FAQ's

In accordance with N.C.G.S. 116-40.11, students accused of violations outlined in the Code of Student Conduct (the Code), and are going through the formal resolution process, may be represented, at their own expense, by a licensed attorney or non-attorney Advocate of their own choosing. Additional information can be found in Article 1.01 & Article 6.04 of the Code.

In an effort to educate and prepare attorneys and/or non-attorney Advocates (Advocates) we are providing a few common questions often asked by Advocates. If you have additional questions or need further information regarding our process, please contact the Office of Student Conduct.

The process by which Appalachian State University educates students who violate the community standards of the Code is through disciplinary review and imposition of sanctions, including possible separation from the University. Decisions made using the Code take into consideration both the rights of the student(s) and the needs of the University in accomplishing its educational goals and mission. The disciplinary process is held in accordance with the Code and applicable polices. It is not comparable to criminal proceedings. Formal rules of evidence and procedure do not apply.

For all disciplinary hearings where an attorney representing a complainant or respondent is present, an attorney from Appalachian State University’s Office of General Counsel may be present.

 

1. I have been asked to represent a student accused of violating the Code of Student Conduct. How do I establish this with the University?

The student must notify the Office of Student Conduct in writing if they intend to have you attend a hearing. This must be submitted no later than 2 days before a hearing. The student must also provide written authorization for you to have access to information about the case. The following are forms that may be requested by the Office of Student Conduct.

  1. Advocate Certification
  2. Certification of Licensed Attorney

For access to these forms click here.

The Office of Student Conduct may correspond at all times directly with the student, and not through any third party. You may receive copies of correspondence with the student’s authorization.

 

2. If I am an attorney, can I serve as the student’s Advocate?

As an attorney, you may serve as the student’s Advocate and may fully participate only to the extent, and in the same manner afforded to the student(s) they represent, provided the Advocate may not provide testimony. As the Advocate, you may not, in the sole discretion of the individual facilitating the meeting, delay, disrupt, or otherwise interfere with the proceedings.

Attorneys may not participate in hearings which are fully staffed by students.
For further information, please see Article 1.01, and Article 6.08 of the Code.

 

3. What is the University’s standard of proof?

The University must establish that the Respondent is responsible for the alleged violation(s) by a preponderance of the evidence (i.e., that it is more likely than not that the Respondent violated this Code.)

 

4. What is my role at your hearing?

In a disciplinary hearing, an Advocate may:

·         Consult with a student during a hearing, but cannot use the discussion to delay the hearing,

·         Suggest questions for the student to ask,

·         Assist the student in clarifying their response to questions,

·         Question witnesses in accordance with the hearing guidelines as outline in the Code,

·         Treat others with respect and civility.

 

5. Besides an Advocate, who else can accompany the student in the hearing?

Respondents going before a board have the right to be accompanied by up to two support individuals. These individuals are present to provide emotional support to the student. The support individual(s) may not participate in the proceedings, address any participants, or, in the sole discretion of the individual facilitating the meeting, delay, disrupt, or otherwise interfere with the proceedings. A support individual cannot serve as an Advocate.

 

6. When will I have the opportunity to depose witnesses?

There are no depositions under this Code. Neither the complainant party nor the respondent (or their representatives) should approach the other party’s witnesses prior to the hearing. All questioning of the witnesses takes place during the proceeding.

 

7. Who do I talk to if I have questions about the case?

As an attorney/non-attorney Advocate, you may contact the Office of Student Conduct to ask questions to better understand the disciplinary proceedings. If questions relate to specifics of the incident involving the Respondent, the attorney/non-attorney Advocate must have received permission from the Respondent for the office to share information. Please see Question 1 for the appropriate waivers.

Requests regarding correspondence on the specifics of an incident may be referred to the Conduct Review Officer assigned to the case.

 

8. Can I request that the hearing be postponed?

The student may request a postponement, but pending criminal proceedings will not ordinarily serve as a basis to postpone a student’s disciplinary proceeding. The student should make the request at least two (2) days prior to the hearing and will generally only be granted in cases of serious illness, family emergency, or when a student has a scheduled exam that directly conflicts with the scheduled time. Additional information can be found in Article 6.08 of the Code.

