Dispute Resolution & Conduct Procedures

Residential and Dining Services encourages students to resolve problems at the lowest level possible in a peaceful, constructive and mature manner while in residence. Living in a group situation can be challenging, with roommates having different backgrounds and different expectations for living in the residential community. Policies are established to support standards by which all members of the living/learning community can be successful together. Residential and Dining Services has designed an education-focused dispute/conduct process that addresses personal conflicts, inappropriate or illegal behavior with the goal of empowering personal growth and changing future behavior.

Students are responsible for their actions and will be held accountable for them. The Dispute Resolution/Conduct policies are designed to ensure that individual student rights are not violated and that all community members’ rights are protected. Students who violate policies should be aware that Residential and Dining Services and Evergreen may undertake proceedings prior to, simultaneously with, or following civil or criminal charges.

Dispute Resolution

If you find yourself in conflict you are encouraged to make a determined effort to resolve the problems at the lowest level possible in a respectful, peaceful and constructive manner. You are encouraged to progress through the following options to resolve your dispute/conflict. Dispute Resolution assistance is available from Resident Assistants, Resident Directors, Residential and Dining Services Staff, Campus Mediation Services and the Campus Grievance Officer.

  • One-on-one conversation - you may experience roommate conflicts, noise problems or other difficulties. Residential and Dining Services recommends that you address situations early on and directly to the person(s) in dispute. Use "I" statements, resist placing blame and refrain from accusations. Approach the situation in a positive manner and try to understand the other person's perspective. Express your needs clearly, listen actively and be willing to compromise.
  • Facilitated Conversation with a Residential and Dining Services Staff Member - If a one-on-one conversation does not resolve the conflict, you may contact your Resident Assistant or Resident Director for help. This is especially applicable when there are more than two people involved, the problem happens often, or if the Living Learning Agreement is not being fulfilled.
  • Formal Mediation - if the above steps have not resolved your situation the campus Mediation Center can provide trained mediators in a more formal process. For mediation to be successful, both parties must agree and be willing to enter into mediation. Please contact the Evergreen Mediation Center directly for more assistance.
  • Filing a Grievance - you may file a formal grievance against another student if you both live on campus and the dispute is centered in the Residence Halls. Your Resident Assistants and/or Resident Directors can answer questions about this process. Residential Grievances are heard by the Assistant Director for Residential Life.

Students may pursue a complaint by contacting the Campus Grievance Officer and using the options afforded to each Evergreen student in the Student Conduct Code. The Campus Grievance Officer may decide to seek a resolution by following the process in the Student Conduct Code or refer the complaint back to Residential and Dining Services. Complaints involving discrimination, including sexual harassment, may be directly referred to the Civil Rights Officer.

Conduct Process

Students, staff and faculty can initiate the grievance process by providing information to College officials regarding inappropriate behavior as outlined by Evergreen's Student Conduct Code and the Residential and Dining Services Contract and Policies. When it appears a policy violation might have occurred, an Incident Report will be written to document the situation. The student will be notified via their Evergreen email account regarding a meeting with a conduct officer. The conduct officer can be one of the following: usually the Resident Director (RD), Coordinator of Residential Life, Assistant Director of Residence Life or the Assistant to the VP of Student Affairs for Student Conduct (Campus Grievance Officer). At this meeting the conduct officer will review the incident report and listen to the student's perspective. During or after the meeting the conduct officer will determine whether a violation has occurred, determine the degree to which the student was responsible, and possibly assign sanctions as appropriate.

Conduct Meeting Notices

The student will receive written notification of the decision (conduct letter) within seven (7) business days of the conduct meeting. The student will be notified, in writing, if the letter will be delayed beyond seven days due to extenuating circumstances.

