Code of Student Conduct
A. Community Expectations
Fei Tian College is an academic community dedicated to the transmission of knowledge and the free pursuit of truth. The institution acknowledges core values based in truthfulness, compassion, and forbearance that come to characterize the Fei Tian experience. Students who enroll at the college assume an obligation to conduct themselves in a manner compatible with institutional values, including during their school breaks, vacation time, and when they are off campus. Students are expected to take responsibility for their own actions and the conduct of their guests. Failure to uphold college policies and laws is an infraction that may result in disciplinary action under the authority of this Code of Student Conduct.
B. Purpose of the Code
This Code of Student Conduct aims to discourage conduct inconsistent with institutional values and thereby protect the character of the college community. Publishing this Code of Student Conduct puts students on notice of substandard performance and prohibited conduct, and their responsibilities as students.
Nothing in this Code of Student Conduct shall infringe on rights guaranteed by the law or Fei Tian College policies, nor is it intended to afford the specificity or the due process rights of law.
C. Authority for Student Conduct
As members of an academic community and the larger society, students are subject to the provisions of college policies, laws, and to all legal and judicial authorities.
Students may be accountable both to the college and to civil and criminal authorities for acts that constitute violations of this Code of Student Conduct and law. Conduct proceedings at the college may proceed independent of and during the pendency of external proceedings.
Ultimate authority for student conduct is vested in the college president, who has discretion to take immediate and final action for any disciplinary matter including waiving any disciplinary rule. Authority for student conduct may be delegated as set forth in this Code of Student Conduct, or in other appropriate policies, rules, or regulations adopted by the president.
- The Vice President of Academic Affairs (for academic misconduct matters) and the Director of Student Affairs (for non-academic misconduct matters), and their designees, reserve the right to take immediate and appropriate interim action whenever student conduct jeopardizes the wellbeing of the student or others or otherwise runs counter to the institutional mission and standards. An interim action becomes effective immediately upon delivery of verbal or written notification to the student or student’s designee.
- Instructors and other authorized personnel reserve the right to temporarily dismiss from class students who create disorder in the education process.
II. Substandard Performance and Prohibited Conduct
The following are categories of substandard performance and prohibited conduct that may result in disciplinary action. Some specific types of conduct may fall within multiple categories.
A. Unsatisfactory Academic Progress
B. Unsatisfactory Artistic Progress
C. Substandard Conduct/Negative Influence
This is a broad category of conduct deemed to violate this Code of Student Conduct and includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Disruptive behavior
- Spreading negative materials or information that run counter to the institutional mission
- Casual interaction between males and females
- Inappropriate attire, games, or other materials
- Social media/smart phone use or account or otherwise inappropriate Internet use.
D. Other Violations of College Policies or Rules
Commission of or attempts to commit any of these acts or failure to prevent one’s guests from committing these acts may be treated as violations of this Code of Student Conduct.
- Academic Dishonesty – including but not limited to cheating, fabricating, and plagiarizing.
- Damage to or Misuse of Property – damaging or defacing college property or the property of others; unauthorized entry into campus facilities or property; or unauthorized use or misuse of college property or the property of others.
- Dangerous Conduct – intentionally or carelessly engaging in conduct that threatens or endangers the health or safety or causes physical harm to any person, including the violator. Includes tampering with fire safety equipment, disregarding a fire alarm signal, or recklessly activating an alarm when an emergency situation does not exist.
- Dangerous Items – using, possessing, or storing any dangerous games, firearms, explosives, other weapons, fireworks, dangerous chemicals, alcohol, drugs, or smoking devices.
- Disorderly Conduct – acting in a manner that annoys, disturbs, interferes with, obstructs, or is offensive to another or others.
- Harassment – acting, threatening, gesturing, or directing words toward another person which have the purpose or which tend to incite a breach of the peace, create a hostile environment, or cause emotional distress to that person because of the humiliating, intimidating, insulting, coercive, or alarming nature of the conduct.
