Student Rights and Responsibilities


Preface

The following statement of students’ rights and responsibilities is intended to reflect the philosophical base upon which university policies are built. This philosophy acknowledges the existence of both rights and responsibilities which are due an individual not only as a student at the University of Houston-Victoria but as a citizen of the United States of America.

The Student Government Association (SGA) is the official liaison between the student body and the university administration and serves as the mechanism for student input in institutional decision-making. The SGA comprises representatives and officers elected by the student body.

It is the responsibility of the SGA to represent the entire student body, to give thoughtful consideration to student concerns, to present recommendations to the President’s Cabinet for consideration, and to communicate decisions affecting students to the entire student body.

Recommendations may be presented for the President’s Cabinet consideration at the request of a simple majority of the SGA. Recommendations shall be written form and shall be presented to the President’s Cabinet through the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs or the Provost. The President’s Cabinet shall consider all recommendations and inform the SGA of its decision(s). The President’s Cabinet may confer with members of the SGA prior to making decisions. The President’s Cabinet may, from time to time, request that the SGA consider various matters deemed by the Cabinet to require review by the student body.

Student Rights

ARTICLE I

A student shall have the right to participate in a free exchange of ideas and there shall be no university rules or regulations or administrative policy that in any way abridges the rights of freedom of speech, expression, petition, and peaceful assembly as set forth by the U.S. Constitution.

ARTICLE II

Students shall be treated on an equal basis in all areas and activities of the university regardless of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity, age, national origin, or educationally unrelated handicaps.

ARTICLE III

A student has the right to personal privacy except as otherwise provided by law, and this privacy will be observed by students and the university authorities alike. See “Confidentiality of Records” (FERPA) for more information.

ARTICLE IV

Each student shall be free from disciplinary action by university officials for violations of civil and criminal law off-campus, except when such a violation is determined also to be a violation of the student code of conduct regarding off-campus conduct.

ARTICLE V

Each student subject to disciplinary action arising from violations of university regulations shall be assured procedural due process. At all discipline hearings, an accused student shall be assumed innocent until found responsible, and in the initial hearings, the burden of proof shall rest with those bringing the charges. In all proceedings, the student shall be guaranteed substantive and procedural due process.

Student Responsibilities

ARTICLE I

A student has the responsibility to respect the rights and property of others, including other students, the faculty, the staff and the administration.

ARTICLE II

A student has the responsibility to be fully acquainted with the published University policies and procedures and to comply with them and the laws of the land.

ARTICLE III

A student has the responsibility to recognize that student actions reflect upon the individuals involved and upon the entire university community. If a student violates any university policy or procedure, the student will be subject to due process of university policy regardless of any civil or criminal action that may be pending as a result of the same violation. The university reserves the right to refuse acceptance to prospective or former students who have criminal records including conviction of a felony or other offenses of a serious nature. If a student has deliberately attempted self-inflicted harm, the university may withdraw the student when the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs deems such action to be in the best interest of the student and the university. If a student remains in school, the university assumes no responsibility for the welfare of the individual.

The university reserves the right, through due process, to issue a warning, to suspend, or to dismiss any student for conduct that is harmful to members of the university community or damaging to the educational interests of the university.