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Opportunities for Resolution
While many situations can be addressed through conversational and informal means, other matters may necessitate more formal procedures depending on the wishes of others’ impacted, the severity of the alleged conduct, and potential sanctions. Upon receipt of a report, the Office of Student Conduct & Conflict Resolution shall review the matter and determine an appropriate option for resolution. All forums, as outlined below, are administered to ensure that any student accused of violating University policy (the “respondent”) is afforded a fair and impartial process.
BULLDOG ENGAGEMENT NETWORK
The Bulldog Engagement Network (BEN) supports students through incidents that are difficult or concerning to our campus community, but that do not constitute a violation of University policy. The student will optionally meet with a trained administrator, who may or may not be an OSCCR employee, to learn about the reported concern, discuss the matter, and share their perspective. Outcomes in this forum may include informal discussion, mentoring, coaching, review of University policy that could have future relevance, restorative practices, and other non-disciplinary educational or support measures. BEN is not a disciplinary body, cannot impose discipline, and does not require participation in any aspect of BEN’s work.
NOTICE & COACHING
In some cases, the University has limited knowledge of an allegation because the complainant does not wish to participate in a University investigation or the University does not have the means to investigate. However, if substantiated, the alleged behavior would constitute a policy violation. If requested by a complainant, or if the alleged behavior occurred within an employment setting, OSCCR employees will meet with students who reportedly engaged in the restricted behavior. During this meeting, OSCCR staff will discuss relevant University policies prohibiting the alleged behavior, provide education relevant to the concern, and reiterate the University’s prohibition against retaliation. If desired by the complainant, OSCCR may communicate that the complainant does not want any contact with the respondent. However, communication of such wishes is NOT equivalent to a University-based no-contact order.
Mediation may be helpful in a variety of situations. When all parties are willing and capable of participating, want resolution, and positive action is possible, mediation is a useful option. Trained mediators are OSCCR professional staff who provide a setting where it is possible for individuals to share their concerns, be heard, and come to a workable solution that they choose. The mediator maintains neutrality and will ask questions and guide individuals through the process. The mediator may also help craft a written agreement that the parties may sign to memorialize the outcomes of their session. For additional details about the above forum for resolution, please see Conflict Mediation.
- Conflict Coaching: In circumstances where another party has not opted into the process, conflict coaching can assist the student in better understanding and de-escalating conflict.
- Facilitated dialogue: University community members may benefit from a facilitated dialogue, in which a facilitator helps parties overcome communication barriers and engage in a productive conversation regarding issues of mutual concern resulting in shared solutions.
When a report is received, if the information in the report suggests a possible violation of the Board of Regents Student Conduct Code, a Hearing Officer from the Office of Student Conduct & Conflict Resolution (OSCCR) is assigned the case. The student will meet with a hearing officer to discuss the matter. During or after the discussion, the hearing officer will determine if a violation of policy occurred using the preponderance standard. If a violation is found, the hearing officer will determine appropriate sanctions. The student may choose to agree to resolve the case at the conclusion of the conduct conference, or request a formal hearing. For additional details about the above forum for resolution, please see Conduct Conference.
A formal hearing is conducted by a three-person panel which may include faculty, staff and/or students. The student has the opportunity to be present for the duration of the hearing, provide their perspective, and ask questions. The panel will determine if the student has violated any University policy. If a violation is found, the panel will determine appropriate sanctions, ranging from warning to expulsion.
For additional details about the above forum for resolution, please see the University Conduct Procedures.