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Community and Ethical Standards

Student Organizations

IX. Conduct of Student Organizations

This policy sets forth the rules governing the conduct of student organizations and also sets forth the sanctions that may be imposed on student organizations for violations of University rules and regulations.

The organization must ensure that members acting individually or as a group reflect the Clemson Core Values to all members of the community in addition to all other outlined expectations within the Code and within the organization’s bylaws. Organization leaders bear a special responsibility for ensuring that constituents recognize and embrace these values in carrying out the organization’s mission. Student organizations are not afforded the same rights and responsibilities as individual students.

As a guiding principle, student organizations will be held responsible for the acts of their members when those acts grow out of or are in any way related to the organization. Isolated violations of individuals should not be chargeable to the student organization, but evidence of organizational conduct exists when:

  • Members of the organization are acting together in violating a conduct regulation;

  • A violation of a conduct regulation arises out of an organization-sponsored, financed, or endorsed event;

  • An organization’s leader(s) has knowledge of the potential for a violation of conduct regulations before it occurs and fails to take corrective action;

  • A violation of a conduct regulation occurs on the premises owned, leased, or operated by the organization;

  • A pattern of individual violations of conduct regulations is found to have existed without proper and appropriate organizational control, remedy, or sanction; and

  • The organization, or members of the organization, provides the impetus for a violation of conduct regulations.

Cases involving student organizations are not considered confidential under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA); therefore, the University does not protect the confidentiality of the disciplinary records regarding the conduct of student organizations.

A. Sanctions for Student Organizations

The following disciplinary sanctions may be imposed upon student organizations when they have been found in violation of the Code. All sanctions may be imposed individually or in combination. Disciplinary sanctions are imposed for the purpose of holding student organizations accountable for their actions and the actions of their guest(s), whether on campus or at any organizational event. Failure to satisfactorily complete a disciplinary sanction may result in more severe sanctions.

  • Reprimand

    An official statement to the student organization explaining that they have violated a University regulation. Any further misconduct could result in additional disciplinary action.

  • Restitution

    When an organization has damaged or destroyed University or personally owned property the organization may be required to make restitution, or receive additional educational sanctions.

  • Restriction of Privileges

    Restrictions may be placed upon a student organization which limits the organization’s access to certain University privileges for a specified period of time. These limitations may include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • Prohibition from participating in University events,

    • Denial to maintain an office or other assigned space on University property,

    • Denial to receive or retain University funds,

    • Denial to participate in intramural sports,

    • Denial to sponsor, co-sponsor and/or participate in any social event or other activity,

    • Denial to sponsor any speaker or guest on campus,

    • Denial of rush or membership recruitment activities,

    • Denial of the request for block seating at University events,

    • Denial of the use of University vehicles,

    • Denial of the use of University facilities,

    • Denial of advertising on campus for organizational activities, and/or

    • Denial of soliciting and/or selling any items on campus.

  • Disciplinary Probation

    A specified period of review, observation and/or restrictions during which a student organization is under official warning that its misconduct was very serious. Subsequent violations of University rules, regulations, or policies could result in more severe sanctions, including suspension or dismissal of recognition. During the probationary period, a student organization is deemed “not in good standing” with the University and may be subject to specific limitations upon its behavior or University privileges.

  • Suspension of Organizational Registration

    The denial of privileges of a registered organization for a designated period of time, which will be no less than one semester. Any organization whose recognition is suspended must:

    • Cease all organizational activities.

    • Vacate any appointed or elected office with that organization’s governing body for the duration of the organization’s period of suspension.

    • Surrender balances of all organizational funds granted by the University, Student Government or, the Student Funding Board.

    • Vacate office or housing space assigned by the University from the date of the notice of suspension. Space vacated due to suspension may be reassigned to other eligible University organizations. In the case of housing, individual members will be reassigned provided space is available. There will be no University Housing contract cancellations.

  • Dismissal of Organizational Registration

    Permanently excludes the organization from the University without any recourse to reapply for registration. Any organization whose registration is permanently revoked must:

    • Cease all organizational activities.

    • Vacate any appointed or elected office.

    • Surrender balances of all organizational funds granted by the Student Funding Board.

    • Vacate office or housing space assigned by the University from the date of the notice of dismissal. Space vacated due to dismissal may be reassigned to other eligible University organizations. In the case of housing, individual members will be reassigned provided space is available. There will be no University Housing contract cancellations.

  • Interim Suspension of Organizational Registration

    An interim suspension may be imposed, by the Vice President for Student Affairs or his/her designee, prior to the beginning of the administrative process. The interim suspension may be imposed in cases where:

    • The alleged action of the student organization may pose a threat to the well-being of the University or any of its members, or to preserve University property;

    • The student organization poses a threat of disruption or interference with the normal operations of the University.

    During any interim suspension, the organization shall be required to discontinue all organizational activities and will be denied access to all University activities and privileges. In certain circumstances, organizational leadership may be restricted from communication with the organizational membership or students may be required to vacate organizational housing units.

    A student organization shall be notified in writing of an interim suspension, its restrictions, and the reasons for it, and shall also be notified of the time, date, and place of a subsequent meeting with the Dean of Students or his/her designee at which the organization may contest the grounds for the interim suspension.

    Except in the case of exigent circumstances or other good cause, this meeting shall occur no more than 5 business days following the notice of interim suspension and may occur prior to the effective date of the interim suspension. Following such meeting, OCES may lift, modify, or continue the interim suspension while the disciplinary process continues.

B. Student Organization Discipline Procedures

The Director of OCES or his/her designee will investigate all allegations of student organization misconduct. The investigation will include interviewing those individuals with information about the incident and meeting with the appropriate officers of the organization. The director shall have the authority to do the following:

  • Institute all sanctions except suspension or dismissal.

  • Refer the student organization to an administrative hearing.

  • Schedule an administrative hearing for the referred student organization in cases where the contemplated sanction is suspension or dismissal of recognition, unless the student organization waives its right to a hearing. The notice of an administrative hearing, the procedure during an administrative hearing and the appeal process of an administrative hearing will follow the same format as described in the Section VI. D.2. If the student organization waives its right to a hearing, the recommended sanction will be imposed.

Approved by Board of Trustees Jan. 24, 2020.

Office of Community and Ethical Standards
Office of Community and Ethical Standards | 202 Sikes Hall, Clemson, SC 29634