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A unit of the University System of Georgia

Student Code of Conduct

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Students are admitted to Gordon State College with the expectation that they have developed acceptable personal standards of conduct and ethics. Students are expected to have a responsible attitude toward and respect for the regulations and standards of the College, the laws of the community, state, and nation, and the standards of fellow students.

College regulations go into effect at the time a student accepts admission to Gordon State College and continue until the time of graduation or withdrawal.  The student assumes an acceptance of the standards and regulations which are stated in this handbook and in other publications of the College. Students should realize that they may be held accountable through the College’s disciplinary system when an on-campus or off-campus offense is committed. The College will take necessary and appropriate action to protect the safety and well-being of its community.  In such case, the Vice President for Student Affairs or official designee may impose the necessary temporary sanctions, pending a hearing unless the student admits responsibility and participates in an informal hearing.

The most current version of the Student Code of Conduct may be found online. In the event of a conflict between the Student Code of Conduct and other College policies, the most current version of the Code governs. Students involved in criminal matters may be sanctioned by the College in addition to any sanctions that may be imposed by a court of law. However, the relationship a student has with the state or federal court system does not alter the student’s relationship with the College unless the student is also found responsible for violating College Policy.

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A. Classroom Behavior

Discipline in the classroom is vested in the authority of the instructor. Instructors are expected to establish guidelines for their classes and the college will support their enforcement.

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B. Academic Dishonesty

Gordon State College recognizes honesty and integrity as being necessary to the academic function of Gordon State College. The following regulations are promulgated in the interest of protecting the equity and validity of Gordon State College’s grades and degrees and to assist students in developing standards and attitudes appropriate to intellectual life.

  1. No student shall receive or attempt to receive assistance not authorized in the preparation of any laboratory reports, examinations, essays, themes, term papers, computer software, or similar requirements to be submitted for credit as part of a course or in fulfillment of a College requirement.
  2. No student shall knowingly give, or attempt to give, unauthorized assistance to another in the preparation of any laboratory reports, examinations, essays, themes, term papers, computer software, or similar requirements to be submitted for credit as part of a course or in fulfillment of a College requirement.
  3. Plagiarism is prohibited. It is assumed that the written work submitted for evaluation and credit is the student's own unless appropriately acknowledged. Such acknowledgment should occur whenever one directly quotes another person's actual words, appropriates another's ideas, opinions, or theories even when they are paraphrased, and whenever one borrows facts, statistics, or other illustrative materials unless the information is common knowledge.
  4. No student shall sell, give, lend, or otherwise furnish to any unauthorized person any material which can be shown to contain the questions or answers to any examination scheduled to be given at some subsequent date or time in any course of study offered by the College, excluding questions and answers from tests previously administered.
  5. No student shall take or attempt to take, steal, or otherwise procure in an unauthorized manner any material pertaining to the conduct of a class, including tests, examinations, grade change forms, grade rolls, roll books, laboratory equipment, library materials, etc.
  6. No student shall falsify any fact presented in any laboratory reports, research, examinations, essays, themes, term papers, or similar requirements to be submitted for credit as part of a course or in fulfillment of a College requirement.

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C. Administrative Summons

Students are expected to respond immediately to an administrative summons.

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D. Alcohol

Georgia law prohibits possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages by those under the legal drinking age and prohibits making alcoholic beverages available to persons under the legal drinking age. Federal, state, and local laws pertaining to possession and use of alcoholic beverages and other drugs are enforced on the College campus and in residence halls.

  1. The manufacture, distribution, sale, possession, or use of intoxicating substances on campus, or while participating in a College function, or at College approved events off campus is strictly prohibited.
  2. Student(s) on or returning to campus who are unable to control himself or herself because of alcohol consumption are in violation of the Student Code of Conduct.
  3. No student shall furnish or cause to be furnished any alcoholic beverage to any person under the legal drinking age.
  4. Consumption or possession of alcoholic beverages is not allowed on campus.
  5. Alcohol containers are not allowed (full, empty, or decorative). The possession or presence of alcohol containers (full, empty, decorative, etc.) is prohibited in residence hall rooms and on campus and will be viewed as evidence of possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages regardless of student’s age.

