Article I: College Code of Conduct
Iona College emphasizes our Catholic tradition and the God-given dignity and potential of every person. Therefore, Iona College is committed to its mission, and to each student’s pursuit of their educational goals. Great emphasis is placed on integrity, personal responsibility and on respect both for oneself and for others in the community. The purpose of the College and its unique mission can best be protected through the communication and the enforcement of certain standards of behavior judged essential to the achievement of those purposes.
This is only possible when all students, faculty, administration, and staff ensure the intellectual, social, and spiritual development of each member of our community in an ethical way. Honesty, integrity, and responsibility for the welfare of one’s self and all members of the Iona community are characteristics of a caring and thriving community. The Iona College Student Conduct Process and Code of Conduct aims to develop the unique potentialities in each individual and to assure an atmosphere where the educational purposes of the College can be achieved. The widest freedom consistent with the rights of others - both individually and collectively - is enthusiastically fostered.
The Student Conduct Process pertains to the process for addressing allegations of non-academic violations. It is not exclusive and does not preempt or preclude independent action that may be taken by authorized members of the Iona community, including (but not limited to) the Title IX Coordinator, deans of academic units or authorized members of the Athletics Department.
All students are encouraged to report every potential College Code of Conduct violation to the appropriate member of the Iona community. At the College, a complaint may be investigated and adjudicated by the Title IX team, the Vice President for Student Life or their designee or another administrator.
This process uses a “preponderance of the evidence” standard to determine responsibility for alleged violations of the College Code of Conduct. The concept of “preponderance of the evidence” can be visualized as a scale representing the burden of proof, with the totality of evidence presented by each side resting on the respective trays on either side of the scale. If the scale tips ever so slightly to one side or the other, the weightier side will prevail.
The College Code of Conduct shall apply to conduct that occurs both off and on Iona College premises, at Iona College-sponsored activities, and off-campus conduct that adversely affects the Iona College community and/or the pursuit of its objectives. This includes but is not limited to in person conduct as well as actions taken virtually, including but not limited to social media. Each student shall be responsible for conduct from the time of application for admission through the actual awarding of a degree, even though conduct may occur before classes begin or after classes end, as well as during the academic year and during periods between terms of actual enrollment (and even if their conduct is not discovered until after a degree is awarded). The College Code of Conduct applies to all students including full-time, part-time, and visiting students as well as students auditing classes. The College Code of Conduct shall apply to a student’s conduct even if the student withdraws from school while a matter is pending.
Ultimate authority over student discipline is vested in the President of the College, who may exercise it at their discretion whenever it is determined that the interests of the College warrant it. The President may impose any penalty, including dismissal. In exercising such plenary authority, the President shall afford the student an opportunity to know the charges against them, and to offer their version of the events. Action taken by the President is final and closes the matter. The President may designate an appropriate senior administrator to exercise this authority whenever it is deemed necessary or convenient.
The President of Iona College has delegated authority over student conduct to the Senior Student Affairs Administrator. Currently, the Senior Student Affairs Administrator is the Vice President for Student Life. The Vice President for Student Life or designee is responsible for oversight of student conduct administrators and to ensure that the student conduct process is carried out in accordance with College policy and procedures. The Vice President for Student Life or designee shall determine the composition of the College Conduct Board and determine which student conduct administrator shall be authorized to address a reported violation. Findings of responsibility for a College Code of Conduct violation shall be final, pending the normal appeal process, and sanctions go into effect immediately.
Disciplinary records are for internal use only and are typically not made available to persons outside the College except on formal written request of the student involved or per a lawfully issued subpoena. Internal use is at the discretion of the Vice President for Student Life or designee, who may inform other officials in the institution of the student’s disciplinary status when necessary to the discharge of their official duties. Additionally, parents/guardians may be notified of alleged conduct in accordance with College policies including but not limited to the Alcohol Policy and CARE Team guidelines.
The Vice President for Student Life assumes the responsibility of maintaining the privacy of disciplinary records and for timely destruction of such records. Disciplinary records are maintained for five year for minor or seven years for major after the student has graduated, withdrawn or from their date of last attendance at the College with the exception of cases in which a sanction of Suspension or Dismissal was imposed. In cases resulting in expulsion from the College, disciplinary records are maintained permanently.
