Saint Joseph's University, commonly referred to as "St. Joe's," uses its Sexual Misconduct Policy to pursue disciplinary action against students who have been alleged to have committed acts of sexual misconduct. This process is slightly different than the University's course of action for standard behavioral misconduct violations. The process is overseen and upheld by the University's Title IX Coordinator.
Saint Joseph's University Disciplinary Process
The disciplinary process for sexual misconduct violations begins when a student initiates a report of sexual misconduct with the Title IX office. Typically, the person who initiates the complaint is known as the "complainant," while the subject of the complaint is known as the "respondent." Reporting can be done by an outside party, who may be known as a "reporter."
The University may take measures to ensure the confidentiality and safety of the reporter and complainant as it sees fit. this may involve certain interim actions against the respondent, which can include a change in class schedule or residence; an interim suspension can also be imposed when deemed necessary.
The first phase of the disciplinary process is an investigation. Investigations will be conducted by an Investigator who is appointed by the University. Once an Investigator is selected, any party may object to this choice, on the basis that they believe the Investigator has any bias towards either party. The Investigator will then perform an investigation into the matters that will involve speaking with each party, gathering evidence, and compiling information pertinent to the case. The Investigator is also responsible for making the finding of responsibility.
Once the investigation phase is concluded, the Investigator will finalize an investigative report. The Investigator will compile a report of the full extent of the investigation, and make a decision of "responsible," "not responsible," or "undetermined." The parties involved will be notified of the outcome and any sanctions that are applicable to the situation. The standard of decision-making used by the Investigator will be a "preponderance of information."
Students involved in the sexual misconduct disciplinary process are entitled to the presence of an advisor of their choosing during their meetings with the Title IX Coordinator and any meetings with the Investigator. Sexual misconduct violations can put a student's entire future in jeopardy. Because of the seriousness of these allegations, students should select an attorney to serve as their advisor. An attorney will be able to help ensure that a student's rights are protected throughout the disciplinary process. The earlier an attorney is involved, the greater a student's chances are at a favorable outcome. An attorney can also further assist the student with any adverse consequences that may come from the initial report of the allegations at St. Joe's.
Saint Joseph's University Appeal Process
In the event of an unfavorable outcome, students are entitled to an appeal of the outcome. Appeals must be made within 5 business days of the outcome. The grounds for appeal are procedural error, or new evidence to be considered.