University Code of Student Conduct
“The University Code of Student Conduct was created to ensure the safety and security of the Rutgers community. This document is intended to ensure students and organizations are aware of their rights and responsibilities within the conduct process, and to uphold the integrity and values of the Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. When students choose to enroll at Rutgers University, they are expected to embrace its values.
The Code of Student Conduct is more than a collection of university regulations to be abided by- it seeks to promote the university’s values and educate. The Code of Student Conduct encourages students to be their authentic selves as they find their place on campus, while also encouraging students to embrace inclusion through discovery, dialogue and development as they celebrate diverse backgrounds.
The spirit of the Code of Student Conduct promotes student engagement both on and off campus, global citizenship and leadership. It encourages students to uphold the highest tenets of trust, honesty and integrity, understanding at all times that our actions significantly impact our personal journeys, our communities, and our larger society.
Rutgers Camden, Newark and New Brunswick students originate from all corners of the world and travel between many campuses and cities. As our students strive to achieve their goals, they are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with University policies and procedures but more importantly the values and spirit that they are founded upon.”
- Jurisdiction/ Authority
- Rights of the Complaint Party and Accused Party
VII. Rules and Regulations
VIII. Interim Action
- Disciplinary Sanctions
- Disciplinary Process
XII. Disciplinary Procedures Outside of the Jurisdiction of the Code of Student Conduct
XIII. Medical Amnesty
XIV. Disciplinary Files
- Clemency for Expulsion
XVI. Student Conduct Process Volunteers
XVII. Revisions to the Code of Student Conduct
Please note that definitions in this section relate to policies and procedures that are consistent system-wide (Rutgers University-Camden, Rutgers University-Newark and Rutgers University-New Brunswick). Definitions are also provided in procedures documents.
A. “Accused student” or “responding party” is any current student who has had disciplinary charges filed against them.
B. “Administration or staff” includes any person who currently holds a non-faculty appointment within the University.
C. “Campus Advisor” is a member of the University community who has been trained to provide support and guidance to accused students and compliant parties.
D. “Charge” is a determination that the University has reasonable suspicion that a student or student organization may have violated University policy.
E. “Chief Conduct Officer” is the person (or people) that enforce the University Code of Student Conduct, oversees the processes for handling misconduct, and may develop procedures for administration of the conduct process.
F. “College” or “School” refers to any academic division at Rutgers University.
G. “Complaint initiator” or “complaint party” refers to anyone who has filed a report with the Office of Student Conduct/Community Standards alleging misconduct by a Rutgers University student.
H. “Conduct Officer” refers to an individual appointed by the Chief Conduct Officer to carry out the disciplinary process.
I. “Faculty” includes any person who holds a current academic appointment within the University.
J. “Institution” and “University” mean Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.
K. “Impact statement” is a description of the effect of a policy violation on an affected party. It may be submitted in writing, or via audio or video recording.
L. “Member of the University community” means any student, faculty, administrator or employee at the University.
M. “Presiding Officer” refers the trained community member that oversees University Hearings.
N. “Office of Student Conduct” or “Office of Community Standards” refer to the offices that handle the conduct process at Rutgers University- Camden, Rutgers University-Newark, and Rutgers University – New Brunswick.
O. “Senior Student Affairs Officer” refers to the officer in the Division of Student Affairs, or their designee(s), who oversees the Office of Student Conduct or Community Standards.
P. “Student” is any person for whom the University maintains educational records, and who has not yet been awarded a degree from the University at the time of the alleged violation, as defined by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 and related regulations. The term student may also include any person who is a non-matriculating student at the time of the alleged violation.
Q. “Student organization” is any identified group of students who have complied with the formal requirements for university recognition and affiliation and have registered for affiliation with the university or who are advised by a university department or university employee.
R. “Support person” is the person or persons asked by the accused student or complaint party to provide support and assistance during the disciplinary process. A support person cannot represent the student during any proceeding and cannot address a Hearing Board, Presiding Officer, or Conduct Officer unless specific procedures provide that person the opportunity to speak.
S. “University premises” includes buildings or grounds owned, leased, operated, controlled or supervised by the University
T. “University sponsored activity” means any academic, co-curricular, extra-curricular or other activity on or off campus, which is initiated, aided, authorized or supervised by the University.
U. “Working day” includes any weekday that is not listed as a University holiday on the University Calendar. Days when classes are not in session but the University is open for business, are “working days.”
V. “Written Notice” is delivery of mail to a student’s local, permanent or email address. Students are responsible for checking any/all email addresses connected to their NetID. Students have the responsibility for providing the University with current addresses, e-mail addresses, and phone numbers.
A. The University Code of Student Conduct
This policy applies to conduct that occurs on University premises; at University sponsored activities; at functions, activities, or events hosted by recognized students or student organizations, on or off campus; and other off-campus conduct that affects University interest (as defined below). Each student is responsible for their conduct from the time of application through the actual awarding of a degree or certificate, even if conduct occurs before classes begin or after a semester is complete.
