Mount Aloysius College governs its student body using Code of Conduct, located in the College's student handbook. The Code exists to create a safe and secure campus and learning environment for students of the College. Students suspected of committing actions that violate the Code of Conduct will become subject to the Student Conduct Process. The Student Conduct Process is a three tiered system used as the College's form of a judicial process. Students that are held responsible for a violation through this process will have sanctions imposed on them by the College.
The process begins when a report is filed to a College authority. Any person can make a report of an alleged violation regarding a student.
Level One: Director of Residence Life
The student will be notified that they have been mentioned in an incident report, and invited to a brief meeting with the hearing officer assigned to their case. At the meeting, the hearing officer will summarize the violations for the student. The student can admit or deny the violations. If the student admits to the violations, then sanctions are immediately issued, unless the violation is of a more serious nature, in which case there will be a short hearing to determine sanctions. The hearing officer can also move the case to the next level if it is deemed appropriate.
Level Two: The Student Conduct Board
For more serious violations, a case can be escalated to Level Two. Level Two cases are adjudicated by the Student Conduct Board.
The accused student will be given the time and date of a Pre-Board Review. The Pre-Board review is a brief meeting with the Conduct Officer to explain the Student Conduct Board Hearing process to the student.
The overall goal of the hearing is for the Student Conduct Board to determine whether or not violations have occurred, and if so, to assign the appropriate sanctions. There is no process outlined; however, accused students are guaranteed certain liberties through the process. Students will be able to question the person who initiated the charges, as well as any witnesses. After all pertinent information has been heard from all sides, the board will go into deliberations. A decision will be made using the standard of a "preponderance of evidence."
At hearings with the Student Conduct Board, the accused student is entitled to an advisor from the College community. While this may seem beneficial to the student, it's worth noting that a member of the College community may not have what it takes to help put up a strong defense. An attorney working with a student from behind the scenes will be able to help the student through the hearing process much better than an individual who is a part of the very same institution pushing charges forward. Attorneys can advise students on courtroom techniques such as methods of evidence presentation and witness questioning that can be incredibly effective when applied to a hearing.
Level Three: Appeals
In the event of an unfavorable outcome, the third stage in the Student Conduct Process allows a student to make an appeal. Appeals must be made within 5 school days of the notification of the hearing results. Letters of appeal should be submitted to the Vice President for Student Affairs. The grounds for appeal are either a claim that the regulations for the hearing process were not follow, or that available evidence was not reviewed.
If you or your student is facing disciplinary action from Mount Aloysius College, contact attorney Joseph D. Lento today.