Student Handbook 2015-2016
The policies of Washington and Lee University are under continual examination and revision. This Student Handbook is not a contract; it merely presents the policies in effect at the time of publication and in no way guarantees that the policies will not change. For more updated policies and information see www.wlu.edu.
This Student Handbook and the policies contained herein remain in force and effect in between terms of the academic year and during holidays and other periods of the academic year when classes are not in session.
This Student Handbook and the policies contained herein apply to all students enrolled at Washington and Lee University, including those auditing courses at Washington and Lee University and the Washington and Lee University School of Law.
This year's Student Handbook was last updated in March 2016. Please check the W&L Student Affairs website for the most recent version.
(As adopted by the Board of Trustees May 25, 1985)
The Board of Trustees believes that one of its primary responsibilities is to encourage the development and maintenance of an environment within the University community, which best permits the realization of our institutional goals. Those goals, according to the University's Statement of Institutional Philosophy, include the pursuit of our educational purpose in a climate of learning that stresses the importance of the individual, the personal honor and integrity of all students and their harmonious relationships with other members of the greater community. In this context, the institutionalized extracurricular and social life of students should contribute to these goals.
It is our desire that student self-government should be encouraged and that a proper balance between student privilege and responsibility should be sought and achieved. We recognize that all members of the student body will spend a portion of their life apart from the institution and outside its governance. Students must nonetheless remain aware that they are members of a University community whose traditions, image and reputation can be harmed by negative actions and behavior as well as being helped by positive contributions. This awareness is especially important because the University, lodged as it is within a larger community, must encourage respect for local ordinances and law enforcement and honor the claims of non-University persons for quiet and safety. In all of its expression, the spirit of this Campus Life statement places emphasis on concepts of honor, integrity, standards of value, leadership, good character, respect for traditions and personal responsibility. We do expect that individual and group actions and behavior will be measured against these concepts. It is our intention to hold accountable for the successful implementation of this policy the administration, the faculty, the students and, indeed, this Board of Trustees.
As provided in the University By-Laws, the Faculty shall be responsible for the academic regulation of students for entrance and graduation requirements, for the approval and supervision of courses of study, for the recommendation of students for degrees, and for the discipline and government of the students and all student organizations, except for the Honor System which is the responsibility of the Student Executive Committee as delegated by the Board of Trustees. The Faculty may adopt such rules and regulations as may be necessary and proper for the discharge of its obligations.
The Executive Committee is a 13-member body of representatives elected by students from each undergraduate and law class. The Executive Committee is entrusted with administration of the Honor System by the Washington and Lee Board of Trustees. The Executive Committee also serves as the student government organization, which maintains the student activity fee and is responsible for allocation of the funds, other than the Student Bar Association fee, to student organizations.
Honor is the moral cornerstone of Washington and Lee University. Commitment to honor is recognized by every student, faculty member, administrator, and staff member of the University. Honor provides the common thread woven through the many aspects of this institution and creates a community of trust and respect affecting fundamentally the relationships of all its members. The centrality of honor at Washington and Lee is contained in its Honor System. The Board of Trustees has granted to students the privilege of overseeing the administration of the Honor System. This privilege includes the responsibilities of (1) defining dishonorable acts that the current student generation views as breaches of the community’s trust; (2) investigating possible violations of the Honor System; (3) administering closed hearings where possible Honor Violations are suspected; (4) writing and revising the White Book, the Honor System policy and procedures manual; and (5) reporting directly to the Board of Trustees on the administration of the Honor System. The sole penalty for an Honor System violation is dismissal from the University. These responsibilities are administered by the Executive Committee of the Student Body, a group of students elected annually by their peers. Academic life is essentially shaped by the commitment to honor. Assuming that students will behave honorably, the faculty grants flexibility in the scheduling of most final examinations and all are taken without supervision. Take-home closed book examinations are a common occurrence. The pledge, “On my honor, I have neither given nor received any unacknowledged aid on this (exam, test, paper, etc.),” expresses the student’s promise that the work submitted is his or hers alone. Students’ dedication to honorable behavior creates a strong bond of trust among them and between them and the faculty. This student dedication and the bond that it engenders also provide the basis for the faculty’s commitment to accepting a student’s word without question.
The dedication to behave honorably is not confined to academic life. It is expected that students will respect each other’s word and intellectual and personal property in the residence halls and the Greek houses, on the playing field, in the city of Lexington, or wherever Washington and Lee students take themselves. This principled expectation provides the foundation for the community of trust which students seek to create not only in the academic sphere but in life outside it as well. The Honor System has been a unique feature of Washington and Lee University for well over a century. Thousands of students have lived under it while in residence, have been morally shaped by it and, as alumni and alumnae, continue to be guided by it in their professional lives. Current students are as committed to it as were those who lived and studied here before them, and they maintain with firm conviction this distinctive ideal of the University.
Students attending Washington and Lee must realize that our commitment to the principle of honor is firm. This commitment stems from a long tradition of trust and honesty in a community that respects those traits embodied in such great men as George Washington and Robert E. Lee. Under this system, students must not lie, cheat, steal or misrepresent themselves in any way that is considered dishonorable by the student generation involved. Students found guilty by their peers of a breach of the Honor System are dismissed permanently from the University.
The Honor System of Washington and Lee is based on the fundamental principle that a spirit of trust pervades all aspects of student life. This spirit of trust makes Washington and Lee a unique educational institution. Students enjoy unparalleled academic and social freedom. The system is one of mutual trust---trust among students, faculty, administrators, and townspeople that students attending Washington and Lee will conduct themselves honorably at all times, on or off campus. Students are expected to do their own work, represent themselves truthfully, and claim only that which is their own. No violation of this trust is more egregious than another or too small to be ignored.
The Honor System governs only acts that indicate a student is not worthy of trust by his or her peers. The System is not structured to work against students, but rather for students. It is not structured to frighten honest students, but rather to encourage them. The System is mutually reinforcing. The more students live by the System, the stronger the System becomes.
The notion of an honorable community is closely related to the University's educational objectives, for the learning process flourishes best in an environment where mutual trust and respect shape the bedrock of relationships within the community. Every student at Washington and Lee, thus, has a duty to the Honor System.
A student at Washington and Lee is presumed to act honorably at all times. A sense of mutual trust and respect surrounds all aspects of a student's life at Washington and Lee. Professors rely on the integrity of their students and expect that all work submitted is exclusively their own. All work at Washington and Lee, unless otherwise stated, is considered pledged.
The form of the pledge is: "On my honor, I have neither given nor received any unacknowledged aid on this (exam, test, paper, etc.)."
While President of Washington College, General Lee implemented a new understanding for behavior of students at the school. In asking the students of that time merely to behave as "gentlemen," he was asking for honesty, forthrightness, civility and courtesy in all their actions. Today, the same standard is expected of all students. Combined with the rigid standards of no lying or cheating, the Honor System has helped to build an atmosphere of trust in which students often leave their possessions unattended anywhere on campus without fear of theft.
One of the truest expressions of trust and honesty found on our campus and one of the most tangible privileges of the Washington and Lee Honor System is the open examination policy. Under this policy, it is the general practice of The College, the School of Law, and the Williams School, not to have exams proctored by University officials.
Undergraduates are allowed to schedule their exams on any day of the six possible exam dates at either the 9:00 a.m. or 2:00 p.m. sitting. Students are required to make their selections the week before the examination period begins. Only in rare instances are there stated times for a particular examination.
At the School of Law, only first-year course exams are given at one stated period. Generally, second and third-year law students have a choice between two stated times and dates.
This policy reinforces the great amount of trust placed in Washington and Lee students. In order for students to continue to exercise such academic freedom, they must accept the responsibilities and challenges of governing themselves. Part of the open exam policy is an agreement that no one will discuss any aspect of an exam with anyone else until the examination period has ended. Even a casual remark as to the difficulty of an exam is not allowed. Experience has proven such remarks may give some students an unfair academic advantage over their peers. Therefore, it is imperative to the freedom and trust placed in Washington and Lee students that no aspect of any exam be discussed or commented upon until the examination week is concluded. To do so would place a great strain on the privilege. Discussing exams is considered a serious honor violation.
"Plagiarism" describes the use of another's words or ideas without proper acknowledgment. The students of Washington and Lee University have considered plagiarism a violation of the Honor System in the past; therefore, all forms of plagiarism including Internet plagiarism are taken very seriously. Students at Washington and Lee must be aware of the nature of plagiarism. Plagiarism takes many forms, including the wholesale copying of phrases or texts, or the use of ideas without indicating the source. Certain facts must also be properly acknowledged.
Examples of possible plagiarism can be found in the Executive Committee's Plagiarism Pamphlet. This is available to the entire W&L community on the Executive Committee's website at ec.wlu.edu. In addition, Leyburn Library has a helpful site on avoiding plagiarism: go.wlu.edu/plagiarism.
The Honor System at Washington and Lee is administered exclusively by the Executive Committee of the Student Body. The authority for the Honor System comes directly from the Board of Trustees of the University and is in no way influenced by the University's administration or faculty.
Being completely student administered means that the students have a great responsibility in preserving this unique aspect of the community. As a result of previous students' dedication, the Honor System has remained strong in a day when many honor codes crumble under the pressure of legal challenge or simply fade away because of lack of interest. See The Honor System “White Book” published by the Student Executive Committee at ec.wlu.edu.
There shall be a Hearing Advisor Program. Hearing Advisors who show exceptional ability and a strong desire to uphold the Honor System shall be available to serve as members of the investigative team and as advisors for the respondent. The Executive Committee shall select a law student to serve as head hearing advisor and a student to serve as assistant head hearing advisor.
The Head Hearing Advisor shall administer the Hearing Advisor Program. These advisors are also available to assist in other conduct matters.
Anyone with knowledge of a possible Honor Violation should confront the suspected student and ask for an explanation of the incident. Should this explanation convince the inquiring person that no honor offense exists the matter should be dropped.
If the inquiring student believes that a violation exists, then the matter should be brought to the attention of a member of the Executive Committee. A person not wishing to confront a student suspected of an Honor Violation should bring the matter to the immediate attention of a member of the Executive Committee.
On receiving information that an Honor Violation might have occurred, the Executive Committee will investigate the charge. One member of the Executive Committee, one Hearing Advisor, and a member of the student body conduct the investigation and report their findings to the full Committee. If the Executive Committee believes that there is sufficient evidence of an Honor Violation, a closed hearing shall be held, during which the accused will be assisted by Hearing Advisors if he or she so chooses. If the Executive Committee finds the student not guilty, all charges are dropped and the student remains an active part of the University. A guilty verdict by the Executive Committee results in dismissal of the student from the University. The student, if he or she desires, may appeal the case to a Student Body Hearing. The Hearing, which is open to all members of the W&L community, is conducted before a jury of twelve students selected at random from the student body. The verdict of the student jury is final.
Academic policies are set by the faculty. The University Catalog on the web, along with the notifications of changes, is the most complete and up-to-date information about these policies. Please check the most current version on the University Registrar's web page at catalog.wlu.edu.
Participation in the work of a course is clearly a precondition for a student receiving credit in that course. Because of the wide variety of courses and teaching methods at Washington and Lee, the University recognizes that the nature of a student’s participation in the work of a course cannot be prescribed on a University-wide basis. For this reason classroom attendance is not a matter subject to regulation by the University. Attendance in class and laboratory is rather a matter between the student and the professor in that class or laboratory. Faculty members may require a previously registered student to drop a class if the student misses the first meeting of the term without the prior approval of the instructor. In such cases, the student is responsible for submitting the appropriate forms and fees. A student taking an unauthorized underload or maintaining an unapproved extended absence from classes (two weeks or more without contacting the appropriate Dean’s office) may be required to withdraw from the University.
Intercollegiate athletic competition provides young men and women with opportunities for character development and learning that are not necessarily available in the classroom context. This is particularly true at the Division III level, where athletics remain unsullied by the pressures imposed by scholarships, high exposure, and the need to promote revenue-generating events. As a consequence, Washington and Lee University encourages students to take maximum advantage of opportunities at the University to engage in intercollegiate athletics. This is part of their education. At the same time the University and the Department of Physical Education and Athletics recognize that the primary goal of a university education is intellectual development. As a consequence, student-athletes are fully expected to devote themselves to their courses and to their intellectual development in no less a fashion than they would were they not engaged in intercollegiate competition.
To accommodate these twin goals of intellectual development and athletic participation, the Department of Physical Education and Athletics makes every effort to schedule “the time, place, and duration of team practices and contests” in a manner that avoids conflicts with students’ class schedules (Mission Statement of the Department of Physical Education and Athletics). With respect to practices and team meetings, the faculty and coaching staff understand that class attendance takes precedence over participation in athletics. Furthermore, full class participation in courses that may cause students to miss occasional practices will not, in itself, prejudice the coaches in the selection of team participants.
On occasion, University-sanctioned athletic events may unavoidably conflict with academic schedules. In those situations, student-athletes are not automatically entitled to exemptions from class attendance. However, given the Athletic Department’s commitment to the academic mission of the University, professors are encouraged to accommodate those conflicts whenever doing so will not damage the individual student-athlete’s academic performance. In this regard, students who participate in intercollegiate athletics should review their calendars to see which athletic contests, if any, conflict with their academic schedules. Each student is responsible for discussing any scheduling conflict with his or her professors at the beginning of the term or as soon as possible after the student learns of the conflict. The ultimate goal is a reasonable accommodation of academic and athletic pursuits.
All students at Washington and Lee are expected to make steady progress toward completing their degree requirements. Their progress is judged by the quality of their academic work as measured by their grade-point averages. Withdrawal from courses, repetition of courses, incomplete courses, and transfer courses may have an effect on a student’s grade-point average, total credits attempted, or number of terms completed toward degree requirements. Eligibility for federal Title IV aid is determined by the Satisfactory Academic Progress guidelines listed in the financial aid section of the catalog.
Failure to make the minimum progress as defined below for undergraduate students will result in academic probation or in the students being suspended under the Automatic Rule.
The Committee on the Automatic Rule and Reinstatement places students on academic probation for the following term for failing to meet one or both of the following standards:
- the term grade-point average for any term falls below 2.000;
- the cumulative grade-point average falls below 2.000.
Students placed on academic probation are warned of their precarious position and advised to limit their participation in extracurricular activities during the period of their probation. Students who do not resolve their probationary status within the timeframes described below receive academic suspension under the Automatic Rule. Term specific information follows.
At the end of the fall term, a student is put on probation if the fall-term grade-point average is below 2.000 and/or the cumulative grade-point average is below 2.000.
These students will be on probation during the following winter term, at the end of which they must have a term and cumulative grade-point average of at least 2.000 to avoid academic suspension under the Automatic Rule.
At the end of the winter term, a student is put on probation if the winter-term grade-point average is below 2.000 and/or the cumulative grade-point average is below 2.000.
These students will be on probation during the following spring and fall terms. A spring-term grade-point average at or above 2.000 will not remove the student from academic probation, even if the cumulative grade-point average is over 2.000 at the end of the spring term. Rather, probation extends into the following 12-week fall term when the probation is either removed (via cumulative and term grade-point averages at or above 2.000) or converted to academic suspension.
At the end of the spring term, a student is put on probation if the spring-term grade-point average is below 2.000 and/or the cumulative grade-point average is below 2.000.
These students will be on probation during the following fall term, at the end of which they must have a term and cumulative grade-point average of at least 2.000 to avoid academic suspension under the Automatic Rule.
Automatic Rule (Academic Suspension)
At the end of any academic term, the Committee on the Automatic Rule and Reinstatement suspends students who are on probation if they fail to meet either the term grade-point average or cumulative grade-point average standards described above. Suspension from the university severs all connections and privileges associated with being a student at Washington and Lee.
The following also fall under the Automatic Rule:
- First-year students whose first-term grade-point average falls below 1.000; or
- Those students who have been reinstated on probation and who have failed to meet the grade-point standard required by the Committee on the Automatic Rule and Reinstatement; or
- Those students withdrawing from the university during any term for reasons other than medical and having a cumulative grade-point average below 2.000; or
- At the end of the winter term, those students unable to remove their probationary status by attempting no more than four credits during the spring term.
A student who has been suspended from the university under the Automatic Rule may apply for reinstatement after a minimum absence of one year (see the details and requirements for this process at “Reinstatement” or in the Reinstatement section of this handbook below). Such students are placed on academic probation if reinstated. Though rarely granted, a student may appeal for immediate reinstatement. Students petitioning for immediate reinstatement may appeal in writing to the Associate Dean of The College, Chair of the Committee on the Automatic Rule and Reinstatement by 5:00 p.m. US Eastern time December 30 for winter term or May 30 for fall term.
It is the policy of the Washington and Lee University and its School of Law to provide equal access to educational opportunities to qualified students with physical or mental disabilities, in accordance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Students requesting accommodation will need to provide appropriate documentation of: (1) a disability, which is a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; and (2) a need for accommodation, by virtue of the specific functional limitations of the disability, to have equal access to educational opportunities. The University and the School of Law intend to provide an interactive process of dialogue and timely exchange of information between the student and the designated Dean.
It is the responsibility of a student with a physical or mental disability who may require any type of accommodation to make the accommodation request in a timely manner. In order to allow sufficient time for the eligibility and accommodation decision process and to make arrangements for appropriate accommodations, the student should contact the designated Dean and submit the documents required for consideration of disability accommodations during the first month of the fall or winter academic terms. The designated Dean will inform the student of further specific procedures and required documentation.
Undergraduate students should contact the designated Associate Dean of The College, Lee-Jackson House, Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Virginia 24450, (540) 458.8746.
Undergraduate student accommodation policies, procedures, informational documents, and forms: go.wlu.edu/OGC/ugDisabilityPolicy.
Law students should contact the Associate Dean for Administration and Student Affairs for the School of Law, 508B Sydney Lewis Hall, Washington and Lee University School of Law, Lexington, Virginia 24450, (540) 458.8528.
Law student accommodations policies, procedures, informational documents, and forms: go.wlu.edu/OGC/LawDisabilityPolicy.
