The University of Virginia’s College at Wise

Location: Wise, Virginia
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 4th Circuit

Tell The University of Virginia’s College at Wise to revise its speech policies by filling out this form.

Speech Code Rating

The University of Virginia’s College at Wise 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
  • Guide to Campus Living:

    Speech Code Category: Posting and Distribution Policies
    Last updated: December 4, 2018

    All exterior door and window decorations, other than message boards, that are visible from outside must be approved by the [Director of Residence Life].

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  • Student Life: Code of Conduct

    Speech Code Category: Other Speech Codes
    Last updated: December 4, 2018

    For student conduct which is outside the jurisdiction of the Honor Court but which tends to discredit or injure the College, the Chancellor is authorized by the President of the University of Virginia to impose such penalty as he/she may deem appropriate, including expulsion from the College.

    Generally, prohibited conduct for which a student is subject to discipline is defined as, but not limited to, the following: … Conduct that is unbecoming, disorderly, or that reflects negatively on the College community, including but not limited to acts that breach the peace, are lewd, indecent, or obscene, and that are not Constitutionally-protected speech.

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  • Compliance at UVa-Wise: Be Wise. Report It.

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
    Last updated: December 4, 2018

    UVa-Wise is committed to maintaining a respectful, professional and nondiscriminatory academic, living and working environment for students, faculty, staff, and visitors.

    UVa-Wise is dedicated to mutual respect and inclusiveness of its diverse community. Unfortunately, there are times that this respect and civility are breached through acts of bias or disrepect [sic] in our community such as slurs based on one’s race, gender, national or ethnic origin, or affectational orientation.

    The Be Wise. Report It. Form may be used to alert the College of any instances of Prohibited Conduct or incidents of bias or disrespect in our UVa-Wise community.

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  • Student Life: Code of Conduct

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: December 4, 2018

    Physical or emotional abuse of any person on College-owned or controlled property or at College-sponsored or supervised functions, or conduct which threatens or endangers the health or safety of others.

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Green Light Policies
  • Sexual Misconduct and Interpersonal Violence Policy

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: December 4, 2018

    1. Sexual Harassment is any unwelcome sexual advance, request for sexual favors, or other unwanted conduct of a sexual nature, whether verbal, non-verbal, graphic, physical, or otherwise, when the conditions outlined in (1) and/or (2), below, are present.

    2. Gender-Based Harassment includes harassment based on gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression, which may include acts of aggression, intimidation, or hostility, whether verbal or non-verbal, graphic, physical, or otherwise, even if the acts do not involve conduct of a sexual nature, when the conditions outlined in (1) and/or (2), below, are present.

    (1) Submission to or rejection of such conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly, a term or condition of a person’s employment, academic standing, or participation in any College programs and/or activities or is used as the basis for College decisions affecting the individual (often referred to as “quid pro quo” harassment); or

    (2) Such conduct creates a hostile environment. A “hostile environment” exists when the conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with, limits, or deprives an individual from participating in or benefitting from the College’s education or employment programs and/or activities. Conduct must be deemed severe, persistent, or pervasive from both a subjective and an objective perspective. In evaluating whether a hostile environment exists, the College will consider the totality of known circumstances, including, but not limited to:

    • The frequency, nature and severity of the conduct;
    • Whether the conduct was physically threatening;
    • The effect of the conduct on the Complainant’s mental or emotional state;
    • Whether the conduct was directed at more than one person;
    • Whether the conduct arose in the context of other discriminatory conduct;
    • Whether the conduct unreasonably interfered with the Complainant’s educational or work performance and/or College programs or activities; and
    • Whether the conduct implicates concerns related to academic freedom or protected speech.

    A hostile environment can be created by persistent or pervasive conduct or by a single or isolated incident, if sufficiently severe. The more severe the conduct, the less need there is to show a repetitive series of incidents to prove a hostile environment, particularly if the conduct is physical. A single incident of Sexual Assault, for example, may be sufficiently severe to constitute a hostile environment. In contrast, the perceived offensiveness of a single verbal or written expression, standing alone, is typically not sufficient to constitute a hostile environment.

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  • Student Life: Code of Conduct- Expectations

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: December 4, 2018

    The College is a community of scholars in which the ideals of freedom of inquiry, freedom of thought, freedom of expression, and freedom of the individual are sustained. It is committed to preserving the exercise of any right guaranteed to individuals by the Constitution.

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At present, FIRE does not maintain information on this school's policies.
  • Schools struggle with dark writings

    May 20, 2008

    When Steven Barber turned in a short story this semester for his creative-writing class at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise, his instructor was alarmed. The 23-year-old student had produced an imagined account of someone on the edge of a violent breakdown, touching on suicide and murder. “It had to be acted on immediately,” says Christopher Scalia, the instructor. He alerted administrators, who reacted swiftly, searching Mr. Barber’s dorm room and car. Upon discovering three guns, they had him committed to a psychiatric institution for a weekend. Then they expelled him. Yet the psychiatrists who evaluated Mr. Barber during […]

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