B. The Academic Integrity Policy
This policy is used to address allegations of student academic misconduct. Please refer to the Rutgers University Academic Integrity Policy for specific information regarding what would constitute a violation of this policy.
C. The Student Policy Prohibiting Sexual Harassment, Sexual Violence, Relationship Violence, Stalking and Related Misconduct
This policy is used to address allegations of sexual harassment, sexual assault, relationship violence, stalking, and other gender-based discrimination in which a Rutgers student is the perpetrator. Descriptions of violations and procedures for addressing violations are described in Policy 10.3.12.
D. Professional/Academic Programs
Individual academic programs may have additional ethical rules, professional requirements and professional standards of conduct. Academic programs are empowered to address deviations from acceptable professional standards of conduct. Any procedures a program puts in place to address deviations from their professional standards must include, at a minimum, notice to the student of the issue and some opportunity for the student to respond to the information before a decision is made.
E. Student Organizations
Student organizations are collectively responsible for any action committed by members on behalf of the organization that violates University policy. Disciplinary action against student organizations is separate from action taken against individuals. Student organizations will be asked to account for behavior committed by organization members on behalf of the organization. Consult the Office of Student Conduct /Community Standards
F. Criminal and civil court cases
Formal rules of process, procedure, and/or evidence that are applied in criminal and civil courts are not used in campus disciplinary proceedings. Participants are provided process and procedure as outlined in this Code.
G. Residence Life
Incidents that occur in or around the residence halls will typically be managed by Residence Life staff.
H. Electronic Content
The Code may also be applied to conduct online, via email, or via other electronic medium. Students and student organizations should be aware that online postings such as blogs, web postings, chats, and social networking sites are in the public sphere and are not private. Online postings may subject a student and/or student organization to allegations of conduct violations.
I. University Interest
Student or student organization conduct committed on or off the campus which affects a University Interest is behavior that:
1. Constitutes a violation of local, state or federal law;
2. Indicates that the student or student organization may present a danger or threat to the health or safety of themselves or others;
3. Impinges upon the rights, property or achievements of others or significantly breaches the peace and/or causes social disorder; or
4. Is detrimental to the educational interests of the University.
5. Any on or off campus behavior that adversely affects a University interest and/or violates the Code of Student Conduct is subject to conduct action following standard University procedures
J. Interim Action
The University may take interim disciplinary action as outlined in Section VIII.
Students may be held accountable for their behavior through both the criminal system and the University conduct process. University conduct proceedings may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with, or following civil or criminal proceedings at the discretion of the Chief Conduct Officer, or their designee(s), on each campus. Disciplinary action, decisions, and/or sanctions shall not be subject to change because criminal charges were dismissed, reduced, or resolved in favor of the student. University community members are not precluded from filing a civil or criminal charge against a student before, while, or after the University pursues disciplinary action.
The University is committed to providing accessible, prompt, thorough and fair methods of investigation and resolution of incidents reported under this Policy to all University members of the Rutgers community. To this end, both the complaint party and responding student are entitled to the following rights throughout the disciplinary processes set forth in this Policy, subject to the terms of this Policy.
A. To be treated with dignity by all persons involved in the disciplinary process.
B. To equal access to information, evidence and University resources, including information pertaining to counseling services.
C. To a fair hearing.
D. To information about this Code.
E. To participate or to decline to participate in the disciplinary process.
F. To have a support person present at all meetings and hearings. Support person availability is not sufficient grounds for postponing a meeting, Administrative Conference, or University Hearing.
G. To have a Campus Advisor present at all meetings and hearings. Advisor availability is not sufficient grounds for postponing a meeting, Administrative Conference, or University Hearing.
H. To written notice of all meetings and hearings, including the time and place.
I. To present information and/or witnesses on their behalf during the disciplinary process. The relevance of witnesses shall be determined by the Conduct Officer or by the Hearing Officer during the disciplinary process.
J. To choose to withhold information or testimony if the student feels information presented will lead to self-incrimination. Students are expected to fully cooperate with and participate in the University disciplinary system when notified but no negative inference will be made should a student choose not to speak.
K. To hear and respond to all information presented against them.
L. To one written copy, upon request, of the report stating the circumstances and allegations involved. This information will be made available after a student is notified of charges.
M. To notice of the charges, including what prohibited conduct is at issue.
N. To submit written materials relevant to the sanction decision, which may include written impact statements.
O. To be free from intimidation, harassment, bullying, or any other form of retaliation throughout the investigation and disciplinary process.
P. To written notification of the results of the hearing or other case resolution, including any sanctions imposed.
Q. To be informed of their right to appeal and of the process for doing so.
R. To written notification of the outcome of any appeal.
S. To privacy throughout the investigation and disciplinary process. The Conduct/Community Standards office will not release information about a case unless legally bound.
T. To understand that information collected in the process may be subpoenaed in criminal or civil proceedings.
U. To have reasonable steps taken to prevent any unnecessary or unwanted contacted with the other party or parties during the investigation and hearing process.
