Table of Contents

Student Conduct Policies


Student Conduct Policies

GENERAL CAMPUS GUIDELINES

  • The Blackburn Campus (the interior of all campus buildings) has been designated as smoke free (this includes vaping and use of e-cigarettes).
  • Blackburn email will be used as the official communication channel for all announcements. Each student, faculty member and staff member receive a Blackburn College email account and the accounts are secured by each individual’s personal password. It is the responsibility of each individual to routinely check their email account for any official communication from the College.
  • All clubs must be registered with both the Student Senate and the Office of Student Engagement to become official campus organizations. Officially registered clubs and organizations are eligible to obtain funding from the Student Senate (via the allocations process). Religious organizations or those sponsored by religious groups are subject to the jurisdiction of the Office of the President.
  • Posters displayed on campus must be approved by personnel in the Student Life Office and removed within 24 hours after the event. No signs may be taped to any walls, doors, or windows. There are designated areas for signs in each building. No signs may be posted on bulletin boards designated to specific departments without the permission of the department. Each group or individual posting signs is responsible for removing and properly discarding the signs by the stamped expiration date.
  • At the beginning of their first semester each new student is issued an Identification Card. Returning students are expected to retain their IDs. IDs are required for admission to meals and campus events during the entire academic year. There is a $10.00 fee for replacement of lost cards.
  • All announcements and printing jobs, including publications which pertain to Blackburn College, must be approved by the Director of Public Relations before being released to the news media or the general public. Such items include news releases, posters and brochures that represent the College officially.
  • Normally no fee is charged to members of the Blackburn community for admission to any College activity. Under special circumstances campus groups may petition the Student Life Committee for permission to charge a nominal fee for a special event.
  • Students who find it necessary to withdraw from the College during the course of a semester must contact the Dean of Students or designee. Individual rights of privacy will be respected. Failure to do so could result in financial ramifications including a withdrawal fee of $100. Information regarding the military service withdrawal policy is available in the Records Office or Student Life Office.
  • Because of Blackburn’s small size and democratic traditions, fraternities and sororities are not authorized at the College.
  • If you are dissatisfied with the services of the College – other than areas with grievance procedures outlined herein – contact the Dean of Students.
  • Any student who drops below full-time academic status (below 12 hours) MUST BE AWARE that their eligibility for financial aid and campus residency is in jeopardy.
  • The Student Senate is empowered by its constitution to call an assembly of the student body. This assembly is called a “Town Hall Meeting.”
  • Although electronic media sites (including but not limited to Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.) are hosted outside of Blackburn College, violations of college policy on such sites may be subject to investigation and sanction under the Nondiscrimination Policy, Student Code of Conduct, and other college policies. Information including but not limited to public comments, SMS, MMS, videos, and photos may be used as evidentiary material by Blackburn College as deemed appropriate or necessary by judiciary bodies. Students who receive unsolicited messages or images on their cell phones or any other form of electronic communication systems can use such text and images as evidence supporting a harassment case against another student or representative of the institution. Blackburn College is not held liable for the comments or material students post on internet sites or via cell phone services.

THE STUDENT CONDUCT CODE

By choosing to attend Blackburn College you become a member of the Blackburn community, whether you are a resident or live off campus. As a result, you have a responsibility to yourself and other members of the community to behave in a civil manner that demonstrates respect for the College, its physical and non-physical components and its other members (Faculty, Staff, and Students).

CONDUCT GUIDELINES
College policy and regulations are published in this Handbook so that students are informed of expected and prohibited conduct.

Students are expected to be familiar with and observe all provisions of College policy and public (municipal, county, state and federal) law. Violations may result in disciplinary action. All community members (including students) are responsible for their own behavior. This includes becoming knowledgeable of all applicable and relevant guidelines, rules, and laws. As with the laws of the United States, ignorance of the law is no excuse for a violation.

One of the values that the Blackburn community holds in high regard is the responsibility our students take in the care for others. Behaving in a civil manner includes respecting yourself and others and accepting responsibility for your actions including the responsibility for the impact of your actions as they affect the general welfare of the other members of the Blackburn community. You are asked to speak up and share with Student Life staff members when the health, safety, and well-being of others is in jeopardy or when student conduct code violations are disrupting the College community. “Bystanders” may be held accountable for their actions or inaction when in the presence of violations of the student conduct code.

