Appeals of Sexual Misconduct Decisions

How to Appeal

An appeal of a dean of students or a hearing panel decision is no different from any other appeal, except that they are referred to the Vice-Chancellor. In cases of sexual misconduct either party may appeal the decision or the sanction. Both reporter and respondent may appeal the outcome.

Those hearing appeals generally give consideration only to those cases involving the most serious matters and the most significant consequences, such as suspensions or expulsions. Appeals will be reviewed using the following criteria:

  • there is new information that substantially alters the understanding of the event(s) in question; and/or

  • the discipline process was not followed in a fundamentally fair manner; and/or

  • that the disciplinary response is disproportionate to the offense.

If a student wishes to appeal a decision, such an appeal must be made in writing to the Vice-Chancellor's office within three (3) class days after receiving an outcome letter from the dean.

Process for Reviewing an Appeal

If there is an appeal, it will be shared with the other party, who will have three (3) class days to respond in writing.

The Vice-Chancellor may review an appeal directly or appoint a board to review the appeal, making a recommendation to the Vice-Chancellor for a final determination. Reviewing an appeal includes a review of the full investigation, the notice of action and the student’s written appeal, and any response from either party.

Decision on Appeal

The Vice-Chancellor may choose to affirm the action of a dean, to affirm the decision but to change the penalty, to refer the case back to the dean and hearing panel for further consideration, or to reverse the decision. The Vice-Chancellor shall notify the parties, in writing, of the final action on the appeal.  

Note: Students are afforded only a single appeal. Once an appeal is submitted and concluded, the disciplinary process ends and the decision is final.

Parental Notification

The University reserves the right to notify parents/guardians of dependent students regarding any health or safety risk, change in student status, or conduct situation, particularly alcohol and other drug violations. The University may also notify parents/guardians of non-dependent students who are under age 21 of alcohol and/or drug policy violations. When a student is not dependent, the University will contact parents/guardians to inform them of situations in which there is a significant and articulable health and/or safety risk. The University also reserves the right to designate which college officials have a need to know about individual conduct reports pursuant to FERPA.