Undergraduate students who are not on academic or conduct probation who wish to leave the University temporarily for academic, medical, religious or military-service reasons, may request a Leave of Absence for a specified period of time. Leaves are normally approved for up to one academic year. The application (www.wlu.edu/university-registrar/forms) must be submitted to the designated Associate Dean of The College, who is the chair of the Committee on the Automatic Rule and Reinstatement.
Leaves planned in advance must be requested at least three weeks before the beginning of the term during which the student wants to be absent from W&L. Requests for unexpected (e.g., health- related) leaves must be made immediately and are not considered retroactively.
Medical leaves must be supported by Student Health and Counseling. Students must submit medical documentation in support of the leave with their application and/or in support of readiness to return, as feasible under the circumstances. Students must also submit with their application consent for the Director of the Student Health Center to communicate with the health- care provider in order to make an informed, individualized, objective recommendation to the applicable University administrators on the appropriateness of the leave of absence, readiness to return, and follow up treatment needs.
Academic leaves of absence are normally granted only for the purpose of academic enrichment. Students taking courses elsewhere while on leave of absence must request departmental approval in advance for any course to be used for degree credit, particularly major or FDR requirements.
Other types of leaves will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
For the purpose of federally subsidized financial aid only, students on Spring Option will be reported as being on Leave of Absence.
Return is contingent upon approval of a Return from Leave of Absence application and good conduct in the interim. Return is also contingent on an acceptable academic record during an academic leave and/or on readiness to resume full-time academic and campus life after a medical leave, with or without reasonable accommodation, as determined by the University. The University reserves the right to request appropriate documentation, determined on a case-by-case basis, to confirm that the student is qualified and/or ready for return. Students found to be not ready or academically qualified to return in the judgment of the University, after an individualized assessment based on best available current information, will be considered to have voluntarily withdrawn. Such students may apply for reinstatement (see go.wlu.edu/ugr-reinstate).
Students who do not return for the specified term will be withdrawn retroactive to their leave date and may face financial consequences. Leaves of longer than 180 days may also have financial consequences.
Student conduct issues arising during a leave of absence may result in referral for discipline prior to or upon return to the University, which could lead to suspension or required withdrawal from the University.
Law students wishing to request a leave of absence should contact the Associate Dean for Administration and Student Affairs at the School of Law.
Note: The University applies this policy and associated procedures in a nondiscriminatory manner, in consultation with qualified professionals, as appropriate, and will make each reinstatement or readmission determination based on an individualized assessment of that student's situation and what is in the best interests of the student, the campus community, and the University.
Students who believe their class work has been unfairly evaluated have the right to bring the matter to the attention of the head of the department concerned. The head of the department may then discuss the grade with the faculty member involved. However, the determination of any student’s grade remains the responsibility of the faculty member teaching the course.
Students who withdraw voluntarily sever their connection with the University. Students must accomplish withdrawal during a term through the appropriate Dean (designated Associate Dean of the College or Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students (or designee for either)). Those students withdrawing from the university during any term for reasons other than medical and having a cumulative grade-point average below 2.000 will fall under the Automatic Rule. A voluntary withdrawal will have an effect on academic grades and/or credits, refund of applicable fees, and access to University housing or other facilities. The University will consider students not returning for a subsequent term to have withdrawn voluntarily. Students who withdraw voluntarily may apply for reinstatement (see the details and requirements for this process in the Reinstatement section below.)
A student taking an unauthorized underload or maintaining an unapproved extended absence from classes (two weeks or more without contacting the appropriate Dean’s office) may be required to withdraw from the University for the term in which that conduct occurs, forfeiting all academic credit, tuition and fees for that term. The appropriate Dean will inform the student of the withdrawal, along with the steps that the student must take to apply for reinstatement.
The University expects students themselves to notify family members when they withdraw from the University. However, the University retains the discretion to notify parents, guardians or spouses of student withdrawals, which constitute a change in a student’s official enrollment status, with student consent or when the University deems it appropriate to do so and in accordance with the University’s student records policy.
Students who withdraw voluntarily or who are withdrawn administratively from or suspended by the University may apply for reinstatement.
Undergraduate applications for reinstatement are available online at go.wlu.edu/ugr-reinstatement. Undergraduate students must return the completed application, along with all required materials, so that the designated Associate Dean of The College receives it by 5:00 p.m. (US Eastern time) November 15 for winter term, March 1 for spring term, and May 15 or August 1 for fall term. The University will not reinstate an undergraduate student for a spring term unless that student has both: 1) satisfactorily completed at least one fall or winter term at Washington and Lee University, and 2) was registered for a full-time course load through midterm during at least one of the two preceding 12-week terms at Washington and Lee. This means that first-year and new transfer students who withdraw during the Winter Term are not eligible to apply for reinstatement for Spring Term unless they have completed the Fall Term in the same academic year. Undergraduate applications for reinstatement are reviewed and acted upon at the discretion of the Committee on the Automatic Rule and Reinstatement ("the Committee"). See http://catalog.wlu.edu/content.php?catoid=15&navoid=1195#REINSTATE.
Law student applications for readmission are available from the Director of Law School Records. Law students must return the completed application, along with all required materials, so that the Director of Law School Records receives it by November 15 for spring term or July 1 for fall term.
The Law School will not readmit a law student unless the student can complete his or her degree within six (6) years of beginning it (see law school catalog for exception for reinstatement after active duty military service). The Dean of the Law School (or designee) will review and act upon applications for law students.
In all reinstatement cases (whether the withdrawal was voluntary or involuntary, including suspensions), the University reserves the right to require sufficient documentation, determined on a case-by-case basis, that the student is qualified and ready to return to full-time academic work and campus life. Depending on the particular circumstances and reasons for the individual student's withdrawal, this may involve an on-campus interview with one or more appropriate university officials and/or submission of a written progress assessment from a treating health professional indicating that the student is qualified and ready to resume the particular rigors and essential requirements of full-time academic work and campus life at Washington and Lee, with or without reasonable accommodation, and that his/her treatment and care needs, if applicable, can be supported at Washington and Lee.
In cases where the University requires a written progress assessment from a treating health professional, the Director of Student Health and Counseling Services and/or a University Counselor will require a release from the student to discuss current treatment and follow-up needs with the treating health professional, in order to assess whether the student is qualified and ready to return to the particular rigors and essential requirements of full-time academic work and campus life at Washington and Lee, with or without reasonable accommodation, and whether the University can provide the follow-up care needed to maintain the student's enrollment. The Director of Student Health and Counseling Services and/or a University Counselor will review this information and recommend to the Committee or Dean of the Law School or designee approval (with or without conditions of treatment, education, counseling, or other) or denial of the reinstatement/readmission. Members of the Committee or Dean of the Law School may review the health professional’s written progress assessment and/or relevant health care records when needed to inform their decision-making.
After consulting with University health professionals and/or other appropriate university officials as necessary to facilitate an informed decision, the Committee or Dean of the Law School or designee will act on the application. Decisions regarding undergraduate reinstatement are made at the sole discretion of the Committee on the Automatic Rule and Reinstatement or, for law-student readmission, the Dean of the Law School or designee. For more information about undergraduate student reinstatement procedures, consult the University Web page at www.wlu.edu/the- college/for-students/curriculum-and-policies/reinstatement.
Note: The University applies this policy and associated procedures in a nondiscriminatory manner, in consultation with qualified professionals, as appropriate, and will make each reinstatement or readmission determination based on an individualized assessment of that student’s situation and what is in the best interests of the student, the campus community, and the University.
The Board of Trustees reserves the right to withhold the degree of any student who has been convicted of a felony by a court in any jurisdiction. Upon the satisfactory completion of that student’s court-imposed sentence, including any period of supervised probation, the Board may approve the awarding of such degree.
The Board may postpone approval of a degree for any student who has been charged with a felony in any jurisdiction when such charge is pending at the time the degree is to be awarded.
Admission to the Washington and Lee community carries with it certain expectations concerning personal conduct. These expectations are specifically covered by the Honor System. Other less specific expectations concern the way we treat each other. Lee described the expectation at Washington College as "gentlemanly behavior." Today, we interpret this to mean civil, decent behavior designed to encourage mutual respect for our individual differences, desires, and ways of thinking.
Washington and Lee University expects an atmosphere of civility and mutual respect to prevail. Instances of uncivil behavior involving students are most effectively dealt with in personal and informal ways, not by formal conduct procedures. Therefore, members of the Washington and Lee community who believe they have been objects of such behavior should first seek resolution by personal consultation with friends, faculty, designated advisers, or others who may intervene in the dispute. If such direct efforts do not resolve the matter, instances of uncivil behavior involving students may be reported to the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students. The University will take appropriate action by resolving the matter, referring the matter to other resources for informal resolution where appropriate, or to the designated conduct body. One of five conduct bodies may exercise formal procedures:
- The Executive Committee of the Student Body (EC) oversees the Honor System and hears cases of breaches of trust such as lying, cheating, and stealing.
- The Student Judicial Council (SJC) hears allegations of alcohol policy violations and other types of student misconduct.
- The Student-Faculty Hearing Board (SFHB) hears allegations of prohibited discrimination, harassment, retaliation, sexual misconduct, and hazing by individual students and student organizations not under the jurisdiction of the Interfraternity Council or the Panhellenic Council.
- The Interfraternity Council (IFC) hears allegations of hazing, retaliation associated with hazing, and other violations of University policy by fraternities.
- Panhellenic Council (NPC) hears allegations of hazing, retaliation associated with hazing, and other violations of University policy by sororities.
Students or student organizations may be required to sever their connection with the University for non-academic reasons by disciplinary action as outlined in the Student Handbook. In cases where the University has reason to believe that a student or student organization represents a threat to the well-being of the University community, the President or Provost, or their designee, may suspend or dismiss the student, suspend a student organization, or take other appropriate action. Students who are suspended may apply for reinstatement after the period of suspension. Student organizations may apply for reinstatement after the period of suspension. Students and student organizations who are dismissed from the University are precluded from returning to Washington and Lee.
Note: The University applies this policy and associated procedures in a nondiscriminatory manner, in consultation with qualified professionals, and will make each determination based on an individualized assessment of that student’s situation, observations of student conduct, actions, and statements, and their impact on others and the campus community, not on mere perceptions or speculations.
Washington and Lee University is committed to the well-being and safety of its community members and the integrity of its learning environment. The University may require a student to take an administrative withdrawal if there is a sufficient showing that: (1) the student is engaging or is likely to engage in behavior that presents a significant risk of substantial harm to others that cannot be eliminated or reduced by reasonable accommodation; or (2) is engaging or is likely to engage in behavior that substantially disrupts the learning environment and activities of the campus community; or (3) that the student is not otherwise qualified to participate in university programs or activities, with or without reasonable accommodation, including but not limited to a determination that the student requires a level of treatment and care which the University cannot provide to support the student’s continued enrollment and presence on campus. Any of the above circumstances will support a required administrative withdrawal when based on a reasonable, individualized assessment of current objective information, in consultation with qualified professionals, as appropriate.
This policy and associated procedures do not take the place of sanctions associated with a student's behavior that is in violation of University policies, standards, or regulations. This policy is to be invoked in extraordinary circumstances in which, in the discretion of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students or the Dean of the Law School (“appropriate Dean”) or designee, the conduct board process cannot be used or is not appropriate.
This policy may be invoked when a student is unable or unwilling to request a voluntary withdrawal and the appropriate Dean or designee deems a withdrawal necessary to protect the health and safety of the campus community or the integrity of the learning environment and campus programs and activities. Examples of such extraordinary circumstances include, but are not limited to: ongoing substance abuse, threats or acts of harm to others, or bizarre or destructive behavior causing trauma to others and disruption to the campus community. Before a required administrative withdrawal is considered, the appropriate Dean or designee will encourage the student to take a voluntary withdrawal. The procedures related to this policy appear below. A withdrawal form (registrar.wlu.edu/forms) will be filed with the University Registrar’s office by the appropriate Dean or designee.
A student who is involuntarily withdrawn may apply for reinstatement under the detailed process and requirements set out above (see also "Reinstatement" in the catalog).
Note: The University applies this policy and associated procedures in a nondiscriminatory manner, in consultation with qualified professionals, and will make each determination based on an individualized assessment of that student’s situation, observations of student conduct, actions, and statements, and their impact on others and the campus community, not on mere perceptions or speculations.
Consideration of Required Administrative Withdrawal
The Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee will consider required administrative withdrawal for undergraduates. The Dean of the Law School or designee will consider required administrative withdrawal for law students. Upon learning of a student’s behavior from among a variety of sources (such as Student Health Center, Campus Counseling Services, Public Safety, Residential Life staff, a student’s adviser, etc.), the appropriate dean or designee may initiate the following procedures, as deemed appropriate:
The appropriate dean or designee will notify the student that a required administrative withdrawal is under consideration and will afford the student an opportunity to discuss the behavior and circumstances at the time. The appropriate dean or designee will discuss with the student the implications of a required administrative withdrawal and the relevant procedures, and will provide the student with a copy of this policy. Whenever possible and appropriate, the appropriate dean or designee will encourage the student to take a voluntary withdrawal from the University. The appropriate dean or designee may involve a parent, guardian, or spouse in this process with student consent, or when the appropriate dean or designee deems it appropriate to do so and in accordance with the University’s student records policy as applicable.
The appropriate dean or designee also will confer as appropriate and feasible with the following University resources, or others as appropriate to the circumstances, regarding the need for a required administrative withdrawal under the policy:
- University Physicians
- University Counselors
- Office of Public Safety
- Residential Life Staff
- General Counsel
- Faculty Adviser
- Academic Deans
The appropriate dean or designee may require an evaluation of the student’s behavior and any relevant physical/mental conditions by an appropriate medical professional if the dean or designee believes that an evaluation will facilitate an informed decision. This evaluation may be done by University physicians/counselors, or by outside health professionals, including the student’s treating health professional, as indicated and appropriate in the appropriate dean’s or designee’s judgment.
Following these consultations and the review of all relevant information available, the appropriate dean or designee will make a decision regarding the required administrative withdrawal. At any time prior to the appropriate dean’s or designee’s decision, the student may choose to take a voluntary withdrawal, subject to a showing of readiness to resume full-time academic work and campus life at the time of any application for reinstatement, under the policy and procedures for reinstatement (see Reinstatement section).
In cases involving an imminent threat to health or safety, the appropriate dean or designee has the discretion to take immediate action to remove the student from campus pending receipt and review of all relevant information.
Required Administrative Withdrawal Imposed
The appropriate dean or designee will give the student advance written notice of a required administrative withdrawal including the beginning date of the withdrawal and the steps that the student must take to request reinstatement. The appropriate dean or designee will notify a parent, guardian, or spouse of the withdrawal, either with the student’s consent or when he/she deems it appropriate and in the student’s best interest to do so, in accordance with the University’s student records policy.
The student must leave campus within the time frame established by the appropriate dean or designee in the required administrative withdrawal notice. The appropriate dean or designee may ask a parent, guardian, spouse, or other appropriate individual to make arrangements to remove the student from the University. If the student refuses to leave campus after imposition of a required administrative withdrawal, the appropriate dean or designee may implement an enforced administrative withdrawal, equivalent to an immediate suspension. During the duration of the withdrawal, the student may visit the campus only with prior written authorization from the appropriate dean or designee.
A student may appeal a required administrative withdrawal under this policy to the Provost; however, at the discretion of the appropriate dean or designee the withdrawal may remain in effect during the appeal. A student who wishes to appeal must do so in a written letter of appeal delivered to the Provost within three business days of receipt of the appropriate dean or designee’s withdrawal decision. The written appeal must state specifically why the student believes the appropriate dean’s or designee’s decision is not warranted under the circumstances. After reviewing the written appeal, the Provost may meet with the student and consult with the appropriate dean or designee and/or other University officials, as he or she deems necessary, before reaching a decision. The decision of the Provost is final.
Required Administrative Withdrawal Not Imposed
In the event that a required administrative withdrawal is not imposed, the appropriate dean or designee may impose specific conditions and/or requirements for the student to have continued enrollment and presence at Washington and Lee, after an individualized assessment of the student’s situation. One of these requirements may be a behavioral contract. Non-compliance with such conditions/requirements will result in reconsideration of a required administrative withdrawal from the University. The appropriate dean or designee will notify a parent, guardian or spouse of the specific conditions and requirements for the student’s continued enrollment, either with the student’s consent or when he/she deems it appropriate and in the best interest of the student to do so, in accordance with the University’s student records policy as applicable.
Under the University's Nondiscrimination/Equal Employment Opportunity Statement (go.wlu.edu/OGC/NonDiscrimination), students, faculty, and staff have the right to be free from prohibited discrimination, harassment, and retaliation within the University community. Specifically, the University prohibits discrimination, including harassment, on the basis of race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, veteran's status, and genetic information in its educational programs and activities and with regard to employment as described and addressed in the Interim University Policy on Prohibited Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Other Than Sex. The University also prohibits discrimination, harassment and retaliation on the basis of sex and gender, including sexual orientation, gender expression, and gender identity, stalking, and domestic and dating violence as described and addressed in the separate Amended Interim Sexual Misconduct Policy. Finally, the University prohibits retaliation against any individual who brings a good faith complaint under either policy or is involved in the complaint process. Under the Amended Interim Sexual Misconduct Policy, protection against retaliation also extends to any individual who engages in bystander intervention of sexual misconduct. Such conduct violates not only University policy and expectations of personal integrity and respect for others, but may also violate state and federal law. Students, faculty, and staff found to have violated either policy will be disciplined appropriately, up to and including termination from employment or dismissal from the University.
The Interim University Policy on Prohibited Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Other Than Sex is available at go.wlu.edu/OGC/DiscriminationPolicy.
- Procedures for Complaints Against Faculty, Staff, and Other Non-Students: go.wlu.edu/OGC/ComplaintsAgainstNonStudents
- Procedures for Complaints Against Students: go.wlu.edu/OGC/ComplaintsAgainstStudents The Amended Interim Sexual Misconduct Policy: go.wlu.edu/OGC/SexualMisconductPolicy.