Any student found guilty of misconduct as outlined below is subject to disciplinary action. In addition to the specific details concerning alcohol and drug violations, academic dishonesty, sexual assault and harassment (all of which have designated policies in this Handbook and the Catalog), the following list (which is not comprehensive) provides examples of prohibited behavior and illustrates a general set of guidelines for discerning appropriate and inappropriate behaviors:

Violence/Offenses Against Persons or Property:

  • Assault, physical abuse, verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, harassing or belligerent behavior, coercion, and/ or other conduct which threatens or endangers the health, safety and/or educational progress of any person. This includes threats or intimidation through electronic means, as well as hate speech or the display or use of symbols or images commonly associated with fomenting hatred, intolerance, or oppression (e.g. including but not limited to: swastika, confederate flag, burning crosses, burning Korans, sexually explicit imagery) in such a way as to be judged to create a threatening, hostile, or intimidating environment for others.
  • Possession of firearms, explosives, other weapons (including but not limited to knives, pellet/ BB guns, tasers, and/or martial arts weapons), or dangerous chemicals on College premises (including mace & pepper spray). • Sexual harassment or sexual assault (specific policies can be found in the Title IX policy located at https://blackburn.edu/about/policies-information/title-ix-at-blackburn-college).
  • Failure to comply with reasonable requests of College officials acting in the performance of their duties, and failure to identify oneself to these persons when requested to do so.
  • Hazing of any kind.
  • Attempted or actual theft, fraud, and/or damage to College property, or property of a member of the College community or other personal or public property. Intentionally initiating or causing to be initiated any false report, warning or threat, fire, or explosion on College premises or at a College-sponsored activity, or tampering with or misusing fire-safety equipment.

Offenses Against the Peace:

  • While peaceful protests are permitted, conduct which is disorderly or a breach of peace; or aiding or abetting another person to breach the peace on College premises or at College sponsored activities is prohibited.
  • Participating in or promoting disruption or obstruction of teaching, student learning, research, administration, disciplinary proceedings or other normal operation of the College, or at College sponsored activities.

Offenses of Dishonesty:

  • Acts of dishonesty including but not limited to academic dishonesty, furnishing false information to any College official; forgery, alteration, or misuse of documents, or records.

Offenses of Possession:

  • Use, possession, or distribution of controlled substances except as expressly permitted by law.
  • Public intoxication, and/or use, possession or distribution of alcoholic beverages except as expressly permitted by law and College regulations.
  • Unauthorized possession, duplication or use of keys to any College premises, or unauthorized entry or use of any College premises.

Offenses Against the Blackburn Community:

  • Abuse of telephone service, including but not limited to: Unauthorized use of telephone facilities or services to interfere with the work of any member of the College community; or to send any obscene or abusive message; false or prank emergency calls (911) from any campus phone, including (but not limited to) telephone devices intended solely for emergency 911 calling.
  • Irresponsible use of the campus-wide computing system, including but not limited to: use of the system for illegal purposes; use of the system which compromises bandwidth and degrades the performance of the entire system; or participating in activities that compromise system security efforts. If there are questions about specific examples of the listed activities, see personnel in Technology Services.
  • Abuse of the Disciplinary System, including but not limited to: failure to obey the summons of a disciplinary body or College official; falsification, distortion, or misrepresentation of information before a disciplinary body; disruption or interference with the orderly conduct of a disciplinary proceeding; instituting a disciplinary proceeding knowingly without cause; attempting to discourage, influence, harass and/or intimidate an individual to prevent proper participation in or use of the Disciplinary System; or failure to comply with the sanctions imposed under the Disciplinary System.
  • Lewd, lascivious, indecent, or obscene activities when imposed on others or in plain view of others, or in places openly accessible by others.
  • The use of all tobacco products, vape machines, and e-cigarettes in all administrative, academic, and athletic buildings. (Note: Smoking tobacco is prohibited in all campus buildings. Smokeless tobacco is allowed only inside individual residence hall rooms and as long as the roommate agrees.).
  • Violation of federal, state or local law on College premises or at College-sponsored activities.

Other Offenses:

  • No code of conduct can anticipate every possible situation that will pose a threat to the Blackburn community. Therefore, any action that violates reasonable standards of expected human behavior or that threatens the safety or academic environment of the campus will also be considered a violation of these conduct guidelines.

DISCIPLINARY SYSTEM

The goal of the disciplinary system is to encourage students to follow appropriate behaviors and to avoid violations of the student conduct code. Another goal is to present a student found guilty of a violation of the conduct code the opportunity to realize their responsibility for that violation and redirect their behavior.

  • The Blackburn disciplinary system is designed to assure a fair hearing and fundamental due process rights but does not necessarily reflect the philosophy, structure, or formal procedures of civil or criminal Courts of Law.
  • Rules and regulations will be enforced fairly and consistently and apply equally to all members of the community. Each case will be reviewed on its own merits. Because of individual circumstances, similar cases may result in different outcomes.
  • The focus of the inquiry within the disciplinary system shall be to determine if those accused of violating the student conduct code are responsible for that violation. Formal rules of evidence shall not be applicable, nor shall deviations from prescribed procedures necessarily invalidate a decision or proceeding unless significant prejudice to the student or College may result;
  • The President of the College, because of the responsibility granted by the Board of Trustees, has the authority to step in and make decisions at any level of the disciplinary process.

DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURES

  • The use of the Blackburn College Disciplinary System does not negate the right to pursue a complaint in the state or local courts as provided by law.
  • The College reserves the right to hear and make decisions concerning cases which are being considered concurrently by local, state or federal authorities, or happen off-campus but which affect either the College or the individual’s behavior as a Blackburn College student.
  • When more than one student is involved in an alleged incident, all cases may be heard at the same time.
  • When appropriate, discipline will include counseling and mediation to serve as a learning experience for the student.
  • Disciplinary hearings will be held as soon as possible, with a goal of within 5-7 business days after an incident has been reported. Appeals may take longer to schedule, but will be held as soon as possible.
  • If additional information concerning the outcome of a closed case becomes available within one calendar year of a hearing, the College reserves the right to reopen the case and, if appropriate, return it to the proper hearing board/body for deliberation.
  • Disciplinary actions will be maintained throughout the attendance of the student at Blackburn. Records of minor disciplinary actions will be destroyed upon graduation or after five years have elapsed since the last semester of attendance. The records (excluding recordings of hearings) of cases resulting in social probation, suspension, or expulsion will be retained for a period of ten years.
  • Written notices of disciplinary documentation, review meetings, hearings and appeals will be delivered to the student’s e-mail and campus mailbox. Notices are considered to be received by the student unless the student can provide reasonable evidence why they did not receive it.
  • Students on a disciplinary contract who leave the College and are readmitted before the contract was to expire will continue at that contract level through the original expiration date.
  • Any variations on hearing policy or procedure will occur only in extreme circumstances and only after consultation with the Dean of Students.

DISCIPLINARY ACTIONS

Infractions

  • An infraction is defined as a violation of residence hall policy, such as quiet hours violations, unauthorized use of a fire escape, keeping a pet, off campus guest policy violations, etc.
  • Infractions may be issued by Resident Directors (RDs) and/or Resident Assistants (RAs). A copy of the written record of the infraction will be given to the student and also placed on file in the Student Life Office.
  • A student may accumulate a maximum of three infractions, in any one semester, prior to requiring a meeting with the Director of Inclusive Housing who will determine an appropriate sanction and duration of such sanction.

First or Minor Offenses

  • An offense is defined as a violation of the College’s student conduct code.
  • Allegations of minor offenses shall be referred to the Dean of Students (or designee) for adjudication. The Dean of Students (or designee) will review allegations of offenses both inside and outside the residence halls.
  • Students receiving an offense will appear before the Dean of Students (or designee). Appropriate disciplinary sanctions will be developed, specifying the steps the student will take to modify their behavior and/or what specific consequences the student will bear and the time frame for the completion of the sanction. The student will receive a letter outlining the sanctions and deadlines.
  • Disciplinary actions for first of minor offense(s) can include one or more of the following: restrictions of co- curricular activities, withdrawal of specified privileges, payment of a fine, communication with the parent(s)/guardian (in cases of dependent students), mandatory counseling, being moved to another room or residence hall or removal from College housing, and performing community service. Based on the nature and seriousness of the misconduct and the student’s overall behavior and college performance, additional restrictions or conditions may be imposed.

Multiple or Major Offenses

  • Repeated minor offenses or major offenses (those deemed to be serious violations of the student conduct code, i.e. violence or offenses against persons or property), will be referred to the Dean of Students (or designee) for administrative adjudication. The student will receive, via campus mail & campus email, a written statement of the charge. The accused student will be required to provide an official response to the charge within 3 business days of receiving the written charge. An administrative hearing will be scheduled to hear the case. Prior to the administrative hearing, the accused student will be provided with a list of the names of campus faculty or staff who are trained hearing advocates whom students may choose to employ to help navigate the process and procedures of a disciplinary hearing.
  • The following rights apply to students in administrative or conduct hearing board hearings which might result in social probation, suspension or expulsion:
    • The right to be informed in writing of all charges at least three days before any administrative hearing may proceed;
    • The right to waive the three-day notice of charges;
    • The right to have one member of the Blackburn community present at the hearing to act as support (defined as providing advice, asking questions when properly recognized, and providing emotional support);
    • The right to hear specific charges against them and the name(s) of the person(s) bringing charges;
    • The right to be present during the entire hearing, except deliberations;
    • The right to call witnesses whose written or oral testimony has direct bearing on the incident(s) in question;
    • The right to speak on their own behalf;
    • The right to appeal a decision (see “Appeal Procedures” in this handbook)

Administrative hearing procedures:

  • The Dean of Students (or designee) will chair the hearing (hereafter referred to as the Chair).
  • All hearings are closed to the public and will be held in a conference room, private office, or virtual setting.
  • The hearing will be recorded in order to provide a record in cases of appeal. The recording will be stored securely for one month and then destroyed.
  • All witnesses and students involved will be called into the hearing room to have the hearing process explained. Witnesses will be advised to give detailed and factual statements. Witnesses will be excused from the hearing room until they are called by the Chair.
  • The Chair will read the charge(s) and specific conduct code violated along with the name(s) of the persons(s) or office bringing them.
  • The accused student will make a statement as to whether or not they did or did not commit the described offense.
  • The Chair will review, with the student, the incident documentation and the evidence and/or witness statements collected related to the alleged violation of the conduct code. If appropriate, witnesses may be called to provide testimony.
  • In cases when the student(s) against whom charges are being pressed claims they are not responsible for the alleged offense, they will present relevant evidence and call witnesses as appropriate.
  • Witnesses will generally be asked by the Chair to attend only that portion of the hearing relevant to their testimony, although in some cases witnesses may be asked to be present during the entire hearing. Those witnesses who cannot attend may submit a written statement, but it must be provided 24 hours prior to the scheduled start of the hearing.
  • All parties present are entitled to make notes and ask questions at any time during the hearing, providing they have been recognized by the Chair.
  • The Chair will decide based on the evidence presented during the hearing. If a preponderance of the evidence exists (it is more likely than not that there was a violation of the conduct code) the student will be considered responsible for the offense.
  • The Chair may have up to 24 hours to deliberate following the conclusion of the hearing.
  • Students will be verbally informed by the Chair of disciplinary decisions as soon as they are made. The Chair will also discuss with the student any additional disciplinary consequences that will accompany the decision. This discussion may take place in the latter part of the hearing or whenever a decision is made. Written verification from the Student Life Office will be sent within 24–48 hours of the hearing.

