Student Code of Conduct

Student Responsibilities, Rights, and Freedoms

Northeast Community College reserves the right to make changes as necessary in this Student Code of Conduct.

Students enrolled at Northeast Community College (Northeast) are expected to conduct themselves in a mature and responsible manner. It is the policy of Northeast to allow students maximum freedom consistent with good scholarship and citizenship. Students are required to engage in responsible social conduct that reflects credit upon the college community and to model good citizenship in any community. Good citizenship implies high standards of conduct and requires conformity to the laws of the United States, the State of Nebraska, its subdivisions, and to Northeast policies, procedures, and Code of Conduct.

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Article I: Definitions

  1. The term “College” means Northeast Community College, including its Norfolk campus, and its education centers in O’Neill, West Point, and South Sioux City, Nebraska.
  2. The term “student” includes all persons enrolled in courses at the College, including credit and non-credit, full-time or part-time, on site, on-line, or via distance education, or, Adult Education courses. Persons who withdraw from classes after allegedly violating the Student Code and persons who are living in College residence halls, although withdrawn from Northeast Community College, are considered “students” under this Code of Conduct. This Student Code does apply at all locations of the College, including sites of College-sponsored events/activities.
  3. The term “faculty member” means any person employed by the College to conduct teaching activities or who is otherwise considered by the College to be a member of its faculty.
  4. The term “College official” includes any person employed by the College, performing assigned administrative or professional responsibilities.
  5. The term “member of the College community” includes any person who is a student, faculty member, College official or any other person employed by the College. A person’s status in a particular situation shall be determined by the College President.
  6. The term “College premises” includes all land, buildings, facilities, and other property in the possession of or owned, used, rented, or controlled by the College, including adjacent streets and sidewalks.
  7. The term “organization” means any number of persons who have complied with the formal requirements for College recognition or registration.
  8. The term “academic year” means the first day of the fall semester through the last day of the second summer session.
  9. The term “Student Conduct Appellate Board” hereafter referred to as the “Appellate Board” means those persons appointed by the Dean of Student Life to consider an appeal from the sanctions imposed by the Director of Student Conduct.
  10. The term “shall” or “will” is used in the imperative sense.
  11. The term “may” or “might” is used in the permissive sense.
  12. The term “Director of Residence Life" is the offical at the College who is responsible for the administration of Residence Life policies, including the imposition of sanctions upon any student(s) found to have violated specific Residence Life policies.
  13. The term “Director of Student Conduct” is the official at the College who is responsible for the administration of the Student Code of Conduct, including the imposition of sanctions upon any student(s) found to have violated said Code.
  14. The term “Vice President of Student Services” is the College official exercising primary authority over the College’s Student Services, programs, and operations.
  15. The term “code” means the Student Code of Conduct as found in the Student Handbook, on the College website, in the College catalog, or other official College publication.
  16. The term “Residence Life Manual” means the written regulations of the College as found in the Residence Life Manual or on the College website.
  17. The term “cheating” includes, but is not limited to: 1) use of any unauthorized assistance in taking quizzes, tests, or examinations; 2) use of sources beyond those authorized by the instructor in writing papers, preparing reports, solving problems, or carrying out other assignments; 3) the acquisition, without permission, of tests or other academic material belonging to a member of the College faculty or staff 4) engaging in any behavior specifically prohibited by a faculty member in the course syllabus or class discussion.
  18. The term “plagiarism” includes, but is not limited to, the use, by paraphrase or direct quotation, of the published or unpublished work of another person without full and clear acknowledgment. It also includes the unacknowledged use of materials prepared by another person or agency engaged in the selling of term papers or other academic materials.
  19. The term “Complainant” means any person who submits a charge alleging that a student, group of students, or student organization violated the Student Code of Conduct. When a student believes that she/he has been a victim of another student’s misconduct, the student who believes she/he has been a victim will have the same rights under the Student Code of Conduct as are provided to the Complainant, even if another member of the College community submitted the charge.
  20. The term “Accused Student” means any student, group of students, or student organization accused of violating the Student Code of Conduct.
  21. The term “disposition agreement” means a written, signed document in which the accused student agrees that he/she violated the Code of Conduct and agrees to the sanction(s) imposed.

