Contact Us

Ms. Janet McKeithan-Janifer
Associate Dean of Students
(717) 477-1164 
studentconduct@ship.edu


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FAQs for Students

How should I prepare for my hearing?

You may schedule a pre-hearing conference during the three business day period following the receipt of your notification letter.  The pre-hearing conference is designed to help you understand the overall student conduct system, the code of conduct, and the hearing process.

Many students find it helpful to write down notes so they do not forget any relevant details when they are explaining the incident to the Judicial Officer.  You also may submit a written statement to the Student Conduct Officer prior to the hearing or bring it with your to your hearing.  If you went to court for your incident, it is also helpful to bring court documents with you.

Just prior to your hearing, make sure you have your Shippensburg University student ID as that the Student Conduct Officer will request it during the hearing.

Must I attend a hearing on campus, if I’ve had one in the district court?

Yes, you will have a hearing on campus even if you have one in the district court.  As a student of Shippensburg University you are not only a member of the local community, but of the university community as well.  The goal of the Student Conduct System is to redirect the behavior of students to more acceptable productive patterns of conduct.  Through the Student Conduct System, you are challenged to develop better decision-making skills, acquire increased self-discipline, cultivate greater understanding of your community responsibilities and to develop increased personal insight.

Who will meet with me?

You will meet with a member of the Dean of Students’ staff.  This person is referred to as the student conduct officer or hearing officer.  A student conduct officer may be a Graduate Assistant, Residence Director, an Assistant Director of Residence Life, an Associate/Assistant Dean of Students, or the Dean of Students.

What’s going to happen to me?

A student conduct officer will present the documentation given to the Dean of Students Office.  You will then be offered the opportunity to ask questions, dispute the facts, add comments for clarification, or remain silent.  It is best to be honest and cooperative with the student conduct officer.  The student conduct officer will then ask you questions to gain clarity of the incident.  If the student conduct officer feels you are not in violation, the charges will be dismissed. If the student conduct officer feels you are in violation, he/she will issue a sanction and stipulations.  Generally, the student conduct officer will ask you questions regarding your experience at Shippensburg University and what changes you anticipate will help you avoid further violations of the Code of Conduct when he/she determines your sanctions.  The goal of the student conduct system is not to punish you, rather to support your growth and development as a member of the university community.

Who can I bring to my hearing?

You may bring any witnesses or friendly advisors to your hearing.  An advisor may be a parent, residence life staff, faculty member, or an attorney.  The role of the advisor is to advise the student about case preparation and to accompany the student to the hearing for support and consultation.  The advisor does not directly participate in the hearing, for example, by asking or responding to questions, but he or she may interact privately with the student.

What are sanctions and stipulations?

A sanction is a penalty levied against those found “in violation” of the provisions of the student code of conduct.  A stipulation is a condition, beyond the sanction, required of those found “in violation” of the provision of the student code of conduct.

Sanctions and stipulations are used to help students develop more productive patterns of behavior, to support the integrity of the academic mission, and to protect the members of the academic community.  A sanction can vary from a warning to expulsion.  A sanction corresponds with the severity and/or frequency of the violations.  Stipulations may be attached to sanctions.  Some examples of stipulations include community service, an alcohol/drug referral, and counseling.

Are my parents going to be contacted and why?

If you are found in violation of Community Regulations 5.1 or 5.2 and are under the age of 21, your parents or legal guardians typically receive notification via a letter from the Office of the Dean of Students.  The letter is sent to your home address on record at the University.  Other means of communication such as e-mail and phone calls can be used as well.

Parents or legal guardians, students, and the University are viewed as a partnership in promoting responsible decision-making, healthy lifestyles, positive community behavior, academic success, and personal development.  Notifying parents or legal guardians of alcohol and drug-related incidents is a fulfillment of the obligations associated with this partnership.  Notification should not be viewed as punitive but rather as an attempt to engage in productive dialog.

Am I going to have to leave the University?

Depending on the severity and frequency of your violation, you may be suspended or expelled from the university.

