Student Advocacy

Appeal process

*For sexual violence complaints please see that policy for specific appeal procedures.

  1. A decision and/or a sanction may be appealed. The appeal must be in writing and should be delivered to the Office of Student Development within 5 business days of the notification of outcome. Failure to submit an appeal within the allotted time will render the original decision final and conclusive. This can be done by using the online Appeal Request form.
  2. For complaints that were originally heard by the Assistant Director of Community Standards, Residence Hall Directors or Office of Residential and Community Life administrators, the appeal will go to the Director of Community Standards.
  3. For complaints that were originally heard by the Director of Community Standards or the Standing Disciplinary Board, the Vice President for Student Development or his/her designee will review the appeal.
  4. An appeal will be limited to review of the verbatim record of the initial hearing and supporting documents. The appeal process will not include a new hearing, except as required to explain the basis of new information as follows:
    1. If new information is brought forward that was not available at the time of the hearing, the student may be called to present and discuss this information.
    2. If it is found that the student’s due process rights were violated, a new case will be heard by the Vice President’s designee.

Grounds for Appeal- The written appeal must address at least one of the following to be considered:

  1. A procedural error so substantial that it affected the fundamental fairness of the hearing.
  2. Significant information, unavailable during the original hearing that could be outcome determinative.
  3. The sanction imposed was arbitrary or grossly disproportionate to the severity of the offense.
  4. The decision does not accord with the information or evidence presented.

The appeals officer may support or change a decision, as well as decrease a sanction as appropriate. Sanctions may never be increased. The reviewing body will be deferential to the original decision maker, making changes to the finding only where there is clear error and to the sanction only if a compelling justification to do so exists. Students are limited to one appeal for each hearing.

Academic dishonesty process, or a grading grievance

If this is a first offense, unless particularly egregious, you will receive a written warning.

If you would like to appeal your written warning, your case will go to the standing disciplinary board and you may face sanctioning if found responsible.

If this is a second offense or particularly egregious, your case will go to the standing disciplinary board and you may face sanctioning if found responsible.

If you would like to appeal your standing disciplinary board finding, your case will go to the Vice President of Student Development (or designee).

The grade given to you by the particular faculty member cannot be appealed through our office, but rather the academic department. Procedure for grieving a grade

BAT (Behavior Assessment Team)
This team is run out of the department of student development. It is a comprehensive, integrated prevention program used to identify individuals who are potential risks. A single case may involve efforts from senior leadership, University Police, and staff from Residence Life, Counseling, and Community Standards.

BART (Bias Acts Response Team) – See page 46 in Student Code for prevention information

Silent witness information

If you would like to remain completely anonymous when reporting a crime, please utilize our silent witness form. These reports go directly to University Police. Make sure you include enough information into the report so that they can adequately look into the crime.

Victims of Sexual and/or Interpersonal Violence (For definitions and details please read Student Code of Conduct, pages 12-20)

Affirmative Consent: Affirmative consent is a knowing, voluntary, and mutual decision among all participants to engage in sexual activity.  Consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create clear permission regarding willingness to engage in the sexual activity. Silence or lack of resistance, in and of itself, does not demonstrate consent. The definition of consent does not vary based upon a participant's sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

  • Consent to any sexual act or prior consensual sexual activity between or with any party does not necessarily constitute consent to any other sexual act.
  • Consent is required regardless of whether the person initiating the act is under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.
  • Consent may be initially given but withdrawn at any time.
  • Consent cannot be given when a person is incapacitated, which occurs when an individual lacks the ability to knowingly choose to participate in sexual activity. Incapacitation may be caused by the lack of consciousness or being asleep, being involuntarily restrained, or if an individual otherwise cannot consent.  Depending on the degree of intoxication, someone who is under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or other intoxicants may be incapacitated and therefore unable to consent.
  • Consent cannot be given when it is the result of any coercion, intimidation, force, or threat of harm.
  • When consent is withdrawn or can no longer be given, sexual activity must stop.

Information, Resources and Support

  • Policy for Alcohol and/or Drug Use Amnesty in Sexual & Interpersonal Violence
    • The health and safety of every student at the State University of New York and its State-operated and community colleges is of utmost importance. SUNY Oneonta recognizes that students who have been drinking and/or using drugs (whether such use is voluntary or involuntary) at the time that violence, including but not limited to domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, or sexual assault occurs may be hesitant to report such incidents due to fear of potential consequences for their own conduct. SUNY Oneonta strongly encourages students to report incidents of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, or sexual assault to institution officials. A bystander acting in good faith or a reporting individual acting in good faith that discloses any incident of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, or sexual assault to SUNY Oneonta officials or law enforcement will not be subject to SUNY Oneonta code of conduct action for violations of alcohol and/or drug use policies occurring at or near the time of the commission of the domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, or sexual assault.
  • After a report has been received, the College and community have a range of options, accommodations and protective measures to offer the victim. Victims have these options available to them even if they choose not to proceed with discipline or criminal charges, and without a time limitation.
  • These options include, but are not limited to:
    • Filing criminal charges
    • Pursuing the report through a Community Standards hearing
    • Pursuing a Title IX complaint
    • No Contact Order
    • Counseling sessions
    • Accommodating changes in class schedule, residence hall, etc.
    • The Violence Intervention Program Hotline

Dealing with harassment/hazing

We take both of these issues seriously. Each issue differs and outcomes can change depending on many things. If you believe you are being harassed or hazed, please let our office know.

Bullying behaviors can be viewed as Harassment.

The following is a non-exhaustive list of possible outcomes:

  • Order of no contact
  • Community Standards hearing sanctions
  • Counseling/mediation
  • Education sanctions
  • Change in classes or housing

Mediation opportunities

A voluntary and confidential process where multiple parties work to find a collaborative answer to a problem or disagreement and working to deal with underlying issues involved.

A neutral mediator will help the parties brainstorm to come up with ideas for a resolution, while attempting to serve as a calming buffer.

What types of disputes are appropriate for mediation? The following is a non-exhaustive list of examples of situations and disputes that may be appropriate for mediation:

  • Roommate disagreements and other residence hall matters
  • Noise complaints
  • Possessions borrowed and not returned; or returned but not in it’s original state
  • Harassment
  • Students feuding in class over joint projects
  • Relationship issues
  • Stolen or mishandled property
  • Interpersonal issues
  • Misunderstanding and miscommunication
  • Lifestyle differences
  • Student groups disputes (either internally or between groups)

Medical Amnesty Policy (What is expected of you?):

You may be eligible for medical amnesty if you receive emergency medical assistance related to your consumption of alcohol or drugs (whether transported to the hospital or not), or if you seek assistance on behalf of another student from staff or UPD.

After the incident you will receive a letter which outlines the timeline and tasks you must complete in order to receive amnesty.

Tasks that could be required of you:

  • Risk assessment plan
  • Educational initiatives administered by the counseling center
  • Pay for online education module

Amnesty can only be received once

If you violate other College policies outside of the Alcohol and/or Drug policies, you will have a separate hearing.

Other offices that can help and work with us:

  • University Police Department: (607) 436-3550
  • Office of Student Development: (607) 436-2513
  • Counseling, Health & Wellness Center
    • Health: (607) 436-3573
    • Counseling: (607) 436-3688
  • Title IX coordinator: (607) 436-2835
  • Office of Student Diversity and Advocacy


Community Standards
119 Netzer Admin. Building
Phone 607.436.3353
Fax 607.436.2283