STUDENT RIGHTS, RESPONSIBILITIES

The University maintains fair and reasonable practices in all matters affecting students such as the delivery of educational programs, provision of support services, and timely resolution of disciplinary matters, as well as the handling of grievances. In addition, the University endorses the basic principles of the codes of ethics issued by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO).

Freedom of Access

The University is open to all qualified applicants according to its published admissions policies and standards. Upon matriculation, each student has access to all services and facilities for which the student is qualified. Access will be denied to persons who are not students.

Classroom Rights and Privileges

Instructors are expected to encourage open discussion and inquiry. Students may take reasoned exception to information offered in any course in the continual search for new understanding. Students’ views, political associations, and beliefs which are confided to instructors and advisors during the performance of duties are confidential.

Right to Appeal

The purpose of appeal procedures is to provide a system that will represent “fairness and the absence of arbitrariness.” With the intent of assuring fairness and objectivity, the University has created and implemented procedures for appeals by students. The University makes every effort to assure that the appeal procedures are clear to students and are not burdensome. Students have the right to appeal any academic policy or requirement if either of the following conditions is present:

  • Extenuating circumstances make it impossible to comply with the policy or requirement.
  • An undue hardship would result from a strict application or interpretation of the policy or requirement. Please note, however, that extenuating circumstances must be beyond student control and that undue hardship must be a condition far more serious than simple inconvenience. Documentation will be required and the timeliness of the appeal will be taken into consideration. If you appeal an academic policy or requirement, that appeal will be reviewed by the Academic Dean.

Disabilities Policy

The University is committed to complying with all the mandates set forth in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Disabled students may requests for reasonable accommodations to the Academic Dean, and are required to provide medical certification of disability. In certain circumstances, early registration may be available for students with disabilities.

Hearing Committee

Academic dishonesty or acts of student conduct that violate University standards and Code of Conduct will subject the student to disciplinary action that may include dismissal from the University. However, in conformance with Due Process and prior to implementing any disciplinary action, the student is given a hearing before an impartial committee. The student is also given an opportunity to appeal any decision that is considered to be unfavorable.

Student Grievance Procedure

Students who feel aggrieved with the University, policies, practices and procedures, or faculty and staff may submit grievances in writing to the Academic Dean who will act upon or direct the complaint to the President for action which may result in an investigatory hearing and appropriate action. A response will be sent as quickly as possible. Due process will be an integral part of all dispute resolutions.

A student or any member of the public may file a complaint about this institution with the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education by calling (888) 370-7589 or by completing a complaint form, which can be obtained on the bureau’s Internet Web www.bppe.ca.gov

Sexual Harassment Policy

The University strives to provide an environment in which the dignity and worth of the members of the school community are based on mutual respect. Sexual harassment is considered unprofessional conduct by employees and students and is unacceptable

behavior. It will not be tolerated. The University is committed to an employment and academic environment that encourages excellence. This environment includes freedom from all forms of harassment for students, faculty, staff, and applicants who seek to join the University. Sexual harassment violates University policies as well as local, state, and federal law. It is a violation of University policy for anyone to retaliate against an employee, student, or applicant who makes a claim of sexual harassment. Any person violating University policy on sexual harassment is subject to disciplinary action such as reprimand, suspension, or termination of employment or enrollment. The type of disciplinary action imposed will depend on the severity of the offense.

General Definition of Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment is an unwelcome sexual advance, request for sexual favors, verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature directed towards a student, employee, or applicant seeking to join the University. When an individual is in a position to influence the education, employment, or participation in a school activity of another person, even apparent consensual sexual relationships often constitute sexual harassment. Sexual harassment occurs when any of the following circumstances exist:

  1. Submission to such conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly as a term or condition of a person’s status in a program for academic, employment, or admission decision.
  2. Submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for academic decisions or employment decisions, or
  3. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of “unreasonable interfering” with an employee’s work or student’s academic performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, coercive, and offensive work or educational environment. For purposes of this policy, “unreasonable interfering” is defined as improper, unjustifiable behavior going beyond what is appropriate, warranted, or natural.
  4. Sexual harassment is not limited to action by a supervisor or instructor but can include conduct by a co-worker or student.

Personal Conduct

Each student is expected to be an example of proper conduct. This includes the student’s attitudes, actions, appearance, and attire. The University’s administration has the authority to take appropriate action through the Student Body Association or administrative disciplinary measures if this code of conduct is not adhered to.

It is the policy of the University to prohibit smoking except in designated areas and prohibits unlawful possession or use of controlled substances or alcoholic beverages. Firearms possession anywhere on campus is STRICTLY PROHIBITED.