Note: The procedures for complaints against students and non-students are included in the text of the Amended Interim Sexual Misconduct Policy.
The Board of Trustees of Washington and Lee University condemns irresponsible alcohol distribution and consumption. Abusive consumption of alcohol and illegal drug use are inconsistent with the core values of Washington and Lee University. The Board expects W&L students to act responsibly and to conduct themselves in accordance with the applicable laws and University policies on alcohol and drugs. The Board is committed to combating cultural causes of substance abuse on campus. The Board is committed to reducing substance abuse by students through comprehensive education and counseling programs, and effective discipline requiring individual and organizational accountability for alcohol and drug policy violations.
Washington and Lee University supports the Commonwealth of Virginia laws on the licensing, distribution and consumption of alcoholic beverages. Furthermore, Washington and Lee University supports the Commonwealth of Virginia and federal laws on the possession, use, sale, or transfer of illegal drugs/controlled substances. It is the responsibility of all members of the University community to abide by those laws. A fundamental principle of the Washington and Lee University Policy on Alcohol is that students are adults who are personally responsible for conforming their behavior to state and local laws and University policy.
Washington and Lee Public Safety works with the Lexington Police, the Rockbridge County Sheriff, and the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Board to promote awareness of and adherence to the alcohol laws.
Through the appropriate University administrative offices, committees and organizations, Washington and Lee University conducts on-going educational programs to acquaint students with the Commonwealth of Virginia laws on alcohol and other drugs, the health dangers of alcohol abuse, and the medical and counseling resources available for students. A student who violates Washington and Lee University’s alcohol and/or drug policies will be referred to the Dean of Students’ Office to be handled administratively or by the Student Judicial Council. Resolution of the alleged violation will be handled in accordance with the University Policies on Alcohol and Other Drugs.
Washington and Lee University prohibits hazing by all students and campus organizations. Hazing is defined by Virginia law at Va. Code §18.2-56 as follows: “‘Hazing’ means to recklessly or intentionally endanger the health or safety of a student or students or to inflict bodily injury on a student or students in connection with or for the purpose of initiation, admission into or affiliation with or as a condition for continued membership in a club, organization, association, fraternity, sorority, or student body regardless of whether the student or students so endangered or injured participated voluntarily in the relevant activity."
Hazing is a criminal offense in Virginia and any person found guilty of hazing is subject to a Class 1 misdemeanor, unless the injury would be such as to constitute a felony, and in that event the punishment shall be imposed as is otherwise provided by law for the punishment of such felony. Any person receiving bodily injury by hazing or mistreatment shall have a right to sue, civilly, the person or persons guilty thereof, whether adults or infants.
The University will not tolerate hazing by students or student organizations. Furthermore, it will hold individuals strictly accountable for their actions. In serious hazing cases or in cases where evidence is not forthcoming, the University may refer the case to law enforcement authorities.
No individuals or campus organizations may retaliate against any individual who brings forward allegations of hazing, is a witness involved with, or cooperates in the investigation or adjudication of hazing cases. Retaliation includes, but is not limited to, physical, verbal, or written harassment, threats, or intimidation of any person(s) who brought the complaint of hazing to the University or of anyone who was a witness or involved in the University’s review of the case.
Examples of prohibited hazing include, but are not limited to, the following activities:
- Physical abuse such as paddling, striking, branding, electric shock or bodily contact with harmful substances
- Intimidation by threats of physical or other abuse
- Excessive exercise or other tasks intended to cause physical exhaustion
- Prolonged or repetitive tasks that result in sleep deprivation
- Prolonged or harmful exposure to the elements
- Compelled consumption of any amount of alcohol
- Compelled consumption of food, liquids or concoctions intended to cause nausea
- Any task that requires the participant to violate the law or University policies
This list does not and cannot encompass every circumstance that will cause the University to discipline a student or student organization for hazing. However, students must be aware that participation in the above listed activities, as well as retaliation associated with a hazing complaint, will result in disciplinary action, including suspension or dismissal from the University. Furthermore, students must understand, and Virginia law explicitly states, that consent or acquiescence of those who are hazed is not a defense for engaging in this practice.
Allegations of hazing or retaliation by individuals or student organizations not under the jurisdiction of the Interfraternity Council (IFC) or National Panhellenic Council (NPC) will be heard and adjudicated by the Student-Faculty Hearing Board. Allegations of hazing or retaliation by fraternities and sororities will be heard and adjudicated by the IFC/NPC, respectively.
All cases of suspected hazing or retaliation under this policy should be reported to the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students. Credible complaints may result in immediate suspension and investigation of new member education programs of the accused Greek or other student organization.
The Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students will charge the Office of Public Safety (or designee) with conducting an investigation of the alleged hazing or retaliation incident(s). The investigator will report the findings of the investigation to the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students and appropriate conduct body.
If the investigation finds no evidence of hazing or retaliation but does uncover other violations of regulations governing new member education established by the IFC/NPC or violations of other University policies, the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students will send the matter to the appropriate conduct body for its review and action. The IFC and NPC are responsible for regulations governing new member education for prospective new members of fraternity/sorority chapters and for sanctioning chapters that violate those rules.
If the investigation finds that a hearing should occur on allegations of hazing or retaliation with a student organization under the jurisdiction of the IFC or NPC, the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students will send the matter to the relevant Council. If the investigation finds that a hearing should occur on allegations of hazing or retaliation by an individual student or student organization not under the jurisdiction of the IFC or NPC, the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students will send the matter to the Student- Faculty Hearing Board (SFHB). The Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students will provide the individual or organization accused with a written statement of the charges and a list of student Advocates.
Please see go.wlu.edu/OGC/AcceptableUse for the most current version of this policy.
Washington and Lee University provides computing and network resources to its students primarily for educational purposes and to its faculty and staff primarily for work purposes. The University may provide access to other users at its discretion. Use of the University's computing and network resources is a privilege. All users are expected to exercise personal and professional responsibility and integrity when using these resources.
This policy applies to all users of University owned or managed computer-related equipment, computer systems, and interconnecting networks, as well as all information contained therein.
There are no definitions applicable to this policy.
The University enforces necessary restrictions, which may be revised from time to time, to protect its computing and network resources, including the revocation of use privileges for unauthorized or inappropriate use. The Chief Technology Officer or designee is authorized to temporarily suspend use privileges in any case he or she deems appropriate until final resolution of the matter. While the University desires to maintain user privacy and to avoid the unnecessary interruption of user activities, and while the University does not monitor the content of user activities, the University reserves the right to investigate concerns of unauthorized or improper use of University resources, as appropriate.
The campus network, including its servers and associated software, is the property of Washington and Lee University. Neither the network pathways nor W&L-owned computer systems are to be used:
- for purposes incompatible with established University policies, procedures, protocols or applicable laws;
- for unauthorized commercial enterprise;
- for harassing, fraudulent, or threatening purposes; or
- for pirating software, music or images.
The following activities are nonexclusive examples of those that are not permitted and that may lead to suspension or revocation of use privileges and other penalties or discipline:
- unauthorized access, attempts to gain unauthorized access, unauthorized disclosure of confidential information, or violation of the University's Confidentiality Policy (go.wlu.edu/OGC/Confidentiality) involving the University's computing and network resources;
- misrepresenting or attempting to misrepresent one's identity;
- altering or tampering with the configuration of computers in student labs and other common areas, or installing unauthorized games or other programs on their hard disks or on the shared-files area of the file servers;
- any network activity that impedes the flow of network traffic, significantly diminishes the availability of resources to other users, or imposes avoidable burdens on other users (for example, sending mass e-mails instead of using the appropriate services available for communicating with the entire community or large sub-groups); or
- the unauthorized physical or virtual extension or re-configuration of any portion of the campus network by such means as routers (wired or wireless), wireless access points, network wiring, or other methods.
Students, faculty, staff, and volunteers with access to confidential data are reminded of the University's Confidentiality Policy (go.wlu.edu/OGC/Confidentiality). Among other things, the policy states that electronic documents and files containing confidential information are to be accessed, used, and disclosed only with explicit authorization and only on a need-to-know basis for either an employee's job functions or volunteer's service.
In August, 2003, the University implemented a ban on the use of peer-to-peer file-swapping software on computers attached to the University network. The programs, including KaZaA, Morpheus, iMesh, Gnutella, LimeWire, Grokster, and other descendants of Napster, are used nearly exclusively to download and allow the uploading of copyright-protected music, movies, software, and other works, likely in violation of federal law.
Sharing protected works by unauthorized copying is not only a violation of copyright law but also a violation of the University's Computer and Network Use Policy, which forbids use of the network "for purposes incompatible with established University codes and regulations or applicable laws."
Agents of copyright owners have become increasingly aggressive in pursuing violators on university networks, filing suits seeking tens of thousands of dollars in damages from some students and other users. The ban seeks to protect users from exposure to such liability, to adhere to the copyright laws, and to protect network capacity for educational uses.
The use of peer-to-peer computer file sharing programs (e.g., KaZaA, Morpheus, LimeWire, iMesh, Gnuttella, Grokster, and all similar programs and their successors) that are primarily employed to share copyrighted works is prohibited on the campus network. Where possible, banned file swapping will be intercepted and blocked by network control systems. The use of methods designed to evade that blocking is prohibited. For help in removing file swapping software from a computer, call the Information Desk at xHELP (x4357). Specific exceptions to this policy may be approved by the Chief Technology Officer in instances where such programs will be used exclusively for educational/research purposes and in a manner that complies with all US copyright laws.
It is the policy and intent of Washington and Lee University that all members of the University community adhere to the provisions of United States copyright law. A copyright grants to its owner the right to control an intellectual or artistic creation, to prohibit others from using the work in specific ways without permission, and to profit from the sale and performance of the work. Copyright protection extends beyond copies of the written word and recordings of sound to include visual and animated images, and encompasses "hard copy" and electronic use and duplication of protected works. Each member of the University community must take some individual responsibility for copyright compliance. The University has developed extensive guidelines to assist and direct faculty, students, and staff in their compliance obligations. The full University Policy for the Use of Copyrighted Works can be found at go.wlu.edu/OGC/CopyrightPolicy. Conforming to this policy may in some cases result in additional costs to the student for course materials and some additional inconvenience and time delay in the preparation procedure of those materials. Members of the University community who willfully disregard the copyright policy do so at their own risk.
Whatever gray areas there may be in copyright law, offering for sharing over the network a recording, movie, text, software, graphic image, or other work without the authorization of the owner of that work's copyright is unambiguously offering to "distribute" that work and subjects one to serious legal consequences. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act and other statutes require the University to cooperate in eliminating such activity.
Users must protect themselves and the University by not making copyrighted materials available over the Internet without the owner's authorization. Students must ensure that their computers are not offering to share copyrighted works. Faculty and staff may not use their University-owned computers to run file-sharing programs.
Copyright infringement is the act of exercising, without permission or legal authority, one or more of the exclusive rights granted to the copyright owner under section 106 of the Copyright Act (Title 17 of the United States Code). These rights include the right to reproduce or distribute a copyrighted work. In the file-sharing context, downloading or uploading substantial parts of a copyrighted work without authority constitutes an infringement.
Penalties for copyright infringement include civil and criminal penalties. In general, anyone found liable for civil copyright infringement may be ordered to pay either actual damages or “statutory” damages set at not less than $750 and not more than $30,000 per work infringed. For “willful” infringement, a court may award up to $150,000 per work infringed. A court can, in its discretion, also assess costs and attorney’s fees. For details, see Title 17, United States Code, Sections 504, 505.
Willful copyright infringement can also result in criminal penalties, including imprisonment of up to five years and fines of up to $250,000 per offense.
For more information, please see W&L’s Peer-to-Peer File Sharing Policy (go.wlu.edu/OGC/P2P- Policy), W&L’s Plan to Deter Illegal Peer-to-Peer File Sharing (go.wlu.edu/OGC/P2P-Deterrence), and/or the website of the U.S. Copyright Office (www.copyright.gov), especially their FAQs (www.copyright.gov/help/faq).
Students may not make audio or video recordings of classes without the advance written permission of the instructor. Students may use such recordings only for course purposes, may not distribute them outside the class, and are expected to destroy the recordings at the conclusion of the course term. The full policy is located at go.wlu.edu/OGC/RecordingOfClasses.
The Copyright Act protects audiovisual works such as films, videos, and DVDs and controls the showing of movies to any public group. Among the rights of a copyright holder is the right to authorize public performance (showing) of videotape or DVD copies of films subject to “fair use.” Showing of copyrighted films, videotapes, or DVDs generally is permissible in conjunction with teaching activities.
If a videotape or DVD is labeled “For Home Use Only,” the showing must fall under the face-to-face classroom teaching exemption, be licensed or be permissible as “fair use.” Unless a license is acquired, most performances (showings) of films, videotapes, or DVDs in a public room, or in a university building (including public areas of fraternities, sororities, and other university housing), for entertainment, whether a fee is charged or not, is an infringement.
If a performance license is needed, the University’s libraries will assist you in seeking permission by helping you locate the address of the producer’s permissions department. You will then need to fax or send a letter giving full details of what, where, when, how many times, admission policy, advertising, etc. Add a line for the permission agent’s signature and include a self-addressed stamped return envelope or a return fax number. Student organizations showing films for entertainment purposes are responsible for paying royalties.
The showing of a protected work for a legitimate educational purpose may qualify as "fair use" or fall within the exemption of classroom teaching and not require permission. More information is available in the University's Policy for the Use of Copyrighted Works (go.wlu.edu/OGC/CopyrightPolicy), especially Section IV.
Faculty, staff, and students may use the University’s names, logos, and/or other marks (e.g. W&L, the W&L crest) where necessary to identify themselves on matters of official University business. Use of the University name for private purposes is limited to use purely for identification by a current or former member of the faculty, staff, and/or student body (e.g. “John Doe, Professor of Physics, Washington and Lee University,” or “John Doe, Class of ’79, W&L”). W&L names, logos, and other marks shall not be used by individuals or entities otherwise in a manner that implies University endorsement or responsibility for particular activities, products, or publications involved, or by any individual or group promoting itself, without the express written permission of the Provost or designee. Any and all use of the University names, logos, and/or other marks for commercial purposes is prohibited unless approved by the Treasurer or designee.
For more information, consult the University Policy on Intellectual Property at go.wlu.edu/OGC/IP- Policy.
This policy is designed to make the campus community aware of the fundamental principles that will govern University-sponsored clinical and educational activities relating to Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), and to ensure that confirmed or suspected cases of infection are managed appropriately. It is also intended to provide basic information to members of the campus community about the ways in which HIV, the causative factor leading to AIDS, is transmitted. This policy is based on the best currently available medical knowledge and complies with current ethical and legal standards regarding HIV infection and AIDS.
Extensive medical research indicates that HIV is not transmitted through casual contact. Transmission of HIV requires: intimate sexual contact with a person infected with HIV; percutaneous exposure (by puncture) to needles or other sharps contaminated with HIV (e.g. through shared needles in the setting of intravenous drug abuse, or employee exposure in a health care setting); or percutaneous exposure (into the body through punctured or broken skin or mucous membranes) to HIV-infected blood or blood products or other potentially infectious body fluids. Accordingly, legal and ethical considerations suggest there is no reason to adopt policies or courses of action that would deny ordinary privileges and rights, including that of privacy, to students, faculty or staff members who are known or suspected to be infected with HIV.
The University will make available current information on HIV and AIDS to the campus community. The University will also make available to students appropriate clinical services related to HIV and AIDS, including testing and counseling, and will make referrals as necessary to other health-care providers for appropriate medical care. The Student Health Committee will review this policy regularly and recommend updates as indicated. Administrative responsibility for implementing this policy is assigned to the Director of Health Services.
Smoking, including e-cigarettes, is not permitted inside classroom buildings, administrative buildings, residence halls (including Greek housing), dining areas, University Store, athletic facilities, or University owned or rented vehicles. Smokers are asked to refrain from smoking in entranceways to buildings, or adjacent to open windows or air intakes, or in other outdoor areas where environmental smoke is not rapidly dispersed. All members of the University community are expected to treat each other with courtesy and respect in honoring this policy.
Washington and Lee University is committed to providing a safe and secure learning and working environment for students, faculty, staff and visitors on all campus properties. The use, possession and storage of all firearms, dangerous weapons, explosives, electric shock devices, or other dangerous articles are prohibited on all properties owned, leased, or otherwise controlled by Washington and Lee University. Law enforcement officers duly authorized to carry such instruments are excepted.
Any person violating this policy will be subject to conduct sanctions including suspension or dismissal from the University or termination of employment. Student violations will be dealt with through the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students. Staff and faculty violations should be reported to the Director of Public Safety.
This policy is established by Washington and Lee University in compliance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 and applies to all students at the University.
For the purposes of this policy, a student may be considered to be a “missing person” if the student’s absence from campus is contrary to his or her usual pattern of behavior and W&L has reasonable belief that the unusual circumstances may have caused the absence. Such circumstances may include, but not be limited to, a report or suspicion that the student may be a victim of foul play; the student has expressed suicidal thoughts, may be drug dependent or in a life threatening situation; or if the student is overdue returning to campus and is not heard from after giving a specific return time to friends or family.
If a member of the University Community has reason to believe that a student is missing, whether or not the student resides on campus, that individual should contact the University's Public Safety Office. Public Safety will collaborate with the Student Affairs staff to make an effort to locate the student and determine his or her state of health and well-being. Public Safety will gather pertinent information about the student from the reporting person. Such information may include description, cellular phone number, clothes last worn, vehicle description, information about the physical and emotional well-being of the student, an up-to-date photograph, etc.
University officials will also endeavor to determine the student's whereabouts through contact with friends, associates, and/or employers of the student, and determine whether the student has been attending classes, scheduled organizational or academic meetings, and work. If the student is an on-campus resident, Public Safety may make a welfare entry into the student's room. If the student resides off-campus, Public Safety will informally enlist the aid of the neighboring police agency having jurisdiction.
