Student Conduct Procedures
- Any member of the College community may file charges against any student for misconduct. Charges shall be prepared in writing and directed to the Chief Conduct Officer, or his or her designee, responsible for the administration of the Mississippi College student conduct system. Any charge should be submitted as soon as possible after the event takes place, preferably within five (5) working days of the incident. The report should include:
a. Full name, local address and phone numbers of the complainant(s), respondent(s),
witnesses and 700# of all individuals involved whenever possible
b. The specific Standard of Conduct, policy and/or rule allegedly violated (this may be
determined by the Student Conduct Officer)
c. The date, time, location and persons involved in the incident under investigation;
d. A narrative of the incident describing what occurred;
e. Copies of pertinent witness statements, police and/or housing reports, along with a list of any
other physical information (photographs, written documents, items, etc.)
Reports can also be filed via online form here.
- The Chief Conduct Officer, or his or her designee, may conduct an investigation to determine if the charges have merit and/or if they can be disposed of administratively by mutual consent of the parties involved on a basis acceptable to the Chief Conduct Officer, or his or her designee. Such disposition shall be final and there shall be no subsequent proceedings. If the charges cannot be disposed of by mutual consent, the Chief Conduct Officer, or his or her designee, may later serve in the same matter as the student conduct hearing body or a member thereof.
Administrative Student Conduct Conference
- Upon receipt of a properly filed complaint, a Student Conduct Officer shall notify the respondent student in written form by campus email, regular mail or hand delivery that student conduct proceedings have been initiated. The letter indicates a scheduled time for an Administrative Student Conduct Conference with a Student Conduct Officer, or directs the student to schedule an Administrative Student Conduct Conference within a specified amount of time. The letter also lists the alleged violation(s) in which the student is being charged. Failure to comply with this directive may result in a full hearing board being scheduled.
- The purpose of the Administrative Student Conduct Conference is to provide the student the opportunity to review the alleged violation(s) with the Student Conduct Officer, to examine the information and reports, to discuss the Mississippi College Student Code of Conduct and the conduct process. Students who do not have a copy of the Mississippi College Student Code of Conduct will be given one in this conference or be directed to an online copy.
- The student and the Student Conduct Officer will determine if they matter can be resolved through mutual agreement, including, but not limited to, the charges/complaints being rendered null and void; an “Administrative Student Conduct Conference Agreement” being signed which indicates the student assumes responsibility for a violation(s) of the Mississippi College Student Code of Conduct, and waives any further proceedings and/or appeals.
- If the complaint cannot be disposed of by mutual consent, the matter will be referred to a hearing involving a Student Hearing Board or a University Hearing Board. If the case of an incident which may rise to suspension or expulsion from Mississippi College housing or Mississippi College, the matter will be referred to a University Hearing Board.
In cases which cannot be resolved in an Administrative Student Conduct Conference, and in those incidents which rise to suspension or expulsion from Mississippi College housing or Mississippi College, the matter will be referred to a University Hearing Board. Hearings involving a hearing board are designed for both the complainant and respondent to present their accounts of an incident.
- The respondent student shall be given written notice of the hearing to inform him or her of the specific charge(s), of his or her rights as a student, and the date, time and location of the hearing.
a. Generally, a student will be given a minimum notice of five (5) school days and maximum of
fifteen (15) school days before the hearing takes place. However, due to the nature of the
academic year, if the incident occurs close to the end of a semester, or if the appropriate
hearing board cannot be scheduled, the student’s case will be heard as soon as a hearing
can be scheduled.
b. Time limits for scheduling hearings may be extended at the discretion of the Vice President
for Enrollment Services and Dean of Students, Associate Dean of Students, Chief Conduct
Officer and the Director of Student Development.
c. Notice of a hearing shall be sent/delivered to the student’s campus email address and/or
local mailing address identified on the student’s record, and shall be considered delivered two
working days after the letter has been posted or sent. In the event of a hand delivery of a
notice, the notice is considered delivered on the date it is given to the student.
- The purpose of a student conduct hearing is to determine if the respondent student is responsible for violating one or more standards of the Mississippi College Student Code of Conduct, and to recommend any appropriate sanctions. A student is presumed to be not responsible until proven responsible in a student conduct hearing.
