Student Code of Conduct
Westchester Community College students have a responsibility to uphold and build upon the values of the college community. The Student Code of Conduct is the document that details these values and student responsibilities. The college looks to students to breathe life into this code by engaging in activities that promote individual growth, demonstrate civility toward others, and build community through the safe, respectful exchange of diverse thought, opinion, and action while on campus and in everyday events. To maintain the trust extended by the college, students are expected to be exhibit personal accountability and remember that the decisions they make have an impact on the overall health of our community, and, ultimately, on the quality of their experience.
Students who breach this trust and engage in activities that are counter to the community’s values will be held accountable. The Student Code of Conduct establishes a fair and transparent process for the adjudication of alleged violations. The Student Code of Conduct seeks to be educational, not punitive, in nature while also ensuring that the interest and well being of the greater college community and its members are protected.
The Student Code of Conduct applies to all students currently enrolled at Westchester Community College. It is essential that students are familiar with the Student Code of Conduct and refer to it throughout their career at Westchester Community College. An official and complete copy of the Student Code of Conduct can be found by visiting www.sunywcc.edu/codeofconduct.
Classroom Conduct Policy
In the interest of establishing and maintaining an appropriate learning environment, maximizing the educational benefit to all students, maintaining an atmosphere of safety and comfort, and clarifying the faculty and students’ expectations of classroom conduct the college has established the following policy:
- Students are expected to arrive on time. If a student is unavoidably late and the instructor permits him or her to enter, he or she should do so quietly and be seated quickly.
- Students are expected to refrain from participating in personal conversations during class.
- Every student is expected to focus on the class lesson. Please refrain from doing other class work, reading newspapers or magazines, eating, drinking or sleeping.
- Students are expected to use appropriate language at all times and be polite to one another.
- Students are expected to remain seated during class and not to leave the room unless you have notified the instructor or in case of an emergency.
- Students must turn off all cell phones and beepers prior to the beginning of class.
- Visitors are only allowed with permission from the instructor. Children are not permitted in class at any time.
- Students are expected to refrain from packing up and preparing to leave until the instructor has dismissed the class. (It is the instructor’s responsibility to dismiss the class at the proper time.)
Online Code of Conduct
Students have the right to express themselves and participate freely in an online class. However, they are expected to treat each other and the instructor with courtesy and respect. Offensive or inappropriate language is not to be used in any form of communication e.g., emails, discussion postings, group projects, submitted assignments. Students are allowed to disagree with each other or the instructor but must do so in a civil manner.
The discussion area of the course is reserved for postings related to course work only. Postings of a personal or nonacademic nature are not permitted and may be removed by the instructor should they appear. Grades and personal issues should be handled by private email to the instructor.
Emails to the instructor that are considered offensive or inappropriate will be sent back to the writer with a request to rewrite and resubmit. If the emails continue to be unacceptable, the student will be referred to the Academic Dean of Students and denied access to the course until the Dean contacts the student. If students receive inappropriate emails from others in the class they should notify the instructor and appropriate action will be taken.
Students are expected to submit work which is their own. Plagiarism or cheating will not be tolerated. If either is the case the student may have his/her grade for the assignment/quiz lowered or may fail the course.
Distance Learning Students are encouraged to visit the Distance Learning pages of the college web site for a complete list of student expectations.
Children in Classrooms and on the Campus
Children are not permitted in the classroom, lecture room, or laboratory at any time that instruction is taking place. A child’s presence in the classroom can be a distraction to the professor, to other class members, and even to the parent and could expose the child to injury. Children visiting other locations on campus (such as the library or cafeteria) must be supervised at all times.
Students’ Rights and Responsibilities
Upon acceptance and registration, all students become voluntary members of the academic community at Westchester Community College. Initial and continued participation in this community is dependent upon students’ understanding not only of their rights and privileges, but of their responsibilities as well. Therefore, it is understood that each student accepts the obligations of this relationship as outlined in the Student Code of Conduct. For further information, and for procedures followed in cases of student misconduct, see the Student Code of Conduct section of this document.
Policy on Human Diversity
Westchester Community College endeavors to establish and maintain an environment in which individuals of various groups and backgrounds learn to live together in an atmosphere of mutual respect. Furthermore, the college asserts that students’ educations are inadequate unless they have acquired knowledge and appreciation of human diversity and have established sets of values with which to function positively in a pluralistic society.
Respect for and understanding of cultural diversity in all its forms is a strong antidote for prejudice, racism, and discrimination based on religion, national origin, ethnic grouping, color, or other socially-derived attempts to deny people their human rights. Accordingly, the college strives to find the common elements that unite us and the positive differences that strengthen us.