- Interference with College Operations – interfering with any college activities, including but not limited to studying, teaching, social events, and college administration, policy, or emergency services.
- Non-academic Dishonesty – knowingly furnishing false information to the college or a member of the college community; forgery, misuse, unauthorized alteration, and/or creation of documents or other objects; fraud, through act or omission, committed against another; or knowingly initiating or causing to be initiated any false report, warning, or threat.
- Noncompliance – failing to comply with reasonable directives of college officials acting in performance of their duties.
- Sanction Violation – violating the terms of any student conduct sanction as imposed in accordance with student conduct procedures.
- Sexual Offenses – including but not limited to sexual assault, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, and indecent exposure.
- Solicitation – unauthorized soliciting, selling, or promoting any goods or services on college owned or operated property or at college-sponsored events.
- Theft/Unauthorized Possession – stealing property or services, possessing stolen property, or unauthorized possessing of college property or that of others.
- Violation of Other College Policies – violating other published college policies, rules, and regulations, such as on-campus residence rules or policies published in the College Catalog and Addendum policies or other official publications.
- Violation of Law – violating local, state, or federal laws and regulations.
III. Reporting Substandard Performance and Prohibited Conduct
Any person may report a student suspected of violating this Code of Student Conduct to the Vice President of Academic Affairs (for academic misconduct) or the Director of Student Affairs (for non-academic misconduct), or their designees, who will review the reported allegation to determine the appropriate action to be taken. Reports should be made within a reasonable time after the alleged violation. Disciplinary action may be pursued if there is enough information available to substantiate the reported conduct.
If information is discovered alleging that a graduate of the College engaged in Code misconduct at the time he or she was a student, a report shall be made to the Vice President of Academic Affairs (for academic misconduct) or the Director of Student Affairs (for non-academic misconduct), who shall determine the procedures to follow and the appropriate sanction.
IV. Conduct Proceedings
A student facing potential disciplinary sanctions will be given a conduct proceeding in the form of a disciplinary meeting with an administrator or a designated school agent. For academic misconduct, the administrator shall be the Vice President of Academic Affairs; for non-academic misconduct, the administrator shall be the Director of Student Affairs.
The following procedural guidelines are to be applied in all conduct proceedings but deviations from prescribed procedures shall not necessarily invalidate a decision. Formal rules of evidence shall not be applied.
- The student shall have an opportunity to respond to the information related to the alleged violation and may submit additional and relevant information.
- A student who fails to appear at a disciplinary meeting may be adjudicated in absentia.
- The outcome of a conduct proceeding is to be determined based on the reasonable conclusion and sole discretion of the designated administrator or school agent.
- The outcome of the conduct proceeding shall be conveyed to the student.
V. No Appeal
Whether to impose sanctions turns on the nature and severity of the underperformance or violation, as well as the student’s demeanor and disciplinary history. Types of sanctions that may be imposed in accordance with this Code of Student Conduct are as follows:
- Warning – a warning for substandard performance
- Censure – a reprimand for violation of specified regulations
Suspension – temporary exclusion from classes and other privileges or activities including access to college premise ands college-sponsored activities off campus
Revocation of scholarship
Dismissal – termination of student status due to substandard performance and permanent exclusion from college premises, privileges, and activities
- Expulsion – termination of student status due to prohibited conduct and permanent exclusion from college premises, privileges, and activities
- Discretionary Sanctions – other sanctions that bear reasonable relation to the violation for which the student has been sanctioned may be imposed instead of or in addition to specified sanctions.
VII. Disciplinary Files and Records
The disciplinary files of students will normally be retained as incident records in the student’s education records. Incident records shall be maintained in the Offices of Admissions and Records, Academic (academic misconduct files only), and Student Affairs (non-academic misconduct files only), under the authority of the Vice President of Academic Affairs and the Director of Student Affairs, respectively, and in accordance with the college record retention policy.