- Hearings shall be conducted by a student conduct hearing board according to the following guidelines:
a. Hearings shall be conducted in private.
b. Admission of any person to the hearing shall be at the discretion of the Chief Conduct Officer
or his or her designee.
c. In hearings involving more than one respondent student, the Chief Conduct Officer or his or
her designee, at his or her discretion, may permit the hearings concerning each student to be
d. The complainant and the respondent student(s) have the right to be assisted by an advisor,
according to the guidelines outlined in “Article IV: Student Rights” of the Mississippi College
Student Code of Conduct.
e. The complainant and the respondent shall have the privilege of presenting witnesses, subject
to the right of cross examination by the hearing board.
f. Pertinent records, exhibits and written statements may be accepted as information for
consideration by a hearing board at the discretion of the Chief Conduct Officer or his or her
g. All procedural questions are subject to the final decision of the Student Conduct Officer
presiding over or conducting the hearing.
h. After the hearing, the hearing body shall determine (by majority vote) whether the student
has violated each section of the Student Code which the student has been charged.
i. The hearing board’s determination shall be made on the basis of whether it is more likely than not (preponderance of the evidence) that the respondent student violated the
j. There shall be a single verbatim record, such as a tape recording, of all hearings before a
student conduct hearing board. The record shall be the property of Mississippi College and
shall become a part of disciplinary records
k. Except in the case of a student charged with failing to obey the summons of a College
official, no student may be found to have violated the Student Code solely based on the
failure to appear before a hearing board. In all cases, the information in support of the
charges shall be presented and considered.
l. The hearing board may accommodate concerns for the personal safety, well-being and/or
fears of confrontation of the complainant, respondent and/or other witnesses during the
hearing by providing separate facilities, by using a visual screen, and/or by permitting
participation by telephone, videophone, closed circuit television, video conferencing,
videotape, audio tape, written statement, or other means, where and as determined in the
sole judgment of the Chief Conduct Officer or his or her designee.
- A hearing is structure such that the discussion proceeds in an orderly manner. Below is the order the hearing follows:
b. The reading of the complaint/charges by the hearing chairperson;
c. The entering of pleas by each respondent;
d. There are three pleas: Responsible, Not Responsible and No Plea, which indicates that the
student does not know whether or not he or she is responsible, or means the student is
unwilling to say and is allowing the hearing board to decide;
e. Statement of complainant and introduction of information and witnesses;
f. Questioning of the complainant, the complainant’s information and the complainant’s
g. Statement of the respondent and introduction of information and witnesses;
h. Questioning of the respondent, the respondent’s information and the respondent’s
i. Final questions by the hearing board, complainant, and/or respondent;
j. Closing statements, first by the complainant and then by the respondent;
i. Closing statements shall be specific to the incident involved and may include any
reiteration of previously stated facts, written statements of character by a third party,
and/or any other comments involving the case. Closing statements are the final
opportunity for the respondent and the complainant to provide any additional information
which will facilitate the hearing board’s decision, including recommendations for sanctions.
Closing statements may be limited to a specified time constraint at the hearing board
and/or chairperson’s discretion. Once the closing statements are concluded, the
complainant, respondent and Student Conduct Officer will be dismissed.
k. Deliberation of the hearing board;
l. Recommendation of the hearing board to the Student Conduct Officer
The following sanctions may be imposed upon any student found to have violated the Student Code:
An official written notice that the student has violated Mississippi College policies and/or rules and that more severe conduct action will result should the student be involved in other violations while the student is enrolled at the Mississippi College.
Compensation for damage caused to Mississippi College or any person’s property. This could also include situations such as failure to return a reserved space to proper condition – labor costs and expenses. This is not a fine but, rather, a repayment for labor costs and/or the value of property destroyed, damaged, consumed, or stolen.
Reasonable fines may be imposed.
- Educational Service or College Service Requirements
Completion of some type of educational service or specific supervised Mississippi College service.
- Loss of Privileges
The student will be denied specified privileges for a designated period of time.
- Confiscation of Prohibited Property
Items whose presence is in violation of Mississippi College policy will be confiscated and will become the property of Mississippi College. Prohibited items may be returned to the owner at the discretion of the Director of Student Development and/or Director of the Office of Public Safety.
- Behavioral Requirement
This includes required activities including, but not limited to, seeking counseling, academic counseling or substance abuse screening, writing a letter of apology, etc. This may also include working with a Student Services Office such as the Office of Student Success, Community Service Center or Office of Christian Development based on the student’s individual needs. This also includes paying any fees that may be charged for said required activity.