If a residential student is reported missing and cannot be located, certain notices will be made as follows:
- Parents/Guardians will be notified within 24 hours (after Public Safety receives the initial missing person report) to determine whether they know the whereabouts of the student.
- Local law enforcement will be notified within 24 hours after Public Safety determines that the student is missing.
- The student’s designated emergency contact (if any) will be notified once Public Safety or local law enforcement personnel make a determination that the student has been missing for more than 24 hours.
If the student is an off-campus resident, Public Safety will notify appropriate family members or associates within 24 hours of receiving the initial report. These individuals will then be encouraged to make an official missing-person report to the law enforcement agency with jurisdiction. Public Safety will cooperate, aid, and assist the primary investigative agency as appropriate.
After the student has been located, Public Safety will attempt to verify the student's state of health and intention of returning to the campus. When and where appropriate, a referral may be made to the Counseling Center and/or the Student Health Center.
Students will be given an opportunity during the fall-term matriculation process to designate an individual to be contacted by the University if the student is determined to be missing. Returning and transfer students will be given an opportunity to provide this information during the fall term. The designation will remain in effect until changed or revoked by the student. The form provided for the designation will state the circumstances in which the designated emergency contact information will be used, and will include a statement that the University is required by law to also notify the student’s custodial parent or guardian if the student is under 18 at the time he or she is discovered to be missing.
In accordance with established University emergency procedures, the Executive Director of Communications and Public Affairs will be part of the University's administrative response team and is the designated spokesperson to handle media inquiries concerning a missing student.
The local law enforcement agency in charge of the investigation and Public Safety will be consulted by the Executive Director of Communications and Public Affairs prior to any information release from the university so as not to jeopardize any investigation.
Information provided to the media to elicit public assistance in the search for the missing person will be handled by the local law enforcement agency.
Washington and Lee is, above all else, an educational institution. The purpose of all our institutional activities, including conduct hearings, is to protect and promote our educational objectives. The training of conduct board members, the hearing procedures that are tailored to address specific types of misconduct and the overall structure of each conduct body are designed to create a system that upholds the University's standards--honor, integrity and civility--while providing fair process and judgment for students and student organizations.
- As provided in the University bylaws, the faculty has authority over student conduct matters with the exception of the Honor System. To achieve a greater resonance between faculty views on various issues and the views of those immediately engaged in imposing penalties, elected faculty and student leaders meet weekly through the Student Affairs Committee (SAC). On a monthly basis, the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students reports on the work of the SAC at the meeting of undergraduate faculty. Included in that report is a record of all conduct action taken by student conduct boards and the ongoing work of the Student Affairs Committee; such a report is for the information of the faculty and not for formal action. Faculty members on SAC may request more information on such cases, and may, collectively or individually, express their opinions about the handling of such cases to the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, to faculty representatives on the Student Affairs Committee and/or to the individual members of the conduct boards.
- The authority of the University to sanction students is independent of any criminal or other external legal action. University discipline is neither demanded by external legal efforts, nor is it precluded by the absence or failure of the state to act.
- At the undergraduate Baccalaureate Day faculty meeting and the law faculty meeting prior to graduation, there shall be only two conditions required for faculty recommendation for a degree: (1) that the candidate has met the academic requirements for a degree, to which the University Registrar shall attest; and (2) that there are no Washington and Lee conduct proceedings or criminal charges pending against a candidate, to which the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students shall attest. If student misconduct occurs between the faculty vote on recommending degrees and graduation, the matter will be handled administratively through the Office of the Provost.
- The Student Judicial Council, a wholly student group, shall have primary, first-instance responsibility for deciding most misconduct cases and imposing penalties with the exception of cases involving the Honor System (adjudicated by the Student Executive Committee), or student acts of prohibited discrimination, harassment, retaliation, sexual misconduct, or hazing by individuals or student organizations not under the jurisdiction of the Interfraternity Council or National Panhellenic Council (adjudicated by the Student-Faculty Hearing Board). The Interfraternity Council/ National Panhellenic Council are responsible for deciding cases of hazing and retaliation by fraternities and sororities under their jurisdiction. The President and Provost have independent conduct authority consistent with University policies. A student may appeal a finding and the sanction imposed by the Student Judicial Council, the Interfraternity Council or the National Panhellenic Council, or the Student-Faculty Hearing Board to the University Board of Appeals consistent with University policy. Violations of The Honor System are adjudicated by the Executive Committee of the Student Body. A student found in violation of the Honor System is subject to a single sanction--dismissal from the University. A student may appeal the finding by the Executive Committee in an Open Hearing before the student body.
When asked by a visitor what rules he had implemented to encourage responsible student behavior, Robert E. Lee, then president of Washington College, replied, "We have but one rule here, and it is that every student must be a gentleman." The students of Washington College took Lee's words to heart and continued to live by them when the college was renamed Washington and Lee University in 1871. Today, the men and women at Washington and Lee University still hold each other accountable to Lee's expectations for honorable behavior, character, and integrity. The ethos of honor is the foundation for the University's student conduct system
Washington and Lee University has developed five conduct bodies designed to address specific areas of student misconduct:
- The Executive Committee of the Student Body (EC) manages the Honor System and hears cases of breaches of trust such as lying, cheating, and stealing.
- The Student Judicial Council (SJC) hears allegations of alcohol, drugs, and other types of student misconduct.
- The Student-Faculty Hearing Board (SFHB) hears allegations of prohibited discrimination, harassment, retaliation, sexual misconduct, and hazing by individual students and student organizations not under the jurisdiction of the Interfraternity Council or National Panhellenic Council.
- The Interfraternity Council (IFC) hears allegations of hazing, retaliation associated with hazing, and other violations of University policy by fraternities under its jurisdiction.
- The National Panhellenic Council (NPC) hears allegations of hazing, retaliation associated with hazing, and other violations of University policy by sororities under its jurisdiction.
The SJC investigates and acts upon complaints of alleged student misconduct, except for dishonorable acts that involve the general categories of lying, cheating, stealing, or other breaches of trust (which are under the jurisdiction of the Executive Committee); or acts that involve discrimination, harassment, retaliation, sexual misconduct, or hazing by students or by individual or student organizations not under the jurisdiction of the IFC or NPC (which are under the jurisdiction of the Student-Faculty Hearing Board); or hazing, retaliation associated with hazing, or other violations of University policy by a fraternity or sorority (which are under the jurisdiction of Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council). The Student Judicial Council's jurisdiction extends to all conduct committed while a member of the Washington and Lee community, including but not
limited to study abroad programs, pre-orientation, pre-season athletic practices, campus summer programs and camps, and summer research programs. Students who return to Lexington or Rockbridge County for the purpose of enrolling in classes, even if they do not reside in University housing, are under the jurisdiction of the SJC as well as the other University conduct systems. The SJC is designed to affirm the student's obligation to individual responsibility and to see that obligation fulfilled.
The SJC believes that honorable behavior is a University Community Standard ("Standard") that must be upheld. Students are bound to this Standard just as they are bound to the Honor System. Any person who believes a student has deviated from this Standard may bring a complaint to the SJC. Violations of the Standard include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Any conduct disruptive to the life of the University, other universities and colleges or the surrounding community
- Violations of residence hall regulations or other University policies or regulations
- Vandalism or destruction of property
- Actions which endanger person or property
- Violations of the University Policy on Alcohol and Other Drugs for Individuals
- Conduct unbecoming of a Washington and Lee student
Note: Voluntary intoxication shall not excuse any misconduct. Intoxication means impairment by alcohol or other substances. Addiction shall not excuse possessing, possessing with intent to distribute, or distributing any drug.
Student Judicial Council Procedures
The SJC shall be comprised of ten elected justices--one from each undergraduate class (four), one from each law class (three), one elected at-large from the School of Law, and the SJC Chair and SJC Secretary, both elected by the student body. Alternate justices will be appointed by the SJC Chair at the beginning of the academic year in consultation with the Administrative Advisor,1 by first trying to draw from students who have served on judicial committees, and if no students are available from that pool, from students in the community who the chair believes can serve as an objective and fair justice. If the SJC cannot meet quorum for a case, which is seven members, the SJC Chair shall appoint student Alternates. Alternates may also be appointed by the Chair in cases where the Chair determines that a panel greater than seven (7) justices is desired.
Reports of Violation, Forms of Resolution
A person wishing to report an alleged violation of the Standard against a student may submit relevant information to any SJC Justice or the Administrative Advisor who will then submit the information to the Chair of the SJC and the Advisor. The Chair and Administrative Advisor will determine initially whether the alleged misconduct falls within the jurisdiction of the SJC. If so, they (or designee) will conduct a preliminary investigation, if deemed necessary by the Chair, to determine whether sufficient evidence exists that the respondent may have violated the Standard. If there is insufficient evidence to support the allegations, the matter will be closed with no further action. If there is sufficient evidence to believe the respondent violated the Standard, the respondent will be notified of a pending charge and investigation and how the complaint will be resolved -- whether administratively or through a SJC hearing. A respondent who proceeds to a SJC hearing will be notified of the right to have the assistance of a hearing advisor.
For those cases where the respondent admits to the misconduct and/or there is a record or information provided to the Administrative Advisor that confirms the misconduct, the respondent may accept responsibility and accept a sanction that falls within the parameters set forth in these procedures. Administrative resolution is typically utilized for first time violations that are less egregious in nature. If a student rejects proceeding with an administrative resolution, the case will be referred to the SJC for a hearing.
In cases that proceed to a SJC hearing, the SJC Chair and Administrative Advisor will gather relevant information and documentation for distribution to the SJC members hearing the case. The respondent will receive copies of documents that are provided to the SJC. The SJC Secretary shall notify the respondent of the charge(s) and hearing date in writing, which will be held no earlier than 72 hours from the notice, and refer respondent to the SJC policy and procedures that are set forth in the Student Handbook. The SJC Secretary shall also notify the respondent and complainant, if applicable, of the confidential nature of the proceeding and the obligation to observe confidentiality as set forth further below. If the respondent, after receiving proper notification of the hearing, fails to attend, the hearing may be conducted in the student's absence.
The SJC will conduct hearings according to the following guidelines:
- The SJC Chair shall, as presiding officer, regulate and determine the order of the proceedings, the relevancy of witnesses and evidence, and the nature of questioning. The Chair shall exercise reasonable discretion in dealing with all matters not formally covered in these procedures and all procedural questions are subject to the final decision of the Chair.
- The respondent and complainant, if applicable, may choose to be advised by a Hearing Advisor. The responsibilities of the Hearing Advisors are to advise the respondent and complainant on SJC procedures, to assist the respondent and complainant in developing an opening and closing statement, and to advise the respondent and complainant on the specifics of a written appeal, if necessary. Advisors are also available to provide information about resources that the parties may wish to contact to obtain support until resolution.
- When the respondent is one of two or more allegedly involved in a joint misconduct, the hearing may be held jointly or separately, as determined by the SJC. In the case of a joint hearing, the verdicts will be presented separately.
- The SJC and parties have the right to request witnesses bearing relevant information to testify. Witnesses may not be present in the hearing other than to provide testimony and shall not discuss the case with other witnesses. It is the SJC's expectation that any students with relevant information cooperate with the SJC, including appearing to testify, if requested.
- Requests by parties to interview witnesses before a hearing should be directed to the Administrative Advisor who will arrange for the appropriate persons to meet.
- The parties shall provide the Administrative Advisor a list of witnesses whom they intend to call to provide testimony prior to the hearing. The respondent and complainant, if there is one, may be present at the hearing while witnesses testify and to question them. The Advisors have the same rights as the respondent and complainant, if applicable, to be present at the hearing and to question witnesses. The respondent, Hearing Advisors and complainant may remain present throughout the hearing except during SJC deliberations.
- The SJC hearing will begin with the Chair reading the charges to the respondent after which the respondent may make an opening statement, as may the complainant, if applicable. The SJC Justices may then question the respondent and complainant.
- Witnesses will be called to testify in the order determined by the SJC Chair and may be questioned by the parties, the Hearing Advisors, and members of the SJC.
- Pertinent records, exhibits, and written statements may be accepted as information for consideration by the panel. Formal rules of evidence do not apply.
- If during the hearing, a majority of the SJC determines that they need more information or want to call a material witness(es) as a result of the testimony received, they may suspend the hearing for no more than 48 hours in an attempt to gather that information or call said witness(es). The SJC shall then re-convene the hearing within 48 hours from the recess. Any such information or witnesses will be disclosed to the respondent prior to the convened hearing.
- After the respondent and complainant, if applicable, has had an opportunity to present his/her case, including a closing statement, and after all testimony has been heard, the SJC shall adjourn into executive session and begin deliberations. Deliberations are closed to the respondent, the Hearing Advisors, and the complainant.
- After deliberations, the panel will determine by two-thirds vote of the SJC justices present whether it is more likely than not (greater weight of the evidence) that the respondent has violated the Standard. If a student is found responsible, the SJC shall impose appropriate sanctions by a vote of at least two-thirds of the SJC justices present. The SJC Chair shall inform the respondent, the complainant, and the Hearing Advisors of the SJC decision.
- The SJC Secretary shall prepare a written hearing report that summarizes the results of the hearing, including the finding and sanction and the basis for both, if applicable.
Any student, who retaliates against, harasses or attempts to influence a person with respect to that person's participation in an investigation or hearing will be subject to conduct charges by the SJC. Retaliation includes intentional acts (by respondent, complainant, allied third party) that harm an individual as reprisal for bringing forth a complaint or being involved in the SJC process.
SJC hearings are confidential. The facts about individual cases and their dispositions are to remain confidential to the extent possible, except for notification of the results to the community. In order to protect privacy and the effectiveness of the process, no one involved in a complaint process should discuss any information regarding the case except with those with a need to know, with the respondent, with the complainant, with their families, or with those to whom they need to disclose information necessary to obtain support until resolution, including a Class Dean.
The sanctions the SJC may impose include, but are not limited to, the following:
- A monetary fine.
- The payment of restitution for property damage.
- Specific task(s) related to the nature of the misconduct.
- Community service on or off campus.
- Removal from University housing.
- Conduct Probation--A formal warning that additional misconduct may result in more severe penalties.
- Suspension--Period determined by SJC. Suspension length can be for the remainder of a term, a full term, or multiple terms. Suspension results in separation from the University roles and if a respondent desires to return, the respondent must apply for and be readmitted or reinstated consistent with University procedures.
- Dismissal from the University and ineligibility to apply for readmission.
The SJC may not impose a sanction that requires action by a third-party or entity. In addition to the sanction, education and counseling may be recommended.
|Violation||Suggested Sanction for Finding of Responsibility|
|Driving under the Influence of Alcohol or Illegal Drugs||Suspension or Dismissal|
|Activity that Endangers a Person||Suspension|
|Sale of Illegal Drugs/Contolled Substances||Suspension|
|Felonious Possession/Use of Illegal Drugs/Controlled Substances
(Cocaine, Ecstasy, LSD, GHB)
|Non-Felonious Possession/Use of Illegal Drugs/Controlled Substances
|Conduct Probation; Possible suspension if multiple offenses|
|Tampering with or activating a fire alarm||Immediate $250 Fine, Suspension, and Conduct Probation|
|Vandalism||Restitution for Damag and Conduct Probation|
|Violation of SJC Sanctions||Suspension|
Note: Failure to complete or fulfill any SJC sanction in the allotted time frame or otherwise may result in the finding and sanction becoming part of the respondent's disciplinary record.
University Policy on Alcohol and Other Drugs for Individuals
The Student Judicial Council (SJC) enforces an incident system with specific consequences for violations of University alcohol/drug policies by individuals. Students who intentionally aid any violation of the University's Policies on Alcohol and Other Drugs may be held responsible by the SJC as an accessory to the violation occurring.
The SJC is advised by a professional staff member through the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, and all action is reported to the University faculty through the Student Affairs Committee. A probationary period is normally associated with an alcohol/other drug violation, at a minimum.
First incidents that result in a conviction of an alcohol- or drug-related violation of the law in the City of Lexington and Rockbridge County shall be handled administratively. Arrests or convictions related to Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol/Drugs are an exception as outlined below. Conviction of possession/use of illegal drugs within any campus residence results in removal from the residence without refund in addition to other sanctions.
Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Other Drugs
Independent of the incident system, the SJC may suspend or dismiss a student found to have driven a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs in the City of Lexington or Rockbridge County. Students who are convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol will appear before the Student Judicial Council. There is a presumption of suspension as the sanction for one or more academic terms for a student with a blood alcohol content (B.A.C.) of .15 or greater. A student who is suspended will be eligible to apply for reinstatement for the academic term following the final term of the suspension. In the case of any DUI, the Student Judicial Council has the discretion to impose the sanction of dismissal which would make the student ineligible to apply for reinstatement. Factors warranting dismissal could include, but are not limited to, putting other students or individuals at risk of bodily harm, such as driving under the influence with passengers or involvement in an accident There is a presumption of suspension as the sanction by the Student Judicial Council for students who are convicted for a “DUI” under the legal drinking age of the Commonwealth with a BAC of under .15 .There is a presumption of suspension as the sanction by the Student Judicial Council for students who are convicted of "Refusal" when arrested for a DUI offense.
A court's imposition of First-Offender's Status, or deferred adjudication, including any continuance of the case under advisement for an alcohol or drug-related offense (other than DUI as described below) where the student admits to the misconduct, enters a plea of nolo contendere or "did not contest," and where an affirmative sanction is imposed by the court fine or community service), will result in a violation under these guidelines and shall be handled administratively.
The following violations of the University alcohol and other drug policies and standards may or may not be determined by the University's administration or the Student Judicial Council to constitute an "incident":
- A violation of University residential alcohol or drug policies (handled administratively).
- Misconduct that violates other University alcohol or drug policies.
- Drunkenness, when it results in behavior that draws attention to oneself or endangers self or others.
- Alcohol or drug violations within first-year residence halls, including possession of alcohol or other drugs (handled administratively and not heard by the Student Judicial Council).
