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Charges and procedures for Organizations follow the same guidelines described for individual students in the Code of Conduct, except for the two notes in the Minimum Expectations for Harassment and for Sex and Gender Discrimination and Misconduct. For the following procedural aspects, there are differences noted for Organizations. The following procedures will be used to address reports received that allege violations of the Code of Conduct and Honor Code by Organizations. Organizations referred to the conduct process will be represented by the president of that Organization. The president may designate another active member to be the representative in their place.
Although not all acts of individual members can or should be attributable to the Organization, an organization may be held responsible for the actions of its members. Allegations of Organizational misconduct may be adjudicated before, at the same time as, or following related cases of individual misconduct. The standard of proof applied for Organizational misconduct is the same as that for individual students (i.e., the preponderance of the evidence).
Factors used in determining whether alleged violation(s) of the Code of Conduct or Honor Code organization can be attributed to an Organization may include, but are not limited to:
- The circumstances surrounding the alleged misconduct when the violation
- Whether the alleged misconduct occurred at an event the Organization has, formally or informally, sponsored, co-sponsored, planned, financed, or endorsed; or participated in, including whether it occurred as part of an activity not sponsored by the Organization itself;
- The number of Organizational members and/or officers present;
- Whether the alleged misconduct is committed by members attending a function as a representative of the Organization or University, including, but not limited to, competitions, conferences, and conventions;
- Whether the alleged misconduct occurs on the premises owned or operated by the Organization or its members
- Failure of the Organization to implement preventative measures where it is reasonably foreseeable that a violation could occur.
The University strives to work in partnership with the national or international offices of an Organization, if one exists. To that end, the University may notify the national or international office of alleged organizational misconduct at any point in the process. Additionally, the University recognizes the right of a national or international office to initiate its own proceedings regarding alleged organizational misconduct. Those proceedings may be conducted jointly or separately from any proceedings conducted by the University. To the degree the University believes it is appropriate, the University will honor any outcomes imposed by the national or international office of an Organization as additions to any outcomes the University imposes.
A notice of investigation will be provided to the President on record for the organization and the Associate Dean of Students, Student Engagement, or designee.
Investigation procedures may differ from those described above. The investigator, in consultation with the Offices of Student Engagement and Student Conduct, may choose any combination of the following techniques, or others not defined here:
- Individual interviews with selected members of the organization
- Facilitated discussion with the leadership and other selected members of the organization
- Group sequesters with individual interviews
When a report has been filed and has not been dismissed following the initial review by Dean of Students or a designee’s initial review and does not require investigation, the Organization’s President on record will receive written notification (sent via electronic mail to WFU student address) of the allegations from the Office of the Dean of Students. That notification will include the date of the report, the alleged conduct regulation violation(s), a brief summary of the alleged behavior, an electronic link to the Code of Conduct. Additionally, the chair of the Student Life Committee will be notified of the charges.
Based on the nature of an Organization’s alleged behavior, the Dean of Students, or designee, may impose an Interim Action prior to the completion of the conduct process regarding alleged violations of the Code of Conduct. Limited Operations Status may be imposed when:
- The Organization and its operation pose a significant threat of serious harm to any members of the University community, visitors, or guests;
- It is necessary to preserve University property or the property of any members of the University Community, including visitors or guests; and/or
- It is necessary to prevent significant disruption of, or interference with, the normal operations of the University
The Organization is prohibited from continuing part or all of its operations without express permission from the Dean of Students, or designee. This may include, but is not limited to:
- All Organizational operations and member and new member activities;
- Social events, intramural competition, service or philanthropy initiatives under the Organization’s name or any other name;
- New member program: All meetings and activities of the New Member program must cease. Organization officers and all members are restricted from communicating with New Members;
- Other Organizational activities deemed pertinent to the circumstances for which the notice of limited operations is being utilized.
- Any violation of Limited Operations directives could result in additional charges and outcomes.
All incidents resolved through a Formal Resolution require a meeting panel be convened.
In addition to the outcomes listed for individual students, the following outcomes will be considered when an organization is found responsible.
“Educational Sanctions” Projects or assignments designed to educate an Organization and its members in connection to the nature of the violation and with the goal of minimizing the likelihood of future violations with the effect of its member’s actions. Educational assignments include, but are not limited to, educational programming on risk prevention and education around alcohol and other drugs, relationship violence, identity bias, hazing or other topic as relevant to the violation, the development of risk management plans and protocols and/or policy or procedural review.
“Restrictions” Restriction or removal of some or all of the Organization’s activities or privileges, including, but not limited to, social, recruitment, and lounge privileges.
“Recommendation for Charter Revocation” An official request to a national office that the local chapter’s charter be revoked.
“Revocation of University Recognition” Permanent severance of the organization’s relationship with the University.
“Suspension of University Recognition” Removal of the organization’s recognition by the University for a specific period of time. The period of time and any requirements, which must be satisfied prior to review for reinstatement
re-recognition, may be specified in the decision of the Conduct Officer or Meeting Panel.
“Deferred Suspension of University Recognition” Removal of the organization’s recognition by the University is deferred pending the completion of requirements specified in the decision of the Conduct Officer or Meeting Panel. An additional finding of responsibility during the suspension period will result in suspension or revocation of University Recognition.
Groups may request an appeal to the Student Life Committee within 10 calendar days from the date of the notification of the decision. Appeals are directed to the chair of the Student Life Committee.
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