This procedure applies to all drugs and their abuse (including alcohol). Exception for Disclosures: The school, at its discretion, may notify parents of a student under 21 (at the time of violation) if the institution has determined that the student violated its alcohol or drug policies.

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E. Animals

.Animals, except for those needed to assist disabled persons or those required for research or class experiments, are prohibited (unless written permission is obtained from the Vice President for Student Affairs or official designee). No animals of any kind may be kept in or about the residence halls.

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F. Continuing Duty to Disclose Criminal/Disciplinary Matters

Gordon State College students have a continuing duty to report criminal/disciplinary events that occur after application to the College. The criminal/disciplinary events that must be reported are described below and reports must be made to the Office of the Vice President of Student Affairs within 72 hours of the Student’s notice of the event. Failure to comply with the requirement may result in sanctions to and including immediate withdrawal from the college.

  • Conviction of a crime other than a minor traffic violation
  • Criminal charges filed against the student
  • Entering a plea of guilty, a plea of no contest, a plea of nolo contendere, and Alford plea, or a plea under any first offender act in response to charges filed against the student
  • Disciplinary or academic misconduct charges initiated or sanctions imposed against the student from a high school or former college or university

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G. Compliance with College Policy

In addition to the general rights and obligations of College community, each Student is obligated to apprise him/herself of and comply with all College rules, regulations and policies. Students are individually responsible for understanding and exercising their rights, fulfilling their obligations and respecting the rights of others. Lack of knowledge of a College policy will not be accepted as excuse for failure to observe it.

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H. Dining Hall Rules and Regulations

  • Dress Code
  • All individuals entering the dining hall must wear a shirt and shoes. The cafeteria reserves the right to deny entrance to anyone in attire deemed inappropriate.
  • Language
  • Loud, obscene, or profane language will not be permitted in the cafeteria.
  • Safety
  • No disruptive behavior will be tolerated (i.e., horseplay, wrestling, food throwing, fighting, etc.).
  • Identification
  • To dine in the dining hall you must have your proper encoded student identification and/or a meal card or pay cash at the door.
  • Smoking
  • Smoking is not allowed.
  • Courtesy
  • Students are responsible for leaving tables clean and taking trays to dish room.

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I. Disciplinary Charges

Disciplinary charges against a student or student organization alleging infractions of the rules and regulations of the College may also subject such student or student organization to temporary sanctions by the Vice President for Student Affairs or official designee. This may include suspension pending the final disposition of the case if the student’s presence or conduct disrupts the academic atmosphere of the school, endangers fellow students, teacher or school officials, or damages property.

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J. Disorderly Assembly

  1. No student shall assemble on campus for the purpose of creating a riot, or destruction, or disorderly diversion which interferes with the normal operation of the College. This section should not be construed so as to deny any student the rights of peaceful, nondisruptive assembly. Students may seek written permission from the Vice President for Student Affairs or official designee to assemble for peaceful purposes.
  2. No student or group of students shall obstruct the free movement of other persons about the campus, interfere with the use of College facilities, or materially interfere with the normal operation of the College.
  3. The abuse or unauthorized use of sound amplification equipment indoors or outdoors is prohibited. (Any use of sound amplification equipment must be cleared through the Vice President for Student Affairs or official designee.)