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Article II: Student Code Authority

  1. The Director of Student Conduct shall appoint three (3) persons each academic year to serve on the Student Conduct Appellate Board: one (1) on-campus student; one(1) off-campus student; and one (1) full-time faculty or staff member. The Director shall also appoint one (1) alternate member from each of the three (3) categories who shall serve if the regular member is unavailable.
  2. The Director of Student Conduct shall develop policies for the administration of the student conduct system and procedural rules for the conduct of Student Conduct Appellate Board Hearings. These policies shall be consistent with provisions of the Student Code of Conduct.
  3. Decisions made by a Student Conduct Appellate Board and/or the Director of Student Conduct shall be final, pending the “normal appeal process”. This process is outlined in the Student Handbook and on the College website.

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Article III: Proscribed Conduct

  1. Jurisdiction of the NECC Student Code of Conduct
  2. The College Student Code of Conduct shall apply to conduct that occurs on College premises and at College sponsored activities. Each student shall be responsible for his/her conduct during each academic year for which he/she is enrolled. The Student Code shall apply to a student’s conduct if the student withdraws from school while a disciplinary matter is pending.

  3. Conduct – Rules and Regulations

    Any student found to have committed the following misconduct is subject to the disciplinary sanctions outlined in Article IV:

    1. Acts of dishonesty, including but not limited to the following:
      1. Cheating on an advanced placement test or other examination required for admission.
      2. Cheating or plagiarism in the classroom, or other forms of academic dishonesty. Such acts of dishonesty shall be referred to the Educational Services division for handling pursuant to Educational Services policy and administered by the instructor, associate dean, dean, and/or Vice President of Educational Services.
      3. Furnishing false information to any College official, faculty member, or office.
      4. Forgery, alteration, or misuse of any College document, record, or instrument of identification, including misrepresentation of degrees awarded or honors received.
      5. Other forms of dishonesty relating to academic achievement or academically related public service.
      6. Tampering with the election of any institutionally recognized student organization.
      7. Claiming to represent or act on behalf of the institution when not authorized to so represent or so act.
    2. Disruption or obstruction of teaching, administration, disciplinary proceedings, other College activities, including its public service functions on or off campus, or of other authorized non-College activities when the conduct occurs on College premises.
    3. Disruption of or interference with the activities of persons who are studying, sleeping, or otherwise engaging in activities that are consistent with the normal and expected uses of institutional facilities or of student residential facilities.
    4. Acts of aggression including threats, intimidation, coercion, or other conduct that threatens or endangers the health or safety of any person:
      1. Conduct that threatens or endangers a student’s own health or safety may also violate this section.
      2. “Aggression” means not only intentional infliction of harm, but also conduct that intentionally subjects another to unwelcome, offensive, physical contact or that puts another person in reasonable fear that the actor intends immediately to subject that person to intentional injury or unwelcome, offensive touching.
      3. Threats, intimidation, or acts of violence against employees, students, or visitors on Northeast Community College property will not be ignored, condoned, or tolerated. (Northeast Community College Personnel Code 4107, Item 8839 or as the same may from time to time be amended) Physical contact will result in law enforcement being called.
    5. Subjection of another person to any sexual act against that person’s will or without consent, including any conduct that would constitute a sex offense, whether forcible or non-forcible. Persons who are under the influence of alcohol, marijuana, or other illegal controlled substances at the time that they are subjected to the sexual act shall be presumed incapable of effective consent.
    6. Discriminatory conduct, including sexual harassment, racial harassment, or harassment on any other grounds, directed against individuals.
      1. Harassment may be established by showing:
        1. Conduct toward another person that has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile, or demeaning environment and/or that interferes with his or her ability to participate in or to realize the intended benefits of an institutional activity, employment, or resource; or
        2. Other conduct that is extreme and outrageous, exceeding all bounds usually tolerated by polite society and that has the purpose or the substantial likelihood of interfering with another person’s ability to participate in or to realize the intended benefits of an institutional activity, employment, or resource.
      2. Sexual harassment may be established by showing that an individual has been subjected to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature where:
        1. Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or a condition of an individual’s participation or use of an institutionally sponsored or approved activity, employment, or resource; or
        2. Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for educational, employment, or similar decisions affecting an individual’s ability to participate in or use an institutionally sponsored or approved activity, employment, or resource.
    7. Attempted or actual theft of and/or damage to property of the College or property of a member of the College community or other personal or public property, on or off campus.
    8. Possession of stolen property on institutional property or at an institutionally sponsored activity where the property is known to be stolen.
    9. Hazing, defined as an act which endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student, or which destroys or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in, a group or organization. The express or implied consent of the victim will not be a defense. Apathy or acquiescence in the presence of hazing are not neutral acts; they are violations of this rule.
    10. Failure to comply with directions of College officials, campus security staff, or law enforcement officers acting in performance of the duties and or failure to identify oneself to these persons when requested to do so.
    11. Unauthorized possession, duplication or use of keys to any College premises or unauthorized entry to or use of College premises.
    12. Operating a vehicle on campus so as to endanger public safety including negligent and/or reckless driving and other vehicle misconduct.
