15.00 Appeals Process: Academic and Non-academic
Following an initial review, either the accused student and the complainant may file a written appeal within 10 business days from receipt of the written decision. Receipt is deemed accomplished by personal delivery or three days after the date of mailing.
In most cases, the status of a student will not be altered and disciplinary sanctions are not initiated until completion of the appeal. Written appeals should be submitted to the Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards.
Should a party intending to appeal believe they have been given inadequate time to prepare their written documents, a written request for extension of time may be submitted to the Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards. The request must be submitted in writing within the 10-business-day appeal period, and should include the rationale for requesting the extension along with a proposed date by which all appeal documents will be submitted.
Requests for extension of time will be considered on their merits and will not be granted automatically. When an extension is granted, opposing parties to the initial review may be notified.
The written appeal must include the Appeal Request Cover Sheet indicating the specific grounds for the appeal, supporting arguments and documentation, and any other relevant information the accused student or the complainant wishes to include. Appellants should refer to Guidelines for Writing Appeals, a document available from the Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards.
The appellant should be aware that all appeals are documentary reviews in which no oral testimony is taken. Generally appeals are determined solely on the merits of the documents submitted and do not proceed to oral hearing. Appellate documents therefore should be as complete as possible.
Appeals must state one or more of the following criteria as the reason for the appeal:
A. That new evidence has become available which is sufficient to alter the decision and which the appellant was not aware of or could not have been reasonably obtained at the time of the original review.
B. That the sanction imposed is excessive, insufficient or inappropriate.
C. That the review panel or review officer failed to follow university rules or regulations while reviewing the cited behavior.
D. That the conclusion and sanction are not supported by the findings, or the findings are not supported by the evidence in light of the whole record.
Upon receipt of the written appeal, the other principal parties to the original complaint (complainant or accused student) are notified and provided reasonable opportunity to respond in writing to the appeal.
After receiving all appellate documents, the appropriate appeals panel will convene and review the submitted appellate documents, the written decision from the initial review and supporting documents relevant to the initial review decision. In addition, the appeals panel may request additional statements from the review officer of an administrative review or the chairperson or adviser from a panel review, and may refer to the audio recording of an initial panel review, if such was conducted. The appeals panel will issue a written decision through the Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards to all principal parties to the initial review.
Upon review of the appellate documents, the appeals panel may uphold the initial decision in its entirety, increase sanctions of the initial decision, decrease sanctions of the initial decision, remand the case back to the Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards for further review or dismiss the case. The appellate panel applies a preponderance of the evidence standard.
All decisions of appellate bodies as left in effect of modified by the Vice Provost for Student Affairs are final and binding upon all parties. There is not further appeal in any of these cases. (See 12.40E and 15.10).
Upon written request to the Office of Student Judicial Affairs, the university will provide an alleged victim of a crime of violence the final results of the disciplinary proceeding. Final results are available only after the appeal process has been exhausted and the university has made a final determination in the matter. Final results are limited to information related to the sanctions imposed by the university that affect the victim.
15.10 Appropriate Appeals Panel
A. Peer Review Appeals Panel
The Peer Review Appeals Panel reviews all nonacademic appeals except those resulting in sanctions of expulsion, suspension, revocation of degree or revocation of admission, and except for matters of sexual misconduct and discrimination. The panel is appointed by the director, Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards, and consists of three to five members including at least one student member. The director, Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards, or designee shall serve as a non-voting advisory member of every appeals panel. The recommendations of the Peer Review Appeals Panel may be reviewed and modified by the Vice Provost for Student Affairs at his sole discretion and, once approved, are final and binding upon all parties.
B. Student Behavior Appeals Panel
The Student Behavior Appeals Panel serves the President through the Vice Provost for Student Affairs. The recommendations of the Student Behavior Appeals Panel are reviewed and modified by the Vice Provost for Student Affairs at his sole discretion and, once approved, are final and binding upon all parties. No student has the right to make a direct appeal to the Vice Provost for Student Affairs.
The members of this panel are appointed by the President or his delegate. Each appeal is reviewed by three members including at least one faculty member and one student (except that in cases of sexual misconduct the President or his delegate will decide whether or not to include a student.) The panel will be advised by an appointee of the Vice Provost for Student Affairs. The adviser will be a non-voting member whenever the panel convenes.
The Student Behavior Appeals Panel will meet on a regular basis to review all appeals where academic sanctions and/or sanctions of expulsion, suspension, revocation of degree and revocation of admission are imposed.
Revised July 2013.