Student ConductStudent Conduct
The Standards of the Rhodes Community
The Rhodes Community depends on personal concern for one another, and our standards serve as a guide for our daily life. They allow the members of our diverse community to live in harmony, to interact effectively, and to learn from each other. These standards, by which we all agree to live, protect our personal freedom by encouraging a climate of trust, concern, and respect conducive to learning and growing.
Actions and attitudes that undermine this respect and concern are unacceptable. We strive instead to act in a way that promotes the pursuit of knowledge in an atmosphere of integrity, justice and truth. In order to do so we pledge to uphold the following standards:
“We pledge to treat the members of the Rhodes Community, that is, anyone who lives, works, or learns here, as well as those who visit the community, with conscientious respect, honor, kindness and even-handedness.”
“We pledge to respect the property of other members of the Community, treating all such property with care equal to or greater than that accorded our own property. Further, realizing that the property of Rhodes College, that is, its buildings and grounds and all encompassed within, serves to benefit all members of the community, we pledge to preserve this property for others to use after us. Understanding that adherence to these standards is necessary to promote community spirit, we pledge to report violations.”
“Remembering that the reason the Rhodes Community exists is to promote the intellectual development of its members, we pledge to help create an environment that encourages reasoned discourse and action in a way that promotes this intellectual pursuit for everyone.”
Regulations and AppealsRegulations and Appeals
All policies will be enforced by the Director of Community Standards or designee, as authorized by the Dean of Students.
The Director of Community Standards determines the appropriate student judicial body to review an incident report, or whether the report should instead be reviewed administratively (after consultation with the appropriate student judicial body as appropriate). Cases referred to Social Regulations Council or Honor Council will be adjudicated according to those groups’ constitutions.
When a report is reviewed administratively, the staff member will request a meeting with the student, share the report, and ask for a response from the student. The adjudicating staff may also undertake additional investigation as necessary. The adjudicating staff reserves the ability to utilize interim actions during an investigation when an incident causes concern about the safety and well-being of the community. Interim actions may include, but are not limited to no contact orders, interim suspension, and temporary removal from campus or housing. To determine if behavior is “in violation” of policy, administrative hearing officers will consider if a violation is “more likely than not” to have occurred, using preponderance of information as a standard of proof. When a determination has been made, the student will be notified of the decision and sanction (if relevant). The disciplinary record, i.e. previous judicial action, of a student found “in violation” of a policy or policies will bear on the severity of a sanction.
A decision reached by an administrative hearing officer may be appealed by the Accused Student within four days of the decision. Appeals should be in writing and directed to the Director of Community Standards or the appeal officer named in the sanctioning letter. The appeal letter shall specify the basis for the appeal. An appeal will be considered based on the supporting documents, unless the appeals officer decides that interviews are warranted, for one or more of the following purposes: to determine whether the hearing was conducted fairly; to determine whether the decision reached was based on a preponderance of the information; to determine whether the sanctions imposed were appropriate for the violations; or to consider new and relevant information, sufficient to alter a decision, but only where such information was not known or available to the appellant at the time of the original hearing. The appeal officer may either sustain the original decision and/or sanction or render a new decision and/or sanction. An appeal may not result in a more severe sanction for the Accused Student.
Students have the opportunity to apply for a variety of activities at Rhodes, during which the student represents the College and/or is placed in a leadership position. Because of the nature of these opportunities, applications for these positions may include consideration of the applicant’s disciplinary record.
Rhodes College will report to institutions or agencies outside the college only those disciplinary violations that result in disciplinary probation, deferred suspension, suspension, or expulsion from the college. Information is reported only after a signed release is received from the student/alumni. Disciplinary records are maintained for 7 years post-graduation or separation from the College.
Disciplinary ViolationsDisciplinary Violations
Any student found to have committed or to have attempted to commit the following behaviors is subject to disciplinary sanctions. A “student” includes all persons taking courses at Rhodes College, both full-time and part-time, pursuing undergraduate or graduate studies. Persons who are not officially enrolled for a particular term, but have a continuing relationship with Rhodes College. Many of these policies are described in further detail elsewhere in the handbook; this list is intended as notice that violation of the policies is likely to result in sanctions.
1. Acts of dishonesty, including but not limited to the following:
- Lying - in official matters.
- Cheating, plagiarism, or other forms of academic dishonesty. Forgery, alteration, or misuse of any College document, record, or instrument of identification.
- Stealing, attempted or actual theft of property or services of the College, of a member of the College community, or other personal or public property.
2. Interfering with College or College sponsored activities, including but not limited to, studying, teaching, research, college administration, or fire, police, or emergency services.
3. Endangering, threatening, or causing physical harm to any person, or unwanted physical contact or causing reasonable apprehension of such harm. This may include verbal abuse, intimidation, harassment, coercion, and/or other conduct which threatens or endangers the health or safety of any person.
4. Conduct that is directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to (1) fear for her, his, or others’ safety, or (2) to suffer substantial emotional distress.
5. Interfering with the freedom of expression of others.
6. Attempted or actual damage to property of the College or property of a member of the College community or other personal or public property, on or off campus.7. Hazing, which is an action taken or situation created to produce mental or physical discomfort, embarrassment, harassment or ridicule, or which destroys or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in, a group or organization. The express or implied consent of the victim will not be a defense. No organization member shall condone hazing. Any student or student organization found in violation of hazing may be subject to suspension or expulsion from the College.8. Failure to comply with directions of College officials, including campus safety officers, in performance of their duties.9. Unauthorized possession, duplication or use of keys to any College premises or unauthorized entry to or use of College premises.