    13. Violation of any College policy, rule, or regulation published in hard copy or available electronically on the College website.
    14. Violation of any federal, state or local law on institutional premises or at institutionally-sponsored or supervised activities, including behavior classified as disorderly, lewd, indecent, or a breach of peace.
    15. Use, possession, manufacture, or distribution of marijuana, heroin, narcotics, or other controlled substances except as expressly permitted by law. This includes possession of drug paraphernalia.
    16. Use, possession, manufacture, or distribution of alcoholic beverages, or public intoxication. The manufacture, sale, possession, and/or consumption of alcohol, marijuana, or controlled substances by students on any property controlled by the College or in connection with any institutionally-sponsored activity.
    17. Making bomb threats.
    18. Illegal or unauthorized possession of firearms, fireworks, explosives, other weapons, or dangerous chemicals on College premises or use of any such items, even if legally possessed, in a manner that harms, threatens or causes fear to others.
    19. Participating in an on-campus or off-campus demonstration, riot or activity that disrupts the normal operations of the College and/or infringes on the rights of other members of the College community; leading or inciting others to disrupt schedules and/or normal activities within any campus building or area.
    20. Obstruction of the free flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic on College premises or at College sponsored or supervised functions.
    21. Conduct that is disorderly, lewd, or indecent; breach of peace; or aiding, abetting, or procuring another person to breach the peace on College premises or at functions sponsored by, or participated in, by the College or members of the academic community. Disorderly Conduct includes but is not limited to: any unauthorized use of electronic or other devices to make an audio or video record of any person while on College premises or at a college-sponsored event without his/her prior knowledge, or without his/her effective consent when such a recording is likely to cause injury or distress. This includes, but is not limited to, surreptitiously taking pictures of another person in a gym, locker, or restroom; it also includes posting photos to websites.
    22. Theft or other abuse of computer facilities and resources, including but not limited to:
      1. Unauthorized entry into a file, to use, read, or change the contents, or for any other purpose.
      2. Unauthorized transfer of a file.
      3. Use of another individual’s identification and/or password.
      4. Use of computing facilities and resources to interfere with the work of another student, faculty member or College Official.
      5. Use of computing facilities and resources to send obscene or abusive messages.
      6. Use of computing facilities and resources to interfere with normal operation of the College computing system.
      7. Use of computing facilities and resources in violation of copyright laws.
      8. Making, acquiring, or using unauthorized copies of computer software, or violating terms of applicable software license agreements.
      9. Attempting to circumvent data protection schemes or tampering with security.
      10. Any violation of Student Code 5090 Acceptable Use Policy—Electronic Resources and Student Code 5090 a. Acceptable Use Policy—Electronic Resources Procedures. (Northeast Community College Student Code 5090, Item 9142 or as the same may from time to time be amended)
    23. Abuse of the Student Conduct System, including but not limited to:
      1. Failure to obey notice from a College official to appear for a meeting or hearing as part of the Student Conduct System.
      2. Falsification, distortion, or misrepresentation of information before a College official and/or the Appellate Board.
      3. Disruption or interference with the orderly conduct of an Appellate Board proceeding.
      4. Instituting a student conduct code proceeding in bad faith.
      5. Attempting to discourage an individual’s proper participating in, or use of, the student conduct system.
      6. Attempting to influence the impartiality of a member of an Appellate Board prior to, and/or during the course of, the Appellate Board proceeding.
      7. Harassment (verbal or physical) and/or intimidation of a member of the Appellate Board prior to, during, and/or after a student conduct code proceeding.
      8. Influencing or attempting to influence another person to commit a violation of the Student Code of Conduct or procedures relating thereto.
    24. Conduct not expressly proscribed may also subject students, groups of students, or student organizations to discipline where it demonstrates that a student, group of students or organization has disregarded the need to conform to reasonable rules and regulations intended to protect the health and safety of others and to assure their orderly access to and beneficial use of institutional resources and facilities.
    25. Formal or informal student organizations, which by repeated practice, initiate, encourage, support, or tolerate conduct by members, associates, or guests that violate the provisions of this Code shall be subject to discipline.
  4. Violation of Law and College Code of Conduct
    1. No provision of this Code shall be interpreted to deprive students of rights guaranteed them under state or federal law.
    2. College disciplinary proceedings may be instituted against a student charged with conduct that potentially violates both criminal law and the Student Code of Conduct (it is possible both violations may result from the same factual situation) without regard to the pendency of any civil or criminal proceedings under this Student Code may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with, or following any civil or criminal proceedings conducted off campus. Determinations made or sanctions imposed under this Code shall not be subject to change because criminal charges brought against a student or group of students were dismissed, reduced, or resolved in a Court of Law.
    3. When a student or group of students is/are charged by federal, state, or local authorities with a violation of law, the College will not request or agree to special considerations for that individual because of his or her status as a student. If the alleged offense is also being processed under the Code, the College may advise off-campus authorities of the existence of the Code and of how such matters are typically handled within the College community. The College will cooperate with law enforcement and other agencies in the enforcement of criminal law violations which occur at the College. Individual students and other members of the College community, acting in their personal capacities, remain free to interact with governmental representatives as they deem appropriate.
    4. When the Vice President of Student Services receives a report of student misconduct that may constitute a felony offense under state or federal law, that official shall immediately report the known facts and circumstances to the local law enforcement officials who have jurisdiction over the matter.