Violations of any student found responsible for committing, attempting to commit, or assisting others in committing a violation shall be subject to disciplinary sanctions as outlined in Section IX.
Violations, including but not limited to:
A. Violations of Academic Integrity:
Violations of the Rutgers University Academic Integrity Policy Please refer to the Rutgers University Academic Integrity Policy for specific information regarding what would constitute a violation of this policy.
B. Acts of dishonesty:
1. Forging, unauthorized alteration, or unauthorized use of any University documents or records, any instrument or form of identification, or access credentials. This includes, but is not limited to; transfer of a Rutgers ID to Violations of the Rutgers University Academic Integrity Policy or area, and misuse or transfer of residence hall key.
2. Intentionally furnishing false information to the University.
3. Intentionally furnishing false information to persons outside the University concerning the student’s academic record, degree, or activities.
4. Intentionally initiating or causing to be initiated any false report, warning, or threat of fire, explosion, or other emergency.
5. Unauthorized entry into, use of, or misuse of University property, including computers, data and voice communication networks
6. Possessing or selling false identification including fake IDs or RUIDs
7. Unauthorized sale or re-sale of university event tickets or tickets provided through sponsored events/programs funded by university student fees, or the sale of such tickets above face value.
C. Safety violations:
1. Intentionally or recklessly starting a fire (does not include University approved programs including fire, e.g., bonfires.)
2. Misusing fire safety equipment or elevators.
3. Intentionally or recklessly endangering the welfare of any individual.
4. Intentionally or recklessly obstructing fire, police, or emergency services.
5. Using, possessing, or storing dangerous chemical, fireworks, or explosives on University property, even if they are legal to possess because of a license or illegally possessing dangerous chemicals, fireworks or explosives on an off-campus property. Possessing and storing small containers of Mace is permitted.
6. Using, possessing, or storing of any object classified as a weapon by the State of New Jersey on University property or illegally possessing weapons on an off-campus property. Law enforcement officials who are authorized by law to carry firearms are excluded from this definition.
7. Utilizing any instrument in a manner that endangers or tends to endanger any person.
8. Obstructing the free flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic on or adjacent to University premises or at University events.
9. Failing to comply with the reasonable and lawful directions of University officials and/or University police. Including but not limited to, failure to produce identification.
D. Physical misconduct:
1. Inflicting bodily harm upon any person or animal.
2. Using or threatening to use force against any person or animal.
E. Sexual Harassment, Sexual Violence, Relationship Violence, Stalking and Related Misconduct
Violations of the Student Policy Prohibiting Sexual Harassment, Sexual Violence, Stalking, and Related Misconduct (Policy 10.3.12). Please refer to the policy for specific information regarding what would constitute a violation of this policy.
F. Bullying, intimidation, and harassment:
1. Making any communication to another person in any manner likely to cause alarm. Including through electronic or social media platforms
2. Subjecting another person or animal or threatening to subject another person or animal to striking, kicking, shoving, or offensive touching.
3. Threatening to reveal or releasing personal information or media about a person electronically or through other means of communication.
4. Engaging in any other course of alarming conduct or repeatedly committing acts with the purpose of seriously alarming another person.
A person’s behavior should be sufficiently severe, pervasive, or persistent as to substantially disrupt or interfere with the orderly operation of the institution or the rights of a student to participate in or benefit from the educational program.
G. Child abuse
Neglecting or inflicting any form of physical, emotional, or psychological harm or harassment upon any minor identified as a permanent or temporary dependent, co-dependent, or as under the responsibility of the accused.
Creating a false statement about a University community member and communicating that false statement to a third party, which then exposes that community member to hatred, contempt, ridicule, loss of goodwill, or loss of reputation as a result of the false statement.
1. Engaging in any act that impacts the mental, emotional, or physical health or safety of a student for the purpose of initiation into, admission into, affiliation with, or continued membership in any organization or team whose members are Rutgers University students.
2. Engaging in any activity that is inconsistent with regulations or policies of Rutgers University or laws in the State of New Jersey for the purpose of initiation into, admission into, affiliation with, or continued membership in any organization or team whose members are Rutgers University students.
Behavior falling into these categories shall be considered hazing regardless of whether a person is a willing participant.
J. Invasion of privacy:
1. Making, attempting to make, live streaming, transmitting, or attempting to transmit audio, video, or images of any person(s) on University premises in bathrooms, showers, bedrooms, common areas of suites or apartments, medical examination rooms, training rooms, or other premises where there is an explicit expectation of privacy with respect to nudity and/or sexual activity, without the knowledge and consent of all participants subject to such recordings.
2. Viewing any person(s) on University premises in bathrooms, showers, bedrooms, common areas of suites or apartments, medical examination rooms, training rooms, or other premises where there is an explicit expectation of privacy with respect to nudity and/or sexual activity, without the knowledge and consent of all participants.
K. Theft or damage to property:
1. Taking or attempting to take University, public, or private property without the consent of the owner or person legally responsible for that property.
