University and Student Conduct Board Hearings

When an alleged violation is not resolved through the Behavioral Hearing process, there shall be the following hearing panels:

  • Student Conduct Board, Queens Campus
  • Student Conduct Board, Staten Island Campus
  • University Conduct Board

Contents


Section A: Jurisdiction

The Queens Campus Student Conduct Board shall have jurisdiction over violations alleged to have been committed by undergraduate and graduate students registered at the Queens, Manhattan, or Oakdale Campuses. The Staten Island Student Conduct Board shall have jurisdiction over violations alleged to have been committed by undergraduate and graduate students registered at the Staten Island Campus.

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Section B: Composition

Members of the Conduct Board Panel may hear matters on any campus. The Conduct Board Panel shall consist of at least fourteen (14) members as follows:

  • Six (6) students from the Queens or Staten Island campuses
  • Eight (8) faculty members or administrators from the Queens or Staten Island campuses

At the commencement of the academic year, the Vice President for Student Affairs or designee will select student candidates for service. The candidates will include undergraduate and graduate students. Upon their acceptance, they shall receive a formal letter of appointment.

Faculty members are appointed in the Spring semester, serving a term of service for two years. Administrators shall indicate their interest to serve on the panel to the Vice President of Student Affairs or designee, who shall select candidates serving a term of service for two years.

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Section C: Hearing Panels

University Conduct Board: Each University Conduct Board hearing shall be conducted before a hearing panel consisting of five (5) members of the Conduct Board Panel. A quorum of the panel shall consist of three (3) members. Each University Conduct Board Hearing Panel shall consist of faculty members, administrators or students. Where possible, the students chosen may be: (1) from the campus where the accused student is registered; (2) undergraduate students where the accused student is an undergraduate student; and (3) graduate students where the accused student is a graduate student. The Dean of Students or designee shall select the hearing panel from those available for service.

In cases involving sexual misconduct, students will not serve as panel members on the University Conduct Board, nor will students serve on the University Student Conduct Appeal Board. All panel members receive annual and ongoing in-service training on issues related to domestic violence, intimate partner violence (dating violence), sexual assault, stalking, sexual harassment and how to conduct inquiries and a hearing process that protects student safety and promotes accountability.
 
The Dean of Students or designee shall select an appropriate individual to serve as the non-voting Chair of the panel. The Chair shall be responsible for conducting the hearing in an orderly and efficient manner and, for that purpose, may make decisions related to admission of evidence and witness testimony. The purpose of the hearing is to make findings of fact with respect to the matter before the panel and for that reason witness testimony about the accused student’s character will not be permitted.

Student Conduct Board: Each Student Conduct Board hearing shall be conducted before a hearing panel consisting of a minimum of three (3) student members of the Conduct Board Panel. Where possible, the students chosen may be: (1) from the campus where the accused student is registered; (2) undergraduate students where the accused student is an undergraduate student; and (3) graduate students where the accused student is a graduate student. The Dean of Students or designee shall select the hearing panel from those available for service.

A voting Chair shall be selected from among the student panelists. The Chair shall be responsible for conducting the hearing in an orderly and efficient manner, and for that purpose, may make decisions related to admission of evidence and witness testimony. The purpose of the hearing is to make findings of fact with respect to the matter before the panel and for that reason witness testimony about the accused student’s character will not be permitted.

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Section D: University Advisor Panel

Accused students may be accompanied in the hearing by an advisor who is a member of the University Advisor Panel. In cases of alleged sexual misconduct, the complainant and the accused student are both permitted to have an advisor present during the hearing. No person can be compelled to be an advisor, and if the student is unable to secure a willing advisor she or he must nonetheless participate in the hearing without an advisor. There is a University Advisor Panel trained to assist students before and during a hearing

The advisor may advise the accused student, but may not participate in the hearing in any other capacity and may not be a witness. An advisor may consult only, and may not participate or be heard at the hearing. There is no right to have an attorney present to represent any party or witness.

At least two school days prior to the scheduled hearing date, the student must inform the Office of Student Conduct if he or she intends to utilize an advisor. Advisors may not appear in place of the complainant or the accused student.