Major offenses such as those listed in the Equal Employment Opportunity & Non- Discrimination Statements, Policies, and Procedures (found elsewhere in this handbook) will be heard by the Conduct Hearing Board.

Possible disciplinary sanctions for multiple or major offenses include:

Social probation is defined as a time when a student needs to demonstrate appropriate behavior and work to be a cooperative and productive member of the campus community. A student on social probation is restricted for a designated period of time from:

  • leadership in campus organizations and the Work Program,
  • representing the College publicly (UNLESS participation in that activity is REQUIRED for completion of their degree),
  • participating in 10% of athletic competitions for any sport they play,
  • being hired for campus break work or receiving paid hours in the work program,
  • participating in off-campus study opportunities.

Other limitations may be placed on a student as appropriate. Social probation will not last longer than one full year.

Social probation sanctions will be drawn up (or modifications made to existing sanctions) which will specify:

  • the steps the student must take to modify their behavior;
  • the specific restrictions the student will be under;
  • the time frame for the fulfillment of the sanctions;
  • what will happen if the student doesn’t compete the sanction. The student will receive a letter outlining the sanctions.

Suspension from the College is imposed when a student’s conduct is deemed a potential and/or serious threat (i.e. assault, theft, vandalism, sexual offenses, etc.) to the College community. Students may be suspended when found responsible for a serious violation of the conduct code or for repeated social and/ or work offenses. Suspension is recorded and maintained in the student’s permanent record. Suspension is set for a specified period of time, usually one full semester and the student may apply for readmission at some future date. A letter of suspension will outline any special conditions a student must meet to be eligible for readmission.

Expulsion is permanent dismissal from the College and is appropriate only in circumstances where a student’s conduct is a severe threat to the College community. The Provost, Dean of Students, Dean of Work, or the Conduct Hearing Board may recommend expulsion to the President of the College who is the only person with the authority to expel a student. Expulsion is recorded on a student’s permanent record and the student is not eligible to apply for readmission.

Interim suspension: The Dean of Students, in consultation with the Office of the President, has the right to suspend a student on an interim basis to protect the welfare of the College community or the student. Interim suspension is to take place immediately after the preliminary investigation and will require that the student physically remove themselves from the College campus. Under the conditions of interim suspension, the usual three-day notice of charges is waived. An administrative hearing will be scheduled as soon thereafter as practical within three business days to reduce the academic/work burdens imposed by the removal from campus. A hearing may take place off campus if it is believed that such a step is necessary. Should the hearing find that the student was not responsible for the offense for which they were suspended, the suspension is revoked and the student is immediately reinstated without academic or other penalty.

APPEALS PROCEDURES

A student wishing to appeal a disciplinary decision does so by filing a written request for an appeal within 48 hours (excluding weekend days) of delivery of the written disciplinary decision. The appeal should be filed with the Office Manager in the Student Life Office who will forward it to the appropriate appeal officer/chair. The written request must state the specific grounds on which the appeal is based. Grounds for appeal are:

  • Improper procedure
  • New evidence
  • Excessively harsh sanction

The appeal officer or appeal board chair will review the grounds for appeal and will decide if the grounds for appeal are presented with a sufficient preponderance of evidence, meaning that it is more likely than not that the grounds for the appeal are legitimate.

In making the determination about an appeal, the officer or Board may uphold the original decision with no changes; uphold the original decision with revision of sanctions; or overturn the original decision. The decision of the Appeals Officer or Board is final. Students have no further appeal rights unless the President of the College determines that a review of the case is necessary and appropriate.

  • Appeals of infractions. The appeal of an infraction will be heard by the Dean of Students.
  • Appeals of first or minor offenses will be heard by the Student Life Appeals Board. The Student Life Appeals Board shall consist of one Resident Director (not involved with the case), and one student appointed by the President from nominations made by Student Senate and the Student Life Office. The Student Senate Vice-President shall serve on this Board as a voting member and Chair. A member of the professional student life staff (not involved with the case) will serve as a non-voting advisor.
  • Appeals will be heard unless three members of the appeals board (the board chair + two regular members) decide unanimously that there are not sufficient grounds presented to hear the appeal.
  • Appeals of multiple or major offenses, with the original decision being made by the Dean of Students or designee, and resulting in social probation, suspension, or expulsion will be heard by the Conduct Hearing Board. This board shall consist of five members of the campus faculty and staff.
  • Appeals of major offenses, with the original decision being made by the Conduct Hearing Board, will be heard by the Provost.
  • Those making appeals in circumstances where the disciplinary sanction is social probation or suspension should be aware that the appeal may consist solely of a meeting with the appeal officer or board and a review of the audiotape of the original hearing.