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Article IV: Student Conduct Code Procedures

  1. Charges and Appellate Board Hearings
    1. Any member of the College community may file charges against a student for violations of the Code. A charge shall be prepared in writing and filed with the Director of Student Conduct or his/her designee. Any charge should be submitted as soon as possible after the event takes place, preferably within three (3) work days.
    2. The Director of Student Conduct or his/her designee shall conduct an investigation to determine 1) if a violation may have in fact occurred, 2) if so, what an appropriate sanction(s) might be, and 3) if a charge(s) and sanction(s) can be administratively resolved by mutual consent of the parties involved. The Director or his/her designee shall supply to the accused student, a letter outlining the Code or Residence Life violation and the sanction(s) to be imposed. The letter shall also advise the student of a time set for a meeting with the Director or his/her designee, which shall be not more than fifteen (15) work days after the accused student has been notified. Maximum time limits for scheduling of this meeting may be extended at the discretion of Director. If at the meeting the accused student admits violating the Code and agrees to the sanction to be imposed, the Director and the student may sign a disposition agreement. Such disposition agreement shall be final and there shall be no subsequent proceedings. If, however, the charges are not admitted and/or cannot be disposed of by mutual consent, the accused student has the right to appeal the Director’s decision to the Appellate Board. If, however, the student admits violating the Code or Residence Life Manual, but sanctions are not agreed to, the appeal before the Appellate Board shall be limited to determining the appropriate sanction(s).
  2. Sanctions
    1. Sanctions may be imposed upon any student found to have violated the Code or Residence Life Manual. Those sanctions may include the following:
      1. Warning – A notice in writing to the student that the student has violated the Code or Residence Life Manual.
      2. Probation – A designated period during which a student is considered “not in good social standing” with the College. Additional behavior in violation of College regulations during the probationary period may constitute grounds for more serious disciplinary action including, but not limited to, suspension/dismissal from the residence halls, and/or suspension/dismissal from the College. Probation may include specific terms and conditions as deemed appropriate by the Director of Student Conduct or his/her designee.
      3. Loss of Privileges – Denial of specified privileges for a designated period of time.
      4. Fines – A sum imposed as a consequence of violating the Code of Conduct or the Residence Life Manual.
      5. Community Service—time spent, without pay, on projects that benefit the College and the College community.
      6. Restitution – Compensation for loss, damage, or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement.
      7. Discretionary Sanctions – Work assignments, essays, service to the College, or other related discretionary assignments.
      8. Residence Hall Suspension – Separation of the student from the residence halls for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified.
      9. Residence Hall Expulsion – Permanent separation of the student from the residence halls.
      10. Interim Suspension – In certain circumstances, the Vice President of Student Services or a designee may impose an institutional or residence suspension prior to the hearing before a judicial officer. Interim suspension may be imposed only for one or more of the following purposes:
        1. To ensure the safety and well-being of members of the campus community or preservation of institutional property or other property located on premises controlled by the College.
        2. To ensure a student’s own physical or emotional safety and well-being.
        3. To ensure the normal operations of the institution where a student poses a definite threat of disruption of or interference with the normal operations of the institution. During the interim suspension, students shall be denied access to residence facilities or to the campus (including classes) or all other institutional activities or privileges for which the student might otherwise be eligible as the Vice President of Student Services may determine to be appropriate.
        4. College Suspension – Separation of the student from the College for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified.
        5. College Expulsion – Permanent separation of the student from the College.
        6. Revocation of Admission and/or Degree – Admission to or a degree awarded from the College may be revoked for fraud, misrepresentation, or other violation of College standards in obtaining the degree, or for other serious violations committed by a student prior to graduation.
