It can be a stressful time of year for your student as they move into the last month of the spring semester. Between increased school work, extracurriculars and other responsibilities, many students have a lot to balance.
Amid those stressors, there may be times that your student makes a decision that violates the Student Code of Conduct; whether that’s on-campus drinking, a residence hall dispute or unreasonable noise off campus, among others. Perhaps, they made one of those decisions on St. Patrick’s Day or during spring break.
If your student recognizes that they made a mistake, CU Boulder has the resources to help them right their wrongs and grow from the experience. Here are some things you can do to support your student if they have gotten in trouble on or off campus.
Encourage them to engage with the Office of Student Conduct & Conflict Resolution
There are two ways students can be referred to Student Conduct & Conflict Resolution (SCCR)—either they were alleged to have violated the Code of Conduct on campus or off campus. Anyone can refer a student to SCCR if they believe there was a violation, however, the Boulder Police Department is one common off-campus source.
SCCR will contact the students referred to them by sending an email with a resolution meeting letter. This letter is not a penalty or sentencing. It is an opportunity for your student to work with SCCR to reflect on and repair any harm caused when they may have violated the Code of Conduct. The letter invites students to set up a meeting with a resolution specialist, who is there to help them through the conduct process.
The resolution meeting is a chance for your student to tell their side of the story. The student conduct process treats students fairly, openly and follows due process. If a student is found responsible for violating the Student Code of Conduct, they may be assigned resolution outcomes such as educational classes, restorative justice and other outcomes that impact their student status at CU.
Know that the resolution specialists are there to help
The resolution specialist that your student will meet with is one of their best resources. They are there to guide students through the conduct process and help them reflect on the incident that they were referred to SCCR for.
Encourage your student to ask their resolution specialist any questions. The resolution team is very open to discussing the conduct process and policies to ensure students feel prepared and comfortable. If students have specific questions about how they can navigate the Code of Conduct going forward, the meeting with their resolution specialist is also a great time to discuss that.
Resolution specialists also help students determine if there are resources available on campus or in the Boulder community that will assist them in creating a personal plan to minimize or eliminate harm in the future. The specialists can connect your student with educational opportunities through on-campus partners such as Health Promotion, Off-Campus Housing & Neighborhood Relations or Restorative Justice, among others.
Support their next step to go beyond what’s required to repair any harm caused
The CU Restorative Justice Program (CURJ) is all about repairing harm and making things right. The program’s goal is to help students recognize that the mistake they made impacted more people than just themselves. Should your student be referred to CURJ during the conduct process, they will have a large say in what they should do to repair harm.
Restorative justice allows students to share their stories with others in the community, including their families. Other people who can be involved are the student’s hall director, resident advisor, roommate, friends, classmates, professors, instructors, off-campus neighbors or volunteers who work with CURJ. Together, the student and those impacted address the harms and impacts of their actions, and develop a plan to make things right.
There are endless ways that students can go about repairing harm. Some examples include:
- Delivering care packages to neighbors.
- Volunteering at food banks.
- Supporting the Buff Pantry.
- Writing letters of apology and appreciation.
- Sharing their stories with their student networks.
Even if a student was not referred to CURJ, they can still take similar steps on their own time in a safe and healthy way. Encourage them to continue to reflect on their actions to determine if there are additional impacts they want to address with their friends and family, or greater campus and Boulder communities.
Students can also get involved with CURJ to support their peers during difficult times. Students can volunteer as a community representative, get trained as a facilitator or intern with CURJ. If your student is interested in those opportunities, have them email email@example.com.
If you or your student has a question about the conduct process as a whole, have your student email firstname.lastname@example.org.