The student conduct review process includes a meeting between the student alleged to have violated one or more policies (respondent) and a Student Conduct Review Board (SCRB) or hearing officer. The hearing officer and the SCRB are responsible for reviewing and determining responsibility for alleged violations. They are also responsible for determining and recommending sanctions. The Vice President of Student Life has final and binding authority to withdraw, defer, suspend, or confirm decisions and sanctions.
Our approach to violations of policy related to alcohol and other drugs is designed to be proactive and educational. Students are provided with information about the effects of alcohol and other drugs during orientation sessions and programs are hosted in residence halls, by sports teams and student organizations, and by University departments throughout the academic year. Students found in violation of policy are also referred to educational and self-assessment programs such as E-Chug, E-Toke, Alcohol I, and Level II Substance Abuse Courses. Alcohol Level I and Level II Substance Abuse Courses are educational programs that help students develop a better understanding of the effects of use and misuse of alcohol and drugs. Each program is facilitated by trained instructors and provides the student an opportunity to assess their own behavior and risk for misuse or addiction.
In addition to the educational interventions, any student found in violation of the Alcohol Policy three times in any one year period may be suspended from the University. Similarly, any student with violations of the drug policy while enrolled at the institution may be suspended from the University. Also, any student who is found to be manufacturing or distributing drugs or attempting to manufacture or distribute drugs on or off campus may be expelled from the University.
Certain violations may impact the student's future admission to graduate programs and could be requested by employers for background checks.
The submission of an Incident Report Form may cause the creation of a student conduct file. If the respondent is found not responsible for the alleged charges, the student conduct file is sealed. If a student is found responsible for the charges, the file is retained for internal record-keeping purposes and for seven years after the student's graduation. If a student has additional incidents, the student conduct file may be used to provide insight in the student's behavior.
FERPA stands for the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99). It is a federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. "Education records" are "those records, files documents, and other materials which 1) contain information directly related to a student; and 2) are maintained by an educational institution. (20 U.S.C. § 1232g(a)(4)(A); 34 CFR § 99.3). FERPA applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.
The Higher Education Reauthorization Act of 1998 (HERA) amended the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) allowing colleges and universities to inform the parent or legal guardian of a student under the age of 21 who has been found in violation of the University's drug and alcohol policy. The University recognizes that the majority of our students are adults and wishes to respect the rights and privileges of that status. We also recognize that the input and involvement of parents/guardians can have a dramatic effect on the success and decision making of college students.
Studies have indicated that the unhealthy use and abuse of alcohol and other drugs affects a student's grades, health, and safety. We also recognize that the use and abuse of alcohol can have negative effects on others within the community. Our mission is to provide an environment conducive to learning and the success of our students. In an effort to enlist the aid of parents in this process, the University has adopted a policy in which parents will be notified of alcohol and drug violations by a student under the age of 21.
Parents will receive notification of the following violations of University Policy.
- Any second violation of the Alcohol Policy; or
- Any first violation of the University Drug Policy; or
- Any situation involving medical assistance due to incapacitation or suspected incapacitation; or
- The student was cited by Public Safety in connection with a violation of the Alcohol or Drug Policy or for DUI, Public Intoxication, Minor in Possession or any other drug or alcohol-related incident resulting in arrest.
Attorney Guide to the Student Conduct Process
Students are expected to take an active role in responding to allegations of misconduct. Therefore, it is in the student's best interest to engage in the process. The Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards will communicate directly with the student. Attorneys are not allowed to participate directly in any part of the conduct process; however, a student may at any time seek assistance from legal counsel.
A student may have reasonable access to his or her case file prior to and during the hearing, including an oral summary of the evidence supporting the charge(s). Respondents must make this request in writing. Copies of case files are not provided as a matter of policy in order to protect confidentiality or the privacy other students involved in the conduct matter.
It is the desire of the University to resolve matters in a timely and expeditious manner and review will not be delayed for criminal proceedings, unless there is a compelling reason for the university to consider postponing the process. Student Conduct proceedings are independent of any governmental criminal processes that are or may become applicable to the behavior at issue. The findings of governmental authorities will not be determinative of the outcome of the student conduct process.
Pacific may move forward with the conduct process in the student's absence and make a determination of responsibility based on information yielded from its investigation. Students may choose to remain silent recognizing that they give up their opportunity to provide their story for consideration by the decision-making body.
The student conduct process is applicable to all University students, including undergraduate, professional, and graduate students. The jurisdiction of the process extends to behaviors by students and students' guests that occur on or adjacent to Stockton campus or at any University-operated program, premises or facility, including study abroad programs, internships, athletic events, campus trips, and any other activity occurring in the scope of or fairly related to the students' relationship with the University. The University reserves the right to take any action, which in its judgment is necessary and appropriate to protect the safety and well-being of the campus community.
The burden of proof will be such that the respondent will be presumed not responsible for the violation(s). Responsibility of the respondent must be established to the satisfaction of the student conduct review board or administrator by a preponderance of the evidence. A student will be found responsible of the alleged violation(s) if it is more than likely he/she violated the Student Code of Conduct or University Policies.
The student conduct process is grounded in the educational mission of the institution. Student conduct procedures at Pacific comply with the Due Process Clauses essential requirements of notice and an opportunity to be heard. For more information about the student conduct process, please consult Pacific's Student Conduct and Community Standards Office.