Hearing Board or Officer Appeals Procedure:

  • Appeals will be heard in as timely a manner as is possible, with a goal of within five business days of receipt of the request for the appeal.
  • All appeal meetings are closed to the public and held in a virtual setting, closed conference room, or campus office (depending upon the number of individuals participating).
  • The Chair will read the grounds of the appeal along with the names of the persons bringing them.
  • All parties present will be reminded to tell the truth.
  • The individual making the appeal carries the burden of proof. The individual making the appeal will provide evidence, documentation, and/or witnesses to substantiate the appeal.
  • A written and signed statement by a witness to the event will be allowed as documentation during the appeals hearing. Bear in mind however, that such a statement will carry less weight than a witness being present during the hearing (due to board members or hearing officer being unable to question the witness(es)).
  • The person or board who made the decision in the original case will make their presentation, submitting evidence, documentation, and/or witnesses to substantiate the decision.
  • Only those persons necessary to conduct the appeal meeting may be present in the room; including the student bringing the appeal, the person who made the original decision, and appeal board members. Witnesses may attend only that portion of the appeal meeting in which they present testimony.
  • All parties present are entitled to take notes and ask questions at any time during the appeal meeting, provided the Chair has recognized them.
  • Decisions will be based on evidence presented during the appeal meeting.
  • All persons except appeal board members will leave the room during deliberations.
  • Students will be informed verbally of the decision on the appeal as soon as it is made. Written verification will follow as soon as possible.
  • Appeal decisions are made by majority vote.

NO CONTACT ORDERS

College administrators are authorized to issue a No Contact Order (NCO) prohibiting contact between students when there exists a reasonable concern that physical or psychological harm may result from such contact.

The College will consider all facts and circumstances that may be relevant to whether an NCO should be issued, including, but not limited to, the following factors:

  • When there are allegations, threats, or evidence of physical violence by one student against another.
  • When there are allegations, threats, or evidence of emotional abuse or harassment by one student of another.
  • When there is a substantial risk of emotional harm from continued contact between students.
  • When continued contact between students may have a material impact on campus disciplinary proceedings.
  • When requested or agreed to in good faith by both students involved.
  • When there are allegations of serious college policy violations.

All NCOs shall provide that neither student may have contact with the other. “Contact” includes, but is not necessarily limited to, in-person contact, telephone calls, email, texts and other forms of electronic communication, social media-based messages or postings (about or directed to the other person), and third-party communications including through proxies.

NCOs may include additional protective measures or other terms specific to the safety, well-being, or other needs of either or both students subject to the NCO, when deemed necessary by the College. Any additional terms shall be expressly stated in the NCO. Additional protective measures or other terms need not be reciprocal. They may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Restricting a student from being in close proximity to the other student.
  • Restricting a student’s access to certain campus locations, including the other student’s residence hall.
  • Restricting the times a student may be present in on-campus dining facilities.
  • Requiring that the students not be enrolled in the same academic course(s).
  • Requiring that the students not participate in the same co-curricular or extra-curricular activities.

NCOs may be issued by the following administrators:

  • For matters pertaining to the Code of Student Conduct: the Dean of Students, or their designee.
  • For matters pertaining to the Equal Employment Opportunity and Nondiscrimination Statements, Polices, and Procedures and the Sexual Misconduct and Harassment Policy: the Title IX Coordinator, or their designee.
  • For emergency situations involving personal safety, the Director of Campus Safety and Security may issue temporary NCOs, which shall be confirmed, modified or rescinded by the Dean of Students or Title IX Officer once all relevant information is reviewed.

The College will review all NCOs annually. Each NCO will remain in effect until the graduation or withdrawal of at least one of the parties, unless the NCO expressly provides otherwise or is modified or rescinded by the College. A student seeking the modification or rescission of an NCO shall make such a request to the administrator who issued the NCO. The issuing administrator shall consult with both parties before determining whether or not to modify or rescind the NCO.

Violations of No Contact Orders are subject to discipline under the Student Code of Conduct or the retaliation provisions of the Equal Employment Opportunity and Nondiscrimination Statements, Polices, and Procedures, as appropriate.

Students who have interpersonal conflicts that do not raise concerns for individual health and safety will not be granted NCOs. These individuals should pursue other forms of conflict resolution, such as mediation offered through the Office of Counseling Services.

ALCOHOL REGULATIONS

Blackburn College is committed to providing an education that promotes personal growth and lifelong learning. The alcohol policy stems from this commitment, and has been developed with the following tenets in mind:

Students are adults and are obligated to obey the law and take personal responsibility for their conduct. Blackburn College students are encouraged to not only watch out for themselves, but also the safety and wellbeing of others.

