Housing & Residence Life Conduct: Family Resources
Housing & Residence Life supports the mission and purpose of the Office of Student Conduct in regards to student behavior. Items on this webpage are to assist our students, family and friends in navigating the conduct process within Housing.
Please visit the Office of Student Conduct for additional information for the overall University process.
Why did my student receive a letter?
Your student may have been involved with, witness to, or victim of, a situation that may have violated the Student Code of Conduct, Residence Hall Regulations or the Village Regulations. A Housing graduate or full-time staff member, referred to as a Hearing Officer for these types of situations, needs to meet with your student to gather information and resolve the concern.
Can you tell me what happened?
In compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), all conduct records are considered confidential, with exceptions noted in FERPA. The information cannot be released to third parties (including parents) without signed and dated written consent from the student. This waiver is separate from a waiver your student may have already submitted to Office of Student Accounts and Billing Services or Registrar’s offices. Your student can request a waiver from his/her Hearing Officer.
What can I do to help my student?
While we recognize that your goal is to provide support for your student, we ask that you provide this unconditional support for your student with the intent of also encouraging him/her to take responsibility for his or her behaviors and to learn from his/her mistakes. Understand that there is a process in place to hear all information regarding the incident in question. The best thing you can do is to encourage your student to prepare him/herself for the process. Ask questions that get your student to reflect on their role in a given situation and how this may have affected the campus or residence hall community.
This process, and our staff, are not judging your student’s character; we are trying to determine if their behavior during a specific incident violated UWG’s Student Code of Conduct.
We also would recommend you provide emotional support and a willing ear. It is likely to be a very stressful time for your student. You may receive a phone call or email message from your student because he/she is upset about being involved in a conduct case. You may be tempted to step in, and resolve the issue for him/her. Remember in his/her letter, there will be a date and time for your student to meet with a Hearing Officer to address his/her concerns and role within the situation. Use this time prior to his/her meeting to inform, guide, teach, observe, and address any concerns you’ve seen as a parent. Lessons learned through participation in a student conduct process must be experienced to have the desired effect.
May I attend my student’s meetings?
You may attend the meetings with your student if he/she agrees, but we caution against it. We would ask that the Hearing Officer meet with your student first alone. After that initial conversation, you would be welcome to come in. The conduct process can and should be a learning experience for students to explain and/or accept responsibility for his/her own actions. Students are best able to do that without parent(s) present. However, a student does have the right to have an Advisor present if he/she so chooses (a person who is present for moral support).
May I speak on behalf of my student?
Students are adults. Throughout the process he/she will be expected to speak for him/herself.
Do I need to get an attorney for my student?
Note that the student conduct process is not a legal process or criminal process. It is the University’s administrative means for resolving incidents or inappropriate behavior that occurred with our students. In a majority of cases, students receive educational sanctions that assist them in learning from the experience while they continue with their coursework.
If your student is the subject of a pending criminal matter arising from the same incident and your student wishes to have the attorney present during his/her Student Conduct process, the attorney may serve as your student’s Advisor. The charged student has the primary responsibility for presenting his or her perspective on the incident, with the Advisor serving in a supportive and advisory capacity. An attorney may not represent or speak on behalf of the student. (Same goes for when a parent serves an Advisor.)
After the meeting my student told me they got another letter, with sanctions. What are sanctions?
Sanctions are educational activities that may include writing a paper, attending a program, or community service. Students are expected to complete these activities by the designated due dates. If he/she chooses not to complete the sanction, they will receive a conduct hold on their account which will restrict them from register for classes.
Sanctions may also include a probationary period, campus/privilege restrictions, removal from Housing, suspension, and/or expulsion.
Our sanctions are dependent on: the nature of the violation(s), any prior history your student may have with the Office of Student Conduct or Housing and Residence Life, the circumstances surrounding the incident, the student’s motivation for the exhibited behavior, sanctions involved in cases involving similar violations (precedent), and the developmental and educational impact on the student.
Are conduct sanctions placed on the student’s transcript?
Conduct sanctions are never placed on the transcripts of UWG students. Only grade/academic matters are included on the transcript. However, conduct violations are a part of the student’s academic record. Conduct records are maintained by the Office of Student Conduct.
Will this incident stop my student from getting into graduate school, law school, obtaining certain jobs, etc.?
A student’s conduct record does not automatically exclude a student from further study, jobs, etc. That usually depends on the type or severity of the misconduct in which a student was involved. A student conduct record may lead an admissions office or employer to more closely scrutinize a student’s application. We will only release information about a student’s conduct record to another school or potential employer as allowed by our records policy, or with the permission of the student.
Why does the University care, when my student has already received a ticket/gone to court?
The student conduct process is not attempting to determine whether or not a student has violated the law; the University is trying to determine whether or not a student violated University policies. If we determine a student has violated the policies, we wanted to educate him/her about their decision making, so they can be successful adults and contributors the larger community. As such, the goals and the means of the criminal justice process and the student conduct process are dissimilar.
Will I receive any notification of this process?
For students who are found in violation of our alcohol and drug policies while under the age of 21, we may send a notification to the listed parent(s)/guardian(s) home address of the outcome of the case.
Supporting Your Student
If your student receives notification that he/she has been reported as possibly engaging in misconduct, here are some things to keep in mind as you support your student:
- Remember that receiving notice of possible violation does not mean that your student is responsible! There is a process in place to allow your student to share his/her perspective about whatever happened.
- Encourage your student to follow the process and meet with the Hearing Officer if he/she is interested in resolving the conduct case. We want to hear from your student and the information he/she has to provide; when students do not participate in the process, we can only make our decisions based on the information we have. If students don’t attend, we have no way of getting their side of things.
- You may serve as an advisor to your student. An advisor is welcome to be present in the student’s conduct hearing and is there as moral support. You may speak to your student, but may not speak on behalf of them. This role is in place for students to have someone of support with them as they proceed through the conduct process.
- Review our Student Code of Conduct, the Housing & Residence Life Policies and Regulations below, and encourage your student to do the same so he/she has information about the process. More information about the University’s conduct process can be found at the Office of Student Conduct.
- Encourage your student to be honest and to act with integrity during the process, including accepting responsibility if he/she did violate a policy.
- Remember that this process is not about judging your student's character; it is about assessing specific behavior and considering consequences for those behaviors.
- Recognize that this is not a legal process or criminal process. In a majority of cases, students receive educational sanctions that assist them in learning from the experience while they continue with their coursework.
- Keep in mind, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 as well as University policies preclude University staff from discussing your student’s academic and conduct record without his/her written permission. Staff can answer questions about the process, but cannot provide specific details about a case without a written waiver.
- Finally, allow your student to learn from this experience. Much of a college education comes from both inside and outside the classroom - this is a great opportunity for your student to be accountable for him/herself. After all, gaining a higher education degree is about learning.
Additional questions and recommendations are covered in the Parent & Family FAQs section above.
(Adapted from Florida International University Student Conduct & Conflict Resolution Parents & Families website.)
Policies and Regulations
Family members can report an incident by filling out an Incident Report.