- To provide all students with experiences in and out of the classroom that enhance their understanding and respect for differences in race, national origin, religion, ethnic identity, gender, sexual orientation, age, and socio-economic background.
- To sensitize the staff and faculty to regard cultural differences as the norm, not the exception, while recognizing our common needs and aspirations.
- To encourage diverse groups to participate in cooperative endeavors and interactions.
Discrimination Complaint Procedures
A student who wishes to make a complaint about a faculty member, employee, or another student regarding alleged discrimination based on race, color, creed, national origin, age, gender, sexual preference, or disability should register that complaint with the Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (914-606-6733), located in the Student Center. At that time, the student will be advised of the next step to be taken.
An employee who wishes to make a complaint about a supervisor, fellow employee, faculty member, or student regarding alleged discrimination based on race, color, creed, national origin, age, gender, sexual preference, or disability should register that complaint with the Affirmative Action Officer (914-606-6977). (A complaint about sexual harassment would be referred to the sexual harassment officer.)
In any case of alleged discrimination, the first step would be to attempt to resolve the complaint informally.
If a resolution satisfactory to both complainant and respondent is reached within 15 working days through the efforts of the Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, the college official, or other designated person, the case shall be closed. A written notice to that effect will be sent to the complainant.
If no informal resolution is possible, and the student or employee wishes to pursue the complaint, a grievance must be submitted in writing. Such formal grievances must be filed within 45 working days following the alleged discriminatory act, or the time the complainant first becomes aware of that alleged discrimination. Student grievances must be filed with the Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, who will forward the grievance to the appropriate college official. Employee grievances must be filed with the Affirmative Action Officer, who will do the same.
All cases of alleged discrimination for any of the above-mentioned reasons will be forwarded to the Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion. In cases of alleged discrimination based on gender, the grievance also will be forwarded to the Title IX Coordinator; in cases of alleged discrimination based on disability, the grievance also will be forwarded to the 504 Disability Coordinator. In all cases, the discrimination complaint will be dealt with in a timely fashion by each compliance officer in the manner described above.
A decision will be sent in writing to the grievant within 30 working days of the receipt of the formal complaint by all appropriate parties.
Title IX and Section 504 Coordinators
In accordance with Federal regulations, the New York State Human Rights Law and Section 504, Westchester Community College does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, disability or handicap in educational programs, activities and employment.
The following individuals may be contacted for further information on Affirmative Action and Section 504:
|Title IX/Affirmative Action Coordinator
||Section 504 Coordinator
|Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
||Associate Dean of Enrollment Management
Sexual Harassment Policy
Sexual harassment includes any unwanted verbal or physical sexual advance, requests for sexual favors, sexually explicit derogatory remarks, and sexually discriminating remarks which are offensive or objectionable to the person at whom they are directed or which cause a person discomfort or humiliation.
On campus, sexual harassment destroys the trusting relationship that should exist between students and others in the academic community. In all cases, the harasser has introduced a personal element into what should be a sex-neutral situation, and has prevented people from benefiting fully from their education.
Whether verbal or physical, sexual harassment is an act of aggression. It is a violation of both federal law (section 703 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title IX Education Amendments of 1972) and state law (New York State Human Rights Act).
In order to maintain an educational environment fully conducive to learning and academic freedom, Westchester Community College has both a moral and legal obligation to investigate all complaints of sexual harassment and to pursue sanctions when warranted. The college encourages students to confront sexual harassers, to report incidents, and/or to seek advice and assistance. Help is available from the college’s sexual harassment officers (914-606-6381 or 914-606-6572). They are charged with the responsibility of investigating sexual harassment complaints and with instituting the more formal procedures in existence for resolving them.
Sexual Assault Policy
Westchester Community College is committed to creating a community free from violence. Sexual assault, harassment, dating/domestic violence, and stalking as defined by State and Federal law will not be tolerated at Westchester Community College, college supported events or activities, or at functions of recognized student organizations, on- or off-campus. Westchester Community College will take action, as needed, to discourage, prevent, correct, and if necessary, discipline behavior that violates this standard of conduct. Rape and sexual assault constitute crimes. Federal and New York State Law and college policy prohibit such behavior.
Confidentiality is fundamental to all aspects of cases dealing with sexual assault. The names of sexual assault victims shall not be revealed by persons responsible for implementing and enforcing the provisions of this policy, except with consent of the victim.
The college recognizes the necessity of a community which is open and intellectually stimulating, where diversity of ideas is valued and every person’s safety, dignity and autonomy is respected whether they are students, faculty, or staff, and regardless of race, ethnicity, age, religion, class, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, or disability.
Westchester Community College is without dormitories or resident students. Parking lots, walkways, and areas surrounding each building are well lighted, and the campus is regularly patrolled by the 24-hour guard service. While there have been occasional incidents of crime, the campus has generally been a safe and secure environment.
