1.5 Disciplinary Process
The Dean of Students, or his or her designee, shall have the primary authority and responsibility for the administration of student discipline. The Dean works cooperatively with faculty members in the disposition of scholastic violations, with student housing staff in the disposition of student housing violations, with campus security in the disposition of criminal violations and with other appropriate staff members in the disposition of other types of violations. The Dean may delegate to faculty members the authority to dispose of scholastic discipline cases and may delegate to University staff members the authority to dispose of designated student disciplinary matters as deemed appropriate.
Disciplinary charges will be investigated by the Dean or the Dean’s designee. After completing the preliminary investigation, the dean may dismiss the allegation as unfounded or summon the student for a conference.
1.52 Student Summon.
Any student may be summoned by written request of the Dean of Students for a meeting for the purposes of the investigation and/or to discuss the allegation(s). The written request may specify a place for the meeting and a time at least three weekdays after the date of the written request if the request is sent by mail or at least two weekdays after the date of the request if the request is sent by e-mail or hand delivered. The written request may be mailed or e-mailed to the address appearing in the records of the registrar, e-mailed to the student at the e-mail address on record with the University or may be hand delivered to the student. If a student fails to appear without good cause, as determined by the Dean, the Dean may bar or cancel the student's enrollment or otherwise alter the status of the student until the student complies with the summons, or the Dean may proceed to implement the disciplinary procedures. The refusal of a student to accept delivery of the notice or the failure to maintain a current address with the registrar, or failure to read mail or e-mail shall not be good cause for the failure to respond to a summons.
1.53 Interim Disciplinary Action.
Pending a hearing or other disposition of the allegations against a student, the Dean may take such immediate interim disciplinary action as is appropriate to the circumstances when such action is in the best interest of the university. This includes but is not limited to suspension and bar from the campus when it reasonably appears to the Dean from the circumstances that the continuing presence of the student poses a potential danger to persons or property or a potential threat for disrupting any activity authorized by the university.
1.54 Timeliness of Hearing.
When interim disciplinary action has been taken by the Dean under section 1.54 immediately above, a hearing of the charges against the student will generally be held under the procedures specified below, beginning with section 1.58. A hearing following the interim disciplinary action will generally be held within 10 days after the interim disciplinary action was taken; however, at the discretion of the Dean of Students the 10 day period may be extended for a period not to exceed an additional 10 days.
1.55 Withholding Transcripts, Grades, Degrees.
Notwithstanding the above, the Dean may withhold the issuance of an official transcript, grade, diploma, certificate, or degree to a student alleged to have violated a rule or regulation of the University which would reasonably allow the imposition of such penalty. The Dean may take such action pending a hearing, resolution by administrative disposition, and/or exhaustion of appellate rights if the Dean has provided the student an opportunity to provide a preliminary response to the allegations and in the opinion of the Dean, the best interests of the University of Texas System or the university would be served by this action.
1.56 Administrative Disposition.
In any case where the accused student elects not to dispute the facts upon which the charges are based and agrees to the sanctions the Dean assesses, the student may execute a written waiver of the hearing procedures specified below. This administrative disposition shall be final and there shall be no subsequent proceeding regarding the charges.
In any case where the accused student elects not to dispute the facts upon which the charges are based, but does not agree with the sanctions assessed by the Dean, the student may execute a written waiver of the hearing procedures below yet retain the right to appeal the decision of the Dean only on the issue of the sanction. The appeal regarding the sanction will be to the president of the University.
1.57 Hearing Process.
In those cases in which the accused student disputes the facts upon which the charges are based, such charges shall be heard and determined by a fair and impartial Hearing Officer.
1.58 Notice of Hearing.
Except in those cases where immediate interim disciplinary action has been taken, the accused student shall be given at least 10 days written notice of the date, time, and place for such hearing and the name of the Hearing Officer. The notice, sent by the Dean of Students, shall include a statement of the charge(s) and a summary statement of the evidence supporting such charge(s). The notice shall be delivered in person to the student or mailed to the student at the address appearing in the registrar's records. A notice sent by mail will be considered to have been received on the third day after the date of mailing, excluding any intervening Sunday. The date for a hearing may be postponed by the Hearing Officer for good cause or by agreement of the student and Dean.
1.59 Impartiality of the Hearing Officer.
The accused student may challenge the impartiality of the Hearing Officer. The challenge must be in writing, state the reasons for the challenge, and be submitted to the Hearing Officer through the Office of the Dean at least three days prior to the hearing. The Hearing Officer shall be the sole judge of whether he or she can serve with fairness and objectivity. In the event the Hearing Officer disqualifies himself or herself, a substitute will be chosen in accordance with procedures of the university.
1.510 Burden of Proof.
Upon a hearing of the charges, the Dean or other university representative has the burden of going forward with the evidence and has the burden of proving the charges by the greater weight of the credible evidence.
1.511 Duties of Hearing Officer.
The Hearing Officer is responsible for conducting the hearing in an orderly manner and controlling the conduct of the witnesses and participants in the hearing. The Hearing Officer shall rule on all procedural matters and on objections regarding exhibits and testimony of witnesses, may question witnesses, and is entitled to have the advice and assistance of legal counsel from the Office of General Counsel of the System. The Hearing Officer shall render and send to the Dean and the accused student a written decision that contains findings of fact and a conclusion as to whether the accused student is responsible for the violations as charged. Upon a finding of responsibility the Hearing Officer shall assess a sanction or sanctions listed in Section 1.6 below. When an accused student is found responsible for the illegal use, possession, or sale of a drug or narcotic on campus the assessment of a minimum sanction provided in Section 1.33 above is required.
1.512 Minimal Rights.
The hearing shall be conducted in accordance with procedures adopted by the university that assure the university representative and the accused student the following minimal rights:
(a) Each party shall provide the other party a list of witnesses, a brief summary of the testimony to be given by each, and a copy of documents to be introduced at the hearing at least five days prior to the hearing.
(b) Each party shall have the right to appear, present testimony of witnesses and documentary evidence, cross-examine witnesses, and be assisted by an advisor of choice. The advisor may be an attorney. If the accused student’s advisor is an attorney, the Dean’s advisor may be an attorney from the Office of General Counsel of the System. An advisor may confer with and advise the Dean or accused student, but shall not be permitted to question witnesses, introduce evidence, make objections, or present argument to the Hearing Officer.
(c) The Dean may recommend a sanction to be assessed by the Hearing Officer. The recommendation may be based upon past practice of the university for violations of a similar nature, the past disciplinary record of the student, or other factors deemed relevant by the Dean. The accused student shall be entitled to respond to the recommendation of the Dean.
(d) The hearing will be recorded. If either party desires to appeal the decision of the Hearing Officer, the official record will consist of the recording of the hearing, the documents received in evidence, and the decision of the Hearing Officer. At the request of the president the recording of the hearing will be transcribed and both parties will be furnished a copy of the transcript.