The costs of alcohol abuse to members of the College community are high. These costs include, but are not limited to, physical and emotional health problems, poor academic performance, and campus crime and violence.

Disciplinary sanctions are the penalties imposed upon those who make the choice to violate policy. The severity of the sanctions reflects the College’s responsibility to uphold the law and protect members of its community from the harmful consequences of alcohol abuse.

The alcohol policy and resulting disciplinary penalties are set up separately from the College’s Disciplinary System due to the number and nature of alcohol violations dealt with each year. In cases involving violations of both the alcohol and other College policies, additional restrictions or other conditions may be enforced, depending upon the nature and seriousness of the misconduct and the student’s overall behavior and college performance.

BE AWARE—Any violation of the following regulations will be considered an offense and the penalties outlined for alcohol violations will apply.

  • Consumption or possession of alcoholic beverages by persons less than 21 years of age is prohibited.
  • Intoxication by students of any age will result in a violation. Intoxication is defined as being under the influence as determined by Illinois State Law. This is defined at Blackburn by a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of .08 for students 21 years of age & older and a BAC of anything above .000 for students under 21.
  • Students who are 21 years of age and older may possess and consume alcoholic beverages in the confines of their own room if they have approval of their roommate (or other rooms where one resident is of legal age and present). All other alcohol regulations must be followed. The individual(s) present at the time of the incident (resident, commuter, or guest) will be held accountable for any alcohol violations taking place in their room along with any other students determined to be violating policy. Behavior resulting in violation of College policy attributed to the influence of intoxicants may be cause for disciplinary action (under both the code of student conduct and these alcohol regulations). Any 21- year-old or older student who supplies alcohol to anyone under the age of 21 will receive an offense. Public intoxication is prohibited and will result in an alcohol violation.
  • Only beer, wine, wine coolers, and malt beverages may be consumed by those of legal age.
    • Beer kegs are prohibited (including pony kegs, party balls, and similar large multi-serving containers).
    • “Hard” liquor is prohibited on campus.
    • “Trophies” (empty hard alcohol containers) are prohibited on campus.
  • Possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages in public areas is prohibited, with the only exception being special events as outlined later in this policy. Public areas are defined as any College property outside of students’ residence hall rooms. Students of legal age may transport unopened containers of alcohol to their residence hall room or the room of another student of legal age. Requests for the exceptions as outlined later in this policy will be reviewed and may be permitted by the Student Life Office (with the approval of the Office of the President). Alcohol consumption, in all cases where exceptions are made, will be allowed only in designated areas.
  • Students suspected of an Alcohol Policy violation:
    • Students who are 21 years of age or older and who violate College policy and are suspected of intoxication may be held responsible for an alcohol policy violation. In such a case, the student(s) may request to take a Breathalyzer test to prove they are following College policy.
    • Underage students who are suspected of consumption or intoxication may request to take a Breathalyzer test to prove they are following College policy.
    • Students suspected of violating the alcohol policy who refuse to take a Breathalyzer test will be held responsible for an alcohol violation.
    • Behaviors that warrant suspicion of intoxication include but are not limited to: scent of alcohol, belligerent behavior, slurred speech, impaired mobility.
  • A member(s) of the Student Life Department can make a request to the Dean of Students to have alcohol prohibited on certain wings or in residence halls where documented alcohol related problems have occurred. The Student Life Committee will vote on the measure and, if necessary, set a period of prohibition.
  • All persons will be held responsible for their conduct regardless of their state of mind.
  • College funds (defined as any funds that are received by the College or by any College representative on behalf of the College) may not be used to purchase alcohol without the express permission of the President or designee, and even then within clearly defined purposes and limits. The College or College representatives will not sell alcohol.
  • The Student Life Committee (SLC) may review the alcohol policy at any time and recommend changes (with review by the Student Senate) to the President’s Cabinet to be voted upon and incorporated in the following academic year.
  • All off campus guests must obey the alcohol policies as well as other college rules and regulations. Students will be held responsible for their guest(s), which means students may receive an alcohol violation for the actions of their guest(s).
  • Process for allowing alcohol consumption in public areas:
    • Any registered campus club or organization can petition to the Dean of Students to sponsor an event where alcohol is to be served to those who are 21 years of age or older.
    • Approved events will be limited to two events per month—events will be approved on a first come basis. o The event must have a “theme” or “focus” beyond simply gathering to drink alcohol.
    • The Dean of Students must approve the event at least two weeks prior to the event.
    • The club or organization sponsoring the event must hire Fresh Ideas to serve as the bar provider for the event.
    • The bar will be a cash bar and can serve only beer, wine, and wine coolers.
    • The bartenders will only be allowed to serve one alcoholic beverage to one person per visit to the bar. Those who purchase alcohol must show an arm band to verify that they are 21 years of age.
    • Anyone found to be providing alcohol to a person who is under the age of 21 will be cited for a violation of the alcohol policy.
    • No other alcohol will be allowed to be brought into the event venue.
    • No alcohol will be allowed to be taken out of the event venue.
    • A volunteer full-time college employee who has participated in event monitoring training must be engaged to serve as the entrance monitor. This person’s responsibility is to:
      • Check the 21-year-old list (provided by student life) or photo ID of guests & affix arm bands to those who are 21 and wish to purchase alcoholic beverages.
      • Monitor the condition of those arriving and refuse an arm band to any who appear at the “check in” table as being intoxicated (evidenced by belligerent behavior, slurred speech or impaired mobility). If any individual is refused an arm band, they could attend the event but would be restricted from purchasing alcohol.
    • An off-duty Carlinville Police Officer or, if available, two campus safety staff members must be hired by the sponsoring organization to oversee the party and help with crowd control, help assure no one is bringing in or taking out alcohol, and help ensure no underage students are consuming alcohol.
    • It is expected that the advisor of the sponsoring organization will be present at the event, along with two volunteering members of the sponsoring organization. These people will assist security in monitoring the event.
    • The sponsoring organization must provide a non-alcoholic beverage at no cost to attendees and food for the event—at no cost to attendees (a minimum of $50 must be spent on food for the event). Food and non-alcoholic beverage service must be arranged through Fresh Ideas.
    • Events can be no more than four hours in duration.
    • Those approved to purchase alcohol can purchase a total of six (6) 12-ounce beers, or six (6) 5- ounce glasses of wine or six (6) 12-ounce wine coolers.
    • The bartender or monitor will mark each purchaser’s arm band with the number of alcoholic beverages purchased.
    • The venue must be cleaned to the condition prior to the event no later than one hour after the end of the event.
    • Venues will be limited to DCC Commons, Woodson or Jaenke and must be reserved with Auxiliary Services at least two weeks in advance. Other venues could be considered as an exception but only if the venue suggested allows for clear distinctions for entrance and monitoring.
    • Events will only be approved for Friday nights/Saturday mornings and Saturday nights/Sunday mornings and each event must end no later than 1:00 a.m.
    • Guests will be limited to no more than 100 in the venue at any one time.
    • Policy for non-Blackburn student guests—numbers must be limited to no more than two per current student and any guest MUST have a current student as a host.
    • Any violations of the alcohol policy will result in an offense for the student violating the policy. In addition, if it is evident that the sponsoring club or organization was negligent in upholding these event regulations, the club or organization will be prohibited from hosting future events with alcohol for the next calendar year.

