Name: Student Conduct Procedure
Effective Date: July 20, 2023
Next Review Date: AY 2027-2028
Part 1. Standards of Behavior for which Students Are Held Accountable
North Hennepin Community College is committed to fostering and maintaining an engaging and ethical academic community within the framework of academic and civic integrity.
Principles of academic integrity in education apply to every member of the academic community and are based upon affirmation of honesty, integrity of scholarship, and the highest ethical standards and behaviors in the acquisition, pursuit, and investigation of knowledge.
Principles of civic integrity apply to every member of our campus community. We affirm the value of human dignity across differences. We value the right of non-violent freedom of expression, and the rejection of all manifestations of discrimination. We value the diversity of backgrounds, experiences, perspectives, needs, and goals of the members of our community.
As an additional piece of civic integrity, we are committed to dismantling the belief in a racial human hierarchy and being an anti-racist campus.
The college expects that every member of our community is responsible for ensuring that academic and civic integrity is upheld.
Subpart A. Academic Integrity
A commitment to the values of academic integrity ensures that:
all individuals involved in the learning process accept full responsibility for their own work and ideas;
fairness and respect are promoted throughout the college, so that no student is given an unfair advantage;
expectation for lifelong learning and ethical behavior is fostered among all students;
faculty are committed to fostering, guiding, and monitoring students for adherence to all principles of academic integrity; and
the reputation of the college, the degrees, and its alumni are protected and enhanced.
Students are expected to adhere to the values of academic integrity at all times. Students are responsible for their learning, which is communicated through the work they complete in and beyond the classroom, as well as their personal actions related to all academic activities. To further this end, students will:
Turn in assignments that adhere to assignment expectations and represent the student’s own learning effort as required by the assignment
Work individually or collaboratively as determined by assignment parameters
Follow all rules provided for assignments and examinations
Act with honesty and integrity in all interactions with peers and faculty.
Subpart B. Equity, Civility, and Inclusion
Students are expected to act as ethical members of the campus community, and to actively promote equity, honesty, civility, and inclusion for all members of our community in all their interactions.
All members of the campus community have the responsibility to assume good intent in the behavior of other members of the community unless there is a preponderance of evidence to the contrary. We hold each other accountable to the basic standards of honesty and truthfulness to support each other’s individual dignity.
Allegations of discrimination or harassment based on race, sex, color, creed, religion, age, national origin, disability, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression are handled under separate procedures in accordance with Minnesota State Board Policy and 1B.1 and System Procedure 1B.1.1.
Subpart C. Behaviors that Violate of the Student Code of Conduct
- Cheating is the unauthorized use or exchange of information for personal gain.
- Plagiarism is representing another person’s words or ideas as one’s own without proper attribution or credit. It includes representing the work of an AI bot as one’s own.
- Collusion is an agreement by two or more people to violate the principles and values of academic integrity. The College does not attempt to distinguish between students who cheat or plagiarize and those who allow such behaviors to occur. A student who intentionally assists another in the act of cheating or plagiarism is equally subject to disciplinary action for violating academic integrity.
- Inappropriate Use of Computer and/or Technology, including but not limited to,
- College account and password sharing
- interfering in or disrupting technology and network services;
- installing or downloading unauthorized software;
- distributing viruses or other malicious code;
- illegally downloading and/or distributing copyrighted material.
- Disregard for the Code of Student Conduct process.
- Disruptive or disorderly conduct on Campus, that interferes with the ability of others to learn, disrupts normal College operations, or threatens the safety and well-being of members of the campus community.
- Hazing includes behavior that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a person, subjecting a person to public humiliation or ridicule; and the destruction or removal of public or private property for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in a student group, organization, or athletic team.
- Failure to Comply with College or Emergency officials acting in their official capacity.
- Falsifying or Withholding Information
- Solicitation includes the selling of good or services without authorization; and recruiting without authorization.
- Theft, Damage or Misuse of College or Personal Property
- Threatening and/or Harmful Conduct
- Violations of Federal, State and Local Laws and Minnesota State and College Policies
Subpart D. Off Campus Conduct
Consistent with Minnesota State Board Policy 3.6, the college may hold students, who may be identified as a North Hennepin student, accountable for a violation of the behavioral proscriptions contained in their student codes of conduct committed off campus when:
- Hazing is involved; or
- The violation is committed while participating in a college sanctioned or sponsored activity; or
- The victim of the violation is a member of the college community; or
- The violation constitutes a felony under state or federal law; or
- The violation adversely affects the educational, research, or service functions of the college or university.