Sanctions for Violation of University Policy on Alcohol and Other Drugs for Individuals (other than DUI)
- First Incident: Mandatory education and counseling, plus $100 fine. Parents or legal guardian(s) of undergraduate students notified upon a finding of violation. One calendar year probationary period from date of incident.
- Second Incident (during the period of probation resulting from the first incident): These cases are automatically heard by the Student Judicial Council. Sanctions may include mandatory education and counseling plus a minimum of a $100 fine and maximum of a $200 fine, up to and including suspension for a full term or full semester. Parents or legal guardian(s) of undergraduate students notified upon charge and disposition.
- Third Incident (during the period of probation resulting from the second incident): These cases are automatically heard by the Student Judicial Council. Sanction up to and including dismissal from the University plus a minimum of a $200 fine and maximum of a $350 fine. Mandatory education and counseling for those students not dismissed. Parents or legal guardian(s) of undergraduate students notified upon charge and disposition.
Students who are suspended for any alcohol/drug-related reason, whether administratively or by the Student Judicial Council, are required to participate in alcohol/other drug education prior to their application for readmission and consideration for reinstatement to the University.
Lying about one's involvement in any alleged violation of student conduct policies may result in referral to the Executive Committee of the Student Body.
Student Judicial Council decisions that would create a disciplinary record may be appealed to the University Board of Appeals consistent with University policy. See section on Records of Student Conduct Referrals.
As soon as possible in the event of a finding of responsibility, the SJC Secretary will issue a notice to the University community outlining the results of the case. The notice may include basic facts about a case and the basis for the SJC's finding.
If criminal charges have been filed against a student, the Chair of the SJC will consult with the Office of the Dean of Students to determine if SJC action should be postponed until resolution of the criminal case.
Changes to the SJC section of the Student Handbook
Changes must be approved by a majority of the SJC and by the University faculty.
Washington and Lee University does not tolerate prohibited discrimination, harassment, sexual misconduct, retaliation or hazing of any kind. The University, by providing resources for prevention, intervention, education and a fair conduct process, seeks to eliminate all forms of prohibited discrimination, harassment, sexual misconduct, retaliation and hazing.
The Student-Faculty Hearing Board has jurisdiction over the following matters:
- Allegations of student conduct in violation of the University's Interim Policy on Prohibited Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Other Than Sex ("Policy") at go.wlu.edu/OGC/DiscriminationPolicy. The Policy prohibits discrimination, including harassment, on the basis of race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, veteran's status, and genetic information in its educational programs;
- Allegations of student conduct in violation of the University’s Amended Interim Sexual Misconduct Policy;
- Allegations of hazing by individuals or by student organizations not under the jurisdiction of the Interfraternity Council or the Panhellenic Council.
Applicable University Policies
When reviewing complaints of discrimination, including harassment, on the basis of race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, veteran’s status, and genetic information, the SFHB will refer to the University's Interim Policy on Prohibited Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Other Than Sex (go.wlu.edu/OGC/DiscriminationPolicy). When reviewing complaints involving sexual misconduct, which includes sexual harassment, sexual assault, stalking, and domestic and dating violence, it will refer to the Amended Interim Sexual Misconduct Policy (http://go.wlu.edu/OGC/SexualMisconductPolicy). It will refer to the Policy on Hazing from the Student Handbook when reviewing complaints involving hazing under that policy.
The procedures and definitions herein apply to the adjudication of conduct violations that fall under the University’s Interim Policy on Prohibited Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Other Than Sex or the Policy on Hazing from the Student Handbook. For cases of Sexual Misconduct, the SFHB will apply the procedures and definitions in the Amended Interim Sexual Misconduct Policy.
Definitions for Adjudication of Conduct Violations within the SFHB’s Jurisdiction Except for Allegations of Sexual Misconduct2
When reviewing the procedures of the Student-Faculty Hearing Board, the following terms are defined below to supplement those found in the Policy:
- Discrimination and Harassment: Prohibited discrimination and harassment are defined in the Policy (go.wlu.edu/OGC/DiscriminationPolicy).
- Hazing: Hazing includes harassing and excessive tasks associated with initiation or membership in an organization. It involves mistreatment of prospective members by those who exercise control over them. Hazing is further defined at section V of the Student Handbook.
- Retaliation: Retaliation, whether by an individual, a group of individuals, or an organization, against anyone who makes an inquiry about discrimination or harassment, or who is involved in complaint process, is illegal and constitutes a violation of the Policy.
Procedures for Adjudication of Conduct Violations within the SFHB’s Jurisdiction Except for Allegations of Sexual Misconduct
Filing a Complaint
Any individual who believes that s/he has been subjected to prohibited conduct under this policy may file a complaint with any one of a number of people including the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, any dean within the Division of Student Affairs, or the Chair of the SFHB. If not the Chair, the person receiving the complaint shall bring it to the attention of the SFHB Chair. An SFHB proceeding may be initiated by any other member of the University community by filing a complaint. A complainant outside the University community, for example, a student from another college or university, may also file a complaint and the case will be considered at the discretion of the Board. An individual may also file a complaint through the Silent Witness – Anonymous Online Crime Report website (go.wlu.edu/ReportCrime)
Following the initiation of a formal complaint or where the University becomes aware of prohibited conduct, the specially trained Investigator (s) will conduct an investigation and prepare a report. Based on a detailed investigation report, the SFHB Chair will then determine whether to formally charge the respondent(s) and notify the parties. The Chair will consider the complainant’s wishes in determining whether to formally charge the respondent and proceed with the SFHB process.
No-Contact Directive and Other Interim Measures
The Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students (or designee) may issue a no-contact directive between or among the parties or witnesses to create a level of reassurance throughout the process and may take other interim measures, or refer the complainant to the appropriate campus administrator(s) to take prompt interim measures that may be appropriate, including but not limited to a change of housing or class assignments.
The formal charge(s) will state the subject matter of the complaint (e.g., "Discrimination," "Harassment," "Retaliation," and/or "Hazing"), the name of the complainant, and the approximate date and/or timeframe for the alleged conduct. The formal charge need not include details on the sub-categories of behavior within each charge.
While only a single charge is required to initiate a proceeding for any category of prohibited conduct within the jurisdiction of the SFHB, a complainant may bring multiple charges if the conduct complained of constitutes more than one form of misconduct.
Charge for Subsequent Retaliatory Behavior
Any type of retaliatory behavior occurring following a charge may result in an additional charge.
Charge for Conduct Unbecoming a Washington and Lee Student
A charge of "conduct unbecoming" may accompany any other charge.
Pendency of Criminal Charges
If criminal charges, or a civil suit, has been filed against a student with respect to conduct which is also the subject of a complaint before the SFHB, the SFHB Chair will consult with the Office of the Dean of Students to determine if SFHB action should be postponed until resolution of the criminal case or civil suit. Pending criminal charges or civil suits shall not prevent the SFHB from proceeding.
Composition, Selection and Training of the SFHB
Composition of the SFHB
The SFHB is composed of four student members, four faculty members and one administrator. The administrator serves as Chair of the SFHB.
Role of the Chair
The Chair manages the SFHB and administers the hearing process and schedules and presides over each hearing, but does not participate in deliberations and does not vote on matters before the SFHB.
Appointment of Student Members
In accordance with the following procedures, the Executive Committee of the Student Body (EC) shall appoint four student members to a one-year term on the SFHB. The student members will be representative of the student body and upon appointment will be trained to adjudicate the sensitive cases heard by the SFHB. In selecting student members to serve on the SFHB, the EC will make every effort to create diverse representation.
The appointment procedures of the EC shall be reviewed by the Student Affairs Committee (SAC) before the application process commences. The application process will elicit participation of stakeholder groups on campus that may not be represented on the EC, including groups that promote the prevention of sexual violence, groups that respond to those situations, and groups representing women and minority students. The EC shall require applications and conduct interviews of applicants for SFHB positions apart from other Spring Term appointments. Applications shall include discussion of knowledge or experience relevant to the mission of the SFHB and confidential recommendations of two non-student members of the Washington and Lee University community. After receiving applications and before the interview, the EC shall send the list of applicants to the Vice President for Student Affairs to gather additional information.
Appointment of Faculty Members
The University Provost shall appoint four faculty members to three-year, staggered terms on the SFHB. The EC may nominate faculty members for the Provost's consideration. In selecting faculty members to serve on the SFHB, the University will make every effort to create diverse representation.
Appointment of Administrator Member
The Vice President for Student Affairs shall appoint the administrator member to serve as Chair of the SFHB.
Members of the SFHB shall be trained in both broad conduct procedures and in understanding specific prohibited discrimination, harassment (including all forms of sexual misconduct), retaliation and hazing. The Chair of the SFHB shall organize the training, which shall occur at the beginning of the academic year. The University will make every effort to train those student members at the same time as the faculty members.
SFHB Hearing Panel
Upon issuance of a charge that falls within the jurisdiction of the SFHB, the SFHB Chair shall select and convene a Hearing Panel in accordance with the following procedures:
Composition of the Hearing Panel
A Hearing Panel is composed of five SFHB members: two student members, two faculty members and the Chair. The remaining student and faculty members are alternates.
Selection of the Hearing Panel
In selecting the Hearing Panel, the Chair shall strive as much as possible for diverse representation and will be aware of the Recusal and Conflict of Interest Guidelines Pertaining the University Conduct.
Hearing Procedures for Adjudication of Conduct Violations within the SFHB’s Jurisdiction Except for Allegations of Sexual Misconduct
Notice to the Parties and Opportunity to Object
The complainant and respondent shall be informed of the Panel's composition at least 48 hours in advance of the hearing. Either party may object to the appointment of any member of the Panel. That objection should be directed to the Chair, and should state the basis for the objection. The Chair will make the final determination on a member's ability to serve on the Panel.
Advisors of Choice and Hearing Advisors
During an SFHB proceeding, the complainant and the respondent may each be accompanied by an Advisor of Choice or a Hearing Advisor (referred to collectively as “Advisor(s)”).
Advisors of Choice
Advisors of Choice must be members of the University community. The Advisor of Choice may be an individual within the W&L community with special training for this role, or may be another faculty or staff member.
Hearing Advisors appearing before the SFHB must be members of the Hearing Advisor Program with special training for this role.
Role of Advisor
The Advisor’s role is to advise the complainant/respondent of SFHB procedures, to assist the complainant/respondent in developing opening and closing statements, and to advise the complainant/respondent on the specifics of a written appeal, if applicable. Advisors are also available to offer support for students and to provide information on additional resources. Advisors may hear all testimony, and examine all information and evidence presented to the Panel. Additionally, Advisors may direct, to the Chair, questions for any person testifying. The Chair of the SFHB will determine relevancy of the questions to be posed. Parties and SFHB panel members also may, at their discretion, invite the Advisors to express views as the SFHB panel members deem appropriate.
Support for Complainants from Outside the Washington and Lee Community
In addition to an Advisor of Choice or Hearing Advisor, if the complainant is a member of another community, the complainant may also be accompanied by a member of that community, subject to approval of the SFHB Chair.
Notice to Respondent of Specific Allegations of the Complaint
At least five business days prior to the hearing, the respondent will be provided with written/electronic notice of the specific factual allegations made by the complainant. This will occur through communication between and among the Chair, the Advisors, the complainant and the respondent.
Notice to Complainant of Service of Notice of Allegations on Respondent
Prior to service upon the respondent of notice, the complainant will be notified regarding when service upon the respondent will occur.
Formal Response to Specific Allegations of the Complaint
The respondent is encouraged but not required to submit, in advance of the hearing, a formal, written response to the written notice of specific factual allegations that was served upon him or her. Any formal, written response will be shared with the complainant in advance of the hearing.
The SFHB Chair will hold a pre-hearing conference with the parties and their Advisors to resolve evidentiary or other matters.
Disclosure of Witnesses and Evidence in Advance of the Hearing
Upon request of either party, at least 48 hours in advance of the hearing each party shall be provided a list of all witnesses and shall be provided an opportunity to examine all information and evidence to be presented to the hearing.
Hearings will be held in a timely manner, assuming no extraordinary circumstances, within 45 working days of the initial complaint.
All hearings are closed to the public. Witnesses should be kept in separate rooms, entering the hearing room only to provide testimony. Witnesses should not have contact with one another outside of the hearing room.
Presence of the Parties
The complainant and the respondent have a right to be present during the hearing.
Use of a Privacy Screen
Although both the complainant and respondent are entitled to be present throughout the hearing, a privacy screen may be erected at the request of either party to provide a sense of privacy during testimony.
Witnesses and Evidence for Adjudication of Conduct Violations within the SFHB’s Jurisdiction Except for Allegations of Sexual Misconduct
The Hearing Panel
Members of the Hearing Panel may call and question witnesses and examine related information and evidence.
SFHB hearings are confidential. The facts about individual cases and the outcomes are to remain as confidential as possible, except for the notification of the outcome to the University community. In order to protect the privacy of those involved, and to protect the integrity of the process, no one involved in a complaint should discuss any information regarding the case except with participants in the hearing, University faculty and staff with a need to know, family members and those to whom a party needs to disclose information necessary to obtain support without otherwise making information about the matter known to the public. All individuals involved in proceedings shall read the SFHB's confidentiality policy and sign a statement acknowledging the policy.
The complainant and the respondent are permitted to summon and question witnesses and offer tangible evidence. The complainant and respondent may direct questions to one another through the Chair.
Evidence and Witnesses Not Reasonably Anticipated
Notwithstanding the prehearing disclosure requirements, if information produced during the hearing discloses additional tangible evidence or witnesses with relevant information, the Chair may obtain that evidence or call those witnesses to testify.
Questioning of witnesses and admission of information and evidence shall be restricted to matters that the Chair deems relevant to the specific case.
Alcohol or Other Drug Use – Not an Excuse
Behavior that would otherwise be misconduct in violation of this University policy is not excused or exonerated because the individual engaging in such conduct was under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
Decisions of the SFHB for Adjudication of Conduct Violations within the SFHB’s Jurisdiction Except for Allegations of Sexual Misconduct
Votes Required for Finding of Responsibility
In all cases that the SFHB hears, at least three panel members must vote "responsible" for a finding of responsibility.
Standard of Evidence for a Finding of Responsibility
Each case brought before the SFHB is unique and must be decided after the SFHB's review of all the facts and circumstances presented at the hearing. The SFHB shall base its decisions on a preponderance of the evidence; that is, the panel must decide whether it is more likely than not that the respondent's conduct violated University policy.
Findings in SFHB Cases
The SFHB shall examine all relevant evidence, and shall determine, as applicable:
- the nature of the conduct;
- for complaints of discrimination or harassment based on protected categories, whether a protected category was involved, whether the conduct was unwelcome, and the severity and pervasiveness of the conduct;
- for complaints of hazing whether the respondent recklessly or intentionally endangered the health or safety of a student or students or inflicted bodily injury on a student or students in connection with or for the purpose of initiation, admission into or affiliation with or as a condition for continued membership in a club, organization, association, fraternity, sorority, or student body regardless of whether the student or students so endangered or injured participated voluntarily in the relevant activity.
Finding of Conduct Unbecoming
Normally, any finding of responsibility by the SFHB will include a finding of "conduct unbecoming of a Washington and Lee University student." If the SFHB does not find that the respondent violated the University's Interim Policy on Prohibited Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Other Than Sex, but finds that the respondent's conduct was unacceptable and contrary to that expected of a Washington and Lee student, it may make a finding of "conduct unbecoming," if separately charged.
Evidence of Violations of Other University Policies
If the SFHB finds there is reasonable evidence that another University policy may have been violated, it may refer that information to the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students.
The Hearing Panel may, after considering factors relevant to each case and finding responsibility, determine the appropriate sanction.
Votes Required for Imposition of a Sanction
In all cases that the SFHB hears, at least three Panel members must vote in favor of the imposition of each sanction or combination of sanctions.
Sanctions for Violations of the University's Interim Policy on Prohibited Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Other Than Sex
In imposing sanctions for violations of the University's Policy, the Hearing Panel shall determine the appropriate sanction (or combination of sanctions) by referencing the Sanction Guideline Matrix. The SFHB may select among the sanctions within the range set forth in the Sanction Guideline Matrix for the types of violations described under these guidelines, as factors in each case may warrant. It may also combine various sanction options to produce a package of appropriate sanctions. The SFHB shall also consider the sanction recommendation of the complainant and respondent.
Sanctions for Hazing
Upon finding that an individual or student organization under the jurisdiction of the SFHB has engaged in hazing, the Hearing Panel shall determine the appropriate sanction (or combination of sanctions) by referencing the Sanction Guideline Matrix. The Hearing Panel may select among the sanctions within the range set forth within each sanction box for the types of violations described under these guidelines, as factors in each case may warrant. It may also combine various sanction options to produce a package of appropriate sanctions. The sanction may include referral to other appropriate conduct bodies. If applicable, individuals may be reported to an appropriate national body. In cases of hazing by a student organization under the jurisdiction of the SFHB, the sanction may include suspending the organization's activities.
Sanctions for Conduct Unbecoming
In imposing sanctions for Conduct Unbecoming a Washington and Lee University student, the Hearing Panel shall determine the appropriate sanction (or combination of sanctions) as factors in each case may warrant. The SFHB shall also consider the sanction recommendation of the complainant and respondent. Possible sanctions include Dismissal, Suspension, Probation, Community Service, Education and/or Counseling.
Sanction Guideline Matrix for Adjudication of Conduct Violations within the SFHB’s Jurisdiction Except for Allegations of Sexual Misconduct
The following matrix shall guide the SFHB in developing sanctions, and provide notice to the University community of the possible sanctions for an individual or student organization under the jurisdiction of the SFHB found responsible under the University's Interim Policy on Prohibited Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Other Than Sex or the University's policy prohibiting hazing.
|Prohibited Behavior||Range of Sanctions|
|Discrimination or Harassment||Dismissal
|Hazing by an individual student||Dismissal
|Hazing by a student organization under the jurisdiction of the SFHB||Dismissal
Procedures for the SFHB after Reaching a Finding
Notice to the Parties
Immediately upon reaching a finding, the SFHB Chair shall notify the parties orally of the outcome and, within 36 hours of the decision, shall provide the parties with a copy of the written SFHB hearing report.