2. Obtaining University services through devious means.
3. Knowingly possessing public, private or University property that was stolen.
4. Intentionally or recklessly damaging University, public or private property.
L. Use or possession of alcohol, narcotics, or other drugs
1. Possessing or consuming alcohol under the legal drinking age in New Jersey.**
2. Possessing alcohol in areas of campus where alcohol is not permitted.
3. Unlawfully possessing or using drugs, narcotics, controlled substances, or paraphernalia.
4. Misusing or misappropriating any prescription, over-the-counter medication, or legal substance.
5. Possessing or using medical marijuana on any Rutgers University property.
6. Impaired driving: Driving under the influence of alcohol and/ or drugs is prohibited.
**The University strongly encourages students to call a University Official and/or Medical Professional for medical assistance for themselves or for community members who are dangerously under the influence of drugs or alcohol. No student seeking medical treatment for the effects of drug or alcohol use will be subject to university discipline for violations pertaining to drug or alcohol possession/use as outlined in the Student Code.
Medical Amnesty will be granted to both the intoxicated student and to the student seeking medical assistance for the intoxicated student; however, both the intoxicated student and the reporting student will be required to meet with their respective campus’ Conduct/Standards Office to provide a detailed account of the events leading to the need for assistance in order to receive amnesty. Additionally, involved students may be required to participate in an educational program related to drugs or alcohol. Medical Amnesty does not apply to disciplinary action relating to any other code violation including, but not limited to, assault, property damage, or the presence of or distribution of other substances. Medical Amnesty does not apply to student organizations.
M. Distribution of alcohol, narcotics, or other drugs:
1. Selling, transferring, giving away, or exchanging something in return for narcotics, prescription medications, or other illegal substances.
2. Providing or facilitating the consumption of alcohol by any person without taking reasonable and prudent precautions to insure that the person is of legal drinking age in New Jersey.
3. Sharing medical marijuana with individuals who do not have a medical marijuana prescription.
1. Intentionally or recklessly interfering with any University activity or University sponsored activity.
2. Disrupting or obstructing an academic class or lecture, an administrative or support function, or official University business.
3. Engaging in classroom conduct prohibited by the faculty member or in violation of the law or University policy.
It should be noted that this policy is not intended to punish students for classroom dissent or hinder organized, peaceful and orderly protests that are undertaken within reasonable time, manner, and place restrictions placed upon the same by the University.
Disruption Policy (Policy 50.3.5) https://policies.rutgers.edu/sites/policies/files/00011247.PDF
O. Disorderly conduct:
Engaging in conduct that is disruptive, lewd, or indecent, regardless of intent, which breaches the peace of the community.
P. Undisclosed recording:
Recording, live streaming, or transmitting images, audio, or video of private, non-public conversations and/or meetings on University premises without the knowledge and consent of all participants. This may include recording instructors without consent. Students must consult with instructors for guidance on their recording policies. This provision does not extend to the recording of public events or discussions, to recordings made for law enforcement purposes, or to any registered disability accommodation.
Q. Violations of other University policies:
Violating other published University regulations or policies
R. Engaging in behavior that violates a University Interest (as defined under jurisdiction).
S. Abuse of the disciplinary system:
1. Knowingly providing false testimony or evidence during the conduct process.
2. Disrupting or interfering with the conduct process.
3. Failing to complete imposed sanctions.
4. Refusing to provide information at a disciplinary proceeding, students are expected to fully cooperate with and participate in the University disciplinary system when notified. A student may choose to withhold information or testimony if the student feels information presented will lead to self-incrimination.
5. Harassing a University Hearing Board member, Campus Appeals Committee member, Conduct Officer, Hearing Officer, Campus Advisor or witness before or after a disciplinary proceeding.
A. Interim Suspension
1. In certain circumstances, the Senior Student Affairs Officer, or their designee(s) may impose an Interim Suspension or other restrictions before the student goes through University disciplinary proceedings. Interim suspension shall be enacted when the Senior Student Affairs Officer, or their designee(s), determines there is a reasonable basis to conclude that the continued presence of the student at the University presents an acute and immediate threat to themselves, to others at the institution, or to University property.
2. During an interim suspension, students shall be denied access to the residence halls, to the University premises (including classes) and to all University activities or privileges for which the student might otherwise be eligible.
3. It is the right of the student issued an interim suspension to meet with the Senior Student Affairs Officer, or their designee(s) within two (2) working days of the student reaching out to schedule a meeting to discuss the following issues only:
a) The reliability of the information concerning the student’s alleged misconduct, including the matter of their identity.
b) Whether the conduct and surrounding circumstances reasonably indicate that the continued presence of the student on University premises poses a substantial and immediate threat to themselves, to others, or to property.
4. The Senior Student Affairs Officer, or their designee(s), may affirm or lift the interim suspension. The student shall be notified of the decision in writing. The student will then be asked to participate in the investigation. If applicable, the appropriate disciplinary proceeding will then be scheduled at the earliest possible time.