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Section E: Witnesses

Two school days prior to the hearing, the accused student must submit lists identifying the witnesses they expect to present at the hearing to the Office of Student Conduct. A witness may appear at the hearing in person, or may submit a written statement for the panel’s consideration. The Chair has the discretion to exclude any witness not previously identified. In the discretion of the University, accommodations for witnesses may be made. The hearing panel may request the appearance of any additional witness it deems appropriate.

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Section F: General Provisions for Hearings of both University Conduct Board and Student Conduct Board

The following general provisions are common elements for hearing panels:

  • At the hearing, a Student Conduct Administrator or designee may present charges on behalf of the complainant.
  • The Chair is responsible for the orderly and proper functioning of all hearings and for ensuring that both parties receive the opportunity to present relevant facts.
  • Hearings are to be private and not open to members of the University community or to the public. The hearing panel’s decisions and reasons may be made public if in the sole judgment of the University, and as allowed by law, it is deemed necessary to do so. Hearing panel members are duty-bound to maintain confidentiality. The University anticipates that hearings shall be conducted within sixty (60) days of when the incident was documented. Unique circumstances of individual matters may require extension of time frames set forth herein within the discretion of the University.
  • All persons attending the proceedings shall conduct themselves in an orderly and respectful manner. Any person who engages in an obstructive, disruptive, or disorderly manner in the presence of the hearing panel will be removed from the hearing room in the sole discretion of the Chair.
  • No audio or video recordings of the hearings may be made.
  • The University reserves the right to have an attorney present in an advisory capacity.
  • If the accused student does not appear for the hearing at its scheduled time, the hearing will proceed at the discretion of the Chair.
  • Strict conformity to the legal rules of evidence will not be required at hearings. A finding of culpability in all matters shall be based on a preponderance of the evidence.

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Section G: Procedure

The Chair shall explain the function of the hearing, verify that the accused student and the complainant are aware of the rights of a student before the hearing panel and inform the accused student and the complainant that she or he and all witnesses will be asked to affirm the truthfulness of their testimony and that providing false information to the hearing panel is a violation in itself.

The Chair shall ask whether there will be any witnesses testifying on behalf of the accused student and the complainant, advise the accused student and the complainant of the right to be present at all stages of the hearing process except deliberation, read the charges, and inform the accused student and the complainant that the hearing is being tape-recorded (in the case of a University Conduct Board).

A Student Conduct Administrator may present the incident report, charges and, as necessary, any statement submitted on the case. Hearing panel members may question the Student Conduct Administrator and any witnesses called by the Student Conduct Administrator.

The Chair shall offer the accused student the opportunity to testify or remain silent. If the accused student elects to testify, he/she is obligated to answer relevant questions by any member of the Hearing Panel. If the accused student refuses to answer any question that question and/or answer may not later be presented as grounds for any appeal.

The accused student and the complainant may call witnesses on his or her behalf even if he or she does not testify.

The accused student and the complainant have the right to question all witnesses who testify at the hearing. Questions shall be submitted to the Hearing Panel who will direct them to the witness. Hearing Panel members may question witnesses called by the accused student and the complainant. Any party to the hearing may submit questions to the Hearing Panel to be asked of the witness.

All witnesses shall be excused from the hearing room upon completion of their testimony. The Chair shall advise these witnesses that they are not to discuss their testimony outside the hearing room, including during any breaks in the hearing. Witnesses shall not be allowed in the hearing room prior to their testimony. The members of the Hearing Panel may recall any witnesses if needed.

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Section H: Deliberation

Upon conclusion of all testimony the Hearing Panel will meet in private to deliberate the matter. No deliberation shall be tape-recorded. The determination of responsibility for violations is decided by a majority vote of the Hearing Panel. The Hearing Panel shall relate its findings to the Dean of Students for imposition of appropriate sanctions.

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Section I: Notification

After the hearing and deliberations have been completed, the Chair will send written notification of the results of the hearing to the Dean of Students. The Dean of Students or designee will notify the accused student of the outcome. If the alleged violation involves an allegation of sexual misconduct, both parties will be notified in writing of the outcome of both the complaint and any appeal.

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Section J: Hearing Records

All written records of proceedings are confidential and are property of the University. A copy of material associated with the hearing will be retained by the Division of Student Affairs for seven (7) years after a student leaves the University at which time all records will be destroyed except records that support a suspension or expulsion.

The University will not audio or video record the student conduct proceedings or deliberations, nor is any other individual permitted to record the proceedings.

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