What should I do if I am charged with a code of conduct or disciplinary violation at a college or university in Virginia? VIDEO

If you're a student or the parent of a student at a college or university in Virginia and you're charged with a code of conduct or disciplinary violation, you should not take the matter lightly. Do not make the mistake of believing what some schools describe to be as an educational opportunity. A code of conduct or disciplinary case can have serious potential consequences with respect to academic goals, including internships and graduate school and professional goals, including employment opportunities.

Regardless of when you first learn of the allegations, whether it's from the office of student conduct or from a professor, an athletic coach, the campus police, respectfully declining to discuss the case before you could take or until you could take the necessary precautions is critical. You must understand how your school will investigate and adjudicate the charges. To do so, you must familiarize yourself with the applicable policies and procedures.

All schools will conduct an investigation, and regardless of whether your school would decide responsibility based solely on the investigation or will do so at a hearing, it's important to present the necessary defense and response. Notice is an issue at many schools so you must clearly define the allegations. You must then present your version of events and support it through all available means, including relevant evidence, supporting witnesses and anything else that would be appropriate to the circumstances