Records Policy for Students
Fei Tian College collects and maintains accurate information about prospective, current, and former students in its operation as an educational institution. All students are required to keep their records on file at the college accurate and current. Fei Tian respects the confidentiality of student information acquired in the course of work in the spirit of the federal law and honors the rights of students to 1) inspect and review their nonprivileged education records, 2) request amendment of inaccurate or misleading data in their education records, and 3) grant or withhold consent to disclosure of their education records to third parties.
A. Access to an education record is guaranteed to the student subject to reasonable time, place, and supervision regulations with the following exceptions:
- Any and all documents to which the student has waived access;
- Any and all records excluded from the FERPA definition of education records;
- Any and all financial data and income tax forms submitted in confidence by the student’s parents in connection with financial aid;
- Any and all records connected with an application for admission to FTC, if that application was denied, or accepted and the applicant never enrolled. FERPA rights are provided only to applicants upon actual acceptance and subsequent enrollment;
- Those records containing information on more than one student. The requesting student has the right to view only those portions of the record pertaining to his or her own education records; and
- Records on which a hold has been placed.
B. The Office of Admissions and Records (OAR) will refer students wishing to access their records to the office of the appropriate administrative official under whose authority such records are maintained.
C. Student access to records is granted only upon a request, presented in person with appropriate identification, made to designated personnel of the office maintaining the records. All requests shall be granted as soon as practicable.
A. If the student believes that his or her record is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of his or her privacy rights, he or she may request the record be amended through change or addition of a statement into the file.
B. Any disagreement should be resolved informally, if possible.
C. Corrections to an academic file must be co-authorized by the Director of Admissions and Records and the appropriate administrative official under whose authority such record is maintained.
D. If the amendment request is denied, the student will be notified of the decision and advised of his or her right to place in the record a statement commenting on the challenged information and setting forth reasons for disagreeing with the amendment decision. Such a statement becomes part of the student’s education records and will be disclosed with it.
E. If the amendment request is granted, the college will amend the record and notify the student of the amendment.
Fei Tian will disclose information from a student’s education records only with the written consent of the student, except that the records may be disclosed without consent when the disclosure is made:
A. Of information the college has designated as “directory information,” unless a hold has been placed upon release of the information by the student.
B. To school officials who have a legitimate educational interest in the record(s).
- A school official is:
- A person employed by the college in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position;
- A person elected to the Board of Trustees;
- A person or entity under contract with the college to perform a special task including a security function; or
- A student serving on an official committee, or who is assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.
- A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official is:
- Performing a task congruent with his or her work position or agreement;
- Performing a task related to a student’s education;
- Performing a task related to the discipline of a student;
- Providing a service or benefit relating to the student or student’s family; or
- Maintaining the safety and security of the campus.
- Whether a legitimate educational interest exists is determined by the record(s) custodian on a case-by-case. If there is a doubt, the custodian should withhold disclosure unless he or she obtains the student’s written consent or an appropriate official concurs as to the disclosure.
C. To officials of another school, upon request, in which a student intends to enroll or is already enrolled so long as the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer. The student shall receive notification of the disclosure unless the student initiated the disclosure.
D. To authorized representatives of the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or State and local educational authorities in compliance with federal regulations.
E. To school officials or lending institutions, in connection with financial aid for which the student has applied or which the student has received, if the information is necessary for such purposes as to determine eligibility for the aid, amount, conditions, or to enforce the terms and conditions of the aid.
F. To state and local officials or authorities to which such information is specifically required to be reported or disclosed.
G. To accrediting organizations in order to carry out their accrediting functions.
H. To parents of a dependent student, as defined in Section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954.
I. In connection with an emergency, to appropriate persons if the knowledge of such information is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or others.
J. In compliance with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena, provided the College makes a reasonable effort to notify the student of the order or subpoena in advance of compliance. Notification may be prohibited if the College receives a federal grand jury subpoena or any other subpoena which states that the student should not be notified. Counsel shall be consulted prior to disclosure of the record.
K. To an alleged victim of any crime of violence. Counsel shall be consulted prior to disclosure of the record.
L. To Veterans Administration Officials pursuant to 38 USC 3690 (c).
M. To the court those records that are necessary to defend the institution if a student initiates legal action against the institution.