        7. Withholding of a Transcript – The College may withhold a formal transcript until the completion of the process set forth in the Student Conduct Code, including the completion of all sanctions imposed, if any.
    2. More than one of the sanctions listed above may be imposed for any single violation.
    3. (a) Other than College expulsion or withholding of a formal transcript, disciplinary sanctions shall not be made part of the student’s permanent academic record, but shall become part of the students’ disciplinary record. Upon graduation, the student’s disciplinary record may be expunged of disciplinary actions other than residence hall expulsion, College suspension, College expulsion, or withholding of a formal transcript, upon application to the Vice President of Student Services or his/her designee. Cases involving the imposition of sanctions other than residence hall expulsion, College suspension, College expulsion or revocation or withholding of a degree shall be expunged from the student’s confidential record 7 years after final disposition of the case.
      (b) In situations involving both an accused student(s) (or group or organization) and a student(s) claiming to be the victim of another student’s conduct, the records of the process and of the sanctions imposed, if any, shall be considered to be the education records of both the accused student(s) and the student(s) claiming to be the victim because the educational career and chances of success in the academic community of each may be impacted.
    4. The following sanctions may be imposed upon groups or organizations:
      1. Those sanctions listed above in article IV (B) (1) (a) – (g)
      2. Loss of selected rights and privileges for a specified period of time.
      3. Deactivation. Loss of all privileges, including College recognition, for a specified period of time.
    5. In each case in which the Director of Student Conduct or his/her designee determines that a student and/or group or organization has violated the Code or Residence Life Manual, the sanction(s) shall be determined and imposed by the Director or his/her designee. Following the meeting with the Director or designee, the accused student and/or group or organization will be informed in writing of the sanction(s) imposed, if any.
  3. Appeals
    1. A decision reached by the Dean or his/her designee may be appealed by the accused student(s) or complainant(s) to the Appellate Board within five (5) work days of the decision. Such appeals shall be in writing and shall be delivered to the Dean or his/her designee. Said request shall include whether the accused student or complaint is going to be represented at the hearing by an advisor and the name of the advisor.
    2. The appeal shall be limited to a review of the initial meeting with the Dean or his/her designee and supporting documents. If there is new information and/or relevant facts which were not known to the accused at the time of the original meeting with the Dean or his/her designee, the Appellate Board may allow said new information and/or relevant facts to be brought out if requested by the accused prior to the time for the appellate hearing as provided in Subparagraph 4 below.
    3. The Appellate Board’s responsibility is:
      1. To determine whether the meeting 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 to present information that the Code or Residence Life Manual was violated, and giving the accused student a reasonable opportunity to prepare and to present a response to those allegations. Deviations from designated procedures shall not be a basis for sustaining an appeal unless significant prejudice results.
      2. To determine if the decision reached regarding the accused student was based on whether there were sufficient facts in the case to establish that a violation of the Student Code occurred.
      3. To determine whether the sanction(s) imposed were appropriate for the violation of the Code or Residence Life Manual which the student was found to have committed.
    4. The Appellate Board hearings shall be conducted according to the following guidelines:
      1. Appellate Board Hearings shall be conducted in private unless requested to be an open hearing by the accused or complainant. The hearing shall be not less than five (5) nor more than fifteen (15) work days after the student or accused has filed the appeal with the Dean or his/her designee. Maximum time limits for scheduling of this meeting may be extended at the discretion of the Dean or his/her designee.
      2. College faculty or staff member shall serve as the Chair of the Appellate Board.
      3. The complainant and the accused student shall have the right to be assisted by an advisor of their choice, at their own expense. The advisor shall be a member of the College community and may not be an attorney. The complainant and/or the accused student is responsible for presenting his or her own information. Advisors shall only be permitted to speak at the hearing if requested by the complainant or accused prior to the hearing and approved by the Appellate Board Chair.