The SFHB Chair shall post a public notice of the outcome of any SFHB case.
Content of Public Notice
The notice shall include the nature of the conduct and each charge for which the party was found responsible or not responsible. If there is a finding of responsibility, the public notice will include the sanction imposed for the charge and whether or not there were mitigating or aggravating circumstances that affected the choice of sanction. The notice will not indicate the circumstances or names of the parties or witnesses. The posting will be available in both written (with all other recent conduct body notices) and electronic (on the SFHB website) forms.
Time for Posting of Public Notice
The SFHB Chair shall post the notice within a reasonable time after the SFHB concludes the case, and shall keep the notice posted for a minimum of three years. The Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students will maintain copies of all public notices for 10 years. During that period, the notices will be available upon request.
All outcomes of the SFHB, including decisions regarding the imposition of sanctions, may be appealed within 72 hours of receipt of the written SFHB hearing report by either party, or by the University to the University Board of Appeals, in accordance with the policies that apply to that body.
Required Administrative Withdrawal for Non-Academic Reasons
Notwithstanding the pendency of a matter before the SFHB or a sanction imposed by the SFHB, in accordance with the University policy regarding Required Administrative Withdrawal for Non-Academic Reasons, the University may require a student to take an administrative withdrawal in circumstances outlined therein, including if there is a sufficient showing that the student is engaging, or is likely to engage in, behavior that presents a real danger of substantial harm to others, or substantially disrupts the learning environment and activities of the campus community.
Note: The University applies this policy and associated procedures in a nondiscriminatory manner, in consultation with qualified professionals, as appropriate, and will make each determination based on an individualized assessment of that student’s situation and what is in the best interests of the student, the campus community, and the University.
Option for Appeals
Requests for appeals to decisions by the Student Judicial Council, Student-Faculty Hearing Board, Interfraternity Council Conduct Board, and Panhellenic Council Conduct Board may be made by the complainant, the respondent, or designated University Official to the University Board of Appeals (UBA) if the action taken by the body would create a disciplinary record or if, in the case of the University official, the action taken by the judicial body could have created a disciplinary record. “University official” is the Director of Public Safety or other Student Affairs Administrator designated by the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students (hereinafter “Dean of Students”). Appeals, if granted, do not constitute a re-hearing of the case and the UBA will defer to decisions of the underlying conduct body unless one or more of the reasons for granting the appeal are satisfied.
The pool of four Faculty members are elected by the faculty and six students are appointed to the UBA. The Chair of the UBA is the Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students (VPSA/DoS) or his or her designee. In the event that the VPSA/DoS determines he or she may have a conflict of interest, the VPSA/DoS shall appoint an alternate Chair.
A pool of four Faculty members (two Undergraduate Faculty and two Law Faculty) is elected by the respective Faculty for staggered two-year terms. A pool of student representatives of the UBA (six total: three undergraduate and three law) is appointed by the Executive Committee of the Student Body for a one-year term. The Executive Committee of the Student Body appoints one junior and two seniors for the undergraduate representatives, and one second-year and two third-year students for the Law School representatives.
The Chair of the UBA will randomly select one Faculty member and one student from this pool to constitute a panel, who, with the Chair, will review a specific case.
When possible appeals arising from law students or organizations should typically be heard by a panel consisting of a Law Faculty member and a law student; appeals arising from undergraduate students or organizations should typically be heard by a panel consisting of an undergraduate Faculty member and an undergraduate student.
The UBA may grant or reject a request for appeal based on one or more of the following grounds if it reasonably determines the ground(s) would more likely than not impact the underlying decision: (1) no reasonable basis/reasonable basis for sanction; (2) new relevant information/no new relevant information; (3) procedural defect or error/no procedural defect or error; or (4) extraordinary circumstances/no extraordinary circumstances. If the UBA decides to grant an appeal, it may decide the case based solely upon the record of the conduct body, the written appeal and other documents it deems relevant, or the UBA may determine to hold a hearing and seek additional information from: i) any person who provided first-hand information to the student conduct body; ii) any person who may have new, relevant information; and/or iii) the Chair of the conduct body, before reaching its final decision.
The UBA has the option to remand the case to the original conduct body in cases in which there is new information presented or where there has been a procedural defect or error. The UBA may modify the sanction of the original conduct body only if the original sanction violates University Policy and/or if the original conduct body lacked a reasonable basis in imposing the sanction. In such cases, the UBA may impose a different sanction, reduce the sanction, or vacate the sanction. If the UBA finds no ground to modify the sanction, the UBA will uphold the sanction.
Options of Participants if the UBA decides to grant the appeal and conduct a hearing on the case
- Options of the Original Respondent or Complainant (if applicable)
- The option to make an opening statement.
- The option to remain present for the entire hearing.
- The option to testify.
- The option to make a closing statement.
- The option to be accompanied by an honor advocate.
- Options of Original Conduct Body Chair(s) (or Chair(s)’ designate)
- The option to make an opening statement.
- The option to remain present for the entire hearing.
- The option to make a closing statement.
- Options of University Official or designate (if a party to the UBA proceeding)
- The option to make an opening statement.
- The option to remain present for the entire hearing.
- The option to make a closing statement.
Role of Chair
The Chair will determine the proper composition of the panel for any appeal, and oversee the process. The Chair has discretion to accommodate any conflicts that may arise with students or Faculty in constituting the panel. The Chair will also serve to provide information regarding precedence of similar appeals. If the two members of the panel are unable to agree on a decision, the Chair will vote to break the tie.
Publication of Findings
The UBA will make public a summary of its findings to the University Community that maintains the anonymity of all parties involved.
Hearing Advisor Program
Student Advisors in the Hearing Advisor Program play an integral role in the proceedings of the Executive Committee, Student-Faculty Hearing Board, and Student Judicial Council. The goal of a Hearing Advisor is to help ascertain the truth. Advisors counsel students by explaining the options available and by assisting in the preparation and presentation of cases. Advisors also provide information about support resources and provide support themselves. Advisors deal with serious matters and must understand and abide by the University's confidentiality policy. Even though Advisors serve as advisors and counselors, they are not attorneys; thus, the attorney-client privilege is not applicable.
Recusal and Conflict of Interest Guidelines Pertaining to University Conduct
- Any person on a hearing board, investigating a complaint, or integrally involved in a complaint against a member of the W&L community or a student organization who was also involved in the alleged conduct or who is a member of an organization that is the subject of an investigation or action against it, is disqualified from participating as a conduct member. Disqualification in the case of any conduct body member means that a person shall not participate in any way in the case, including not being present at the conduct board meetings where the case is being addressed.
- Individuals should recuse themselves from any case in which they believe they cannot be completely impartial in their consideration of an accusation against any member of the W&L community or student organization.
- Alleged conflicts of interest, if challenged, shall be decided by the Provost.
Violation of Conduct Sanctions
An alleged violation of the terms of a conduct sanction (conduct probation, fines, community service hours, etc.) will be referred to the conduct body that imposed the sanction. The conduct body will hear the case and determine if the sanction was violated and, if so, what sanction should be imposed.
Records of Student Conduct Referrals
Washington and Lee University defines “disciplinary records” for undergraduate students as all records related to a student conduct matter resulting in a sanction of dismissal, suspension, or more than one calendar year (52 weeks) of conduct probation. Disciplinary records will be retained permanently as part of a student’s education record.
Records related to an undergraduate student conduct matter resulting in any lesser sanction, up to and including conduct probation for 52 weeks, are not considered “disciplinary records” for purposes of record retention and disclosure, but are considered “educational-conduct records.” Following the expiration of one calendar year from final resolution of such a conduct matter without further conduct referrals, the “educational-conduct records” will be removed from a student’s individual education record but may be maintained separately thereafter by the University for up to seven (7) years from the date of final resolution, in accordance with federally required recordkeeping to support statistical reporting of certain criminal offenses. Following removal from the student’s individual education record, such “educational-conduct records” could be subject to external disclosure under certain circumstances, including but not limited to court order or Department of Education investigation or audit.
Records of all law student conduct matters, regardless of the sanction imposed, will be considered disciplinary records and retained permanently as part of a student’s individual education record.
Residential Life not only provides a “home away from home,” but offers a challenging and engaging environment that promotes learning, personal development and academic success. It is in this environment of close association that each individual must learn to balance autonomy and individual decision-making within the context of a community and the rights of others. In keeping with the traditions of student life at the University, living in the residence halls and houses is based on the principle of student self-governance. Except for regulations related to health, safety, alcohol and drugs, and other University policies, the day-to-day aspects of residence hall life are established by the residents and staff members of the hall. The system under which the students establish policies and practices that govern their residential life stresses the importance of student initiative and a sense of shared responsibility and respect. Students learn that they are accountable not only to themselves but also to their fellow students and to the University community as a whole. The concepts of self-government and individual responsibility, however, do not insulate student conduct from the legal sanctions of the larger community beyond the campus.
Violations of residence hall policies shall initially be handled by the Resident Advisers in the first- year and upper-division halls, with referral to the appropriate conduct board as necessary. Our well-trained and diverse team members serve as role models and act as a resource within the residence halls and University community, promoting the celebration of differences, supporting students' academic success and overall achievement.
The following residence hall regulations have been enacted in the best interest of students residing on campus. Resident Advisers and Public Safety officers are primarily responsible for enforcing these regulations.
- The members of each residential section will reach a consensus on the standards of social responsibility by which they will abide during the academic year. The statement of social responsibility includes standards of responsible conduct which reflect a sense of appropriateness and decorum, and a concern for the rights and sensibilities of others, be they residents, guests or visitors. Statements of social responsibility MUST include a provision for quiet hours from 7:30 p.m. to 7:30 a.m., beginning Sunday evening and ending Friday morning.
- The University provides a card-access exterior security system in the first-year residence halls, Woods Creek Apartments, and many of the Greek and theme houses, in addition to key entry doors for individual rooms. Students should never prop open exterior doors. Students are expected to lock the doors to their rooms and assume individual responsibility for their safety and security.
- Students must respect the rights of their roommates, suitemates, and/or apartment mates.
- The following regulations pertaining to University property and to the health and safety of residents are outside the scope of statements of social responsibility and remain effective throughout the academic year for all residence halls, including Woods Creek, Greek houses and theme houses:
- Smoking, including e-cigarettes, is not permitted in ANY residence halls, and this prohibition extends to any room, restroom, common area, or community lounge. Smokers are asked to refrain from smoking in entranceways to buildings, or adjacent to open windows or air intakes, or in other outdoor areas where environmental smoke is not rapidly dispersed. All members of the University community are expected to treat each other with courtesy and respect in honoring this policy.
- Any damage to facilities (caused by nailing or sticking up posters, breaking windows, damaging furniture, etc.) is charged to the person who damages the property. Charges for damage done to common areas will be apportioned equally among residents of the particular hall or house involved.
- No furniture may be removed from any residential room, lounge, or TV room without the permission of an RA or member of the Residence Life staff.
- Bunk beds should never be placed next to windows.
- Window screens should not be removed from windows. All window air conditioners must be installed by University Facilities Management personnel. Throwing any object, solid or liquid, out of a residence hall window or off any balcony or landing is strictly prohibited. Food, plants, or other items are not permitted on outside windowsills, landings, or ledges.
- Clothing, posters, banners, flags, or any other form of messages, may not be displayed from windows or placed on bannisters, balconies, or railings on the exterior of a building.
- Students are prohibited from climbing onto outside ledges, accessing roofs, and leaning out balconies and windows.
- Objects are not to be hung from any pipes, pipe chases, and sprinkler heads.
- Students must be present when holiday lights are on. Only non-flammable or fire retardant decorations may be used. Curtains, clothing, paper, and other flammables must be kept away from all wires. Banners and sheets must not be placed over any lights.
- No luggage, storage containers, or similar personal items are allowed in hallways or commons areas. Limited storage for these items may be available in the basement of Woods Creek.
- In-room refrigerators and microwaves must fit W&L’s size and energy-use specifications – see letter l. There is a limit of one microwave per Woods Creek apartment kitchen. Electrical appliances such as radios, stereos, televisions, computers, hair dryers, etc. may be used within the electrical usage guidelines stated in these regulations.
- Use of electric outlets is subject to reasonable standards of safety. Consequently, items such as electric heaters, ceiling fans, refrigerators of more than 2.5 cubic feet capacity, air conditioners, and cooking appliances are strictly prohibited. Maximum wattage for double outlets is 1500 watts. Up to four appliances may be plugged into one double outlet (one directly plugged into outlet and others plugged via approved extension cord).
- Only UL approved three-prong grounded extension cords 14-gauge or heavier that are not longer than 10 feet may be used. Only one appliance may be plugged into an extension cord. Extension cords must not be strung together. Do not place cords under rugs. Avoid placing cords in areas where they will be continuously stepped on.
- Only UL approved multi-plug adaptors (power strips) with circuit breakers are allowed. Up to three items may be plugged into a multi-plug adaptor. Maximum wattage for a multi-plug adaptor is 1500 watts. Do not confuse a surge protector with a circuit breaker.
- The following are also strictly prohibited:
- Alcoholic beverages are prohibited in all of the first-year halls. In the upper- division residence halls, students who are 21 years of age or older may use and possess alcoholic beverages in accordance with the Commonwealth of Virginia laws within their assigned room.
- Any illegal drug paraphernalia, including but not limited to smoking devices and water pipes
- Any type of weapon, including but not limited to firearms, blowguns, BB guns, air guns, stun weapons, and knives (except pocket knives having a folding metal blade of less than three inches)
- Possession or use of fireworks or explosives of any kind in or near the residence halls
- Water bombs, water fights, or water beds
- Pets of any kind, except assistance animals approved pursuant to University policy as a reasonable accommodation for a qualifying disability. Service animals will be allowed under the provisions of the University’s Policy on Use of Service Animals on Campus.
- The use of hard balls (lacrosse balls, baseballs, etc.) in the residence halls and in the Washington Street Park, Graham-Lees, and Gaines quads
- Loft beds (except those assembled and approved by W&L Facilities staff)
- Incense, candles, halogen lights or lamps, or any open flame or other incendiary agent
- Use of unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) in or near the residence halls or on University property
- Use or storage of any flammable liquids and solvents (gasoline, kerosene, propane, etc.) in or near student rooms or living areas
- Use or storage of self-balancing two-wheel motorized boards, self-propelled electric scooters, and similar devices, also known as Hover boards, Swagways, IO Hawks, Skywalkers, etc.
- Violation of the statements of social responsibility or any of the above regulations may result in temporary or permanent removal from housing and discipline consistent with applicable University policies. Vandalism and deliberate destruction of University property are included.
- If a student violates the University Policy on Illegal Drugs/Controlled Substances in University housing and is a resident of University housing, the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee may remove the student from housing without refund. If the student resides in a University fraternity or sorority and violates the University Policy on Illegal Drugs/Controlled Substances in a fraternity or sorority house, the House Corporation, in accordance with the Standards for Fraternities/Sororities, may remove the student from the house without refund.
- Any student who deliberately activates the fire alarm system, for reasons other than that of fire prevention, will receive an automatic fine of $250 and will be referred to the SJC with a recommendation for suspension. Defacing or destroying life safety equipment will subject a student to a fine and referral to the SJC.
- The terms and conditions of each student’s lease with the University are incorporated by reference within these Residence Hall regulations.
The possession and consumption of alcohol in residence halls and their social spaces are privileges for those who are 21 years of age or older. The following policies and guidelines are intended to promote responsible drinking and behavior for the safety and well-being of all students in the community. Students age 21 or older who choose to consume alcoholic beverages are expected to do so in accordance with this policy and in moderation and to observe the individual rights of students to privacy, sleep, and study within their rooms. Loud or disruptive behavior, interference with the maintenance and cleanliness of the halls, houses or apartments, or drinking habits and behaviors which are disruptive or injurious to the health or well-being of individuals will not be tolerated and individuals involved in such conduct are subject to sanctioning.
The laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia apply in all cases. Individuals who are under 21 years of age may not purchase, possess, or consume beer, wine, or distilled spirits.
Students who are 21 should not purchase for or provide alcohol to anyone under the age of 21. Alcohol should not be served to anyone who is believed to be intoxicated or who is being disruptive.
Alcohol may only be possessed by students who are 21 years of age or older. No alcohol may be kept in common spaces or shared refrigerators unless all residents are 21 years or older.
Any student event held in residence hall or house social rooms must be registered through the Office of Residential Life.
Social event registration forms are available on the Student Life website.
All alcohol must be served in accordance with the social event policy. University Catering has the right of first refusal for on-campus events.
Alternative beverages and food are required at all events serving alcoholic beverages.
As stated in the Policy Statement Relating to Campus Life, the University desires a community of student self-governance that balances student privilege and responsibility. Students involved in organizations are expected to adhere to the same standards of conduct to which students are held on an individual basis.
Washington and Lee University continues to affirm that "fraternities/sororities are a valuable and integral part of both the University and Lexington communities." The University also continues to recognize that fraternity/sorority chapters "have important privileges as well as responsibilities to those communities." In keeping with the letter and spirit of these statements as set forth in the documents adopted by the Board of Trustees on May 25, 1985 - the "Policy Statement Relating to Campus Life" and the "Statement Relating to Fraternities," which incorporates the "Policy Statement on Fraternities" adopted by the University Council on February 25, 1976 - the University has developed the following standards for fraternity/sorority life at Washington and Lee University.
These standards are established in order to give direction and support to those entities crucial to and responsible for the vitality of the fraternity/sorority community:
- The University
- The National Fraternity/National Sorority
- The Interfraternity Council/The Panhellenic Council/The Multicultural Greek Council
- The Alumni Greek Council V. The House Corporation VI. The Local Chapter
- The Chapter House
- Maintenance and Review of These Standards
The following standards define the privileges, responsibilities, and interrelationships of each of these fraternal entities; they also specify the physical standards to be met for the interior and exterior condition of its chapter house if the local chapter expects to remain an integral part of the University and Lexington communities. The historically black Greek organizations will have a governing body known as the Multicultural Greek Council (MGC). Only the relevant parts of these standards apply to organizations without chapter houses.