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K. Disorderly Conduct

  1. Disorderly or obscene conduct, language, dress or breach of the peace on College property or at any function sponsored or supervised by the College is prohibited.
  2. No student shall push, strike, or physically assault any member of the faculty, administration, staff, student body, or any visitor to the campus. Physical assault, including sexual assault, is prohibited.
  3. No student shall intentionally harass another person. Harassment includes but is not limited to threatening, intimidating, verbally abusing, impeding, telephoning, following, or persistently bothering or annoying. Harassment may represent but is not limited to acts based on sex, race, religion, national origin, or disability.
  4. No student shall fail to comply with the administrative policies enacted by the College.
  5. Conduct on College property or at functions sponsored or supervised by the College, which materially interferes with the normal operation of the College or the requirements of appropriate discipline, is prohibited.
  6. No student shall enter or attempt to enter any building, dance, social or athletic event, or any other event sponsored by or supervised by the College or any recognized College organization without credentials for admission, i.e., ticket, I.D. card, invitation, key, etc. At such College functions, a student must present proper credentials to properly identified College faculty and staff upon their request.
  7. Conduct, dress, and/or expressions which are obscene or which are patently offensive to the prevailing standards of an academic community are prohibited.
  8. No student shall interfere with, give false name to, or fail to cooperate with, any properly identified College faculty, administrative, or staff personnel while these persons are in the performance of their duties.
  9. The children of students are not allowed in class. Children (unauthorized) are not conducive to the residence hall environment and are not allowed in the residence halls.
  10. In-line skating, roller blading, hover boarding and/or skateboarding is prohibited throughout the college campus.

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L. Disregard for Library Property

No student shall take, attempt to take, or keep in their possession items belonging to the library, or items placed in the library for display, reference, etc. Malicious or unwarranted damage, destruction, or defacement of library materials is prohibited.

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M. Dress

Students are required to be appropriately dressed while on campus so as not to cause disruption and or disrespect to students, faculty, staff, or guests of Gordon State College. Inappropriate dress may include but not limited to:

  1. Showing of undergarments, for both male and female.
  2. Clothing with derogatory or lewd messages either in words or pictures.

Failure to adhere to the above dress code policy may result in disciplinary action. (Note specific dress code requirements in food service areas listed elsewhere)

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N. Drug - Zero Tolerance

Georgia law prohibits possession of drugs. Federal, state, and local laws pertaining to possession and use of drugs are enforced on the College campus and in residence halls.

  1. The manufacture, distribution, sale, possession, or use of marijuana, narcotics, controlled substances, intoxicating substances or dangerous drugs on campus, or while participating in a College function, or at College approved events off campus is strictly prohibited.
  2. Student(s) on or returning to campus who are unable to control himself or herself because of drug consumption are in violation of the Student Code of Conduct.
  3. Consumption or possession of drugs is not allowed on campus. Possession of drug paraphernalia is prohibited on campus.
  4. Inappropriate or misuse of prescription drug(s) is a violation of the drug policy.

This procedure applies to all drugs and their abuse (including alcohol). Exception for Disclosures: The school, at its discretion, may notify parents of a student under 21 (at the time of violation) if the institution has determined that the student violated its alcohol or drug policies.

Disciplinary sanctions for students convicted of a felony offense involving the manufacture, distribution, sale, possession or use of marijuana, controlled substances or other illegal or dangerous drugs, shall include the forfeiture of academic credit and the temporary or permanent suspension or expulsion from the institution. (BOR Policies; Section 406.04).

Withdrawal of Recognition of Student Organizations due to violation of zero tolerance drug rule

The Board of Regents has determined that the use of marijuana, controlled substances, or other illegal or dangerous drugs constitutes a serious threat to the public health, welfare, and academic achievement of students enrolled in the University System of Georgia. Therefore, all student organizations, including but not limited to societies, fraternities, sororities, clubs, and similar groups of students which are affiliated with, recognized by, or which use the facilities under the jurisdiction of institutions of the University System, are hereby charged with the responsibility of enforcing compliance with local, state, and federal laws by all persons attending or participating in their respective functions and affairs, social or otherwise. (Section 406.01)

