Procedures

Overview

The Assistant Dean of Students, as a designee of the Dean of Students, is responsible for determining the appropriate mechanism for resolving alleged violations of the Niagara University Student Code of Conduct. The Assistant Dean of Students, or designee, will provide oversight and coordination of the student conduct process. Any member of the Niagara University community shall bring complaints against a student or a group of students to the attention of any university official, which will be directed to the Dean of Students or designee.  

It is the policy of Niagara University that any time allegations of misconduct are brought against a student, the   university will pursue to conclusion any necessary investigation and hearing process, aside from the decision by the accused student to withdraw, temporarily or permanently from the university.

Process

Any member of the university community may initiate the student conduct process by filing a complaint with any university official, which will be directed to the Dean of Students' office.   Residence Life staff document incidents by submitting an incident report to the Assistant Dean of Students, or designee. Campus Safety officers file reports at the end of each shift, which are forwarded to the Assistant Dean of Students, or designee.  

The Assistant Dean, or designee, will conduct a preliminary review of the complaint. Based on the review, one of the following means of resolution will be pursued:

Further Investigation

The Assistant Dean, or designee, may designate an officer of the university to further investigate the complaint.  

Residence Hall Community Standards Accountability Meeting

In cases involving a resident(s) with a residence hall community who are believed to be violating the agreed upon community standards, the Assistant Dean, or designee, may refer the case to a Residence Hall Community Standards Accountability Meeting.

The Accountability Meeting is intended to serve as a form of mediation between the community and the resident(s) within the community who are believed to be violating the agreed upon community standards. The goal is to determine if the floor considers the behavior to be a violation of community standards and, if so, to have the resident(s) understand how their behavior is affecting floor residences and to have the resident(s) agree to modify the offending behavior.

The Accountability Meeting is not a punishment meeting, which means the community cannot impose student conduct sanctions. However, resident students are empowered to recommend actions of the accused student to remedy the behavior. Similarly, the Accountability Meeting should not be used to address violations of the Student Code of Conduct that extend beyond the community standards.  

Mediation

The Assistant Dean of Students, or designee, may propose mediation as a means to resolve some student conduct cases. Mediation is possible, with the approval of the Assistant Dean of Students, or designee, when all parties involved (accused and accuser) agree to engage in the mediation process and when students involved have not previously engaged in mediation through this process. If mediation fails, the case will be directed to an alternate means of resolution. Records shall be kept of all cases that have been mediated, with names and a summary. Mediation yields neither a student conduct record nor sanction.  

Administrative Conduct Hearing

The Assistant Dean of Students, or designee, may decide to resolve an issue through an Administrative Conduct Hearing with the Dean or Assistant Dean of Students (or his/her designee) or a Residence Director/Graduate Residence Director.  

Conduct Council Hearing

The Assistant Dean of Students, or designee, may also decide to resolve an issue through a Conduct Council Hearing. Conduct Council is comprised of two faculty and/or staff and two students, and hears various student conduct cases. The Conduct Council hearing is designed to review information and determine the student’s level of responsibility. Students will be required to appear before the Conduct Council to discuss their involvement and determine responsibility for the alleged violations.