What to bring to a Community Standards Conference (CSC)?
- Your resume. Include things such as student organizations you are a part of, current jobs, leadership positions, and other relevant information.
- Witness statements. Make sure they are signed, dated and have the OU E-mail and P-ID. This is important! The statement should include what the person saw, their relationship to you, a basic timeline, and any other relevant information to the case.
- Letters of recommendation. If you can get a professor, employer, or other professional to write you a letter of recommendation it is helpful. Have them talk about your strengths, qualities, and you as an individual. Letters from friends or family are usually not helpful.
- Your DAR’s (if they are good). If you have a 3.0 GPA or higher consider bringing in your DAR’s CSSR wants to see you are doing well, so show off your grades!
Before your CSC
- Make sure you dress nice. A dress shirt and jeans works. If it is a hearing, dress pants and a dress shirt work.
- Have all your evidence together and make copies. Make sure you have copies to hand them because they will keep it and add it to your file.
- Come early! Your SDS representative will probably ask that you arrive at the campus hearing 10-15 minutes early. It is helpful to go over last minute details.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions and not answer. You have rights. If you are ever unsure, ask your representative. That is why we are here.
- Don’t bring in your phone. It is a distraction and takes away from the conversation. You want to put yourself in the best possible light.
During your CSC
- Expect questions such as who was involved? What happened? How did you get the alcohol/drugs/etc.?
- Expect them to ask you to lay out a timeline. This may be as simple as we went to the bar around eight, had five drinks, and went home by eleven. It could be as complex as me and five friends went to the CI at 8, had five bud lights in about 2 hours, walked home, arrived around 10:30… and so on.
- Admit or deny part. At the end, you will be asked to formally admit or deny the charges against you. You can admit to all, some, or any combination. You can deny the same. Talking to your representative before doing this is helpful.
- Expect paperwork. If you close the case (by admitting or have the charges dismissed) the case is considered closed. You will sign paperwork with the sanctions, outcome, and other information. If you deny any charges, you will not sign paperwork. You will be scheduling a hearing.
After your CSC
- If the case is closed, follow the paperwork you signed. Finish all requirements and you will be fine.
- If a hearing is scheduled, be on the lookout for that date in your catmail. Your SDS
- representative can give you more information on hearings and the different types.
- Save your paperwork! It is important to save it for the future. If there are any issues or further incidents it can be helpful to have records.
Most important…know your rights! You have the right to:
- Know the charges. You get an email with the charges and the base for those charges.
- Get a notification if you are up for suspension or expulsion
- Use SDS
- Have someone to support you. This can be a parent, friend, or someone to comfort you throughout the process.
- Have accommodations (reasonable ones) for disabilities.
- Access your file (you have to go in person to the office and ask for it)
- Have the process and outcome explained to you
- Be assumed not in violation until proven by “fifty-and-a-feather”
- Speak or not!
- Rebut and respond to information in the case
- Accept or deny any or all charges (and request a hearing)
- Have witnesses during hearings (witness statements for CSCs)
What are the types of hearings?
- There are administrative hearings (AH) or University Hearing Boards (UHB’s)
- If you are NOT up for suspension or expulsion, you automatically get an AH. This is one person listening to both sides and deciding the case. This person has no history with the case. The “complainant” is the person you had the CSC with. You are the respondent.
- If you are up for suspension you can pick a UHB. This is comprised of a staff member, faculty, and a student (usually a graduate student). The complainant is the person you had the CSC with. You are the respondent. They vote by majority to determine the case.
Note: CS SR decisions are made based on a “fifty-and-a-feather” idea. Think of a scale. The evidence is fifty-fifty. If a “feather” tips one side. That is the side they go with.