Scheduling a Conduct Meeting:

  • The Conduct Officer will send the student an email notifying them of the alleged misconduct. The email will instruct the student to appear at a designated time and place for the conduct meeting. If it is not possible for the student to meet at the designated time due to a class conflict, the student may arrange for an alternate hearing with the conduct officer by contacting them no less than 24 hours prior to the initially scheduled time. Meetings will take place whether the student is present or not. Information will be reviewed and a decision will be made based on the information available. The student will be informed of the decision in writing through their Evergreen email. A student who voluntarily moves out of Residential and Dining Services or withdraws from Evergreen prior to the completion of proceedings is not excused from pending conduct action. In such cases, information will be referred to the Campus Grievance Officer for possible further action.
  • Interim Sanctions - in some cases interim sanctions may be imposed. An interim sanction is not an indication of a policy violation, it is simply a community safeguard until a decision about a possible violation(s) can be made. These sanctions remain in place until the conduct process is completed. If an interim sanction is violated, the offending resident may be removed from the halls and referred to the Campus Grievance Officer for further action.
  • Severe incidents may be referred to the Campus Grievance Officer for immediate action that may affect your student status; please see the "Rights and Responsibilities - Yours and Ours" for more information.

Decision Making

The Conduct Officer uses the available information to make a decision of whether it is more likely than not that the student violated Residential and Dining Services policy.

  • Consistency and Fairness - the Conduct Officer evaluates each situation and student individually when deciding the most appropriate action to take. When sanctions occur, they vary from student to student, even when a similar policy violation occurs. This is because the Conduct Officer considers multiple factors in arriving at the best sanction for the individual, including the details of the current incident, the student's previous conduct history, their attitude around the incident and conduct meeting, their chances for changing their conduct, and the actual intended and potential impact of the behavior on the community.
  • Confidentiality - conduct records are confidential and are not typically shared outside of Residential and Dining Services though they may be shared with college officials on a need-to-know basis. Please talk with your Resident Director if you have questions regarding confidentiality.

Sanctions

When a student has been found in violation of a policy, a sanction (or sanctions) may be assigned. Sanctions are designed to hold students accountable for policy violations, to educate the student and to guide them toward a more acceptable behavior in the future. Sanctions include, but are not limited to:

Action/Warning Sanctions (No specific action is required by the student):

  • Verbal Warning - verbal warnings are typically given by a Resident Assistant to students when confronting a policy violation, verbal warnings may or may not be documented
  • Written Warning - written warning that future policy violations will result in more severe disciplinary sanction. Students typically cannot accumulate multiple written warnings.
  • Disciplinary Probation - notice that further violations of policies may result in either relocation to another residence hall, additional sanctions, or eviction from Residential and Dining Services.

Behavioral Sanctions (Action is required on the part of the student):

  • Alcohol or Drug-Related Sanctions
    • Students who violate the alcohol or drug policies are typically sanctioned to the Alcohol and Drug Class held during the academic year. In an Alcohol and Drug Class a student will be able to - identify the effects of alcohol and drugs, make decisions about their personal use, compare their personal use with EVERGREEN norms, amount and severity, develop an understanding of consequences experienced compared to EVERGREEN norms, personal risk factors present, personal values about alcohol and their belief about future alcohol related behavior.
    • Students may be sanctioned to an Individual Alcohol or Drug Assessment through the Counseling Center or through licensed providers. Other options utilized may include an alcohol skills assistance referral to support or treatment services as appropriate to the situation.
    • Follow-up Session(s) - If additional alcohol or drug-related incidents occur, or if the original problematic behavior continues, students may face additional sanctions.
  • Community Service
    • Requirement that the student complete a work project, thereby giving something back to the community or with the intention that learning will also occur, whenever possible, there will be a logical relationship between the misconduct and the assigned community work project.
  • Educational Sanctions
    • Sanctions specific to a particular incident. Examples include stereo checks, creating informative posters, or rounds with an RA for a quiet hours violation.
  • Eviction
    • Cancellation of the student's housing agreement/contract, requiring that the student move off campus. This sanction is reserved for those students who indicate an unwillingness or inability to live within the parameters that have been established for on-campus housing at Evergreen. This sanction typically includes restriction of visitation rights to one or more communities. The student will be charged the full contract breakage penalty, since they have broken their contract by his/her own actions. Evicted residents are typically referred to the Campus Grievance Officer for additional follow-up.
  • Interim Suspension
    • In order to prevent danger to individuals, substantial destruction of property, or significant disruption of teaching, research, or administrative functions, the Vice President of Student Affairs or his/her designee may temporarily suspend a student. An Interim Suspension will be pending a full review and discussion between the student and the Vice President of Student Affairs or designee. An Interim Suspension becomes effective immediately upon written notice. The written notice of an Interim Suspension must include the stated violation, as determined by the Vice President of Student Affairs, and the time, date and location of the meeting. The written notice will be delivered in person to the student. Please see the Evergreen Student Conduct Code for more information at Evergreen Student Conduct Code.
  • Referral to Campus Resources
    • Students may be required to meet with a specific campus resource. Examples include, but are not limited to, the counseling center and health center, or academic advising center.
  • Registration Hold
    • A 'hold' may be placed on a student registration that has an outstanding obligation to the college. Certain conduct code violations (for example, non-compliance with a behavioral sanction) may result in such a hold. When possible, written notification will be given to allow the student to comply with the sanction(s) prior to registration periods.
  • Relocation
    • Student(s) must move out of their current residence hall, but not out of the Residential and Dining Services system. This sanction is based on a hope that the student will be more successful if given the opportunity to begin a fresh start in another residence hall. The Conduct Officer may be very specific about which hall the student must move to and may restrict the student visitation rights to their former building and/or area of Residential and Dining Services.
  • Referral to Campus Grievance Officer
    • A student who has violated Residential and Dining Services policies and/or Evergreen policies may be referred to the Campus Grievance Officer.
  • Restitution
    • Requirement that the student make payment to Evergreen or to other persons, groups, or organizations for damages which the student is responsible. This may be imposed whether the action was intentional or accidental.