      4. The complainant, accused student and their advisors, if any, shall be allowed to attend the entire portion of the Appellate Board hearing at which information and testimony is received (excluding deliberations). Admission of any other person to the Appellate Board hearing shall be at the discretion of the Appellate Board Chair.
      5. In Appellate Board hearings involving more than one accused student, the Appellate Board Chair, at her or his discretion, may permit the Appellate Board hearing(s) concerning each student to be conducted either separately or jointly.
      6. The Appellate Board Chair shall have the power to remove from the hearings any person whose conduct interferes with the hearings.
      7. The complainant, the accused student and the Appellate Board may arrange for witnesses to present pertinent information to the Appellate Board. If reasonably possible, the College will try to arrange the attendance of possible witnesses who are members of the College community and who are identified by the complainant and/or accused student at least two work days prior to the Appellate Board hearing. Witnesses will provide information to and answer questions from the Appellate Board. The accused Student, the complainant, and the Dean shall have the privilege of presenting witnesses, subject to the right of cross examination by the other party or parties. Witnesses may only be present during the hearing while testifying. It is the intent to preserve the educational tone of the hearing and to avoid creation of an adversarial environment. Questions of whether certain information will be allowed to be introduced and considered at the hearing shall be resolved by the Appellate Board Chair.
      8. Pertinent records, exhibits, and written statements (including Student Impact Statements) may be accepted as information for consideration by the Appellate Board at the discretion of the Appellate Board Chair.
      9. All procedural questions are subject to the final decision of the Appellate Board Chair.
      10. After the evidentiary portion of the Appellate Board hearing concludes in which all pertinent information has been received, the Appellate Board shall determine (by majority vote) whether the accused student has violated each section of the Code or Residence Life Manual which the student is charged with violating.
      11. The Appellate Board’s determination shall be made on the basis of whether it is more likely than not that the accused student violated the Code or Residence Life Manual and whether the sanction imposed was reasonable and appropriate for the violation.
      12. The fact that a student acted while under the influence of alcohol, marijuana, or an illegal controlled substance shall not be considered a mitigating factor.
      13. Formal rules of process, procedure, and formal rules of evidence, as are applied in civil or criminal court proceedings, are applicable to these appellate proceedings.
    5. There shall be a single verbatim record, such as a tape recording, of all hearings before the Appellate Board (not including deliberations). Deliberations shall not be recorded. The record and its contents shall be held in confidence and may be used only for the purpose of appeal to the Dean of Student Life or the Vice President of Student Services. In the event of such appeal, the complainant and the accused student shall be given access to the record for purposes of preparing the appeal. Access shall be provided at such places and times as the Vice President of Student Services may direct. The record shall be the property of the College.
    6. If an accused student or complainant, with notice, does not appear for a scheduled Appellate Board hearing, after having received written notice of the same, the information in support of the charges shall be presented and considered even if the accused student is not present.
    7. The Appellate Board may accommodate concerns for the personal safety, well-being, and/or fears of confrontation of the complainant, accused student, 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, or other means, as long as the ability for cross examination of the witness is preserved, and where and as determined in the sole discretion of the Appellate Board Chair to be appropriate.
    8. The Appellate Board Chair shall prepare written findings to support the Board’s determination. These shall include:
      1. Concise statements of each factual finding.
      2. Brief explanations of whether factual findings justify a conclusion that the conduct violated the Code or Residence Life Manual.
      3. Recommendations concerning appropriate sanctions.
      4. A copy of these findings will be presented to the Directorr of Student Conduct, and mailed certified mail, return receipt requested to the complainant and the accused student within five (5) work days of the determination.
    9. The determination of the Appellate Board is final, unless new information regarding the accusation is brought forth.
