Standards of Conduct

Standards of Conduct at Willamette University are set forth in writing to give students general notice of prohibited conduct. The Standards should be read broadly and are not designed to define misconduct in exhaustive terms. Students and student organizations are expected to comply with published university policies and local, state, and federal laws.

The university may move to hold a student or student organization accountable through Rights and Responsibilities processes when alleged behavior can reasonably be held to engage or attempt to engage in any of the actions listed below.

  1. Falsification, forgery, unauthorized alteration or misuse of university documents, records, keys, student identification or combination door locks.
  2. Disruption, obstruction or material interference with the process of instruction, research,   administration, career placement, discipline or any other service or activity provided or sponsored by the university.
  3. Lying, furnishing false information, withholding of information or misrepresentation to any university office or faculty, staff or conduct board member, whether oral or written (including financial aid applications).
  4. Damage, destruction, theft, or misuse of property belonging to the university, or a member, or guest of the university.
  5. Unauthorized entry, use, or abuse of university owned or controlled property, facilities, equipment or resources (e.g. telephone equipment, computer access lines, mail services, telecommunication resources, etc.).
  6. Physical or verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, harassment, or other conduct that threatens or endangers any person or causes reasonable apprehension of such harm. This includes the use of e-mail, social media, or other technological means of communication.
  7. Aiding, and abetting another in a violation of the Standards of Conduct.
  8. Lewd or indecent conduct.
  9. Sexual Misconduct (For complete policy see: Sexual Misconduct Policy for Students, Procedures for Students are currently under review. Please contact the Office of Student Affairs at 503-370-6813 or for information.
    1. Sexual or Gender-Based Harassment - Any unwelcome sexual advance, request for sexual favors, or other unwelcome verbal, physical, or other conduct of a sexual or gender-based nature when the condition outlined in i. or ii. below is present.
      1. Submission to or rejection of such conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly, a term or condition of an individual’s employment, evaluation of academic work, or participation in programs or activities or is used as the basis for decisions affecting the individual; or
      2. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of creating a hostile environment. A “hostile environment” exists when the conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with, limits, or deprives an individual from participating in or benefiting from the university’s employment, academic or social environment. In evaluating whether a hostile environment exists, the university will consider the totality of known circumstances.
        • The effect will be evaluated based on the perspective of a reasonable person (objective perspective) with similar identities and circumstances in the position of a claimant (subjective perspective).
        • The more severe the conduct, the less need there is to show a repetitive series of incidents to prove a hostile environment, particularly if the harassment is physical.
        • A single or isolated incident of sexual or gender-based harassment may create a hostile environment if the incident is sufficiently severe.
    2. Sexual or Gender-Based Stalking (including via electronic means or on-line activity) – A course of conduct (more than one behavior) targeted at an individual by an individual or group using various forms of contact to pursue, harass, or to make unwelcome contact with another person in an unsolicited fashion that would cause a reasonable person with similar identities and circumstances to feel harassed or afraid, or cause fear for or by a third party.
    3. Interpersonal Violence (including Dating and Domestic Partner Violence) – Harm or threat of harm by a current or former partner or spouse, or a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature. The harm or threat of harm can involve physical, sexual, psychological, economic, emotional, or other aspects.
    4. Sexual Exploitation – Taking non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another person for one’s own or another’s advantage or benefit.
    5. Non-Consensual Sexual Contact (or attempt) – Any intentional sexual contact that occurs without consent or capacity to give consent or by use of force. Sexual contact includes touching of a person’s intimate parts (including genitalia, groin, breast, or buttocks, or clothing covering any of those areas), or using force to cause a person to touch their own or another person’s intimate parts.
    6. Non-Consensual Sexual Intercourse (or attempt) – Penetration of the vagina or anus with any object or body part, or oral copulation (mouth to genital contact or genital to mouth contact) without consent or capacity to give consent or by use of force.
