Student Conduct Code
Statement of Responsibilities and Standards of Conduct
For the most current information on the student conduct code and all policies and procedures regarding the student judicial system, please refer to the Office of Student Life website at www.scu.edu/studentlife/osl.
The goal of Santa Clara University is to provide students with a general education so that they will acquire knowledge, skill, and wisdom to deal with and contribute to contemporary society in constructive ways. As an institution of higher education rooted in the Jesuit tradition, the University is committed to creating and sustaining an environment that facilitates not only academic development but also the personal and spiritual development of its members. This commitment of the University encourages the greatest possible degree of freedom for individual choice and expression, with the expectation that individual members of the community will:
- Be honest.
- Demonstrate self-respect.
- Demonstrate respect for others.
- Demonstrate respect for the law and University policies, procedures, and standards; their administration; and the process for changing those laws, policies, procedures, and standards.
In keeping with this commitment, this Statement of Responsibilities and Standards of Conduct and related policies and procedures have been formulated to guarantee each student’s freedom to learn and to protect the fundamental rights of others. There can be no rights and freedoms if all who claim them do not recognize and respect the same rights and freedoms for others. In addition to the laws of the nation, the state of California, and the local community, the University administration has established policies, procedures, and standards deemed necessary to achieve its objectives as a Catholic, Jesuit university.
All members of the Santa Clara community are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that is consistent with the goals of the institution and to demonstrate respect for self, others, and their property. Students living off campus are members of this community, and as such are representatives to the community at large. In this regard, students living off campus maintain an equal measure of accountability to the values and expectations of all members of this community as identified in the Student Conduct Code.
Whether living in or traversing through the neighborhood, or parking in the street, students are expected to adhere to the same high standards of conduct and behavior that are consistent with the students’ developing role as responsible and accountable citizens, and that reflect well upon the Santa Clara University community.
All members of the University community have a strong responsibility to protect and maintain an academic climate in which the fundamental freedom to learn can be enjoyed by all and where the rights and well-being of all members of the community are protected. The University reserves the right to review student conduct that occurs on and off campus when such behavior is inconsistent with this expectation and the Student Conduct Code. The following acts subject students to disciplinary action:
- Engaging in any form of academic dishonesty, such as plagiarism (representing the work or ideas of others as one’s own without giving proper acknowledgment), cheating (e.g., copying the work of another person, falsifying laboratory data, sabotaging the work of others), and other acts generally understood to be dishonest by faculty or students in an academic context. (Law students, refer to School of Law code.)
- Illegal use, possession, or distribution of drugs. The use or possession of equipment, products, or material that is used or intended for use in manufacturing, growing, using, or distribution of any drug or controlled substance
- Falsification or misuse, including non-authentic, altered, or fraudulent misuse, of University records, permits, documents, communication equipment, or identification cards and government-issued documents
- Knowingly furnishing false or incomplete information to the University, a University official, or judicial hearing board in response to an authorized request
- Disorderly, lewd, indecent, or obscene conduct; excessive or prolonged noise; behavior that interferes with the orderly functioning of the University, or interferes with an individual’s pursuit of an education on University-owned or controlled property or during an authorized University class, field trip, seminar, competition or other meeting, or University-related activity
- Detention, physical abuse, or conduct that threatens imminent bodily harm or endangers the physical well-being of any person, including harm to self
- Nonconsensual physical contact of a sexual nature such as sexual misconduct, sexual assault, and rape
- Destruction, damage, or misuse of University property or the property of any other person or group
- Theft or conversion of University property or the property of any other person or group
- Hazing, harassing, threatening, degrading language or actions, including stalking, or any practice by a group or individual that degrades a student or employee, endangers health, jeopardizes personal safety, or interferes with an employee’s duties or with a student’s class attendance or a person’s educational pursuits
- Intentional obstruction or disruption of teaching, research, administration, disciplinary procedures, or other University activities; or obstruction or disruption that interferes with the freedom of movement, both pedestrian and vehicular
- Possessing, concealing, storing, carrying, or using any real or simulated weapons (including toy guns). The definition of weapons includes, but is not limited to, firearms (including BB/pellet, Airsoft, and paintball guns—regardless of whether they are disassembled), knives [switchblade, double-edged, hunting-style (fixed-blade) of any length, throwing, folding (pocket-style with a blade that locks into place), and knives of 2.5 inches in length or greater], explosives (including, though not limited to, fireworks and firecrackers), ammunition, dangerous chemicals, or any other dangerous weapons or instruments, or chemicals as defined by, though not limited to, California State Law except if expressly authorized by University policy or procedure (see Residence Hall Policies for information that pertains to Residence Life).