    10. If the accused or complainant does not agree with the determination of the Appellate Board, , he/she may file a written Notice of Appeal to be considered by the Dean of Student Life or the Vice President of Student Services. This Appeal must be requested, in writing, to the Dean of Student Life or the Vice President of Student Services, no more than five (5) work days from the date of the statement prepared/submitted by the Appellate Board Chair was received by the accused student or complainant.
    11. The Dean of Student Life or the Vice President of Student Services shall review the record on appeal and render a written decision within fifteen (15) working days after receipt of the Notice of Appeal. The Dean of Student Life or the Vice President of Student Services shall send a copy of his/her decision to the accused student and complainant by certified mail, return receipt requested within the fifteen (15) work days prescribed above. The decision of the Dean of Student Life or the Vice President of Student Services shall be considered final.
  4. Freedoms The following enumeration of freedoms shall not be construed to deny other rights retained by students in their capacity as members of the student body or as members of the campus community:
    1. Freedom of Access.
      1. Within the limits of its resources, NECC will admit all applicants who are qualified in accordance with published admission requirements.
      2. All facilities and services of NECC will be available to registered students insofar as practical according to NECC policy.
    2. Freedom in the Classroom.
      1. Students will have the freedom to inquire, to discuss, and to express their views by orderly means that do not infringe upon the rights of others or impede the progress of the class.
      2. Students have the right, through a course syllabus or outline, to be informed of the academic standards expected of them in each course. Academic standards include, but are not limited to, class attendance requirements, objectives to be achieved, and the grading criteria which are applied to a particular course.
      3. Students have the right to be evaluated solely on the basis of their academic performance, not on their opinions or conduct in matters unrelated to academic standards or course requirements. Students have the right to be protected through established procedure against prejudiced or capricious academic evaluation.
      4. Students have the right to expect that faculty will post and maintain office hours, as required by NECC policy. Students may also expect that faculty will be available during scheduled office hours to help with academic concerns.
      5. Students have the right to expect the institution to provide reasonable academic assistance both in and out of the classroom.
      6. Students have the right to be free from explicit or implied harassment including but not limited to sexual or racial harassment.
      7. Students will have the opportunity, through established institutional mechanisms, to assess the value of a course theme, to make suggestions as to its direction, and to evaluate both the instructor and the instruction they have received.
    3. Freedom on Campus.
      1. Students have the right to discuss and to express by orderly means any view in support of any cause, providing it does not disrupt the operation of the institution or infringe on the rights of other members of the college community.
      2. Students are free to determine their personal behavior without institutional interference, according to the following guidelines.
        1. Dress and grooming are modes of personal expression which are left to the individual except when they violate the Student Code, Residence Life Manual, or for reasonable requirements of health and safety. Standards of dress and grooming will be set for ceremonial occasions, such as graduation, the nature of which requires particular dress.
        2. Student’s lockers or Residence Hall rooms will not be searched unless:
          1. the student utilizing the locker or room, or to whom the possessions in question belong, consents to the search, or
          2. a law enforcement officer conducts a search pursuant to a judicially obtained search warrant, or
          3. the search is conducted pursuant to administrative approval by the Vice President of Student Services or his/her designee. In those instances where there is probable cause to believe that a life-threatening situation exists, no warrant will be necessary.
    4. Freedom from Improper Disclosure of Student Records. The privacy and confidentiality of all student educational records will be preserved and access guaranteed in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (as amended, 2008) and pursuant regulations. NECC will not permit access to, or the release of, non-directory student educational records or personally identifiable information contained therein without a formal release of information signed by the student. All information pertaining to an individual student may be inspected by school officials pursuing legitimate educational interests.