B. In certain circumstances, the Senior Student Affairs Officer, or their designee(s), may impose other interim restrictions on a student, such as a residence hall suspension, termination of housing contract, mandated room reassignment, or other restrictions prior to University disciplinary proceedings. These restrictions shall be enacted when the Senior Student Affairs Officer, or their designee(s), determines there is a reasonable basis to conclude that the student presents a substantial and immediate threat to themselves, to others, or to University property if the student is allowed access to the resource being restricted.
C. Under certain circumstances when it is impossible for a student to address disciplinary action due to specific mitigating factors and the incident in question does not require an interim suspension, the University may grant a student a disciplinary withdrawal. The decision to grant a disciplinary withdrawal will be made by the Senior Student Affairs Officer, or their designee(s), in consultation with the Chief Conduct Officer on the student’s campus. The student shall be permitted to withdraw from classes and a disciplinary hold will be placed on the student’s record. The student will not be permitted to return to Rutgers University until the disciplinary matter has been resolved.
A. Disciplinary sanctions are imposed when students are found in violation of University regulations. The purpose of sanctioning is to educate a student as to why their behavior is inappropriate, as well as to make the student aware of all the possible consequences of the behavior in question. Sanctions for misconduct will be determined on a case by case basis, utilizing six main criteria:
a) The nature of the offense.
b) The precedent established by previous sanctions.
c) The previous disciplinary history of the student.
d) Aggravating or mitigating circumstances brought up during the Investigation, Administrative Conference, or University Hearing.
e) The developmental needs of the student.
f) The safety and well-being of the community.
B. Sanctions are typically comprised of two components:
a) An “inactive sanction,” or official University sanction (Reprimand, Suspension Withheld, Disciplinary Suspension, Expulsion, or loss of University housing)and
b) An “active sanction,” requiring the student to complete some form of service or assignment.
C. Inactive sanctions:
A Reprimand formally indicates to a student that their behavior is unacceptable and that continuing that behavior shall warrant additional, more serious consequences.
Probation is a notice to a student that their actions are of such a serious nature that they jeopardize their status as a student. The University shall refrain from suspending the student at this time, as long as the student meets all sanction requirements. Any additional incidents in which the student is found in violation of the Code of Student Conduct may result in immediate removal from the University for a specific period of time with the possibility of additional sanctions.
While a student is serving probation, they cannot hold elected office and cannot represent the University in any official capacity, including but not limited to: intercollegiate athletics, Residence Life positions, major extracurricular activities or student exchange programs including Global Studies and Learning Abroad. At the end of the deferred suspension period, all lost privileges and eligibility shall be restored.
3. Disciplinary Suspension:
There are two types of suspension, students may be subject to one or both.
a) Term: A term suspension stipulates the period of suspension, after which the student may return to the University community as a student (if the student meets the academic requirements of the program of study).
b) Conditional: A conditional suspension requires that the student meet certain requirements before they can return to the University community. The conditional suspension shall continue until the Conduct Officer determines that the conditions have been satisfied.
In either case, a notation will remain on the student’s official University transcript through the duration of the suspension. When the term is complete and conditions have been met, the notation will be removed.
While on suspension, a student shall not be permitted to earn credits at any other institution for the purpose of transferring those credits and making progress towards a Rutgers degree. Notice of the suspension shall appear on the student’s academic transcript for the term of the suspension.
4. Dismissal or Expulsion:
Expulsion of a student from the University is a permanent loss of student status, unless student has successfully petitioned for clemency. A student is precluded from registration, participation in any class, activity or program of the University, and presence on campus. The sanction of expulsion is permanently noted on a student’s official University transcript unless student has successfully petitioned for clemency, and has completed their degree.
5. Loss of University Housing:
Termination of student housing privileges, and exclusion from campus residence hall premises and activities. Loss of housing privileges is often permanent, but can be designated for a period of time at the discretion of the University. This sanction may be implemented when a resident student has either breached the terms and conditions of their housing contract, has engaged in inappropriate behavior on or off campus that severely impacts the University community, and/or has been suspended, dismissed, or expelled from the University. The termination can be enforced immediately, at the discretion of the University, and is typically carried out and overseen by the Residence Life staff of the campus. The student losing housing privileges will not receive a refund of any housing fees paid, may be subject to a contract cancellation fee, and may be held financially responsible for the full cost of their housing for the remainder of the contract period.
D. Active sanctions:
a) Restitution: Repayment to the University or to an affected party for damages resulting from a violation of this Code.
b) Fines: A monetary penalty paid to the University. Fines are utilized as a deterrent to further student misconduct, and are put in place in cases involving the use of alcohol and other drugs. Conduct fine rates are approved by the Senior Student Affairs Officers, or their designee(s), on each campus.
Programs, projects, or assignments designed mitigate the harm done to the affected parties and restore the University community. Restorative sanctions may include (but are not limited to) educational service, letters of apology, and restorative justice practices..
a) Service hours – Community service hours to be completed by a specified date. Location and projects for completion of service hours must be approved by the Conduct Officer.
b) Alternative Resolution – Students may be sanctioned to nontraditional means of conflict resolution. These sanctions may vary case to case and are at the discretion of the Conduct officer.