 

9. Does the Office of Student Conduct address off-campus violations?

Yes. For more information about Off-Campus violations, please click here. Additional information can also be found in Article 2.03 of the Code.

 

10. My client is charged with a crime off-campus. Can I get the proceedings delayed until the criminal matter is resolved?

The disciplinary process at Appalachian State University 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 the Code. The procedures in this Code are not intended to be equivalent to the process of federal, state, or local laws and do not determine whether criminal conduct has occurred. Criminal procedures do not address the educational mission of the University.

 

11. Why would the University act on allegations of sexual misconduct prior to the criminal proceedings?

The U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights guidelines (see the 2011 “Dear Colleague” Letter) require a “prompt investigation” of allegations of sexual misconduct.

 

12. What will happen if my client refuses to participate in the University’s disciplinary process?

The process will continue with or without the student’s involvement. Respondents who fail to appear at a hearing after proper notice will be deemed to have answered “not responsible” to the pending charges. The student may not use his or her refusal to participate as grounds for appeal.

 

13. Is the hearing recorded? Can I get a transcript?

All disciplinary hearings are recorded. The recording will serve as the verbatim record of the proceedings, and a copy of these proceedings will be included with the disciplinary record in the Office of Student Conduct. The University retains the sole right to record the hearing. No other recordings may be made of the hearing. Students who wish to review the recording may schedule an appointment to do so with the Office of Student Conduct.

 

14. What are the student’s rights of appeal?

The Respondent and Complainant may appeal a decision of the Board. The purpose of the appeal process is to provide the opportunity for questioning the appropriateness of actions resulting from a formal resolution. It is not the purpose of the appeal process to provide for a new hearing at a higher administrative level. The student may appeal a decision based on the  following grounds: a) a violation of due process or b) a material deviation from Substantive and Procedural Standards as adopted by the UNC Board of Governors, as set forth in UNC Police Manual 700.4.1 – Policies on Minimum Substantive and Procedural Standards for Student Disciplinary Proceedings.

Appeals must be submitted to the Director within five (5) days of the notice of the decision and is to be completed online. 

Additional information about appeals can be found in Article 7 of the Code.

 

15. Is the hearing outcome confidential? Can information provided during the hearing regarding my client be made available to the prosecutor’s office if they choose to participate in the student disciplinary process?

All disciplinary records are confidential and shall not be released without the student’s consent, except as otherwise provided by law. Pursuant to FERPA and the Clery Act, the University may disclose disciplinary records (a) to University officials who have a legitimate educational interest, (b) to parent(s) or legal guardian(s) of students under the age of twenty-one who are claimed as dependents for income tax purposes, the outcome of any drug-or alcohol- related violation of this Code, or (c) to an alleged victim, the final results of a disciplinary proceeding conducted with respect to an alleged crime of violence or act of sexual misconduct. The University may also be required to produce disciplinary records in accordance with a lawfully issued subpoena. Limits to disclosure shall be governed by appropriate federal law, including FERPA and the Clery Act. Failure to maintain the confidentiality of any protected record shall constitute a violation of Section 4.07c. of this Code.

 

16. Isn’t the student disciplinary process double-jeopardy for someone also facing criminal charges?

Some violations of the Code of Student Conduct are also violations of federal, state, or local law. Students may face both criminal charges and University disciplinary action. This does not constitute double jeopardy.

Appalachian’s disciplinary process is not a criminal process. In other words, its process is separate from, and does not involve, legal proceedings. Consequently, holding students accountable for off-campus violations of the Code of Student Conduct is not considered double jeopardy.

 

17. Why isn’t my client being afforded the same protections that he or she would receive in the criminal process?

The disciplinary process at Appalachian State University 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 the Code. The procedures in this Code are not intended to be equivalent to the process of federal, state, or local laws and do not determine whether criminal conduct has occurred. Criminal procedures do not address the educational mission of the University.

 

Portions of this guide is modeled after those developed by Illinois State University, Towson University and Rutgers University Guide for Attorneys.

Contact Us

Office of Student Conduct

Physical Address
320 Plemmons Student Union
263 Locust Street
Boone, North Carolina 28608

Mailing Address:
ASU Box 32084
Boone, NC 28608-2084

Phone: 828-262-2704
Fax: 828-262-4997

Email: 
studentconduct@appstate.edu