- Educational Program
Requirement to attend, present and/or participate in a program related to the violation. It may also be a requirement to sponsor or assist with a program for others on campus to aid them in learning about a specific topic or issue related to the violation for which the student or organization was found responsible. Audience may be restricted.
- Restriction of Visitation Privilege
May be imposed on a resident or non-resident student. The parameters of the restriction will be specified.
- Mississippi College Housing Probation
Official notice that, should further violations of Residence Life Guidelines or other Mississippi College policies occur during a specified probationary period, the student may immediately be removed from Mississippi College residential housing. Regular probationary meetings may also be imposed.
- Mississippi College Housing Reassignment
Reassignment to another Mississippi College residence hall room or residence hall. Residence Life personnel will decide on the reassignment details.
- Mississippi College Housing Suspension
Removal from Mississippi College housing for a specified period of time after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for re-admission to Mississippi College housing may be specified. Under this sanction, a student is required to vacate Mississippi College housing within 24 hours of notification of the action, though this deadline may be extended upon application to, and at the discretion of, the Director of Residence Life. This sanction may be enforced with a trespass action if deemed necessary. Prior to reapplication for Mississippi College housing, the student must gain permission from the Director of Residence Life (or designee). This sanction may include restrictions on visitation to specified buildings or all Mississippi College housing during the suspension.
- Mississippi College Housing Expulsion
The student’s privilege to live in, or visit, any Mississippi College housing structure is revoked indefinitely. This sanction may be enforced with a trespass action if deemed necessary.
- Mississippi College Conduct Probation
The student is put on official notice that, should further violations of Mississippi College policies occur during a specified probationary period, the student may face suspension or expulsion. Regular probationary meetings may also be imposed.
- Eligibility Restriction
The student is deemed “not in good standing” with the Mississippi College for a specified period of time. Specific limitations or exceptions may be granted by the Director of Student Development and terms of this conduct sanction may include, but are not limited to, the following:
a. Ineligibility to hold any office in any student organization recognized by Mississippi College or
hold an elected or appointed office at Mississippi College; or
b. Ineligibility to represent the Mississippi College to anyone outside the Mississippi College
community in any way including: participating in the study abroad program, attending
conferences, or representing the Mississippi College at an official function, event or
intercollegiate competition as a player, manager or student coach, etc.
- Mississippi College Suspension
Separation from Mississippi College for a specified minimum period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Eligibility may be contingent upon satisfaction of specific conditions noted at the time of suspension. The student is required to vacate the campus within 24 hours of notification of the action, though this deadline may be extended upon application to, and at the discretion of, the Director of Student Development and Associate Dean of Students. During the suspension period, the student is banned from university property, functions, events and activities without prior written approval from the Director of Student Development. This sanction may be enforced with a trespass action as necessary.
- Mississippi College Expulsion
Permanent separation from Mississippi College. The student is banned from university property and the student’s presence at any Mississippi College -sponsored activity or event is prohibited. This action may be enforced with a trespass action as necessary.
- 18. Other Sanctions
Additional or alternate sanctions may be created and designed as deemed appropriate to the violation with the approval of the Chief Conduct Officer or his or her designee.
Typical Sanction Ranges
Sanctioning ranges established by Mississippi College exist for students found responsible for violating certain sections of the Mississippi College Student Code of Conduct. However, ranges exist to provide a guide and are not mandatory as each case is determined on a case-by-case basis, taking into account intervening variables, the determination of the Student Conduct Officer or hearing board of the student’s realization and understanding of his or her actions, whether the student has been involved in past infractions of the Mississippi College Student Code of Conduct, and the individual circumstances of the incident. Thus, ranges may be increased, decreased or changed as needed. The following sanction ranges exist as follows for first-time offenses:
- Alcohol Violation (Article III, Section K)
a. Referral to an alcohol assessment within Mississippi College’s Counseling Center (fee), or an alcohol education program
b. Educational service hours;
c. Student Conduct probation for up to one year;
d. If the student is an on-campus resident, Residence Hall probation up to Residence Hall Expulsion;
e. If the student is under the age of 21, parental notification letter sent to parent/guardians;
g. Loss of parking privileges for any offense related to driving under the influence.
