Conduct Policies and Procedures FAQs

Living in community requires all students to share equally in the responsibilities associated with maintaining a respectful and safe residential learning space.  For the majority of residence hall students, living in a residence hall is their first community living experience, outside of their family unit.  Consequently, knowing and understanding your rights and responsibilities as a member of your community will be helpful to your success as a residence hall student at UWRF.

The UW-River Falls residence halls conduct process exists to provide students accused of violating residence hall policies the opportunity to have their case heard by a professional Residence Life staff member who will hear cases in  a fair and just manner using the University and Residence Life mission to promote student growth and development.

What happens if I am involved in a conduct situation in the halls?

What happens if I am involved in a conduct situation in the halls?

If you are involved in an incident in the residence halls, the Resident Assistant staff will document the situation and a report will be sent to the Department of Residence Life. Each student involved in the situation may be asked to meet with a professional staff member to discuss their level of involvement. All contact and correspondence regarding the situation and your involvement will be sent via your UW-River Falls e-mail account. If you receive a request for a meeting and fail to show to the scheduled meeting, you may be charged with a Failure to Comply violation and additional sanctions.


What are the general residence hall conduct conference procedures?

What are the general residence hall conduct conference procedures?

Students alleged to have been involved in an incident that violates Residence Life policies have the option to resolve their case informally with an administrator. Most students choose to resolve their policy violations through an informal conduct conference. Students who chose to handle the case informally will sign an agreement form at the end of their conference. In lieu of an informal conduct conference, a student can have their alleged violations reviewed in a formal conduct hearing.

A formal conduct hearing may be conducted by either a Residence Life conduct administrator or members of the Student Conduct Board.


What is a Student Conduct Board?

What is a Student Conduct Board?

A Student Conduct Board (SCB) is a trained panel of student peers who hear cases and determine whether or not an individual is responsible for the alleged violations. The SCB is advised by professional staff member from the University.


What are the conduct hearing guidelines?

What are the conduct hearing guidelines?

If you are involved in an incident, the following guidelines may apply to your situation.

The Residence Life hearing officer or SCB may only discuss charges outlined in the Incident Report. New or additional charges may not be introduced at the hearing. Questions will be restricted to the incident and the charge.

In incidents where multiple individuals are involved, hearings will normally be held for each student, unless the hearing officer or SCB allows otherwise.

The hearing officer or SCB may summarize the incident as recorded on the incident report. The Incident Report, Police Reports, Student Reports and other documents from University Police may be presented for additional information.

Witnesses will be asked to wait outside of the hearing until needed. When a witness is excused, she/he will leave the hearing but may not discuss the case with witnesses who have yet to be questioned. The student may bring an advisor to the hearing. Unlike witnesses, the advisor may remain throughout the hearing and serve only in a consulting capacity to the student. The advisor may not address the hearing officer or SCB or speak for the student. The student may consult with the advisor anytime during the hearing.

The hearing officer’s or SCB's finding will be “responsible” or “not responsible” of violating a residence hall policy. In all proceedings, the student will be presumed “not responsible” until it is determined that a violation of a residence hall policy occurred based on preponderance of evidence.

The hearing officer or SCB will issue a written response (via e-mail) to the student including the hearing officer’s decision and, if applicable, the assigned sanction for the violation.


How can I appeal the decision of the hearing officer or SCB?

How can I appeal the decision of the hearing officer or SCB?

Appeals will only be considered if one or more of the following occurs:

  1. There is new information pertinent to the case to be presented by the student;

  2. There is information that established conduct processes were not followed.

To appeal the decision of a hearing officer or SCB, the student should write a letter of appeal, including reference to the reason for the appeal as indicated above, to the Department of Residence Life, B3 Hathorn Hall, within three working days.


How long will my conduct case be on file with the University?

How long will my conduct case be on file with the University?

Students involved in residence hall incidents, whether found responsible or not, will have a record of the incident and summary of all actions on file while the student is enrolled at UW-River Falls. Some records may be held longer depending on the nature of the incident. A student’s file will be available only to the student and to appropriate University personnel upon written request.


What will I have to do if I am found responsible for violating a policy?

What will I have to do if I am found responsible for violating a policy?

If the student is found responsible, one or more of the below sanctions may be imposed (see Student Conduct Process Guidelines and Procedures).