Programs, projects, or assignments designed to educate a student or student organization about the consequences of their actions and to impart skills that may help the student avoid future violations..
4. Other Sanctions:
Other sanctions may be imposed instead of, or in addition to, those specified. Students may be subject to restrictions upon or denials of University parking privileges for violations involving the use of registration of motor vehicles on campus and the loss of privileges for access to University computers or networks. For violations of academic integrity, appropriate academic penalties shall also be applied (see the Rutgers University Academic Integrity Policy). For sanctions regarding violations associated with the Residence Hall, please refer to the Res Life Living Guide. For violations associated with Student Organization student organization sanctions. For violations associated with athletes, NCAA/athletic sanctions may apply.
For all cases, except those:
(a) involving academic integrity violations
(b) subject to the Student Policy Prohibiting Sexual Harassment, Sexual Violence, Relationship Violence, Stalking and Related Misconduct
(c) involving Student Organizational Misconduct
(d) involving student organizational misconduct
1. Any University community member may submit a complaint alleging a violation of the Code of Student Conduct. University community members may also submit a complaint on behalf of another person. All complaints shall be reported to the Office of Student Conduct/Community Standards.
2. During the disciplinary process, the accused student shall be informed of their rights (as identified in Rights of the Complaint Party and Accused Party) and given information about the disciplinary process. Should a student withdraw from the University for any reason, at any time during the disciplinary process, a hold will be placed on their transcripts and registration, and the student will be prohibited from graduating, etc. while the matter is pending. The student will be unable to return to the University until they have completed the disciplinary process and the matter has been resolved.
3. Once a complaint has been received, a Conduct Officer conducts an Investigation. The investigation may include meetings with the responding party, the complaint party, witnesses and any other involved individuals. All parties will be given written notice of meeting time(s), their rights and responsibilities, a list of Campus Advisors, and any other necessary information as determined by the Conduct Officer. An investigation may not require meeting with all parties; the Conduct Officer will determine what meetings are necessary. The Investigation will determine the next step of the process. During the disciplinary process, the accused student shall be informed of their rights (as identified in Rights of the Complaint Party and Accused Party) and given information about the disciplinary process. After the Investigation, one of several things may happen:
- The Conduct Officer has insufficient information. No charges will be brought against the accused student at this time.
- The parties may be able to bypass the conduct process using Alternative Resolution practices.
- The Conduct Officer finds enough information to send a Finding Letter.
- The Conduct Officer may request an Administrative Hearing
- Following an Administrative Conference, the accused student may be called to a University Hearing. (Only for cases where the recommended sanctions includes suspension/expulsion from the University or loss of University housing)
A. No charges
The complaint does not include enough information for the Conduct Officer to bring charges against the student. If new information is found, the University may reopen a case and the student may be subject to the disciplinary process.
B. Alternative Resolution Practices
The University aims to create a culture that supports and utilizes Restorative Justice Practices to address and repair harm in the community, restore wellness, and promote communication, engagement and cooperation. The Conduct/Community Standards Office offers several practices to resolve issues outside of the disciplinary process. Any University community member or group may contact the Conduct/Community Standards Office to learn about available resolution options, and/or to initiate a resolution process.
Circles/Conferences bring together members of the community that have been impacted by an event or incident. They allow both victims and respondents to have honest dialogue in a space where all members may speak and ask questions. It is a non-threatening way to rebuild trust, community, and relationships. Circles/conferences focus on gaining understanding and reaching a mutually desired outcome or resolution.
2. Conflict Negotiation/Resolution
Conflict negotiation involves bringing in a third party to encourage communication. Once the negotiator has a full understanding of the motives and needs of each person, they can begin to look for ways for them to compromise. The negotiator creates a contract or agreement by incorporating the agreed-upon compromises.
3. Impact Panels
Panels provide an opportunity for indirect encounter when either the victim or respondent is unwilling or unable to meet the other in person. A panel is comprised of unrelated victims and respondents linked only by a similar type of violation. The panel may help bring closure to the victims and to expose respondents to the harms that they have caused by providing an opportunity for the parties to speak about their experiences.
Mediation is a dispute resolution process. Co-mediators will guide the people involved toward their own resolution. Through joint sessions and separate caucuses with each person, the mediators help both sides define the issues, understand the other’s position and move closer toward their own resolution.
C. Finding Letter
In certain minor cases, a Conduct Officer will have enough information to determine charges and responsibility from the complaint. The Conduct Officer will provide students with written notification that includes: the complaint, the given charges, the finding of responsibility, and sanctions.
Should a student feel they received a letter in error or if they disagree with the finding and/or sanctions, they will have the opportunity to appeal to the Campus Appeals Committee. The office of Student Conduct/Community Standards will review the cases for eligibility.