- Unauthorized entry into or use or defacement of University facilities, including residence halls and other buildings and grounds, including unauthorized entry into or presence in or on a University building; unauthorized erection or use on University property of any structures including specifically but not limited to tents, huts, gazebos, shelters, platforms, and public address systems; or unauthorized use of University property for dances, concerts, as semblies, meetings, sleeping, cooking, or eating if said activity interferes with the operation of the University or surrounding community
- Publication, posting, or distribution through the use of University resources (e.g., computer networks, telephone lines, e-mail services, Internet connections), or at authorized University activities of material that violates the law of libel, obscenity, postal regulations, the fair use of copyrighted materials, or any law or statute or University policy
- Failure to comply with a reasonable request or order of a University executive or other authorized official(s); refusal or failure to leave such premises because of conduct prescribed by this code when such conduct constitutes violations of this code or a danger to personal safety, property, or educational or other appropriate University activities on such premises; or refusal or failure to identify oneself when requested by a University official provided the official is identified and indicates legitimate reason for the request
- Possession, consumption, sale, or action under the influence of alcoholic beverages by persons under the age of 21; furnishing alcoholic beverages to persons under the age of 21; consumption of alcoholic beverages in a public place (all areas other than individual residences, private offices, and scheduled private functions); excessive and inappropriate use of alcoholic beverages. (See also “Alcohol Policy Within the Residence Halls” on page 27.)
- Misconduct in which a student is detained, arrested, cited, or otherwise charged with violations of local, state, or federal laws that materially or adversely affect the individual’s suitability as a member of the Santa Clara University community
- Tampering with, removing, damaging, or destroying fire extinguishers, fire alarm boxes, smoke or heat detectors, emergency call boxes, and other safety equipment anywhere on University property; creating a fire, safety, or health hazard; or failure to respond to fire alarms, evacuate buildings during alarm activation, or respond to the directions of emergency personnel
- Any behavior that disrupts or causes disruption of computer services; damages, alters, or destroys data or records; adversely affects computer software, programs, systems, or networks; or uses data, computer systems, or networks to devise or execute any scheme to defraud, deceive, extort, or wrongfully obtain money, property, or data
Students who are alleged to have violated the Student Conduct Code may be subject to disciplinary action and, if applicable, may also be subject to criminal prosecution.
Judicial Records Policy
The Office of Student Life maintains a hard copy file and a digital record of a student’s judicial history. Judicial records are educational records, and are thereby subject to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the University’s Student Records Policy.
The judicial record is confidential and is only shared internally with University officials in instances when the student grants permission to release the record, or there is what FERPA defines “an educational need to know” basis for the request. The judicial record is maintained throughout the student’s enrollment and thereafter as indicated below. A student’s judicial record will only be released from the hard copy file to a person or party external to the University if the student has granted permission, where the disclosure of the record is permissible under the provisions of FERPA, or where the University is required to do so by law. The digital copy of the judicial record will only be released to an external person or party where the University is required to do so by law.
Retention of Hard Copy of Judicial Records
- The hard copy file of a student’s entire judicial history is kept for a minimum of one (1) academic year beyond the academic year in which the date of the last violation of the Student Conduct Code occurred. When a student commits a violation of academic integrity, the hard copy file is retained for the remainder of a student’s academic career.
- The files of any student who has received one or more of the following sanctions will be maintained for three (3) academic years beyond the academic year in which the student’s tenure in his/her current degree program at the University has ended:
- Removal from University housing
- Disciplinary probation
- Deferred suspension
- The judicial files of a student who has been expelled will be maintained for seven (7) years beyond the academic year in which the student’s tenure at the University has ended.
The University reserves the right to change this policy at any time at its sole discretion.