A. The college will keep a record of the requests for access to and disclosures of student education records.
- The requests and disclosures record will indicate:
- The name of the requesting party;
- The requesting party’s legitimate interest in the records;
- The records that were disclosed, if any;
- Any additional party to whom records may be disclosed; and
- The additional party’s legitimate interest in the records.
- The requests and disclosures record may be reviewed by the student.
- The requests and disclosures record is not required if the request or disclosure is made by or to:
- The student;
- A school official determined to have a legitimate educational interest;
- A party with written consent from the student;
- A party seeking directory information; or
- A federal grand jury or law enforcement agency pursuant to a subpoena that by its terms requires nondisclosure.
B. General information concerning the federal law and the college’s student records policy is available at the Office of Admissions and Records.
C. For a grievance concerning student records, the student should seek assistance from his or her advisor and attempt to find, through the informal conciliation process or formal complaint process, a resolution within the institution.
D. An unresolved complaint concerning the institution may be filed with the federal government for alleged failure to comply with FERPA (send complaint to: U.S. Department of Education, Family Policy Compliance Office, 400 Maryland Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20202-8520).
Student Grievance Resolution
Fei Tian College endorses open communication and prompt resolution of student grievances without fear of prejudice or reprisal and with assurance that student confidences will be respected to the extent of the law. Students who believe they have been treated in a manner inconsistent with college policies and procedures resulting in a specific decision, act, or condition that affects the student’s standing may use the internal student grievance resolution procedures.
- When a student cannot resolve a grievance and feels unfairly treated by a member of the college community, he or she should first seek assistance from his or her advisor who is obligated to make a good faith effort to air differences and find a resolution. The student may also seek assistance from another faculty member. If unsuccessful, the student may communicate the problem to the Vice President of Academic Affairs (for an academic grievance) or the Director of Student Affairs (for a non-academic grievance), who may offer advice or facilitate communications with the concerned individual(s). The informal conciliation process is expected to be completed within one month.
- If the grievance cannot be resolved informally, the student is entitled to file a formal complaint within a reasonable time of the occurrence (i.e. generally within three months). The complaint should be filed with the Vice President of Academic Affairs (for an academic grievance) or the Director of Student Affairs (for a non-academic grievance), who will promptly forward the complaint to the Judicial Committee. Within three weeks of receipt, the Judicial Committee will assign a committee member to the grievance case who does not have direct involvement in the issue. The student shall have the right to be assisted during the grievance process by an available advisor. The role of the advisor is limited to support and consultation.
- A grievance case generally consists of a preliminary investigation, a hearing with the aggrieved student, and a final report. In conducting the investigation, the committee member may obtain information from any source and in any manner determined to be useful in reaching a recommendation. Grievance hearings will be closed to the public.
- The student shall receive notification upon assignment of the grievance case, including advance written notification of the hearing. The student shall have the opportunity to submit additional relevant information before the hearing.
- Copies of the final report shall be provided to the student and the Vice President of Academic Affairs (for an academic grievance) or the Director of Student Affairs (for a non-academic grievance).
- Should the recommendation of the Judicial Committee not be acceptable to the student, the case may be forwarded to the president. The president’s decision is final within the college appeal process and cannot serve as the basis for a grievance. The formal complaint process is expected to be completed within three months.
- The files relating to a student grievance case will normally be retained as grievance records in the student’s education records. Student grievance records will be maintained in the Offices of Admissions and Records, Academic Affairs (for academic grievances only), and Student Affairs (for non-academic grievances only), under the authority of the Vice President of Academic Affairs and the Director of Student Affairs, respectively, and in accordance with the college record retention policy (see College Policy #1010).
- A student has the right to file an unresolved complaint with the state (send complaint form to: New York State Education Department, Office of College and University Evaluation, Education Building, 5 North Mezzanine, 89 Washington Avenue, Albany, New York 12234) concerning the institution’s educational programs or practices subject to the various exceptions in the law.