Part 2. Guests and Hosts
A guest is someone who does not currently meet the definition of a student. A host student is someone who brings a guest to campus or invites them to campus for a period of time. NHCC guests are expected to follow the Student Code of Conduct, College, and Minnesota State policies. Hosts are responsible for the actions of their guests and will be held accountable for any damages, loss of property, or behavior that is initiated by their guests.
Part 3. Employee Rights and Authority
All employees have the right to hold students accountable for failing to adhere to the standards of academic and civic integrity. All employees are encouraged to take a growth mindset to violations, use de-escalation strategies, and view violations as opportunities to educate the student and promote learning and growth.
Employees are encouraged to file code of conduct violations in cases of repeated or extreme violations.
Subpart A. Faculty Right and Authority for Classroom Management
In addition to the traditional understanding of the term “faculty,” for the purposes of this subpart, “faculty” applies to any employee involved in learning activities tied to the Essential Learning Outcomes (ELOs) and/or Co-curricular Learning Outcomes (CCLOs).
Faculty have the right and responsibility to ensure a classroom environment conducive to learning. Academic integrity is integral to the academic process. Faculty have the authority to promote academic integrity and maintain the learning environment. Faculty are expected to communicate expectations for academic integrity to students. Faculty will provide students with opportunities for education and remediation as part of the approach to address academic integrity violations before proceeding down a route that potentially leads to discipline.
In cases of repeated academic integrity violations, appropriate classroom actions to address the violation(s) include, but are not limited to:
- assignment of substitute and/or additional work;
- grade reduction (including a zero) for the assignment;
- grade reduction (including an F – failing) for the course.
- filing a code of conduct complaint with College administration.
In cases of repeated classroom disruption, appropriate classroom actions to maintain the integrity of the learning environment include, but are not limited to:
- verbal warning;
- written warning;
- direction to leave the class for the remainder of the period;
- filing a code of conduct complaint with College administration.
When filing a code of conduct complaint, faculty shall ensure the student is notified of any charge of violation of academic integrity and the corresponding academic remedy. Faculty shall report violations of academic integrity or any conduct incident and the corresponding classroom remedy to the appropriate Academic Dean and the Conduct Officer.
In addition to academic sanctions imposed by the faculty member, the Conduct Officer may, at his/her discretion, initiate an investigation and proceed with the Code of Student Conduct process.
Part 4. Investigation and Informal Hearing Process
- Any member of the College community may file a written complaint alleging a violation of the Code of Student Conduct. Although a complaint needs to be submitted in writing, the Conduct Officer may proceed on a verbal complaint.
- A complaint should be submitted as soon as possible after the event takes place, within seven (7) business days, except if the complainant is in consultation with the Conduct Officer.
- Persons filing a complaint shall be informed of their rights under the Minnesota Data Practices Act.
- The alleged student must be informed that a code of conduct report is being submitted against them prior to the report submission, unless the physical health and/or safety of the community member or the college is considered to be in danger.
- Following the filing of a complaint, the Conduct Officer shall conduct a preliminary investigation of the allegations. If the complaint seems unwarranted, the Conduct Officer may discontinue proceedings. The Conduct Officer will notify the complainant that proceedings have been discontinued.
- If there is sufficient evidence to support the complaint, the Conduct Officer shall offer the alleged student an opportunity to resolve the violation at an informal meeting. The informal meeting may include the complainant as part of a facilitated conversation. Prior to this meeting the student shall be provided with:
- written notice of the specific alleged policy violation against them and what they are accused of doing;
- a copy of the Code of Student Conduct policy and procedure;
- information regarding student advocates. The alleged student may bring a student advocate to the informal hearing if they inform the Conduct Officer in advance.
- The informal meeting shall be scheduled as soon as possible, but no more than ten business days after initial notice of the complaint to the student.
- During the meeting the Conduct Officer shall review the complaint and the evidence with the student and allow the student to present a defense against the complaint. With a reasonable time following the meeting, the Conduct Officer shall inform the student in writing of their decision, any remedy or consequence, and options for a formal hearing and/or an appeal. Decisions will be based on a preponderance of evidence. The complainant will also be notified that a resolution has been reached, recognizing the limitations of FERPA and legitimate educational needs to know.
- A student who is subject to a consequence of expulsion or suspension, except summary suspension, for more than nine (9) days may agree to accept the consequence or may request a formal hearing. The formal hearing will be held within a reasonable time. Other sanctions shall be accepted or may be appealed in accordance with the appeal procedures outlined below.
- If the student fails to appear for the informal hearing, the Conduct Officer may proceed to review and act upon the complaint in their absence and shall notify the student in writing of any action taken.
- A remedy or consequence shall not become effective during the time in which a student seeks an appeal or formal hearing, unless, in the discretion of the Conduct Officer, it is necessary to take immediate action to ensure the safety and welfare of the College community.