The Vice President for Student Life, upon written request, will disclose to the alleged victim of a crime of violence or a non-forcible sex offense, the final results of Iona College’s disciplinary proceeding dealing with that alleged violation. In cases involving dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, the written notification will be sent simultaneously provided to both the accused and accuser detailing the sanctions and any possible appeal to the decision.
Iona College will follow legal requirements for transcript notations, including Article 129-B of the New York State Education Law. Please refer to the Iona College web site for the Iona Transcript Notation Policy for Violent Crimes and additional information regarding Transcripts.
Students may be accountable to both governmental authorities and to the College for acts that constitute violations of law, the College Code of Conduct, or other policies stated in the Student Handbook. A student’s conduct may be considered a violation of the College Code of Conduct, but it may also be considered a violation of provisions of civil or criminal law on both local and national levels.
The College reserves the right to enforce all of its policies for behavior that takes place either on or off campus. Disciplinary action at the College may proceed during the pendency of civil or criminal proceedings and shall not be subject to challenge on the ground that criminal or civil charges involving the same incident have been delayed, reduced or dismissed. The College also retains the discretion to delay internal proceedings, while imposing interim actions such as privilege restrictions or even suspensions to separate a student from some or all college activities, during the period in which criminal or civil matters are pending.
Students’ Bill of Rights in conjunction with New York State Education Law Article 129-B, also known as “Enough is Enough” legislation. The following Students’ Bill of Rights lists the rights students have when reporting sexual offenses (sexual assault, stalking), relationship violence (dating violence, domestic violence), and any other sexual activity that otherwise violates the College’s code of conduct, to the designated administrators of the college:
All students have the right to:
- Make a report to local law enforcement and/or state police;
- Have disclosures of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, and sexual assault treated seriously;
- Make a decision about whether or not to disclose a crime or violation and participate in the conduct process and/or criminal justice process free from pressure by the institution;
- Participate in a process that is fair, impartial and provides adequate notice and a meaningful opportunity to be heard;
- Be treated with dignity and to receive from the institution courteous, fair and respectful health care and counseling services, where available;
- Be free from any suggestion that the reporting individual is at fault when these crimes and violations are committed, or should have acted in a different manner to avoid such crimes or violations;
- Describe the incident to as few institution representatives as practicable and not be required to unnecessarily repeat a description of the incident;
- Be protected from retaliation by the institution, any student, the accused and/or the respondent, and/or their friends, family and acquaintances within the jurisdiction of the institution;
- Access to at least one level of appeal of a determination;
- Be accompanied by an advisor of choice, in accordance with appropriate regulations*, who may assist and advise a reporting individual, accused, or respondent throughout the judicial or conduct process including during all meetings and hearings related to such process;
- Exercise civil rights and practice of religion without interference by the investigative, criminal justice, or judicial or conduct process of the institution.
*As outlined in Article IV: Section C
The term “shall” is used in the imperative sense. The term “may” is used in the permissive sense. The term “College” means Iona College.
The term “student” includes all persons pursuing academic or non- academic education through the College, either full-time or part- time, pursuing undergraduate, graduate or professional studies.
Persons who withdraw after allegedly violating the College Code of Conduct, who are not officially enrolled in a particular term but who have a continuing relationship with the College, or have accepted an offer of admission, are considered students.
The term “member of the Iona community” includes any person who is a student or any person who is employed by Iona College in any capacity.
The term “student organization” means any group comprised of Iona College students with a common purpose, including (but not limited to) all Student Government Association-recognized groups and Greek letter organizations.
The term “complainant” means any person or entity who submits an allegation that a student violated the College Code of Conduct. The College may be considered the complainant when an alleged violation of the College Code of Conduct is reported to, or documented by, a member of the Iona community.
The term “respondent” means any student accused of violating the College Code of Conduct.
The term “student conduct administrator” means the Vice President, or a member of the Iona community authorized by the Vice President to determine responsibility for and (when appropriate) to impose sanctions upon any student found to have violated the College Code of Conduct.
The term “College Conduct Board” means any person or persons authorized by the Vice President or designee to determine whether a student has violated the College Code of Conduct.
The term “Iona premises” includes all land, buildings, facilities and other property in the possession of or owned, used or controlled by Iona College (including adjacent streets and sidewalks). The term includes property that the College leases from third parties or contracts with third parties for its use.