In order to help maintain this status and improve upon it, all members of the campus community are required to maintain up-to-date identification cards which are available, free of charge, from the Security Office in the Student Center. There is a small fee to replace lost ID cards. In addition, all students, faculty, staff, and visitors are advised to:
- pay careful attention to your personal belongings, including textbooks, at all times
- lock your car, each time you leave it, leaving nothing inside within view, and
- have your car keys in hand before leaving a building.
Blue Light Phones and Emergency Cell Phones
There are 15 strategically located emergency blue light phones on campus that connect directly with the County Police without having to dial. These phones are for emergencies requiring immediate police assistance. Directions for proper use are printed on the inside of the call box in English and Spanish. In addition, the Security Department emergency phone number is 6-911.
In addition, the college has free emergency cell phones available for any student, faculty, or staff member. Please contact our Security Office in the Student Center.
Additional information regarding security and safety at Westchester Community College is regularly updated and available on the college web site at www.sunywcc.edu/security.
Important Security and Safety Information
In compliance with the Federal Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act, Westchester Community College publishes an annual “Campus Security & Safety Report.” This report includes statistics for the previous three years concerning reported crimes that occurred on campus; in certain off-campus buildings or property owned or controlled by the college; and on public property within, or immediately adjacent to and accessible from, the campus. The report also includes institutional policies related to campus security, such as policies concerning alcohol and drug use, crime prevention, the reporting of crimes, sexual assault, bias crimes and other crimes. The Advisory Committee on Campus Safety will provide upon request all campus crime statistics as reported to the United States Department of Education. To obtain these crime statistics, access the U.S. Department of Education web site at: https://ope.ed.gov/campussafety
To get a copy of the full report and crime statistics, contact the Security Office, Room 113 in the Student Center Building (914-606-6730) or visit the following web site: www.sunywcc.edu/security
Emergency procedures to follow for fire, injuries, or other medical emergencies; techniques on how to avoid becoming a crime victim; and lists of resources are available to students and employees online, visit www.sunywcc.edu/security for more information
Alcohol and Drug Policy
Alcohol and drug abuse are devastating both to the user and to the college community. In addition to impacting the lives of others in dangerous ways, users of illegal drugs and alcohol subject themselves to serious health problems both now and for years into the future, including addiction, disease, and loss of physical skills. Substance abuse is a major cause of accidents and can seriously affect academic performance and campus morale. Possession, use, and distribution of illegal drugs or alcohol on college property or at college-sponsored events is forbidden. Infractions will result in serious disciplinary action: students could be expelled and employees could be fired.
The college, therefore, discourages students and employees from covering for co-workers or fellow students who are users but rather encourages them to assist users in getting help. Students should seek out the Health Services Office in the Student Center, room 181, 914-606-6610 or the Personal Counseling Department in the Student Center, rooms 225/226, firstname.lastname@example.org or at 914-606-7784. Employees can go to their immediate supervisors or to Westchester County’s Employee Assistance Program (914-995-6070).
In addition, under local, state, and federal laws, illegal use of drugs and alcohol is a serious crime. Conviction of a felony carries serious consequences, including loss of citizenship rights during the period of sentence and a possible jail term. Convictions may also jeopardize future employment opportunities.
Further information on the legal consequences of alcohol and drug abuse can be found in the Library/Educational Technologies Center under Public Law 101-226. Further information about college disciplinary violations and proceedings for students can be found in the Student Code of Conduct found at www.sunywcc.edu/codeofconduct.
The Surgeon General of the United States has determined that use of tobacco products is the largest preventable cause of illness and premature death in this country. Westchester Community College has been, and continues to be, committed to the health and well-being of its staff, faculty, and students. The college not only has a vested interest in the vitality of its students and those who administer and operate the programs here, but also a role to play in the promotion and advancement of the general health of our society as a whole. We are dedicated to providing a safe and healthful environment.
In response to these considerations, the use of tobacco products, vaping devices, electronic cigarettes, and other nicotine delivery devices is prohibited in all Westchester Community College facilities and outdoor areas. For details about this policy please visit www.sunywcc.edu/tobacco-vape-free.
It is the policy of Westchester Community College to make every effort to protect the environment, especially in the following ways:
- Promote awareness of environmental issues.
- Minimize consumption of natural resources, especially paper and energy.
- Encourage recycling and/or reuse of materials.
- Use only products known to be environmentally safe.
- Follow regulations and standards for safe use, storage, and disposal of materials.
- Follow regulations and standards for safe use of machinery, equipment, and technical processes.
- Require periodic monitoring and reporting of progress toward implementation.