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Sewanee: A Community of Honor

“Behold how good and pleasant it is when brothers and sisters live together in unity!”
Psalm 133:1

The University’s motto—EQB—summarizes the principle that as members of the Sewanee community, we have a responsibility to live with respect for one another and in healthy relationships. The Honor Code similarly reinforces that “membership in the student body carries with it a peculiar responsibility for the punctilious observance of those standards of conduct which govern an honorable person in every walk of life.” Students are expected to live with honor day and night, in the classroom and in the residence halls, on the athletic field and in social spaces, on campus and off—in short, “in every walk of life.”

When we commit to living in community with one another, we necessarily agree to accept limitations on our own actions for the benefit of all, with the parallel expectation that we will not be injured, maligned, or otherwise negatively affected by the actions of others. Those who insist upon living outside the expectations of the Sewanee community will understandably be held accountable for their choices by the Honor Council, the Student Discipline Council, or other disciplinary bodies, and may in certain circumstances be removed from the Sewanee community. Additionally, students are expected to comply with federal, state and local laws in their conduct whether on or off campus.

Expectations of Students

With such in mind, the web pages below provide an outline of what Sewanee students can expect of their community experience with a focus on the implications of “living honorably”:

  1. Living with Personal Integrity
  2. Respecting the Dignity of All
  3. Valuing Freedom of Thought and Expression
  4. Demonstrating Self-Control
  5. Developing Trusting Relationships

Any sense of honor requires that each individual living within the community has the responsibility to take action to support the health of the greater community: we all must hold each other to our shared standards of honor. This responsibility can be made manifest in many ways: for example, students actively preserve their own integrity as well as the reputation of the University’s academic programs when they refuse to tolerate academic dishonesty in any form; they actively respect the dignity of all when they refuse to participate in behavior that demeans others and instead take steps to end such behavior in others; they actively promote an environment of shared trust and support when they alert authorities to threats to the safety of others. We encourage students to support the community values by reporting violations and other concerns.

Policies

Based on these commitments, Sewanee has developed a number of policies (see below) to assist its members in understanding what is expected of them and to assist the community at large in operating more smoothly, effectively, and safely. Becoming aware of these policies or expectations is your responsibility and will enable you to live more successfully within our community.

On those occasions when individuals do choose to break with the community's expectations, the University's response will include a penalty but more importantly an educational opportunity and an opportunity to demonstrate a re-commitment to the community's expectations and values. We assume that students want to be part of the community and accordingly will want to return to the community when they err.

Specific information about these policies and related processes can be found at the following:

The Honor Code

Student Code of Conduct (see here for a list of standard sanctions for first-time offenses)

Residential Living

Organizational Code of Conduct

Information about sexual misconduct