10. Possession of weapons of any type by students or visitors and/or vehicles controlled by an individual while on College property, including those individuals with valid Tennessee gun carry permits is prohibited. This includes, but is not limited to firearms, B-B guns, pellet guns, bows and arrows, hunting knives, explosives or any other object that could be used as a weapon.
11. Student hosts are responsible for guest behavior, including behavior occurring in their residence hall rooms, behavior at student organization events, and behavior by off-campus guests.
12. Violation of college alcohol or other drug policies.
13. Violation of the standards of the Rhodes Community.
14. Violation of college Sex/Gender Discrimination and Sexual Misconduct Policy.
15. Violation of any college regulation or policy.
16. Violating the terms of any disciplinary sanction imposed in accordance with the Handbook.
17. Violation of any federal, state or local law
Disciplinary SanctionsDisciplinary Sanctions
The following sanctions may be imposed upon any student found to have violated College policies:
- Warning: After a judicial conference or hearing, the hearing officer or body may believe the appropriate lesson has been learned and conclude the matter with a formal letter of warning.
- Disciplinary Probation: A written notification for violation of specified regulations. Probation is designated for a specified period of time and includes the probability of more severe disciplinary sanctions, including suspension or expulsion, if the student is found to violate any institutional regulation(s) during the probationary period. Students can be placed on disciplinary or housing probation.
You are considered not in good social standing with the College. Good Standing may be required for participation in certain campus activities. In addition, students not in good standing may have their conduct reviewed for leadership or employment positions on campus.
- Deferred Suspension: You cannot represent the institution on or off campus in any capacity. Examples include, but are not limited to: competition in varsity athletics, international programs or activities, executive board member of any student organization, PA, RA, Diplomat, Mock Trial, or Rhodes Ambassador.
- Loss of Privileges: Denial of specified privileges for a designated period of time.
- Fines: Previously established and published fines may be imposed.
- Restitution: Compensation for loss, damage, or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement.
- Discretionary Sanctions: Work assignments, service to the college, education, referral to counseling, required behavioral assessment, or other related discretionary assignments.
- Residence Hall Suspension: Separation of the student from the residence halls for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified.
- Residence Hall Expulsion: Permanent separation of the student from the residence halls.
- College Suspension: Separation of the student from Rhodes College for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified.
- College Expulsion: Permanent separation of the student from Rhodes College.
More than one of the sanctions listed above may be imposed for any single violation.
Off-Campus ConductOff-Campus Conduct
The values of Rhodes College apply wherever Rhodes community members live, work or play. Students may be held accountable for conduct which constitutes a hazard to the health, safety, or well-being of members of the College community or which is detrimental to the College’s interests whether such conduct occurs on campus, off campus, or at College-sponsored events. All complaints filed with Rhodes College regarding off-campus conduct will be investigated by the Office of Community Standards.
Good Neighbor Policy
Rhodes College values all community members, including those outside our gates. The College strives to build positive, respectful, and civil relationships with our community neighbors to ensure positive, open streams of dialogue.
Complaints involving excessive noise and/or trash reported by community neighbors will result in an investigation led by the Office of Community Standards. The following are possible sanctions for community violations involving noise and/or trash:
- Impact/Reflection Letters
- Mandatory Community Service
- Disciplinary Probation
Involuntary Withdrawal or Removal from CampusInvoluntary Withdrawal or Removal from Campus
The College occasionally faces the problem of students who pose a threat to themselves or others, who are unable to cope, or who create a pattern of extreme disruption. If such behavior constitutes a violation of College rules and regulations, the case will be referred to the Dean of Students or the Dean’s designee for action.
If the student’s behavior occurs without such violation, if the student does not respond to the charges against him or her, or if the student did not know the nature or quality of the conduct in question at the time of occurrence, the Dean of Students will investigate the situation and the effect or the potential effect of the behavior on the student and the College community. The Dean may require a personal interview with the student and/or an evaluation of the student by a qualified professional. The Dean may require an interim removal of the student from campus pending conclusion of the investigation.
If, as a result of this investigation, the Dean of Students determines that the student’s behavior indicates substantial risk of threat to self or others, or that the individual is otherwise unable to fulfill the expectations of a student at Rhodes, the pursuit of professional care or a withdrawal from the College may be recommended. The student will be provided with the option of voluntarily withdrawing from the College for the remainder of the term. If the student refuses to do so, the Dean of Students will consult with other College staff members as deemed appropriate. They will recommend to the Dean of Students a course of action, which may include removal of the student from the College with conditions for readmission. If the student withdraws, he or she may be referred to an appropriate facility for additional assistance. The parents will be notified as soon as possible and must assume responsibility for the student’s care.
Students who leave campus under the above conditions, either voluntarily or involuntarily, will be readmitted to the College only after being cleared by the Dean of Students and, when appropriate, the Committee on Standards and Standing. Permission for readmission will typically be based on the student’s demonstrating a period of responsible behavior outside the College and may require a statement from a physician, psychologist, or other qualified professional that the student is ready to return and cope with college life. Follow-up assessment or services may be required as part of the readmission decision.
Removal of a student from the College will be undertaken only as a last resort. Every effort will be made to help students understand the consequences of their behavior, make responsible decisions, and develop skills that will allow them to remain and function in the Rhodes community.
Students who have voluntarily withdrawn or who have been removed from campus are not allowed to attend class and have no access to the campus or College sanctioned or sponsored events.