Part 5. Formal Hearing Process
Subpart A. Student Conduct Panel Composition
The Conduct Officer is responsible for convening a Student Conduct Panel. The panel shall include six members who have been trained in conduct proceedings - three students (selected from a pool of students appointed by the Student Senate), one faculty member (selected from a pool of faculty members appointed by the Faculty Association President), one staff member and one administrator (designated by the College Provost). The administrator shall serve as a non-voting chairperson and will serve as the advisor of the Student Conduct hearing process. The Conduct Officer shall be present and serves as the college representative, outlining the case on behalf of the college and explaining the alleged policy violations.
Subpart B. Student Advocate
The student may bring an advocate to the formal hearing. Participation of student advocates during the informal and formal hearing processes is limited to speaking with/caucusing with their student and asking clarifying questions to facilitate the hearing process. If the student advocate is an attorney, the formal hearing will be immediately suspended until a representative from the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (Minnesota State) Office of General Counsel can be present.
Subpart C. Student Conduct Panel Hearing Process
The Student Conduct panel hearing process shall follow the guidelines below:
- Student conduct panel hearings shall normally be conducted in private.
- If more than one student or organization is involved, the Conduct Officer may choose to conduct the hearings separately or jointly.
- The failure of a student, student advocate, or student organization to appear at the hearing shall not prevent the hearing from proceeding as scheduled.
- During the hearing the student shall be given the opportunity to speak in their own defense, to present witnesses to the event in question, to question any witness, and to have a student advocate present.
- The hearing may accommodate concerns for the personal safety, well-being, and/or fears of confrontation of the complainant, student, and/or other witnesses during the hearing by providing for the presence of law enforcement and/or security, 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 Conduct Officer to be appropriate.
- At least five (5) business days prior to the hearing, the student or organization shall be provided written notice of:
- the time, place, and date of the hearing;
- the complaint and the nature of the evidence to be presented against them.
- At least three (3) business days prior to the hearing, the accused student shall provide the Conduct Officer with:
- names of material witnesses that may be called to speak on their behalf;
- copies of all documents or written statement that will be presented on their behalf;
- name of their advocate, if an advocate will be present.
- The order of the hearing shall be as follows:
- The chair presents an opening statement of the charges and the supporting evidence.
- The student presents an opening statement of testimony or evidence to refute the charges.
- The Conduct Officer presents the case on behalf of the college.
- The chair calls witnesses for the College. At the conclusion of each witness statement, the student, the panel, or the chair may ask questions. Witnesses may be recalled as needed.
- The chair calls witnesses for the student. At the conclusion of each witness statement, the student, the panel, or the chair may ask questions. Witnesses may be recalled as needed.
- The chair presents a closing statement.
- The Conduct Officer presents a closing statement.
- The student presents a closing statement.
- In closed session the Student Conduct Panel shall review the evidence and witness testimony. Using the preponderance of evidence standard, the Student Conduct Panel shall determine by majority vote whether it is more likely than not a violation occurred. If the Student Conduct Panel determines a violation occurred, they may also make a recommendation to the Conduct Officer to amend the remedy or consequence imposed.
- The Conduct Officer shall provide a written notice of findings, including any remedy or consequence imposed and the appeal process, to the student within three (3) business days after the hearing.
Part 6. Remedies and Consequences
Emphasis is placed on the consideration of each individual case rather than attempting to have matching remedies and consequences for specific incidents. The objectives of the Student Conduct process are to facilitate civility on campus, holistic student development, and personal responsibility. Through a fair consideration of all factors in each case, an attempt is made to prevent arbitrary and authoritarian action. Remedies and consequences are assigned with a focus on the education of the whole person and, when possible, providing opportunities towards restorative justice. During the entire conduct process, the College works to ensure that the community and student are kept in the forefront of the work and always seeks for ways to link the student with other resources on campus to ensure academic success and preparedness for their future after college.
One or more remedies or sanctions may be imposed for any single violation of the Student Conduct Code, including but not limited to:
- Anger Intervention Assessment. A requirement that a student take part in an anger intervention assessment at an off-campus location. This could include an assessment or a certified Anger Management program. These programs are to be paid for by the student. Must be a licensed professional and a letter must be submitted by this professional to show that the requirement has been fulfilled.
- Behavior Concerns and Response Team (BCRT). Conduct that potentially risks the safety of the student or someone else on campus will be referred to the BCRT.
- College Probation. Written reprimand for violations of specified regulations. Probation is for a designated period of time and includes the probability of more severe disciplinary sanctions if the student is found to be violating any institutional regulations during the probationary period.
- Deactivation. For groups or organizations, the loss of all privileges, including College recognition, for a designated period of time.