These standards provide guidance for construction, renovation, maintenance, and preservation of the chapter houses as part of the goal of strengthening the fraternity/sorority system at Washington and Lee. The University realizes that this goal can only be achieved when alumni and student fraternity/sorority members themselves adhere in practice as well as in rhetoric to their fraternal ideals, seek a higher standard of group living, and create a climate of fraternity/sorority life compatible with Washington and Lee's institutional philosophy and objectives.
These standards, then, are not to be construed as optional guidelines, but rather as reasonable requirements necessary for the local chapters to realize the University's expectations enumerated in the Board's "Statement Relating to Fraternities":
Chapters ... are expected to maintain adequately the physical appearance of fraternity/sorority property and to assure the structural integrity of chapter houses. Chapter members are expected to conform to standards of honorable conduct and to exhibit a concern for the rights and sensibilities of others.
- The University
- Shall maintain these standards for all fraternity/sorority chapters at Washington and Lee.
- Shall recognize each local chapter upon the recommendation of the Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council/Multicultural Greek Council and the Student Affairs Committee.
- Shall recognize each alumni house corporation upon the recommendation of the Alumni Greek Council.
- Shall require adherence to the fraternity/sorority standards.
- Shall provide:
- Financial support to individual fraternity/sorority chapters through:
- Programs to generate revenue for construction, renovation, repair and maintenance.
- Loan assistance at favorable rates.
- Maintenance support and advice.
- Periodic inspection services.
- Guidance for the Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council/Multicultural Greek Council.
- Support for the Alumni Greek Council.
- Recognition and support of a University and/or Alumni Adviser for each chapter.
- Recognition and support of a House Director for each chapter.
- National Fraternity/National Sorority
- Shall set forth standards for its local chapter.
- Shall recognize the local chapter.
- Shall require strict adherence to the National by-laws and regulations.
- Shall provide:
- For the chapter's participation in the National governing structure.
- Guidance through:
- National and regional leadership training programs.
- Annual visits to the local chapter.
- Shall notify immediately if local chapter is not in good standing.
- Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council/Multicultural Greek Council
- Shall serve as the governing organizations of all recognized fraternities/sororities.
- Shall hold regularly scheduled meetings.
- Shall maintain up-to-date constitutions and by-laws which:
- Set a high standard for chapter conduct.
- Require each chapter to set a similarly high standard of conduct for its individual members and guests.
- Shall elect conduct boards empowered to uphold the constitutions, by-laws, and other rules or agreements necessary for sound governance.
- Shall be responsible to the faculty through the Student Affairs Committee.
- Shall discipline individual chapters through authority derived from the faculty via the Student Affairs Committee
- Shall recommend prospective member chapters to the University for its recognition.
- Shall have the power to recommend that the University withdraw recognition of a chapter.
- Shall promote cooperation among the member chapters and the greater community.
- Alumni Greek Council
- Shall promote the continued well-being of the fraternity/sorority community at Washington and Lee University through participation by alumni in fraternity/sorority affairs.
- Shall meet not less than twice annually.
- Shall be constituted by the presidents of the house corporations or their appointed representatives.
- Shall conduct itself in accordance with its Charter, as amended time-to-time. 67
- Shall establish guidelines to assure that its house corporation members are in good standing. At a minimum, the Alumni Greek Council shall assure that its house corporation members:
- Are incorporated in the Commonwealth of Virginia;
- Are in good standing with the State Corporation Commission; and
- Have a minimum of three (3) active directors, two-thirds of whom must be affiliated with the national organization or alumni of Washington and Lee University.
- Shall be responsible for certifying annually to the University, through the appropriate Student Affairs designee, compliance of its house corporation members with those requirements specifically enumerated in section IV. E 1 through 4 and section V. as necessary.
- Shall promote cooperation among its house corporation members.
- Shall provide services and information and act as a forum for the concerns of its house corporation members.
- House Corporation
- Shall write, implement, and periodically update a master plan to insure the perpetuation of the chapter and house corporation.
- Shall incorporate in the Commonwealth of Virginia with a minimum of 3 active directors, of whom no more than one-third may be current student officers and preferably a majority should be alumni of Washington and Lee University.
- Shall be represented on and be a member in good standing of the Alumni Greek Council.
- Shall meet at least semi-annually at the chapter house with chapter representatives.
- Shall hold title and/or lease to all real property and furnishings.
- Shall serve as lessee by requiring separate contracts with the chapter and individual resident members.
- Shall establish policies that protect the property and require a high standard of conduct among the members.
- Shall employ a House Director to represent the interests of the House Corporation and serve as liaison to the University and the Chapter. House Directors shall be required to comply with all University policies applicable to individuals working or living on campus. House Directors may not be students (undergraduate or law). A chapter may seek a waiver of this requirement by submitting a written request to the appropriate Student Affairs designee. The Vice-President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students may grant a waiver under compelling circumstances, but in no event will a waiver be given to an individual chapter for more than two years in a 10-year period.
- Shall establish financial criteria, approve the chapter budget, designate the dispensation of funds collected by the University, and audit chapter operations.
- Shall set fees sufficient to:
- Meet all debt and tax or related obligations.
- Provide insurance for property and furnishings at replacement value.
- Maintain adequate liability insurance for its directors and the chapter.
- Maintain the property and furnishings at the University standard.
- Shall collect and disburse funds in a timely manner.
- Shall re-certify compliance with these standards annually to the appropriate Student Affairs designee (see section IV. F).
- The Local Chapter
- Shall have and abide by written by-laws which:
- Define the duties and responsibilities of all chapter officers.
- Require members to behave honorably.
- Establish parietal regulations for the chapter house.
- Prohibit the possession, use, and distribution of illegal drugs and controlled substances.
- Set guidelines for the responsible use of alcohol.
- Prohibit firearms and weapons (including air guns and fireworks) on the chapter house property.
- Prohibit smoking.
- Provide for regular cleaning of the chapter house and prompt repair of all maintenance problems.
- Include strict enforcement policies subject to the review of the Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council/Multicultural Greek Council conduct boards.
- Require the chapter president (current or former before the school year after the current is elected) live in the chapter house. Live in means primary and preferably only residence. Additional upperclassmen and/or officer should live in as well.
- Require all new student chapter officers specified by Interfraternity Council/ /Panhellenic Council/Multicultural Greek Council be elected by the Wednesday after the last possible initiation date.
- Shall have a University Adviser to assist the chapter with campus and community relations, as well as academic affairs. (Description attached as Appendix 1)
- Shall promote academic excellence and intellectual growth among its members.
- Shall conduct a social program that conforms to the Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council/Multicultural Greek Council's regulations.
- Shall conduct a responsible new member education program that conforms to the Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council/Multicultural Greek Council's regulations.
- Shall establish with the House Corporation's approval a financial policy that:
- Complies with University and National fraternity/National sorority regulations.
- Requires sound business practices to minimize the chance of fraud.
- Utilizes the University collection program for charges and requires prompt payment of bills.
- Includes an annual budget.
- Shall have adequate liability insurance.
- Be in good standing with its national fraternity/national sorority.
- Strictly adhere to its by-laws and regulations.
- Actively participate in its national governing structure and leadership training programs.
- Shall re-certify compliance with these standards annually to the appropriate Student Affairs designee, and through the Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council/Multicultural Greek Council.
- Chapter House Physical Standards (currently maintained by the University)
- The fraternity/sorority chapter shall maintain a residence with an exterior which:
- Is compatible with the neighborhood.
- Is kept in excellent condition at all times.
- Has landscaped grounds conforming to an approved plan.
- The grounds shall be well maintained at all times.
- A chapter plan shall provide, consistent with the needs of the chapter, as much paved, off-street parking as possible, to be connected to the house by paved walkways.
- The fraternity/sorority chapter shall maintain a residence with an interior which:
- Meets or exceeds all applicable code requirements for fire, safety, health, and sanitation plus such additional requirements imposed by the university or its insurers.
- Provides bedroom and bath facilities of a quality at least equal to the best residence hall accommodations provided by the University.
- Contains living and recreational areas with well-defined uses and which are furnished and maintained in ways appropriate for such uses.
- Provides for each fraternity chapter a large social area, isolated from other parts of the house, with adequate exterior access, ventilation, adjacent rest room facilities, and sound absorption design features. It is the intent of this standard that fraternity social events occur only in this room. If the room is to have other uses requiring furnishings or equipment, there should be adequate adjacent storage to permit removal of these items during such events.
- Contains a dining room sufficient to provide meal service to membership in a sanitary, attractive, and comfortably furnished area.
- Contains a kitchen which is a sanitary and efficient space meeting all code requirements and with separate areas for food preparation and distribution. It shall be possible to restrict access to the kitchen from the rest of the house.
- Provides for any special requirements of the national fraternity/national sorority or house corporation.
- Is regularly maintained and clean at all times, and complies in all respects with the maintenance requirements of the house corporations and the bylaws of the Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council.
- Provides an apartment on the premises for the non-student House Director.
- In support of these standards, each fraternity/sorority shall have professionally developed plans and specifications for renovation or new construction which assure functional efficiency, durability, and ease of maintenance.
- Maintenance and Review
The VP for Student Affairs and Dean of Students will be responsible for the maintenance and the periodic review every three years of the Standards for Fraternities/Sororities. The VP for Student Affairs and Dean of Students will convene an ad hoc committee to review the Standards for Fraternities/Sororities. The ad hoc committee to review Standards for Fraternities/Sororities, in addition to the VP of Student Affairs and Dean of Students or designee, will consist of the appropriate Student Affairs designee, the President of the Alumni Greek Council, the President of the Interfraternity Council, the President of the Panhellenic Council, the President of the Multicultural Greek Council and a fraternity/sorority University adviser. Input from Facilities Management and the Treasurer's Office will be gathered in the deliberation process for any proposals which might affect those offices.
Following the review of the Standards for Fraternities/Sororities, the VP of Student Affairs and Dean of Students will submit recommendations for any changes in the Standards for Fraternities/Sororities to the President of the University or designee for consideration and approval. The President or designee will then promulgate approved revisions to all appropriate parties, the national fraternity/national sorority offices, house corporations, Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Council, and local chapter presidents.
- Appendix I: University Adviser to a Fraternity/Sorority Chapter
- Required by University policy and the Standards for Fraternities/Sororities
- A member of the Washington and Lee University faculty or administration who:
- serves as an adviser to the chapter officers regarding:
- University policy concerning fraternities/sororities
- Community relations
- Campus relations
- promotes academic excellence and intellectual growth among the chapter members
- provides liaison between the chapter, the faculty and the administration
- provides informal advice to the chapter and members on academic affairs
- encourages the chapter through its officers to develop and maintain a positive image within the whole University community
- suggests programs to foster interaction between the chapter and the faculty
- meets several times a year as a group with all University Advisers to exchange ideas and information
- meets regularly with the president or chapter leadership to discuss concerns and plans
- provides continuity of relationship between University and chapter and
- may serve as a chapter adviser or other role as deemed appropriate (or eligible) by the national office or house corporation for the chapter
- The University will provide:
- recognition of this work as a positive contribution to the quality of University life
- access to pertinent information in support of the work
- appropriate setting for meetings of the University Advisers as a group
- Appendix II: House Director
- Role: Establishes and maintains an environment consistent with the needs of the students and the requirements established in the “Standards for Fraternities and Sororities.” Develops relationships with members of the chapter and promotes the University Mission.
- Resides in the chapter house when students are present. W&L expects the House Corporation to provide a substitute House Director if the regular HD is going to away from the House for more than one night. If that is impossible we ask that the HD notify:
- respective House Corporation contacts,
- W&L Public Safety and,
- appropriate Student Affairs designee
- Complies with all University policies applicable to individuals working or living on campus.
- Supports University initiatives and stays involved in the Campus Community.
- Attends House Director Trainings or other meetings as scheduled by the appropriate Student Affairs designee.
- Communicates expectations for use of the chapter house in collaboration with the chapter officers, the University, and the House Corporation.
- Notices when a student appears to need assistance and refers them to the proper resource. If the House Director perceives potentially life-threatening issues developing they should contact local authorities, Public Safety (x8999) and Counseling Services (x8590). The House Director should not act as a counselor for issues concerning mental health or substance abuse, but rather refer the individual to a trained University staff member.
- Submits work orders in accordance with Facilities Management guidelines and ensures work orders are completed successfully in a timely manner.
- Has basic computer knowledge, including the skills necessary to access email.
Washington and Lee University oversees all student organizations: Greek, non-Greek, athletic teams, and law student organizations. A professional staff member through the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students shall advise all undergraduate and law student organizations regarding use of alcohol for club-sponsored events. Faculty advisers of student clubs and organizations, in conjunction with the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, shall enforce for student clubs and organizations a three-incident system as outlined herein for organizations that violate University alcohol/drug policies.
The Department of Athletics, in conjunction with the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, shall enforce for athletic teams a three-incident system as outlined herein for teams that violate University alcohol/drug policies.
The Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students shall enforce for law student clubs and organizations a three-incident system as outlined herein for organizations that violate University alcohol/drug policies.
The Interfraternity Council shall enforce for fraternities, and Panhellenic Council shall enforce for sororities, and Multicultural Greek Council shall enforce for black Greek letter organizations, a three-incident system as outlined herein for Greek organizations that violate University alcohol/drug policies. The Interfraternity/Panhellenic/Multicultural Greek Councils are advised by a professional staff member through the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students.
The following confirmed violations of University alcohol/drug policies and standards constitute an incident, absent extenuating circumstances:
- Any violations of IFC/Panhellenic rules governing events where alcohol is served
- Any violations of dry recruitment policies
- Excessive damage to property related to alcohol and/or other drug use
- Coordinated use of, or using, fraternity/sorority funds, organization funds or slush funds to purchase alcohol
- Coercive or pressured drinking related to group activities
- Violations of University policies related to alcohol or other drugs
Potential Sanctions For All Clubs/Organizations
Up to and including $50 fine per member and appropriate community service. Two weeks social probation for the organization. Mandatory educational programming for group members, with all costs to be paid by the group. For Greek organizations, notification of house corporation, national organization and parents of members. In the case of a non-Greek student organization, the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students notifies the organization president, adviser, and parents of students in that organization. In the case of an athletic team, the coach, parents of athletes and the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students are notified by the Athletic Director.
Second Incident (within 12 months of the first incident)
Up to and including $100 fine per member and appropriate community service. Up to twelve weeks social probation. Mandatory educational programming for group members, with all costs to be paid by the group. For Greek organizations, notification of house corporation, national organization and parents of members. For non-Greek organizations, notice to the adviser/coach, parents. For athletic teams, all non-traditional activity (e.g. off-season training) for the athletic team is suspended. (This applies to all sports except for men’s and women’s basketball, which do not have non-traditional seasons. Basketball team members involved are suspended in a sequential order so as not to jeopardize contractual obligations.) For an undergraduate or law student club, activities are reduced as decided by the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students.
Third Incident (within 12 months of the first incident)
A minimum of immediate full-year suspension for Greek organization, non-Greek undergraduate student organization, law student organization, and athletic team. Mandatory educational programming for group members, with all costs to be paid by the group. Notice to adviser/coach, house corporation, national organization, parents.
Under the circumstances previously described, the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students will inform parents or legal guardian(s) of undergraduate students when an undergraduate student violates University alcohol/drug policies.
Nothing in these regulations shall preclude the President, Provost, or appropriate conduct body from taking action they determine to be justified for both individual and group accountability in accordance with existing University policy.
All sanctions that may result in a disciplinary file, as defined by the Records of Student Conduct Referrals section, are subject to appeal to the University Board of Appeals.
Traveller Transit serves the community as a safe ride system.
Between 10:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m. on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday nights, Traveller buses operate on designated routes in the city and outside of city limits. The buses accommodate around 25 people. The stops are marked by black benches at transition points on and around campus.
Between 10:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m. every night of the week, Traveller Dispatch operates. Students may call (540) 458.8900 to obtain a safe ride home. Traveller Dispatch operates only within a five-mile radius of campus. Please see www.wlu.edu/student-life/health-and-safety/public- safety/traveller/dispatch for updated Traveller Dispatch procedures.
Students are expected to abide by the following when they use Traveller:
- Eating, drinking and smoking are not permitted in any Traveller vehicle. (Alcohol and unsealed beverages are not allowed in any Traveller vehicle.)
- Passengers must treat Traveller Drivers, Dispatchers, and Monitors with respect.
- Passengers must show a student ID if requested to do so by a Traveller Driver.
- Passengers must wear seat belts.
- The number of passengers may not exceed the capacity of the vehicle. (No one may stand in the aisles on Traveller Buses.)
- Passengers who soil Traveller vehicles may be asked to pay a $200 fee for cleanup.
- Roughhousing and fighting will not be tolerated.
Students whose conduct within the Traveller system is not consistent with the values of the University may be referred to the Student Judicial Council for conduct action.
Composed of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students (Chair), the Dean of Student Life, six members elected by and from the University Faculty (undergraduate and law) from among those not already on the University Board of Appeals and including at least one from the Department of Physical Education and Athletics and one elected by and from the Law Faculty. Student members are the President of the Student Body, the Chair of the Student Judicial Council (SJC), a student member of the Student-Faculty Hearing Board (SFHB), the Head Resident Assistant, the President of the Student Bar Association (SBA), the second-year representative to SBA, a student representative of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) Advisory Board, the President of the Interfraternity Council (IFC), and the President of the Panhellenic Council (PC). SAC is responsible for reviewing issues affecting student life, for recommending changes in University policy on non-curricular student matters to the University Faculty, and for overseeing Greek life including the maintenance and review of the Standards for Fraternities/Sororities. With authority delegated by the University Faculty, SAC oversees the judicial procedures of SJC, IFC, PC, SFHB and the resident advisers in university housing.