Am I going to have to pay money?

At Shippensburg University, we do not fine for violations.  As part of your sanction, you may have to pay restitution (i.e. pay for the property you damaged) or incur a fee for a program such as Connections.  On the day of your hearing, you will not have to pay any money, even if it is part of your sanction.

What if I don’t show up for my hearing?

If you do not show up to your hearing, the Dean of Students or a designee reserves the right to dismiss the case or to proceed with the student conduct hearing in your absence.  In most cases, the student conduct hearing is conducted in your absence and the hearing officer will follow the normal hearing procedure.  You will be notified of the findings in writing, within ten business days after the hearing.

Why do I have to do community service?

Your decisions not only affect you, but your community as well.  Community service is used as a tool to help you better understand your responsibilities to the Shippensburg community and to increase your personal insight.  It also encourages a respect for the rights and privileges of others.  This in turn helps you learn to live more harmoniously and productively within a diverse and dynamic academic community.

Can I get an extension on my community service?

Extensions on completing community service are granted on a case by case basis.  A student may be granted an extension on completing community service if he or she demonstrates that he or she has made an effort to complete the community service by the due date.

To request an extension, please contact the Dean of Students office by phone at (717)477-1164, Monday through Friday from 8:00 A.M. to 4:30 P.M., or you may send an e-mail to judicialaffairs@ship.edu.

What if I don’t agree with my sanction?

If you do not agree with your sanction, you have the right to an appeal.  Appeals must be presented in writing within three business days following written notice of a decision.  An appeal may be sought on the following grounds:

  1. A fundamental error occurred in the hearing procedures that unreasonably interfered with the respondent’s rights.
  2. New evidence or information germane to the case and not available at the time of the hearing has been uncovered.
  3. The sanction imposed was unjust, unreasonable, or inappropriate.
  4. The decision was contrary to the evidence presented.

An appeal is not a new hearing, but it is a review of the records from the original hearing. An appeal may be dismissed if not sought on proper grounds.

What if I don’t complete my sanction(s) or stipulation(s)?

 If you are nearing the due date of your sanctions and have yet to complete them, contact the Dean of Students Office for a possible extension.  If you do not get an extension and your sanctions are due, a hold will be placed on your account.

To request an extension, please contact the Dean of Students office by phone at (717)477-1164, Monday through Friday from 8:00 A.M. to 4:30 P.M., or you may send an e-mail to judicialaffairs@ship.edu.

What happens if I’m suspended?

If you are suspended, you will need to complete your sanctions.  To return to the university, you will need to reapply as if you are a new student.

 

FAQs for Parents

Can I attend my child’s hearing?

You may attend your child’s hearing as a friendly advisor.  The role of the advisor is to advise the student about case preparation and to accompany the student to the hearing for support and consultation.  The advisor does not directly participate in the hearing, for example, by asking or responding to questions, but he or she may interact privately with the student.

I just got a notification from the university about my child. Why am I being contacted?

If your child is found in violation of Community Regulations 5.1 or 5.2 and is under the age of 21, the parents or legal guardians typically receive notification via a letter from the Office of the Dean of Students.  The letter is sent to the student’s home address on record at the University.  Other means of communication such as e-mail and phone calls can be used as well.

Parents or legal guardians, students, and the University are viewed as a partnership in promoting responsible decision-making, healthy lifestyles, positive community behavior, academic success, and personal development.  Notifying parents or legal guardians of alcohol and drug-related incidents is a fulfillment of the obligations associated with this partnership.  Notification should not be viewed as punitive but rather as an attempt to engage in productive dialog.

Why does my child have a hearing if he went to court already?

As a student of Shippensburg University your student is not only a member of the local community, but of the university community as well.  The goal of the Student Conduct System is to redirect the behavior of students to more acceptable productive patterns of conduct.  Through the Student Conduct System, the student is challenged to develop better decision-making skills, acquire increased self-discipline, cultivate greater understanding of his or her community responsibilities and to develop increased personal insight.