Code of Conduct

The disciplinary standards outlined in this catalog include rules and enforcement measures. These are the basic guidelines for conduct on the premises of the University, at any school sponsored activity and, under certain circumstances, behavior in the outside community. At any time, the University reserves the right to exclude students whose conduct is deemed undesirable or prejudicial to the University community’s best interests. The disciplinary standards described herein afford procedural fairness to the accused student and flexibility for the administration to exercise sanctions based on the individual circumstances of each case. Behavior resulting in disciplinary action may involve, but is not limited to, one or a combination of those listed below:

Student Code of Conduct

A student may be failed or dismissed for academic dishonesty or for acts of negligence. A student may be dismissed from the University for behavior disruptive to the educational mission of the University, such as, but not limited to those stated below:  

  • Cheating, bribery, or plagiarism in the academic programs
  • Forgery, alteration or misuse of University documents, records or identification, or knowingly furnishing false information to the University
  • Misrepresentation of oneself or of an organization to be an agent of the University
  • Obstruction or disruption on or off campus property, of the campus educational process, administrative process, or other campus abuse
  • Theft of or non-accidental damage to University property of any member of the campus community, or members of his/her family or the threat of such physical abuse
  • Theft of or non-accidental damage to University property or property in the possession of or owned by a member of the University community
  • Unauthorized entry into, unauthorized use, or misuse of University property
  • Sale or knowing possession of dangerous drugs, restricted dangerous drugs or narcotics, as those terms are used in California statutes, except when lawfully prescribed pursuant to medical or dental care, or when lawfully permitted for the purpose, and which order is not inconsistent with any of the other provisions of this section
  • Soliciting or assisting another to participate in an act that would subject a student to dismissal, suspension, or probation pursuant to this section
  • Practicing acupuncture without license. The administration will refer any indication of such activity to the California Acupuncture Board for investigation and, if substantiated, for prosecutions.
  • The President of the University, at his discretion and prior to recommendations or actions of the Academics Standards Committee, in the interests of the University may place on probation, suspend or dismiss a student for one or more of the causes enumerated above. Any adjustment of fees or tuition shall be those required by law.

Interim Suspension

The President may immediately impose an interim suspension in all cases in which there is reasonable cause to believe that such an immediate suspension is required in order to protect lives or property and to ensure the maintenance of order. A student so placed on interim suspension shall be given prompt notice of charges and the opportunity for a hearing within ten (10) days of the imposition of interim suspension. During the period of interim suspension, the student shall not, without prior written permission of the President or designated representative, enter the campus, other than to attend the hearing. Violation of any condition of interim suspension shall be grounds for dismissal.

Academic Dishonesty

In cases of academic dishonesty in class, instructors may fail a student for the examination, activity or course. The instructor may refer the circumstance to the Academic Standards Committee for review and further action. The President may fail a student in a test, fail a student in a course, or expel a student for cheating or plagiarism. Cheating includes but is not limited to looking at another’s examination paper, using unauthorized notes in an exam, going to a restroom during an exam and consulting notes or references. Cheating includes plagiarism. Plagiarism is the presentation or representation of another’s work as one’s own, such as presenting ideas or words of a source without documenting the source.

Admission / Re-Admission

Admission or re-admission may be conditional or denied to any person who, while not enrolled as a student, engages in conduct that would be the basis for disciplinary proceedings pursuant to the above. Admission or readmission may be conditional or denied to any person who, while a student, commits acts that are subject to disciplinary action pursuant to the above.

Students accused of improper conduct shall be given adequate notice of the charges and an opportunity to appeal the case to the grievance committee. Written notice of specific charges made against a student shall be given at least 15 (fifteen) days before the student is to appear before the committee. While disciplinary action against a student is pending, the student’s status does not change unless it is found that the student poses a significant threat to the University community. Hearings are private.

The accused student is afforded the opportunity to rebut all charges. The University establishes the charges by a preponderance of the evidence. The student has the right to appeal the disciplinary actions to the Academic Dean, but on the grounds that fair procedure was not followed by the committee or that the evidence in the record does not justify the decision or the sanction.

A record will be kept of the disciplinary action taken and the basis for this decision. The disciplinary action taken may be reflected on the student’s permanent record as part of the disciplinary punishment. Disciplinary action invoked by the committee may involve, but is not limited to, one or a combination of the alternatives listed as follows:

Dismissal

Permanent separation from the University.

Suspension:

Separation of the student from the University for a specific length of time. Specific limitations and restrictions on the student’s privileges may accompany probation. University policy stipulates that a student dismissed by disciplinary action, from either the University or a course, will not receive a refund of tuition or other fees. Students dismissed from the University due to disciplinary reasons must exclude themselves from the University classes, activities, facilities, and buildings. Any exception must be approved by the President. A student who is suspended may reapply for admission after two quarter’s from the dismissal.

Campus Security

In accordance with the Higher Education Act of 1965 as amended by Public Laws 101- 542, 102-26, 102-325 and 103-208, all related to the Student Right-To-Know and Campus Security Act, the University makes available to current students, prospective students, employees, and prospective employees, information about campus safety policies and procedures and statistics concerning whether certain crimes took place on campus.

The latest report will be posted on the campus bulletin board, and is available upon request any incidence is a cause of concern to the University. Therefore, students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to report any crimes or suspected crimes. Staff will immediately notify appropriate local law enforcement agency.