The three areas of primary responsibility for the Student Affairs Committee are:
- serving as a University forum for the discussion, debate and dissemination of issues and information affecting student life;
- recommending changes in University policy on non-curricular student issues directly to the University faculty; and
- Overseeing student judicial procedures.
SAC also serves as a University forum for issues affecting student life, and it may recommend changes in University policy on non-curricular student issues directly to the faculty. SAC assumes jurisdiction over all student affairs not covered by other committees. It is also an advisory board to the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students.
As a recipient of federal aid and federal grants, the University must certify under the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989 that it will take certain steps to provide a drug-free workplace. Unlawfully possessing, using, distributing, dispensing, or manufacturing alcohol or illegal or controlled substances is prohibited on University property, in University vehicles, while conducting University business, or as a part of University activities. Any student employee who is convicted for a drug statute violation occurring in the workplace must notify his or her supervisor within five days of the conviction. Additionally, a student employee must report any drug-related or alcohol-related conviction to Human Resources. The University will take appropriate action against an employee who violates this workplace rule, up to and including termination and referral for prosecution, in the best interest of the University, and in accordance with the Drug-Free Workplace Act. Employees not terminated may be required to satisfactorily participate in an approved drug abuse assistance or rehabilitation program. Student employees should review the full University Alcohol and Drug Use in the Workplace policy at go.wlu.edu/OGC/DrugFree.
In accordance with the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989, the University will distribute to students annually information on applicable legal sanctions associated with the unlawful possession or distribution of alcohol or illegal drugs, health risks associated with substance abuse, and a description of drug and alcohol treatment programs available to members of the University community.
Separate from the legal requirements, the University is concerned with the health and well-being of its students. Students may contact the Counseling Center, the Student Health Center, the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, LIFE, and student peer counselors for referrals or information on available and appropriate substance counseling, treatment or rehabilitation programs. Students can obtain substance abuse assessment and treatment from the two licensed Ph.D. counselors and one psychiatrist on staff or may be referred to off-campus treatment centers and programs, including the local Rockbridge Area Prevention Services, the Recovery Choice program at Augusta Health, or other regional or national programs.
In accordance with the Drug-Free and Communities Act of 1989, alcohol and drug education at Washington and Lee University is coordinated by the Office of Health Promotion as part of the Student Affairs program.
- Inform all students at Washington and Lee University about laws of Virginia and University policy regarding the use of alcohol and other controlled substances.
- Involve students directly in comprehensive multidimensional health promotion programs; including planning, development, implementation and evaluation of awareness programs, speakers, harm reduction information, social norms marketing approach (Universal Prevention).
- Provide assessment and education for students who exhibit problem behaviors related to alcohol and other drug abuse (Indicated Prevention). Students who receive a sanction under the University Policies on Alcohol and Other Drugs for Individuals will receive an educational assessment through the Office of Health Promotion.
- Provide educational programming, resources and referrals to organizations, Greek students, first-year residence halls and athletic teams (Targeted Prevention).
- Include faculty from various academic disciplines to foster critical thinking both in and outside the classroom about social issues on campus including alcohol and other drugs.
- Promote and foster the development of LIFE peer health educators to provide educational programs and model behaviors that demonstrate low-risk drinking behaviors.
- Collaborate with the Student Health Center, Counseling Center, Athletic Department, Greek life, faculty, alumni, parents and other University stakeholders to establish an environment that promotes low-risk use of alcohol.
The negative physical and mental effects of the use of alcohol and other drugs are well documented. Use of these drugs may cause: blackouts, poisoning, and overdose; physical and psychological dependence; damage to vital organs such as the brain, heart, and liver; inability to learn and remember information; and psychological problems including depression, psychosis, and severe anxiety. Risks associated with specific drugs are described later in this section.
Impaired judgment and coordination resulting from the use of alcohol and other drugs are associated with acquaintance assault and rape; DUI/DWI arrests; hazing; falls, drowning and other injuries; contracting sexually-transmitted infections including AIDS; and unwanted or unplanned sexual experiences and pregnancy.
The substance abuse of family members and friends may also be of concern to individual students and employees. Patterns of risk-taking behavior and dependency not only interfere in the lives of the abusers, but can also have a negative impact on their friends and family, affecting academics, work, emotional well-being, and student adjustment to college life.
Individuals concerned about their own health or that of a friend should consult a physician or mental health professional. More information and assistance can be obtained by contacting one of the University physicians or counselors, the Employee Assistance Program for faculty and staff, other campus and community resources listed in the University’s annual Drug Free Schools and Communities notice, or a community resource listed in the yellow pages of the telephone directory.
Alcohol abuse is a progressive disorder in which physical dependency can develop. Even low doses of alcohol impair brain function, judgment, alertness, coordination and reflexes. Very high doses cause suppression of respiration and death. Chronic alcohol abuse can produce dementia, sexual impotence, cirrhosis of the liver, and heart disease; and sudden withdrawal can produce severe anxiety, tremors, hallucinations, and life-threatening convulsions.
Marijuana has negative physical and mental effects. Physical effects include elevated blood pressure, a dry mouth and throat, bloodshot and swollen eyes, decrease in body temperature, and increased appetite. Use of marijuana is also associated with impairment of short-term memory and comprehension, an altered sense of time, and a reduction in the ability to perform motor skills such as driving a car. Marijuana use also produces listlessness, inattention, withdrawal and apathy. It also can intensify underlying emotional problems and is associated with chronic anxiety, depression, and paranoia. Frequent and/or long-time users may develop chronic lung disease and damage to the pulmonary system.
This category includes phencyclidine (PCP or “angel dust”) and amphetamine variants which have mind-altering effects. Perception and cognition are impaired and muscular coordination decreases. Speech is blocked and incoherent. Chronic users of PCP may have memory problems and speech difficulties lasting 6 months to a year after prolonged daily use. Depression, anxiety, and violent behavior also occur. High psychological dependence on the drug may result in taking large doses of PCP. Large doses produce convulsions, comas, and heart and lung failure.
Lysergic acid dyethylamine (LSD or “acid”), mescaline and psilocybin (mushrooms) cause illusions, hallucinations and altered perception of time and space. Physical effects include dilated pupils, elevated body temperature, increased heart rate and blood pressure, decreased appetite, insomnia and tremors. Psychological reactions include panic, confusion, paranoia, anxiety and loss of control. Flashbacks or delayed effects can occur even after use has ceased.
Cocaine stimulates the central nervous system. Immediate physical effects include dilated pupils and increased blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate and body temperature. Occasional use can cause a stuffy or runny nose, while chronic use may destroy nasal tissues. Following the “high” of extreme happiness and a sense of unending energy is a cocaine “crash” including depression, dullness, intense anger, and paranoia. Injecting cocaine with contaminated equipment can cause AIDS, hepatitis and other diseases. Tolerance develops rapidly and psychological and physical dependency can occur.
Crack or “rock” is extremely addictive and produces the most intense cocaine high. The use of cocaine can cause kidney damage, heart attacks, seizures, and strokes due to high blood pressure. Death can occur by cardiac arrest or respiratory failure.
Amphetamines and other stimulants include “ecstasy” and “ice” as well as prescription drugs such as Adderall and Ritalin. The physical effects produced are elevated heart and respiratory rates, increased blood pressure, insomnia, and loss of appetite. Sweating, headaches, blurred vision, dizziness, and anxiety may also result from use. High dosage can cause rapid or irregular heartbeat, tremors, loss of motor skills and even physical collapse and possible death. Long-term use of higher doses can produce amphetamine psychosis which includes hallucinations, delusions and paranoia.
Barbiturates and benzodiazepines are two of the most commonly used groups of these drugs. Barbiturates include Phenobarbital, Seconal and Amytal; benzodiazepines include Ativan, Dalmane, Librium, Xanax, Valium, Halcion and Restoril. These drugs are frequently used for medical purposes to relieve anxiety and to induce sleep. Physical and psychological dependence can occur if the drugs are used for longer periods of time at higher doses. Benzodiazepine use can cause slurred speech, disorientation, and lack of coordination. If taken with alcohol, abuse can lead to coma and possible death.
Narcotics include heroin, methadone, morphine, codeine, OxyContin, Vicodin, and opium. After an initial feeling of euphoria, usage causes drowsiness, nausea, and vomiting. Effects of overdose include slow and shallow breathing, clammy skin, convulsions, coma and possible death. Physical and psychological dependence is high, and severe withdrawal symptoms include watery eyes, runny nose, loss of appetite, irritability, tremors, panic, cramps, nausea, chills, and sweating. Use of contaminated syringes may cause AIDS and hepatitis.
Commonwealth of Virginia 2015: Selective Summary of Laws Governing Alcohol and Drugs (Virginia Code sections referenced)
The minimum legal age in Virginia for the purchase, possession, or consumption of alcoholic beverages is 21 years of age.
|Possession or consumption under 21 (4.1-305)||Misdemeanor; mandatory loss of driver's license for six months (up to 1 year) AND mandatory minimum $500 fine or 50 hours community service|
|Use of fraudulent driver's license ID to purchase alcoholic beverages (4.1-305)||Misdemeanor -- mandatory loss of driver's license for six months (up to 1 year) AND mandatory minimum $500 fine or 50 hours community service|
|Drinking in Public* (18.2-306)
NOTE: The definition of a public place includes any sidewalk adjoining a public street. (4.1-100; 4.1-128)
|Misdemeanor; fine not to exceed $250|
|Purchase of alcoholic beverages for intoxicated individuals (4.1-306)||Misdemeanor -- mandatory loss of driver's license for up to 1 year AND fine not to exceed $2500 and/or jail for up to 12 months|
|Purchasing, giving, or assisting in providing alcohol to person under 21 (4.1-306)||Misdemeanor -- mandatory loss of driver's license for up to 1 year AND fine not to exceed $2500 and/or jail for up to 12 months|
|Purchase, possession, use, selling, or offering for sale or use powdered or crystalline alcohol (4.1-302.2)||Misdemeanor -- mandatory loss of license for one year AND mandatory minimum $500 fine (up to $2500) or 50 hours community service; possible jail for up to 12 months|
|Consuming alcoholic beverages while driving motor vehicle (18.2-323.1)||Misdemeanor; fine not to exceed $250|
|Driving after illegally consuming alcohol under age 21-.02% BAC or more constitutes a violation; requires no showing of impaired driving
|Misdemeanor - Suspension of driver's license for one year and either a mandatory minimum fine of $500 or performance of a mandatory minimum of 50 hours of community service.|
|Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI); .08% BAC presumes alcohol intoxication, but can be convicted on lower BAC; specified levels of certain drugs also presume intoxication
|Misdemeanor - fine not to exceed $2500 (mandatory minimum of $250 and/or jail for 12 months, and loss of driver's license for 1 year, in addition to automatic, administrative 7-day license suspension upon arrest or refusal to take a blood or breath test and immediate vehicle impound.|
|Driving on Restricted permit with BAC of .02 or more (18.2-272, 46.2-389/391)||Misdemeanor; fine not to exceed $2500 and/or jail for 12 months, and loss of driver's license for 1-3 years.|
|Driving under the influence of alcohol with passenger age seventeen (17) or younger (18.2-270)||Misdemeanor; with additional fine of $500 to $1000 and mandatory minimum five days in jail, beyond penalties for DUI|
|Unreasonable refusal to take blood or breath test (18.2-268.3/4)||Loss of driver's license for 12 months|
Note: Virginia law provides for arrest without warrant at any location within three hours of the occurrence of an accident if there is probable cause of driver intoxication.
|Marijuana Possession||Misdemeanor; 30 days in jail and/or (18.2-250.1) $500 fine. Second offense - 12 months jail and/or $2500 fine|
|Marijuana Sale/Distribution||½ ounces or less: Misdemeanor; 12 months jail and/or $2500 fine
More than ½ ounce: Felony; 1 to 10 years prison OR 12 months jail and/or $2500 fine
|Cocaine Possession (small amount)
|Felony; 1 to 10 years prison OR 12 months jail and/or $2500 fine|
(and large amt. possession)
|Felony - 5 years to life in prison and $1,000,000 fine (18.2-248)|
|Mushrooms (Hallucinogens)||Same as Cocaine|
|Cannabimimetic Agent Possession||Misdemeanor; 12 months jail and/or $2,500 fine (18.2-250(a))|
|Cannabimimetic Agent Manufacture/Sale/Gift/Distribution or Possession with Intent to Manufacture/Sell/Give/Distribute||Felony -5 to 40 years in prison and $500,000 fine (18.2-248)|
|Other Controlled Substances
(Including imitation controlled substances and prescription medication not pursuant to a valid prescription for the user)
|Same as Cocaine|
|Felony - 1 to 10 years prison OR 12 months jail and/or $20,000 fine|
|GHB (Date Rape Drug)
Manufacture/Sale/Gift/Distribution of Possession with Intent to Sell (18.2-251.3)
|Felony; 5 to 20 years prison and $100,000 fine|
|Inhalent Use||Misdemeanor; 12 months jail and/or $2,500 fine|
|Inhalent Inviting/Inducing use||Misdemeanor; 6 months jail and/or $1,000 fine|
|Sale/Distribution, or Possession with Intent to Sell, Give or Distribute, on or Near School Property
(Imitation/Controlled Substances or any amount of Marijuana)
|Felony - 1-5 years prison and $100,000 fine|
Note: All of these violations carry an additional penalty of loss of driver's license for 6 months. (18.2-259.1)
Note: As of July 1, 2015, Virginia allows an affirmative defense to prosecution for simple possession of illegal drugs or paraphernalia, public intoxication, or unlawful possession, purchase, or consumption of alcohol for reporting of overdose. Affirmative defense to prosecution only applies if, in good faith, an individual seeks emergency medical attention for self or another person for a life-threatening condition resulting from the consumption or use of alcohol, a controlled substance, or combination of substances by reporting the overdose to 911, law enforcement or firefighter, or emergency services medical personnel. Individual must remain at the scene until law-enforcement responds, identify himself/herself, cooperate in any investigation of any reasonably related offense, AND the affirmative defense can apply only if the evidence for the prosecution of an offense was obtained as a result of the individual seeking emergency medical attention. (18.2-251.03)
Federal law prohibits the unlawful manufacturing, distribution, use, and possession of controlled substances. Penalties depend on various factors, including the type and amount of the drug involved, and whether there is intent to distribute. Penalties under federal law range from less than one year to life imprisonment and/or $1,000 to $4 million fines for first offenses. Penalties may include forfeiture of property, including vehicles used to possess, transport or conceal a controlled substance, and forfeiture of Federal benefits, including student loans. A drug conviction may also result in future denial of professional licenses.
Note: A special sanction is provided for distribution and manufacturing near universities. Under federal law, any person who distributes, possesses with intent to distribute, or manufacture a controlled substance on or within one thousand feet of a university is subject to double the applicable maximum punishment.
Note: As of July 1, 2013, texting or reading emails/texts while driving is a primary offense, meaning law enforcement can stop you for doing only that. The offense carries a $125 fine. (Va. Code Section 46.2-1078.1)
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended, ("the Act," commonly referred to as "FERPA" or the "Buckley Amendment") is designed to protect the confidentiality of the records that educational institutions maintain on their students and to give students access to their records to assure the accuracy of their contents. The purposes of W&L's Student Education Records Policy are: to inform students of their rights under the Act; to inform employees, student workers, third-party contractors, and volunteers of the University's responsibilities under the Act; and to describe the circumstances under which the University may disclose student education records. The full policy is available at go.wlu.edu/OGC/FERPA. Please visit the University Registrar’s website for more information at go.wlu.edu/FERPA.
In compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and all other applicable non-discrimination laws, Washington and Lee University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, disability, veteran's status, or genetic information in its educational programs and activities, admissions, and with regard to employment. Inquiries may be directed to Lauren E. Kozak, Title IX Coordinator, Elrod University Commons 306, (540) 458.4055, firstname.lastname@example.org, who is designated by the University to coordinate compliance efforts and carry out its responsibilities under Title IX, as well as those under Section 504 and other applicable non- discrimination laws.
The Coordinator has designated the following Title IX Assistant Coordinators:
- Employment: Amy D. Barnes, Executive Director of Human Resources, Two South Main 109, 540.458.8920, email@example.com; and
- Gender Equity in Athletics: Elizabeth Knapp, Associate Provost and Director of the Johnson Program in Leadership and Integrity, Washington Hall 217, (540) 458.8705, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Inquiries may also be directed to the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education.
As adopted by the Board of Trustees, May 18, 2002.
With a rich heritage from the past and a history spanning more than two centuries, Washington and Lee University has a profound sense of tradition, but it likewise has a firm commitment to the ideal embodied in its motto, non incautus futuri, and therefore remains responsive to changes and innovations that contribute to the realizations of its aim. As we enter the 21st century, the members of our community need to live with and understand different cultural backgrounds in preparation for a changing world.
To that end, Washington and Lee University commits itself to the recruitment and retention of a broad, inclusive student body, faculty and administration who represent a wide range of interests, abilities and cultures —a diverse array of talent. University will strengthen a curriculum that increases knowledge, awareness and understanding of diversity and inclusiveness, and will create a climate that builds on our core values to welcome and nurture all members of the Washington and Lee community. Just as a vibrant liberal arts education in the classroom challenges attitudes, beliefs and accepted ways of thinking, the interaction outside the classroom of individuals with different perspectives strengthens our educational enterprise.
The policies of Washington and Lee University are under continual examination and revision. This Student Handbook is not a contract; it merely presents the policies in effect at the time of publication and in no way guarantees that the policies will not change. For updated policies and information, see www.wlu.edu.
1The Administrative Advisor is a professional Student Affairs’ staff member appointed by the Vice President for Student Affairs who is a resource dedicated to assisting the Chair and Council with its proceedings.
2The procedures for adjudication of conduct violations under W&L’s Amended Interim Sexual Misconduct Policy can be found at: http://go.wlu.edu/OGC/SexualMisconductPolicy