D. Administrative Conference
After an investigation has been conducted, the Conduct Officer can request the student attend an Administrative Conference. The student may choose to have a Campus Advisor and/or a support person present. The student will have the opportunity to present information, including witnesses in their defense. At this meeting the Conduct Officer will review all available information, determine charges, responsibility, and sanctions. Should a student disagree with the findings and/or the sanctions, they will have opportunity to appeal to the Campus Appeals Committee.
E. University Hearing
1. After an investigation or an Administrative Conference, a Conduct Officer may find enough information to suggest separation from the University. These cases will be heard by the University Hearing Board. The University Hearing Board is the formal disciplinary body of trained students and staff members overseen by a trained University community member serving as the Hearing Officer. The student may choose to have a Campus Advisor and/or a support person present. During the Hearing, the complaint party will provide a narrative of what happened. Then the respondent to provide their narrative of what happened. Then witnesses in support of the complaint will provide their accounts. Then the respondent can provide witnesses to support their interpretation of the incident. The University Hearing Board will review all available information, determine charges and responsibility. Should a student disagree with the findings and/or the sanctions, they will have opportunity to appeal to the Campus Appeals Committee.
2. Hearing Boards will typically be comprised of two students, one faculty or staff member, and a trained University community member to serve as the Presiding Officer. In the case of Academic Integrity violation the Hearing Board Composition will include a faculty member.
3. If the responding student fails to respond to the Conduct/Community Standards Office on several modes of communication, fails to meet with the Conduct Officer for an investigation, or Administrative Conference, the Conduct Officer will assume the student declines to participate in the process. The Conduct Officer will make a determination based on their investigation. The Conduct Officer will notify the student of charges, responsibility, and sanctions. Should the student disagree with the findings, they will have the right to appeal to the Campus Appeals Committee.
4. Should a student need to withdraw from the University for any reason, at any time during the Disciplinary Process, there will be a hold placed on their transcripts, registration, Graduation, etc. The Student will be unable to return to the University, until they have completed the Disciplinary process and their Disciplinary matter has been resolved.
A. A student will have ten working days following a decision to file an appeal. All appeals must be submitted in writing, and will be referred to the Campus Appeals Committee (CAC) on the responding student’s campus. Failure to submit an appeal by the appropriate deadline will render the decision final and conclude the disciplinary process.
Appeals may be made on the following grounds:
1. Unsupported Conclusion: The decision made by the Conduct Officer or University Hearing Board is not supported by the facts of the case.
2. Procedural Error: The Administrative Conference or University Hearing was conducted unfairly and not in conformity with prescribed procedures. The error committed must be determined to have substantially impacted the fairness of the disciplinary process.
3. New Information: There is new information available that wasn’t available at the time of the original Administrative Conference or University Hearing and that is sufficient to alter the original decision.
4. Disproportionate Sanction: The sanction imposed against the student was not appropriate for the offense committed.
1. The Campus Appeals Committee (CAC) on the responding student’s campus will convene to review the case being appealed.
2. The Campus Appeals Committee will typically be comprised of two students, one faculty or staff member, overseen by a Conduct Officer that was previously unaffiliated with the case. In the case of Academic Integrity violation the Hearing Board Composition will include a faculty member.
3. Appeals are decided upon the record of the original proceeding and any written information submitted by any of the parties. The Campus Appeals Committee shall not substitute its judgment for the decision of the original hearing body or attempt to rehear the case.
4. In preparation of an appeal, the responding party may have access to the recording of the Administrative Conference or University Hearing.
5. The Hearing Officer (if any), the Conduct Officer, and the complaint party (if any) may respond in writing to the student’s appeal.
6. Any responding student who accepts responsibility for or is found responsible for a violation is given one appeal to be reviewed by the Campus Appeals Committee.
a) Accepted Responsibility – Any accused student who accepts responsibility for a Code of Student Conduct violation but disagrees with the sanction imposed, maintains the right to have their sanction reviewed by the Campus Appeals Committee. All information will be reviewed and a final determination will be made, affirming or modifying the sanctions. If the sanctions are modified, the student is given new sanction instructions by the Campus Appeals Committee and the case is concluded. If the sanction is affirmed, the original sanctions will stand, and the case is concluded. However, should the sanctions include loss of University housing, suspension or expulsion, the Campus Appeals Committee decision is final, however the student will have a final appeal to the Senior Student Affairs Officer or their designee, who makes the final decision on the appeal.
b) Found Responsible – Any accused student who is found responsible for a Code of Student Conduct violation but disagrees with the finding and or sanction imposed, maintains the right to have their case reviewed by the Campus Appeals Committee. The Campus Appeals Committee will review all information and make a determination: affirm the original finding and sanction, affirm the finding and modify the sanction, or remand the case for a new Administrative Conference or hearing or Disciplinary Conference University Hearing.
c) Sanctions will only be recommended for change if they are found to be clearly disproportionate to the gravity of the violation, precedent for similar offenses, and/or the accused student’s prior disciplinary record. Cases will only be recommended for remand for a new Administrative Conference or University Hearing in the event of an unsupported finding, new and significant evidence, or significant procedural error.
d) If the sanctions include suspension or expulsion, the CAC decision is final, however the student will have a final appeal to the Senior Student Affairs Officer or their designee, who makes the final decision on the appeal.