Minimum Sanctions

There is no such thing as an automatic sanction since every situation is unique, however, several consistent baseline sanctions have been defined. These minimum sanctions give the student an understanding of the sanctioning parameters that are expected of the Conduct Officer in Residential and Dining Services.

  • Abuse of Staff
    • Lack of compliance with, or abuse of, a staff member (including verbal abuse) - disruptive behavior will result in sanctions ranging from a behavioral sanction to removal from Residential and Dining Services.
  • Alcohol or Drug Violation
    • Typically results in a referral to Alcohol and Drug Class.
  • Alcohol or Drug Second Violation in a Given Year
    • Typically will result in a behavioral sanction and/or Disciplinary Probation.
  • Failure to Complete a Sanction
    • Students who fail to complete a sanction within the designated time frame will result in being placed on Disciplinary Probation in conjunction with additional sanctions (e.g. class registration hold). Failure to complete sanctions, ultimately, will result in eviction from Residential and Dining Services.
  • Legal Age Student Providing Alcohol to Minors
    • It is illegal to provide alcohol to anyone under the age of 21. The minimum sanction for any violation of this type is Disciplinary Probation.
  • Policy Violation while on Disciplinary Probation
    • At a minimum will result in additional sanctions, or relocation to another hall and possible eviction.
  • Possession of Keg
    • A full or empty keg or other obvious common source container of alcohol - will result in Disciplinary Probation. Violation of this policy coupled with other violations (e.g., selling alcohol, disruptive behavior, noise violations) may result in eviction from Residential and Dining Services.
  • Possession of Marijuana
    • Violation includes a minimum of Disciplinary Probation and referral to Alcohol and Drug Class.
  • Relocating Lounge Furniture
    • Students who relocate lounge furniture will typically result in a Disciplinary Probation sanction. All thefts will be reported to Evergreen Police Services.
  • Student Sponsors a Party with Alcohol
    • Typically will result in a sanction other than Written Warning, the student will also be informed that the sanctions for sponsoring another party with alcohol may include removal from the residence hall.
  • Tampering with Fire Safety Equipment
    • Behavior which places the student or others at risk of physical harm will result in sanctions ranging from Disciplinary Probation to removal from Residential and Dining Services. (for example initiating a false alarm, tampering with smoke detectors, or intentionally misusing or abusing fire safety equipment).

