Student Conduct Board - Benjamin Franklin Institute Of Technology

Student Conduct Board

Student Conduct Board Hearings are formal proceedings where a board consisting of students, faculty, and staff will meet with relevant parties, report findings and recommend sanctions to the Conduct Board Coordinator. The role of the Coordinator is to brief all parties before each hearing to ensure a clear understanding of the rule(s) in question and of the hearing procedures. They may offer information and assist the chairperson in facilitation. They may also offer advice or clarification regarding appropriate sanctions or questions regarding policies and procedures during deliberations in closed session.

PARTICIPANTS IN THE STUDENT CONDUCT BOARD HEARINGS

Participants in a Student Conduct Board hearing are limited to those persons identified below. Student Conduct Board hearings are closed proceedings, therefore, parents, guardians, family members, attorneys, and the general public are not permitted inside the boardroom.

  • Charged Student: Student charged with allegedly violating the Student Code of Conduct or Residence Life policies.
  • Complainant/Victim: Any member of the BFIT community (student, faculty, or staff) may file a written complaint with the Assistant Dean of Students against a student alleging violation(s) of the Student Code of Conduct. During a Student Conduct Board hearing, the complainant may present documentation and information showing why they believe the charged student is responsible for the alleged violation(s) of the Student Code of Conduct. Often times, the presentation of the case shall be handled by the Conduct Board Coordinator. The complainant / victim may be called to testify to the board regarding the incident in question.
  • Witnesses: Either party or the Student Affairs office may present witnesses to the Student Conduct Board. A list of witnesses is required and must be submitted to the Assistant Dean of Students no later than two (2) class days prior to the scheduled hearing.
  • Advisor: The advisor can be any member of the BFIT community (faculty or staff) who is not on the Student Conduct Board and is not parent/guardian, family member, or attorney of the charged student. The advisor may assist the student in preparing for the hearing, attending the hearing, and if necessary, assisting the student with an appeal. The advisor may not speak to the board during the hearing, but may communicate with the charged student. Students should contact the Assistant Dean of Students for assistance in acquiring an advisor for the hearing. It is up to the discretion of the Conduct Hearing Coordinator to approve or deny an advisor.

Conduct Board Members:

The Student Conduct Board shall consist of the following 5 members (but may convene with as few as 3 members): Student members, Faculty/Staff members, Chairperson, and the Conduct Board Coordinator.

  • Student members: shall be selected through a nomination and application process coordinated by the Director of Student Life and serve a one-year voluntary term. Student members are voting members of the board. Student members must be in good academic and conduct standing.
  • Faculty/Staff members: shall be a faculty or staff member of BFIT and shall serve a one-year voluntary term. Faculty/Staff members are voting members of the board.
  • Chairperson: shall be an additional faculty or staff member who will chair the conduct board hearing and keep all formal documents of the proceedings to be given to the Conduct Board Coordinator. It is the responsibility of the Chairperson to keep decorum and to keep the proceedings running smoothly. The Chairperson shall only vote in the case of a tie.
  • Conduct Board Coordinator: is a professional in the Office of Students Affairs that serves as the advisor to the Conduct Board for a specific conduct case. The Conduct Coordinator may rotate based on the specific incident to avoid conflicts of interest (academic related, commuter student and residential student involvements).

STUDENT CONDUCT BOARD CASE SELECTION AND NOTIFICATION

Cases for the Student Conduct Board may be selected or referred by following:

  • Incidents that may result in expulsion or suspension from BFIT
  • Any incident that endangers the health or safety of another member of the BFIT community based on severity (student, faculty, or staff)
  • Sexual Misconduct Policy, including sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking
  • Repeated substance abuse violations
  • Repeated academic honesty violations

Once a case has been identified for the Student Conduct Board, the Conduct Board Coordinator will contact the charged student to inform them that the case is being referred to the Student Conduct Board.

The Conduct Board Coordinator will notify the Contact Board and schedule a date for the hearing. The case should be scheduled within 10 class days of the incident, unless otherwise scheduled due to the breaks in the academic calendar. It is the students’ responsibility to attend the scheduled conduct board hearing. Failure to attend (or to schedule an alternate meeting beforehand) will result in the case being heard without the students’ input.

The charged student shall receive the scheduled date of the Student Conduct Board Hearing with a list of the alleged charges. It is the student’s responsibility to contact an Advisor if necessary and prepare for the Student Conduct Board hearing. Charged students should thoroughly read the entire Student Code of Conduct and BFIT Residence Life policies prior to the hearing.

STUDENT CONDUCT BOARD DELIBERATIONS AND OUTCOMES

After the Conduct Board Coordinator and the Charged Student have presented their cases, the Student Conduct Board will deliberate in closed session to determine if the student is responsible for the alleged charges. The board will make the decision of responsibility based on the preponderance of evidence which can be defined as – the lowest level of proof which typically means more likely than not.

A majority vote will be taken by the board, and the chairperson shall only cast a vote in the case of a tie. The Chairperson will notify the Conduct Board Coordinator of the results of the vote. If the student is found in violation of any of the charges, the Conduct Board Coordinator will then share any prior conduct history with the board as they prepare sanctions for the charged student.

The Student Conduct Board will open session and inform the charged student of the outcome. If the student is found not responsible, the hearing is adjourned. If the student is found responsible for any of the violations, the Chairperson will inform student and give the recommendation of sanctions to the charged student and the Conduct Board Coordinator. The charged student may make suggestions to the board for sanctioning and the board may choose to accept or deny the suggestions. The Conduct Board Coordinator will make the final acceptance of sanctions before the board and charged student.

Once the sanctions are accepted, the board hearing is adjourned.

The student will receive the outcome of the hearing in writing within 48 hours. Sanctions go into effect immediately at the conclusion of the Student Conduct Board Hearing.