    7. Retaliation – Any adverse action taken against a person making a complaint of sexual misconduct, cooperating in an investigation or hearing of alleged sexual misconduct, or against any individual perceived to be involved in reporting, in an investigation, or hearing of sexual misconduct. Retaliation includes but is not limited to, confirmed or implied behaviors or actions (including electronic or on-line activity) which intimidate, threaten, or harass, or result in other adverse actions threatened or taken. An individual reporting sexual misconduct is entitled to protection from any form of retaliation following a report that is made in good faith, even if the report is later not substantiated based on the available evidence. Retaliation does not include good faith actions lawfully pursued in response to a report of prohibited conduct.
  10. Harassment - Behavior that is so severe, persistent, or pervasive that it interferes with or limits a person’s ability to participate in or benefit from the university’s educational or employment opportunities, programs or activities; includes harassment on the basis of sex, race, cultural background, religion, political creed, marital status, age, sexual orientation, gender expression, or disability, as well as the existence of a hostile environment that is created, encouraged, accepted, tolerated or left uncorrected; and includes:
    1. Bullying (including cyber-bullying), a form of harassment, is abusive treatment (maybe verbal, physical, written, or otherwise), the use of force or coercion to affect others, particularly when patterned and involving an imbalance of power (real or perceived); or
    2. Stalking (including cyber-stalking), a form of harassment, refers to repeated harassing or threatening behavior by an individual using various forms of contact to pursue, harass, or to make unwelcomed contact with another person in an unsolicited fashion. Any unwanted contact between two people that directly or indirectly communicates a threat or places the victim or a third party, such as a roommate or friend, in fear, can be considered stalking.
  11. Possession, use, or threatened use of firearms, ammunition, explosives, or use of any object as a weapon on university property or at university-sponsored activities (see: Firearms/Weapons Policy)
  12. Illegally possessing, using, distributing, manufacturing or selling drugs or controlled substances including but not limited to used drug paraphernalia or prescription drugs; being present or remaining in an area where illegal drugs or controlled substances are being consumed or used.
    Marijuana in all forms, including edibles and extracts, whether for recreational or medicinal uses, or the possession/use of marijuana paraphernalia, remains prohibited within all University owned or controlled facilities, property, and programs.
  13. Violation of the University Alcohol Policy.
  14. Disorderly conduct (including disorderliness resulting from intoxication), unreasonable noise or behavior which results in material inconvenience, annoyance or alarm. Disorderly conduct includes unauthorized use of electronic or other devices to make an audio or video record of any person without the person's prior knowledge, or without the person's effective consent when such a recording is likely to cause injury or distress.
  15. Hazing (see: Hazing – Policy and Procedures for Students, Appendix D) Any conduct that subjects another person to humiliation, degradation, abuse, intimidation, harassment, or endangerment of mental or physical health or safety as a condition of association with a group, regardless of the person’s willingness to participate. Acts of hazing by groups, individuals, or alumni are prohibited. Apathy or acquiescence in the presence of hazing are not neutral acts but violations of the hazing policy.
  16. Violation of Fire Safety Policies or Procedures – misuse or tampering of fire safety equipment or engaging in behavior which constitutes a fire safety hazard.
  17. Students have a continuing duty to report any arrest, plea of guilty or "no contest," or conviction of any crime or traffic violation (except parking citations). The report must be made to the Director of Campus Safety within 5 business days after the arrest, plea of guilty or "no contest," or conviction occurs. Information regarding any such incident will be evaluated by the university's Behavior Review Team and may result in adjudication through a Rights and Responsibilities process. Disclosure is required whether the crime occurred in or outside of Oregon. Failure to report this information may constitute grounds for immediate dismissal from the university.
  18. Failure to comply with a directive from a university staff member in the performance of the staff member's duty.
  19. Failure to abide by any published university policy or procedure, applicable local, state, and federal laws (including, but not limited to Housing policies, residential community agreements, and academic catalogs).
  20. Failure to comply with the terms of any agreement or sanction imposed in accordance with these Standards of Conduct.