As provided by the Student Organization Responsibility for Drug Abuse Act, any such student organization which through its officers, agents, or responsible members knowingly permits, authorizes or condones the manufacture, sale, distribution, possession, serving, consumption or use of marijuana, controlled substances or other illegal or dangerous drugs at any affair, function, or activity of such student organization, social or otherwise, is hereby declared to be in violation of the laws of this state and shall have its recognition as a student organization withdrawn and, after complying with the constitutional requirements of due process, shall be expelled from the campus for a minimum of one calendar year from the date of determination of guilt. Such organization shall also be prohibited from using any property or facilities of the institution for a period of at least one year. Any lease, rental agreement or other document between the Board of Regents or the institution and the student organization which relates to the use of the property leased, rented or occupied shall be terminated for knowingly having permitted or authorized the unlawful actions described above. All sanctions imposed by this policy shall be subject to review procedures authorized by the Board of Regents (Article VII of the Bylaws).

An appeal to the Board of Regents shall not defer the effective date of the adverse action against the student organization pending the Board's review unless the Board so directs.

Any such stay or suspension by the Board shall expire as of the date of the Board's final decision on the matter.

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O. Explosives

No student shall possess, furnish, sell, or use explosives of any kind on College property or at College functions.

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P. Falsification/Misrepresentation of College Records

  1. No student shall complete any College record dishonestly.
  2. No student shall alter, counterfeit, forge, or cause to be altered, counterfeited, or forged, any record, form, or document used by the College, nor shall any student knowingly use any such altered, counterfeited, or forged record, form, or document.
  3. No student shall hinder or mislead or attempt to hinder or mislead a properly identified College official in the performance of his/her duty by providing false or misleading information or by misrepresenting the facts.

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Q. Fire Safety

  1. No student shall tamper with fire safety equipment.
  2. The unauthorized possession, sale, provision, or use of any incendiary device is prohibited.
  3. No student shall set or cause to be set any unauthorized fire or fire hazard in or on College property.
  4. No student shall make, or cause to be made, a false fire alarm.
  5. All occupants of a building must leave the building immediately whenever the fire alarm sounds.
  6. The possession or use of fireworks on College property or at events sponsored or supervised by the College or any recognized College organization is prohibited. Fireworks are defined as any substance prepared for the purpose of producing a visible or audible effect by combustion, explosion, or detonation.
  7. Hot plates, toaster ovens, open elements, or other appliances may not be used in the residence halls.
  8. Smoking is NOT permitted in the residence halls or surrounding areas.

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R. Gambling

The playing of cards or any other game of skill or chance for money or other items of value is prohibited.

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S. Harassment

Gordon State College prohibits, and will not tolerate, harassment based on sex, race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law. This procedure applies to all administrators, faculty members, staff, employees, applicants, independent contractors, students, prospective students, visitors, volunteers, and anyone else who visits or has business on the campus of Gordon State College or interacts with employees, students, or other members of the college community. Any person who violates this procedure against harassment will be subject to appropriate penalties, which may include termination, expulsion, and/or dismissal.

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T. Hazing

Hazing is defined as any action or situation, which recklessly or intentionally endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a person for the purpose of initiation or admission into any organization registered by the College. This includes, but is not limited to, beating, branding, forced exercises, forced consumption of food or beverage or any other substance. Also included are activities causing mental stress such as sleep deprivation, exclusion from contact with others, or forced contact that could result in extreme embarrassment or adversely affect the dignity of the individual.

For the purpose of clarity, any activity described above that is directly or indirectly a condition of initiation or admission into a registered student organization shall be presumed to be a forced activity, the willingness of the individual to participate in such an activity notwithstanding. All students and College-registered student organizations are prohibited from hazing in any form, both on and off campus.

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U. Joint Responsibility for Infractions

  1. Students who knowingly act in concert to violate College regulations have individual and joint responsibility for such violation; such concerted acts are prohibited.
  2. Students are responsible for the conduct of their guests on or in College property and at functions sponsored by the College or any registered College organization.