Conduct Appeals

Students have the right to appeal conduct decisions made by Residential and Dining Services. Conduct decisions that are made by the Resident Director or the Coordinator of Residential Life are considered on appeal by the Assistant Director for Residential Life. Conduct decisions made by the Assistant Director for Residential Life are considered on appeal by the Director of Residential and Dining Services, or his/her designee.

Students may appeal a conduct decision because they believe there is insufficient information on which to base the decision, because conduct procedures were not followed, or because they believe the sanction to be unfair or disproportional.

When a student initiates an appeal, the student must demonstrate to the Appeal Officer that the initial conduct decision was incorrect. Failing to attend the initial conduct meeting is not a reason to appeal a conduct decision.

To file an appeal, the student must submit an appeal statement within five (5) school days of the date on the original sanction letter. The appeal email should address the nature or reason(s) for the appeal. To submit an appeal, email Residential and Dining Services.

The Appeal Officer will review the appeal statement, the incident report, and the related conduct letters. Within seven (7) business days of when the appeal letter was received, the student will receive written notification of the final decision. The original conduct decision may be upheld, modified, or reversed. Decisions made by the Appeal Officer are final.

Proceedings:

All proceedings including the initial conduct meeting are carried out in a manner that is informal, and at the same time assures fundamental fairness. Conduct proceeding records, including Incident Reports, conduct letters, and records from appeal proceedings, will be maintained by the Residence Life Office. Records will not be available to any member of the public except upon written consent of the student involved.

Statement of Student Rights:

  • The student has the opportunity for a thorough conduct meeting.
  • The student has the right to a fair conduct meeting. In cases of obvious and/or significant bias, the student may request an alternate conduct officer (someone other than his/her own Resident Director).
  • The student has the right to be informed of all alleged policy violations prior to the conduct meeting.
  • The student has the right to review the incident report(s) and sanction letter(s).
  • The student has the right to one level of appeal within the Residential and Dining Services conduct system.
  • The student has the right to have a student, faculty, staff support or other person present at any conduct meeting pertaining to his/her case. This individual serves as an advisor to, rather than a representative for, the student.
    • The support person’s role is to observe the process and provide support and guidance to the student as needed. The support person may not represent the student or speak on the student’s behalf.
    • Resident Assistants may not serve in the support-person role due to the potential for conflict of interest, however, the RA can serve as a resource for the student prior to and after the conduct meeting.
    • The support person may not have a conflict of interest with the case being investigated.

Eviction Appeals

Eviction appeals must be received within twenty (20) days of receiving your eviction letter. You must submit your written appeal to the Residential and Dining Services Office during normal business hours. Acceptable grounds for an appeal of eviction are:

  • A procedure error.
  • New information relevant to the eviction becomes available.

The Director of Residential and Dining Services will review all materials and render a decision within five business days of receipt of your written appeal. No further appeal is available to the resident, all decisions are final.

Financial Appeals

Students can appeal financial decisions if they feel that they have been charged in error. The Director of Residential and Dining Services (RAD) will consider appeals for Contract Breaks, Contract Releases, and Evictions. The Housing Appeals Panel (HAP) will meet to make determinations about all other appeals. The Housing Appeals Panel is composed of trained student arbitrators and a nonvoting panel advisor.

Following the appeal students will be notified by email of the decision. The Director of Residential and Dining Services or the Housing Appeals Panel may uphold, modify, or reverse a bill. If the appeal is denied, the original decision is upheld. If the appeal is granted, the billing charges will be reversed. If an appeal is modified, new charges will be set and the student account will be adjusted accordingly. Decisions made by the HAP and the Director are final. If a student has new and relevant information previously unavailable to the HAP or the Director of RAD, after a decision has been already made, the student may request a second appeal to the HAP based solely on the new information.

IMPORTANT DEADLINES:

All financial appeals must be submitted to the Residential and Dining Services Office.

Fall and Winter quarter's financial appeals must be received by 4:30 pm on the Friday of the 4th week of the following quarter.

Spring and Summer quarter's financial appeals must be received by 4:30 pm on the Friday of the 2nd week of the following Fall quarter to be considered.

Download the Financial Appeal Application in MS Word format to fill out electronically and email back.

Download the Financial Appeal Application in PDF format to fill out by hand and mail back.