Frequently Asked Questions
- What is the policy regarding alcohol & drugs?
- Can my student go through the University Disciplinary Process AND the Richmond General District/Circuit Court?
- What is the University judicial process?
- If the student maintains that they did not commit the violation of which they are accused, why do they need to meet with a representative from the Office of Judicial Affairs & Academic Integrity?
- What are the sanctions that may be imposed if it is determined by the preponderance of the evidence that my student is found responsible?
- Can the student appeal the finding or sanction?
- Will I (parent/legal guardian) be notified if my son/daughter violates University policy?
- What is FERPA?
- What judicial records are maintained and for how long?
- What does a hold on my son’s/daughter’s registration mean?
What is the policy regarding alcohol & drugs?
Students under the age of 21 may not procure, possess, or consume alcoholic beverages. Additionally, students may not manufacture, distribute, dispense, possess or use illegal or illicit drugs. University policy also regards being a student knowingly present in the presence of policy violations as a violation, even if the student is not engaging in the violation.
Can my student go through the University Disciplinary Process AND the Richmond General District/Circuit Court?
Yes. The university only adjudicates violations of the Rules and Procedures as matters of addressing our expectations of our students, and a student may experience both the university judicial process and legal proceedings. ‘Double jeopardy’ is not applicable to a university proceeding.
- The Office of Judicial Affairs & Academic Integrity receives and reviews the allegation.
- Notification is sent to the student via their VCU E-Mail.
- The judicial officer meets with the accused and witnesses as necessary and appropriate.
- The student may choose from three options for adjudication of the matter:
- Administrative Adjudication: the judicial officer determines if the student is responsible and if sanctions shall be imposed.
- University Hearing Board: a panel with faculty, staff, administration, and student representatives determines if the student is responsible and if sanctions shall be imposed. (The student may appeal this outcome to the University Appeal Board)
- Withdraw from the University: the student opts to withdraw from the university before the judicial process has been completed; an administrative hold is placed on the student’s future registration at the university.
If the student maintains that they did not commit the violation of which they are accused, why do they need to meet with a representative from the Office of Judicial Affairs & Academic Integrity?
The Office of Judicial Affairs & Academic Integrity will investigate the allegations of misconduct. The investigative process affords the student the right to respond to and refute the allegations. If it is determined that a student is not responsible for the alleged misconduct, the matter may then be closed with no action taken against the student.
What are the sanctions that may be imposed if it is determined by the preponderance of the evidence that my student is found responsible?
Sanctions that are available and can be used in any combination are:
- University probation
- Community service and/or educational experience
- Interim suspension
- Separation (suspension) or dismissal (expulsion) – both are noted on the student’s transcript
Can the student appeal the finding or sanction?
A student may appeal a determination of guilt and/or a sanction imposed by the University Hearing Board. The appeal is heard by the University Appeal Board. The University Appeal Board issues a recommendation which is reviewed by the University President or designee. This decision is final.
Will I (parent/legal guardian) be notified if my son/daughter violates University policy?
When a student under the age of 21 is found guilty of violating alcoholic beverages and/or controlled substance laws or policies, the student’s parents or guardians will be notified. The notification will include the information concerning the violation, the university sanction applied and the notification that the student has met with the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Student Affairs to reiterate the university’s expectations of future behavior.
What is FERPA?
The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA, 1974) affords students the right to consent to disclose of their educational records or the personally identifiable information contained in their education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. A student can authorize, in writing, to have designated person access confidential academic information. The parent or guardian can also show evidence via a tax return that the student is their dependent for the most recent tax year.
What judicial records are maintained and for how long?
All records of censure and probation will be kept for five years and then destroyed. If an individual receives additional sanctions (censure and probation) during this five-year period, records of all violations will be retained until there is a period of 5 years following the most recent incident. If an individual is separated or dismissed, complete records of the proceedings and all pertinent documents, including all records of previous censures or probations, shall be maintained permanently.
- The student fails to schedule or attend a scheduled appointment.
- The student fails to complete the Rules & Procedures Options Form
- The student fails to complete or comply with a sanction.
The hold will remain in effect until the student has attended their scheduled appointment, completed their form, or completed their requirements. This may keep a student from amending their schedule or registering for classes.