C. The imposition of sanctions will normally be deferred during any appeals process. The status of the student shall not change until the appeals process is complete. The University reserves the right to place a hold on the student’s registration and/or transcript and no degree will be awarded to the student during the appeals process. Interim actions may also be taken while the case is going through the appeals process to protect a complaint party or the University community. Where permitted by state and federal laws, the Chief Conduct Officer, or their designee(s), may notify the victim of an act of student misconduct of any sanction imposed.
D. Upon the conclusion of the appeal process, outlined above, there are no additional remedies available to the student.
A. A student found responsible for, or who accepts responsibility for, violating the Code of Student Conduct or the Rutgers University Academic Integrity Policy shall have a disciplinary file created in their name. University Records Retention Policy requires that disciplinary records be kept for ten years from the date of the letter providing notice of final disciplinary action. Disciplinary records may only be reported to third parties in accordance with University regulations and subject to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.
B. A disciplinary hold may be placed on a student’s University records by the Chief Conduct Officer, or their designee(s), while disciplinary proceedings are pending or if sanctions are not completed by the deadline.
C. Permanent notation of disciplinary action shall be made on the transcript whenever a student is dismissed or expelled, except in cases where a student has successfully petitioned for clemency and has completed their degree. Transcript notations of disciplinary action will also be made if a suspension is implemented; when the suspension has been completed, the notation will be removed.
D. At no time will the Office of Student Conduct/Community Standards provide any information that divulges to the public the name, address, or other identifying personal information of anyone involved in the disciplinary process.
A. Rutgers University has established standards of conduct for students, and imposes sanctions for violations of these standards in order to sustain the personal, educational, and social development of its students. The University expels students when the student’s behavior is so egregious that the University concludes that continued affiliation with the University is antithetical to the safety or interests of the University community.
B. The University recognizes that, following a long separation from the University, people may change. Consequently, it is appropriate that the University consider granting clemency to expelled former students in circumstances where they are able to provide significant evidence of rehabilitation and a renewed commitment to the standards of conduct and scholarship expected of Rutgers students. For the purposes of this document, a petition for clemency is a procedure whereby the expelled individual requests the opportunity to complete their degree, and asks the University to consider new circumstances and facts that might alter the original sanction.
C. Individuals who have been expelled from the University may seek clemency under the following circumstances and conditions:
1. The individual must wait a minimum of five calendar years after the original expulsion before initiating a request for clemency. If the individual has taken classes elsewhere in the intervening period, those credits will not transfer towards the Rutgers degree.
2. The request for clemency must be made in writing to the Senior Student Affairs Officer on each campus, hereafter referred to as the Clemency Officer. The written request should include appropriate documentation concerning the individual’s status during the intervening years since the expulsion, any additional mitigating circumstances with appropriate documentation, and any additional information about character or change of behavior that may be appropriate. This documentation may include records pertaining to mental health status, employment, criminal or probation records, educational records, social service records, and letters of recommendation.
NOTE: An impact statement will be allowable if relevant. The Clemency Officer should arrange for its inclusion in the assembled documents.
3. Upon receipt of the request for clemency, the Clemency Officer may consult with whomever they wishes and may empower an advisory panel to advise the process. The Clemency Officer or advisory panel will review the request for clemency and may conduct a personal interview with the individual and/or conduct other forms of inquiry as needed.
4. The Clemency Officer will make a recommendation to the President on clemency including specific conditions, if any, for admission/readmission.
5. The final decision (with any special conditions) will be made by the President and transmitted to the Clemency Officer on the campus from which the individual was expelled.
6. The decision of the President is final.
7. If clemency is granted, the individual will be readmitted to the University and to the school, program, or successor unit from which they was expelled (assuming the student is academically qualified for reenrollment). If the individual wants to attend a different academic unit within the University, they will be subject to the same requirements and approval processes as any current student. The individual will remain on Suspension Withheld, noted on the transcript, until the degree is completed, at which time it will be removed as will the notation regarding the original expulsion. The individual must meet whatever graduation requirements are in place at the time of readmission. The President may impose additional conditions on the individual’s readmission.
8. A record of the expulsion will remain in the student’s disciplinary records maintained by the Office of Student Conduct/Community Standards.
Rutgers University will recruit and train individuals to serve as Advisors, University Hearing Board members, University Hearing Officers, and Campus Appeals Committee members.
A standing system-wide committee is responsible for reviewing this Code and suggesting appropriate amendments or modifications. The committee shall consist of a minimum of two students and two representatives from Rutgers University- Camden, Rutgers University-Newark, and Rutgers University – New Brunswick.
It will be the responsibility of the Senior Student Affairs Officer at Rutgers University-New Brunswick to inform the University Senate, the President, and the Board of Governors of any substantive changes in the student disciplinary process recommended by the committee. Substantive changes to the Code of Student Conduct must be approved by the President of the University.
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