  • Warning: Found responsible as charged, warning that more severe disciplinary action may result should the student be found responsible for any future violations.
  • Community/University Service: A student may be offered an opportunity to complete a specific number of hours of community/University service. The type of community/University service must be determined and approved by the hearing officer.
  • Probation: An official notice that a student is responsible as charged and that more stringent disciplinary action, including removal from the residence hall or referral to the University disciplinary process, may result if future violations occur during the probationary period. The length of the probation is set by the hearing officer.
  • Reassignment to another Residence Hall: The hearing officer may determine that an individual may benefit from living in another residence hall or that community may benefit from their removal and mandate that the individual be reassigned to another residence hall.
  • Removal from a Residence Hall/Loss of Visitation Privileges: This sanction is usually imposed for repeat violations or for more serious or threatening behaviors that may affect the safety and welfare of other students. The removed student shall forfeit his/her housing deposit.
  • Restitution: A student may be sanctioned to pay for financial injury in cases such as theft, destruction of property, or deception. This is not a fine, but rather a repayment for property destruction or damage. The assessed costs to be paid may be beyond other sanctions. Billings for physical damages, clean-up or repairs will be assessed by Residence Life and charged to the student's university account.
  • Educational Sanction: A student may be assigned to attend or complete an educational program. The type of program will be determined by the hearing officer. An individual may be referred to a University Counselor if the hearing officer concludes that the individual may benefit from such services.

In addition to Residence Life conduct policies, all UWRF students are also expected to adhere to the policies found in the UW System (UWS) Student Code of Conduct, otherwise known as Chapter 17.   Sometimes, residence hall students may have their conduct case adjudicated under UWS Chapter 17, even if the violation occurred in the residence halls. This happens most often when the policy violation is more serious in nature, when medical attention was needed, or when an individual has a previous history with a violation of UWS Chapter 17.  Residence hall students, who have a policy violation that results in cancellation of their residence hall contract, will also likely be placed on university probation, which means that any further violations of federal, state, university or residence life policy could result in suspension or expulsion from UWRF.


What if the incident I was involved in involved alcohol?

What if the incident I was involved in involved alcohol?

The following is meant only as a guide; it stipulates only minimum mandatory sanctions. The intent is to provide a framework for which hearing officer can begin the process of sanctioning. Personal judgment will be necessary as every situation involves multiple circumstances.

1st Alcohol Violation

Typically first-time violations will be defined as the student was either consuming alcohol, present while alcohol was being consumed or was in possession of alcohol.

  • Alcohol education web-based course. Student will be assessed the actual charge for the course
  • Residence hall or university probation for six academic months
  • Referral to Restorative Justice (if appropriate). Students are responsible for a cost associated with this program.
  • Signed statement of understanding of conduct policy and consequences of future violations

2nd Alcohol Violation

  • Referral to Student Health and Counseling Services for an assessment. Student will be assessed the actual charge for the assessment of $125.00 when campus services are available
  • Residence hall or university probation for one year
  • Referral to Restorative Justice (if appropriate). Students are responsible for a cost associated with this program.
  • Parental notification
  • Signed statement of understanding of conduct policy and consequences of future violations

3rd Alcohol Violation

  • Residence hall relocation and/or ban likely (Depending on where the violations took place)
  • Residence hall or university probation for tenure as a student
  • Referral to Restorative Justice (if appropriate) or educational paper/interview
  • Parental notification
  • Signed statement of understanding of conduct policy and consequences of future violations

4th Alcohol Violation

  • Residence hall contract cancellation and/or ban likely (Depending on where the violations took place)
  • University probation for tenure as a student
  • Parental notification
  • Signed statement of understanding of conduct policy and consequences of future violations which would result in suspension from the university

Students transported and/or receiving medical attention due to alcohol

Health and safety of UWRF students is paramount. Consequently, students whose choices regarding alcohol result in a need for medical attention or transport, are taken seriously and require a response from the university that addresses both the health risks and concerns for the students as well as addressing the serious nature of the situation.


Will my parents find out?

Will my parents find out?

The Department of Residence Life may contact parents or legal guardians in the event of health and safety concerns or when their student has alleged to have been involved in a violation of the alcohol or drug policy.


Can I submit and Incident Report on a fellow student?

Can I submit and Incident Report on a fellow student?

Any UWRF student or staff member may file a complaint against a student based on alleged violation of residence hall policies in or around buildings. To file a complaint, contact a Residence Life staff member. After a complaint has been filed, a Residence Life Administrator will contact the student to discuss the alleged incident.

Resources

 

Questions? Students who have questions about Residence Life or UWS Chapter 17 conduct policies or process are encouraged to contact a professional staff member. Both the Department of Residence Life and the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities are housed in the basement of East Hathorn Hall. The phone number is 715-425-4555.