Photo by Raquel Hamner
Violating AACC’s code of student conduct could result in a suspension from the college campus.
Sanctions can range from reprimands to interim suspensions. Occasionally, students must make restitution or perform community service on the campus.
“Any time a student is suspected of violating college policy regardless of what it is they could be referred to my office,” said Erik Hunter, director of Student Conduct and Special Projects. “Then what my office does is review the incident report, investigate the incident, and then make a determination whether a violation has occurred or not.
“I take into account whether there are aggravating or mitigating circumstances. The type of violation. What I’ve typically done with similar violations in the past. The impact of the violation on the community … Things like that.
“We try to make sure the sanction is appropriate to the violation and not simply just random.”
According to Hunter, the most common reason a student might face suspension is classroom disruption.
“We get a lot of referrals from instructors with what they believe is disruptive behavior in their classrooms,” said Hunter. “It could be arguing with the professor, two students arguing, it could be a lot of things, but typically that’s what we get.”
Being barred from the college doesn’t always mean that the student will miss out on finishing classes.
“We would contact their instructors, and ask their instructors if they would just accept all their work remotely, and ask them if the student could work remotely,” Hunter said. “Usually instructors are pretty OK with that. They can still finish up their classes.”
Students who are suspended from campus can appeal to a disciplinary review committee.
For non-students found in violation of campus rules the process goes through Vice President Melissa Beardmore, and public safety.
“If we feel that it’s serious enough it will go to … Beardmore, and she’ll issue a Persona Non-Grata, PNG, which means you’re not allowed back here,” said Police Chief Sean Kapfhammer. “It’s like a banning notice.”
“Our approach is the safety of the college community as a whole,” said Beardmore. “We have multiple interventions and programs in place to ensure that if there is an incident those who need to be aware are made aware. People are put off campus until they are deemed ready to come back … if at all.”
Individuals could face legal action if they violate their suspension.
“If they’re on campus, and they’ve been told not to be on campus there’s a good chance they will be arrested, because there’s a reason we banned them to begin with,” said Kapfhammer.
“We think that they pose a safety threat to the campus.”