ALCOHOL POLICY VIOLATION CONSEQUENCES

Student violations of the alcohol regulations will minimally result in the consequences listed below. The listing of behaviors below is simply a sample listing and not exhaustive or all inclusive. Offenses will be judged on a case- by-case basis. Therefore, students participating in behaviors that appear to be similar may be assigned to different LEVELS and be subject to different consequences. Students of any age found in violation of alcohol policy guidelines with a high Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) may be assigned to a higher level—even if it’s their first offense.

Determination of the assigned LEVEL will be made by the Dean of Students (or designee). The accused student will meet with the Dean (or designee) to discuss the incident and will be an active participant in helping determine the appropriate LEVEL. If it is determined that LEVEL 1 or LEVEL 2 is appropriate, the Dean (or designee) will work with the student to determine appropriate consequence(s). If it is determined that LEVEL 3 or LEVEL 4 is appropriate, the student will be referred to an administrative hearing.

*If the Dean of Students must be excused due to involvement with administering the alcohol offense, any professional member of the student life staff will step in for the hearing.

Alcohol offenses stay on a student’s record for the entire time of their enrollment. When a student receives a second or third alcohol offense several things will be considered when the assigned LEVEL is determined. Examples of things considered may include: not only the facts involved in the current offense, but also the facts of previous offense(s); the way in which the individual subscribed to the consequences of previous offense(s); or any other information/testimony that demonstrates the individual could be forming a pattern of alcohol abuse.

Students who fail to complete the consequences assigned to them after an offense of the alcohol regulations may be raised to the next LEVEL with additional consequences, including financial penalty, parental involvement, and/or added tasks.

LEVEL 1

SAMPLE BEHAVIORS WHICH COULD RESULT IN A LEVEL 1 ALCOHOL VIOLATION:

  • Any student age 21 or over found on campus possessing or consuming distilled spirits (or “hard” alcohol).
  • Any student age 21 or over found in possession of an open container of alcohol in a public area on campus.
  • Any student age 21 or over found violating campus quiet hours while under suspicion of possessing or consuming alcohol.
  • Any student found in possession of “trophy” (“hard” or distilled spirits) alcohol containers.

Consequences:

  • Written documentation to student’s file
  • Student is required to complete sanctioning which includes, but is not limited to, successful completion of an on-line alcohol prevention and education course and session(s) with either the College Counselor or their designee.
  • Appropriate restitution to any community member(s) aggrieved in the offense.

