Haverford College

Location: Haverford, Pennsylvania
Website: http://www.haverford.edu
Type: Private
Federal Circuit: 3rd Circuit

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Speech Code Rating

Haverford College has been given the speech code rating Yellow. Yellow light colleges and universities are those institutions with at least one ambiguous policy that too easily encourages administrative abuse and arbitrary application. Read more here.

At present, FIRE has not been involved in any cases at this school.
Yellow Light Policies
  • Sexual Misconduct: Definitions and Policies

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: January 23, 2018

    Sexual harassment is unwelcome conduct that is sexual in nature. Sexual harassment can include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when: … Such conduct is sufficiently severe, pervasive and objectively offensive as to have the effect of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment sufficient to deny an individual educational benefits or participation in activities at the institution (hostile environment).

    Policy statement: Haverford prohibits sexual harassment of any kind. Sexual harassment as defined above is a violation of Haverford’s community standards and, as such, is unacceptable. Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination that is specifically prohibited by Title IX.

    » Read More

  • Haverford College Honor Code

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility
    Last updated: January 23, 2018

    We recognize that acts of discrimination and harassment, including, but not limited to, acts of racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, classism, ableism, discrimination based on religion or political ideology, and discrimination based on national origin or English capability are devoid of respect and therefore, by definition, violate this Code. Upon encountering actions or values that we find degrading to ourselves and to others, we should initiate dialogue with the goal of increasing mutual understanding.

    As part of the Haverford community, we are obligated to reflect on our own actions as well as the actions of those around us in light of their effect on the community and confront others when their conduct disturbs us. We must also report our own breaches to Honor Council if it becomes clear through self-reflection or through expressions of concern by others that our academic or social conduct represents a violation of community standards. We are obligated to report ourselves even if doing so may result in a trial and the possibility of separation from the college.

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Green Light Policies
  • Expressive Freedom and Responsibility

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: January 23, 2018

    Haverford College has consistently and actively affirmed all students’ rights to free inquiry, assembly, and expression in the broad context of its educational mission. These rights include the right to expression of dissent through peaceful protest. The Haverford College Faculty Handbook (Section III, Subsection C) clearly states:

    Haverford College holds that open-minded and free inquiry is essential to a student’s educational development. Thus, the College recognizes the right of all students to engage in discussion, to exchange thought and opinion, and to speak or write freely on any subject. […] Finally, the College reaffirms the freedom of assembly as an essential part of the process of discussion, inquiry, and advocacy. […] The freedom to learn, to inquire, to speak, to organize, and to act with conviction is held by Haverford College to be a cornerstone of education in a free society.

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  • Acceptable Use of Information Technology Resources Policy

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: January 23, 2018

    Use of College IT Resources in any of the following manners is expressly prohibited and constitutes a violation of this policy.

    • Unlawful communications, including threats of violence, child pornography, and harassing communications. …
    • Sending anonymous, forged, threatening, or harassing communication. (e.g. spamming others, using the College network to send harassing e-mail).

    » Read More

  • Area Colleges Draw All-Stars for Commencement

    May 1, 2016

    By Susan Snyder and Jonathan Lai at Philly.com College commencement season will bring a rock-star cast of speakers to the region’s colleges and universities – including the president of the United States… Read more here.

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  • Thought Reform 101

    March 1, 2000

    At Wake Forest University last fall, one of the few events designated as “mandatory” for freshman orientation was attendance at Blue Eyed, a filmed racism awareness workshop in which whites are abused, ridiculed, made to fail, and taught helpless passivity so that they can identify with “a person of color for a day.” In Swarthmore College’s dormitories, in the fall of 1998, first-year students were asked to line up by skin color, from lightest to darkest, and to step forward and talk about how they felt concerning their place in that line. Indeed, at almost all of our campuses, some […]

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  • Preventing the Tyranny of the Minority: Disinvitation and Dissenting Opinions

    August 5, 2015

    Haverford College, the prestigious and bucolic liberal arts school located in the Philadelphia suburbs, made national news in May 2014 when Robert Birgeneau, former chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley, withdrew as commencement speaker following student complaints about his role in the 2011 Berkeley Occupy protests. The students’ letter, as summarized by Philly.com, urged Birgeneau “to meet nine conditions, including publicly apologizing, supporting reparations for victims, and writing a letter to Haverford students explaining his position on the events and ‘what you learned from them.’ Birgeneau declined and withdrew.” Birgeneau’s disinvitation was one of many high-profile events during that […]

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  • Replacement Speakers at Haverford and Smith Urge Graduates to Listen to Other Viewpoints

    May 19, 2014

    “Disinvitation season” continues, but at least some students are getting a lesson in what the phenomenon means for open discourse on campus.

    Former Princeton University president William G. Bowen spoke at Haverford College’s commencement ceremony Sunday and criticized those whose demands ultimately led to former University of California, Berkeley chancellor Robert Birgeneau withdrawing from the event. And at Smith College, former Smith president Ruth J. Simmons replaced International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde as speaker after Lagarde backed down in the face of student protests. In her speech, Simmons emphasized the importance of hearing views with which you disagree, even those that are “deeply offensive.”

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  • Don’t Save the Date: NYT, WSJ, Fox, MSNBC, NPR Cover ‘Disinvitation Season’

    May 13, 2014

    The Class of 2014 is preparing for graduation by buying their caps and gowns—but let’s hope they weren’t counting on having a speaker for the ceremony. The years-long, snowballing trend of protests against commencement speakers, which FIRE has termed “disinvitation season,” is getting major attention this year from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Fox News, MSNBC, and NPR, among many other outlets.

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  • Commencement Invitation Drama Continues; Free Speech Advocates Speak Out

    May 9, 2014

    This spring, FIRE has already brought you the news of women’s rights activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali being disinvited from speaking at Brandeis University, Condoleezza Rice canceling her commencement speech at Rutgers University after some students objected to her invitation, and Pasadena City College disinviting and then re-inviting Academy Award-winning writer Dustin Lance Black. It’s been a pretty active “disinvitation season” so far, and free speech advocates are speaking up about why this trend is so worrying.

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  • The Problem with Mandating Civility

    October 11, 2012

    FIRE is often referred to as a “watchdog” organization, and that is indeed an important part of what we do. But those who follow our work know that we also love to reward schools for upholding students’ free speech rights. That is why when a university earns a “green light” rating—a distinction currently awarded to just 15 out of the hundreds of schools we survey—FIRE does as much as possible to ensure that good news receives the maximum publicity. For example, we publish an annual list of the best colleges for free speech on The Huffington Post. In the last […]

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