- Disciplinary Service Hours. Disciplinary service hours may be assigned and must be completed at an approved non-profit organization by the Conduct Officer. Disciplinary service hours may not count towards service-learning hours or other community service required by another class, program, scholarship, or organization. Court-mandated community service may count towards disciplinary service hours. Deadlines for disciplinary service hours may vary.
- Educational Sanctions. Education experiences or projects may include attendance and participation in an event, workshop, special project, or other initiative to assist in learning or growth to move forward from a given situation.
- Formal Written Warning. Written notice that the student is violating or has violated institutional regulations
- Institutional Expulsion. Permanent denial of enrollment privileges. Notice of action may appear on the student’s academic transcript.
- Institutional Suspension. Denial of enrollment privileges for a specified period of time after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for re-enrollment may be specified. Notice of action may appear on the student’s academic transcript.
- Loss of Privileges. Denial of specified privileges for a designated period of time.
- Notification to the National Organization Representatives, Officers or Advisors. The Conduct Officer may impose this sanction on a student organization. In such a case, the organizations national representative, officer, and/or advisors, and the Department of Student Life may be notified of the violation for which the student organization has been found responsible.
- Participation in Restorative Justice Processes.
- Psychological Evaluation. A requirement that a student take part in a psychological evaluation or therapy in order ensure mental and physical safety of themselves and the campus community. Must be a licensed professional and a letter must be submitted by this professional to show that the requirement has been fulfilled. These programs are to be paid for by the student.
- Removal from Class. Being dropped or withdrawn from a class as a result of policy violation.
- Restitution. Compensation for loss, damage, or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement.
- Revocation or Withholding of Admission and/or Degree. Postponement or permanent revocation of College or program admission status or degree until the completion of a process set forth within the Student Code of Conduct.
- Service Assignments. Work assignments, service to the College, or other related discretionary assignments.
Part 7. Appeals
A decision reached by the Conduct Officer during the informal hearing process or by the Student Conduct Panel during the formal hearing process may be appealed by the student(s) or the complainant(s) to the Dean of Student Development. Such appeals must be in writing and submitted within five (5) business days following notification of the decision.
An appeal is not a re-hearing. Except as required to explain the basis of new information, an appeal shall be limited to a review for one or more of the following purposes:
- To determine whether the informal or formal hearing was conducted fairly in light of the charges and evidence presented, and in conformity with prescribed procedures giving the complaining party a reasonable opportunity to prepare and to present information that the Code of Student Conduct was violated and giving the student a reasonable opportunity to prepare and to present a response to those allegations. Deviations from designated procedures will not be a basis for sustaining an appeal unless significant prejudice results.
- To determine whether the decision reached regarding the alleged violation was based on a preponderance of evidence.
- To determine whether the remedies and consequences imposed were fair and proportionate to the violation of the Code of Student Code for which the student was charged.
- 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 informal or formal hearing.
The Dean of Student Development shall review the appeal and render a decision, which shall be considered final and binding upon all involved except in those cases involving consequences of suspension for ten (10) business days or longer.
Part 8. Chapter 14 - Contested Case Hearing
A student with a consequence of expulsion or suspension for ten (10) or more business days shall be informed of the right to a contested case hearing before an Administrative Law Judge supplied by the Office of Administrative Hearings.
Part 9. Record Keeping
Code of conduct violations and related documentation are part of the student’s educational record and therefore, protected under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act (MGDPA). Documentation related to code of conduct violations are kept in accordance with North Hennepin Policy 5.32 and Procedure 5.32.1, Records Retention.
In accordance with Minnesota State Board Procedure 3.29.1, suspensions or expulsions for disciplinary reasons shall be noted on the transcript with a two-line message. For a suspension, the first line shall read "Disciplinary Suspension" and the second line "Eligible for Reinstatement 'Term, Year.'" An expulsion shall be noted by a first line reading "Disciplinary Expulsion" and the second line reading "Not Eligible for Reinstatement." The disciplinary suspension notation shall be removed from the transcript following the date when the student becomes eligible for reinstatement, while the disciplinary expulsion notation is permanent.
Part 10. Campus Review
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee
4/17/2023 – 5/12/2023
Campus Community Review Period
3/2/2023 – 3/24/2023
4/17/2023 – 5/12/2023
4/17/2023 – 5/12/2023
4/17/2023 – 5/12/2023
Shared Governance Council Review
Student Senate Review
Campus Community Dissemination
- Previous policy/procedure did not have an NH policy number (pre-February 2014)
- Revised Fall 2018, included language holding students accountable for off-campus behavior
- • Extensively revised Spring 2023 to emphasize Academic and Civic Integrity.