LEVEL 2

SAMPLE BEHAVIORS WHICH COULD RESULT IN A LEVEL 2 ALCOHOL VIOLATION:

  • Any student under the age of 21 found in possession of or consuming alcoholic beverages.
  • Any student age 21 or over participating in drinking games (anything that would be considered a “game” with the purpose of players consuming large quantities of alcohol).
  • Any student age 21 or over found in possession of multiple serving container(s) of alcohol.

Consequences:

  • Notification of parent(s)/guardian(s) of dependent students
  • Report of alcohol offense sent to work supervisor and academic advisor
  • Student is required to complete sanctioning which includes, but is not limited to, successful completion of an on-line alcohol prevention and education course and session(s) with either the College Counselor or their designee.
  • Appropriate restitution to any community member(s) aggrieved in the offense.

LEVEL 3

SAMPLE BEHAVIORS WHICH COULD RESULT IN A LEVEL 3 ALCOHOL VIOLATION:

  • Any student found causing damage to personal or College property while under suspicion of consuming alcohol
  • Any student failing to comply with the reasonable request(s) of a staff member while under suspicion of alcohol consumption.
  • Any student under the age of 21 participating in drinking games (anything that would be considered a “game” with the purpose of players consuming large quantities of alcohol).

Consequences:

  • Notification of parent(s)/guardian(s) of dependent students
  • Requirement to submit to and pay for a formal alcohol abuse assessment
  • Social probation
  • Report of alcohol offense sent to work supervisor and academic advisor
  • Appropriate restitution to any community member(s) aggrieved in the offense.

LEVEL 4

SAMPLE BEHAVIORS WHICH COULD RESULT IN A LEVEL 4 ALCOHOL VIOLATION:

  • Involvement in a physical altercation as a result of consuming alcohol.

Consequences:

  • Suspension from the College for a minimum of one full semester with the requirement that the individual seek alcohol treatment services and provide documentation of said services prior to being considered for readmission to the College.

Appeals of these decisions would follow the same guidelines outlined in the Disciplinary System section of the Student Handbook. If it is determined that a LEVEL 1 or LEVEL 2 is appropriate, the Student Life Appeals Board will hear the appeal. If it is determined that LEVEL 3 or LEVEL 4 is appropriate, and the student has an administrative hearing with the Dean of Students, appeals of those decisions will go to the Conduct Hearing Board.

MEDICAL AMNESTY POLICY

When a student’s health or safety is in jeopardy due to alcohol consumption or drug use, immediate medical attention should be sought by notifying a Residence Life staff member, a member of the Security crew, or 911 for assistance. Formal disciplinary action for a violation of the alcohol or drug policy at or near the time of the incident will not be taken against those who seek or receive medical or professional assistance for themselves or others, though violation of other student conduct codes such as vandalism, disorderly conduct, and sexual misconduct may still apply. A student who receives medical assistance from medical service providers may be required to meet with the Dean of Students (or an appointed designee) and/or counseling services. Parents/guardians may be informed.

In order for this policy to apply, the student(s) needing medical assistance must agree to timely completion of substance abuse education activities, assessment, and/or treatment depending on the level of concern for student health or safety. Serious or repeated incidents will prompt a higher degree of concern that may require additional follow-up. Failure to complete required follow-up may result in disciplinary action.

CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES REGULATIONS

The College takes a firm stand on the use and abuse of controlled substances and has set forth the following policy in regard to students who are found to be in possession of or suspected to be under the influence of controlled substances:

  • If Campus Community & Safety or Residence Hall staff suspect a student to be in possession or under the influence of controlled substances, that suspicion will be documented.
  • If any one student (or group of students) is suspected of controlled substance use multiple times, the College reserves the right, with proper prior documentation, to employ any of the following to confirm that suspicion:
    • Perform a search of the student’s room and person.
    • Employ trained canine search teams to search a residence hall floor or wing or the car(s) of suspected student(s) parked in campus parking lots.
    • The Dean of Students (or designee) may require the suspected student(s) to submit to a drug test to verify that the student is drug free.
    • Refusal of the test will be considered an admission of guilt.
  • Students found responsible for illegal possession, use, or distribution (including sale) of controlled substances or paraphernalia will receive at a minimum:
    • A minimum of a $150 fine,
    • A minimum of one semester and a maximum of one year of social probation,
    • The requirement to submit to and pay for a formal drug abuse assessment,
    • Notification of parent(s)/guardian(s) (dependent students).
    • Be required to submit to and pay for random drug screenings during the period of probation to verify they are staying drug free.
    • In addition, in cases where controlled substances and/or drug paraphernalia are found, local law enforcement authorities may be notified.

Although medical & recreational marijuana is allowed in the state of Illinois, there is a federal restriction on any controlled substances as part of the federal Drug Free Schools and Communities Act which is tied to federal financial aid. Blackburn therefore prohibits medical or THC infused products on campus.

EEO & NONDISCRIMINATION POLICY

Please go to https://blackburn.edu/about/policies-information/title-ix-at-blackburn-college for the Blackburn College Equal Employment Opportunity and Nondiscrimination Policy

TITLE IX POLICY

Please go to https://blackburn.edu/about/policies-information/title-ix-at-blackburn-college for the Blackburn College Title IX Policy