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V. Jurisdiction and Authority

The Student Code of Conduct applies equally to students and student organizations. The College has jurisdiction to hear all matters related to violation of College policy and reserves the right to take appropriate action to protect the safety and well-being of the College community.

The Code applies to all student conduct on or adjacent to College property, at College-sponsored activities and programs including those in remote and international locations, and at student organization activities. The Code also applies to conduct occurring on non-College property and at non-College events when that conduct may threaten the safety of the College community. The Code continues to apply to student conduct while a conduct matter is pending if the student withdraws from school.

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W. Misuse of Property

Damage to, destruction of, or removal of any property belonging to the College, to a member of the College community, or to a visitor is prohibited.

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X. Noise

The abuse or unauthorized use of sound amplification equipment or other noise (e.g. yelling, banging, etc.) indoors or outdoors is prohibited. (Any use of sound amplification equipment must be cleared through the Vice President for Student Affairs or official designee.)

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Y. Payment of Fees, Charges, or Fines

Students are required to pay fees, charges, and fines within the specified time.

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Z. Relation of College Code of Local, State, and Federal Laws

Students are subject to the rules and regulations of the College and to local, state, and federal laws. Violation of these rules, regulations, or laws is prohibited, and violators may be referred to the College’s disciplinary system.

A student in any institution of the University System of Georgia who is charged with or indicted for a felony or crime involving moral turpitude, may be suspended pending the disposition of the criminal charges against the student (BOR 406.02).

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AA. Repeated Violations

Repeated violations of published rules or regulations of the College, which cumulatively indicate an inability or unwillingness to conform to the standards of the College for student life, will be grounds for suspension or dismissal.

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BB. Residence Halls

Residence halls have their own published regulations, the violation of which could be cause for campus disciplinary action.

  1. No unauthorized student/non-student shall enter, attempt to enter, or remain in restricted areas of College residence halls. Unauthorized students living in the residence halls are subject to dismissal.
  2. Students shall abide by all policies established by various residence halls for the protection of the privacy, rights, privileges, health, or safety of the community.

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CC. Solicitation

The following forms of solicitation, when approved by the Student Activities Office, are permitted:

  1. Fund raising activities by an organization related to the College; and
  2. Distribution of information in public areas.

All other solicitation is prohibited as the purpose of the College is to promote the educational versus the commercial atmosphere in the residence halls and on the campus.

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DD. Student Identification Cards/Residence Hall Keys

  1. Lending, selling, or otherwise transferring a student photo I.D./residence hall key is prohibited.
  2. The use of a student photo I.D./residence hall key by anyone other than its original holder is prohibited.
  3. Any other fraudulent use is prohibited.          
  4. Students are required to carry College I.D.’s on their person at all times and to present identification upon request by any College Official.        

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EE. Theft

  1. No students shall sell textbooks that are not their own without written permission of the owner.
  2. No students shall take, attempt to take, or keep in their possession items of College property or items belonging to students, faculty, staff, student groups, or visitors to the campus without proper authorization.

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FF. Tobacco Usage

Tobacco usage is prohibited at Gordon State College. In order to ensure a safe, healthy environment, all Gordon State College facilities are tobacco free for all employees, students, and visitors effective June 1, 2011. The use of all tobacco products is prohibited within the boundaries of all College locations, including all buildings, facilities, indoor and outdoor spaces and grounds owned, rented, operated, and/or leased by the College. This policy applies to parking lots, walkways, sidewalks, sports venues, State vehicles and private vehicles parked or operated on College property. For the purposes of this policy, tobacco is defined as any type of tobacco product including, but not limited to: cigarettes, cigars, cigarillos, electronic cigarettes, pipes, bidis, hookahs, blunts, smokeless or spit tobacco or snuff.

Enforcement of this policy is intended to be educational, but violations may result in monetary fines of $25.00 and/or disciplinary actions as outlined in the Gordon State College Academic Catalog/Student Code of Conduct.