- Unauthorized Visitation (Article III, Section O)
b. Educational service hours
c. Loss of privileges (visitation)
d. Student Conduct Probation for up to one year;
e. If the student is a resident, Residence Hall Probation up to Residence Hall expulsion
- Incidents Involving Abuse (Article III, Section C)
a. Mandatory counseling within Mississippi College’s Counseling Center (fee);
b. Community service hours
c. Student conduct probation for one year up to expulsion, and;
d. If the student is a resident, Residence Hall Probation up to Residence Hall expulsion.
- Incidents Involving Illegal Drugs (Article III, Section J)
a. Referral to a substance abuse assessment and/or mandatory counseling/treatment (fee);
b. Educational service hours
d. Student Conduct Probation for two years up to expulsion from Mississippi College;
e. If the student is a resident, Residence Hall Probation up to Residence Hall expulsion;
f. If the student is under the age of 21, parental notification sent to parents/guardians;
- Incidents Involving Sexual Misconduct (Article III, Section X)
a. Sexual Assault
i. Suspension for one year up to expulsion from Mississippi College;
b. Non-consensual sexual intercourse (rape)
i. Expulsion from Mississippi College
c. Sexual Exploitation, Stalking and Discrimination
i. Referral to mandatory counseling/treatment (fee);
ii. Educational service hours
iv. Student Conduct Probation for two years up to expulsion from Mississippi College;
Other violations of the Mississippi College Student Code of Conduct will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
In certain circumstances, the Chief Conduct Officer, or his or her designee, may impose a Mississippi College or Mississippi College housing suspension prior to the hearing before a hearing board.
- Interim suspension may be imposed only:
a. To ensure the safety and well-being of members of the College community or preservation of College property
b. To ensure the student’s own physical or emotional safety and well-being;
c. If the student poses a definite threat of disruption of or interference with normal Mississippi College operations.
- During the interim suspension, students shall be denied access to the residence halls and/or the campus (including classes) and/or all other Mississippi College activities or privileges for which the student might otherwise be eligible, as the Chief Conduct Officer, or a designee, may determine
- A decision reached by a hearing board or a sanction imposed by a Student Conduct Officer may be appealed by respondents to the Chief Conduct Officer within five (5) school days of notification of the decision. Such appeals shall be in writing and shall be delivered to the Chief Conduct Officer or his or her designee.
- The Chief Conduct Officer may act as the Appellate Body or assign the case to an Appellate Body of his or her choosing.
- An appeal is not a re-hearing of a matter to establish fact and therefore shall be limited to review of the verbatim record of the initial hearing and supporting documents, except as required to explain the basis of new information. The basis for an appeal shall be for one of the following purposes:
a. To determine whether the original hearing was conducted fairly in light of the
charges and information presented, and in conformity with prescribed procedures
giving the complaining party a reasonable opportunity to prepare and present
information that the Student Code was violated, and giving the respondent student
reasonable opportunity to prepare and to present a rebuttal of those allegations.
b. To determine whether the decision reached regarding the respondent was based on actual
information, that is whether facts in the case were sufficient to establish that a violation of
the Student Code occurred.
c. To determine whether the sanction(s) imposed were appropriate for the violation of the
Student Code which the student was found to have committed, as well as, other
substantiated considerations which may have also had a bearing on sanctions such as, but
not limited to, past Student Code violations.
d. To consider new information sufficient to alter a decision, or other relevant facts not
brought out in the original hearing, because such information and/or facts were not
known to the person appealing at the time of the original hearing.
- If an appeal is upheld by the Appellate Body, the body may review the case and recommend action to the Chief Conduct Officer, or recommend to the Chief Conduct Officer that the matter be remanded to the original student conduct body and/or Student Conduct Officer for re-opening of the hearing to allow reconsideration of the original determination and/or sanction(s).
- Should an Appellate Body choose to review a case, without recommending that it be remanded to its original student conduct body and/or conduct Officer, the resulting action taken by the Appellate Body, if any, must be presented to the Chief conduct Officer in the form of a recommendation. The recommendation of the Appellate body shall be considered by the Chief Conduct Officer in determining and imposing final sanctions. Final decision of the Appellate Body and/or the Chief Conduct Officer acting as the appellate body will be reviewed and approved by the Vice President for Enrollment Services and Dean of Students. The decision is then final and binding.
- Appeals by a respondent student may not result in more severe sanction(s). Instead, sanctions shall only be upheld or reduced.
- Appeals by the complainant may result in sanctions against a respondent being reduced, upheld, or increased.