deciding sexual misconduct cases. Once the board is assembled, the hearing process will begin. The board will be led by a chair, who will call hearings to order. Hearings will begin with the parties and witnesses being introduced. The chair will then summarize the results of the investigation into the matters, and review the allegations. The board will then question the complainant, respondent, and witnesses in an order deemed appropriate to the case at hand. The complaint and respondent may not question one another, however, they will have the opportunity to question any witnesses, to an extent deemed appropriate by the chair. Following this stage, both complainant and respondent may make closing statements. Finally, the chair will close the hearing and begin the deliberation phase. Deliberations are to be done using the standard of "a preponderance of evidence."
At hearings for incidents of sexual misconduct, students may be accompanied by an advisor of their own choosing. Allegations of sexual misconduct can carry very serious long-term consequences for a student's academic or professional careers. For this reason, students should select an attorney to serve as their advisor throughout these hearings. An attorney can assist students with methods of witness questioning and proper argument that can greatly influence the outcome of a hearing. An attorney can also make sure that the integrity of the Title IX investigation and disciplinary proceedings is upheld, and that an accused student's rights and interests are protected throughout the process. In addition, should any adverse consequences arise from the reporting of the allegations at Lycoming College, an attorney can serve as a student's legal guide.
Appeals at Lycoming College
In the event of an unfavorable outcome, students are able to make an appeal. Appeals should be submitted within two (2) days of the date on the decision letter. In addition, appeals must be on the grounds of new information, procedural error, or an excessively severe sanction.