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GG. Unauthorized Entry or Use of College Facilities

  1. No student/non-student shall make or attempt to make unauthorized entry into any College building, office, or other facility; nor shall any person remain without authorization in any College facility after normal closing hours.
  2. No student/non-student shall make or attempt to make unauthorized use of any College facility or service.
  3. Unauthorized possession or use of College keys/ identification is prohibited.
  4. Students and/or student groups may not make reservations in their name for outside groups or organizations to use College space. (See Facility Reservation Process)
  5. Unauthorized students residing in the residence halls are subject to dismissal.
  6. No student shall walk or climb any campus wall, fence, gate, etc.

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HH. Weapons

Except as expressly provided in O.C.G.A. 16-11-127.1,

1. Beginning on July 1, 2017, House Bill 280 will allow anyone who is properly licensed in the State of Georgia to carry a handgun in a concealed  manner on property owned or leased by public colleges and universities, with some exceptions as explained below.  It will not allow any other type of gun to be carried around campus; nor will it allow handguns to be carried openly.  (House Bill 280 does not apply, however, to institution-sponsored events or excursions away from campus on property not owned or leased by a University System institution.)

The statute defines concealed as “carried in such a fashion that does not actively solicit the attention of others and is not prominently, openly, and intentionally displayed except for purposes of defense of self or others.”  A license-holder therefore may carry a handgun while it is substantially (“but not necessarily completely”) covered by an article of clothing he or she is wearing, or contained within a bag (“of a nondescript nature”) he or she is carrying, or in another similar manner that generally keeps it out of the view of others.

There are a number of exceptions to the new law that limit the places on campus where handguns may be carried.  Even license-holders may not carry a handgun into the following locations on college/university-owned or leased property:

  • Buildings and property used for athletic sporting events.  This exception includes stadiums, gymnasiums and similar facilities in which intercollegiate games are staged.
  • Student housing facilities including residence halls and similar buildings where students live such as fraternity and sorority houses.  
  • Spaces – including any room, continuous collection of rooms or outdoor facility – that are used for preschool or childcare.
  • Rooms and other spaces during the times when they are being used for classes in which high school students are enrolled.
  • License-holders who want to carry handguns to class will need to visit the institution’s registrar or other designated employee, who after verifying their enrollment status will tell them which of their classes, if any, have high school students enrolled.  Institutions shall not, however, keep any listing of those who inquire.  (Note also that the names of enrolled high school students may not be revealed in accordance with applicable privacy laws.)  It is the responsibility of license-holders to seek out this information and make themselves aware of which classrooms fall within this exception.
  • Faculty, staff and administrative offices. This exception includes offices and office suites occupied by faculty, staff and administrators but does not include more general public common spaces outside of those areas.
  • Rooms during the times when they are being used for disciplinary proceedings of any kind, including those regarding students, faculty or staff. These would include any meetings or hearings that are part of the University System’s or the institution’s sexual misconduct, student conduct, dispute resolution, grievance, appeals or similar processes.

Under the new law, it is a misdemeanor crime for a license-holder to carry a handgun “in a manner or in a building, property, room, or space in violation of” these provisions.  Doing so also may be a violation of the institution’s student code of conduct and personnel rules.  It will be the responsibility of those license- holders who choose to carry handguns on campus to know the law and to understand where they can go while carrying.  Institutions will not provide gun storage facilities or erect signs outside restricted areas.

2. Possession of firearms on College property or at events sponsored or supervised by the College or any recognized College organization is prohibited by anyone under 21 years old.
3. The possession or use of any other offensive weapons is prohibited (i.e., knives, stun guns, nunchakus, bows, clubs, baseball bats, etc.).
4. No reasonable facsimile of a weapon is allowed on campus for safety’s sake (i.e. toys, squirt guns, rubber knives, etc.).

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