Office of Student Affairs
P.O. Box 5
Hampden Sydney, VA 23943
97% of full professors hold doctorates.
Procedures for Formal Resolution
(If the complaint is against one of the designated College officials, the Complainant should contact the Director of Human Resources, who will designate a representative of the College to handle the matter. In those cases where the Complainant deems it necessary or desirable to avoid any possible conflict of interest, an officer in a different branch of the College may be contacted.)
1. A Complainant may omit the Informal Discussion process entirely and file a Formal Complaint with the Director of Human Resources. Formal Complaints alleging violation of the Policy must be filed in the Director's office in a timely manner, ordinarily within fifteen days of the offending conduct, or shortly after the conclusion of the Informal Discussion process, usually within ten days. Formal Complaints must be in writing (except in cases where this would not be feasible) and should set out the details of the allegations. If the Complainant, after an initial meeting with the designated College official, decides to proceed, the official should inform the alleged offender of the allegation, of the identity of the Complaint, and provide a copy of the Formal Complaint.
2. In cases where the Respondent is a member of the faculty or staff, the Director or his or her designee will review the Formal Complaint and conduct an investigation, including relevant interviews. The Director or his or her designee will prepare a written report of his or her findings ("Findings") as expeditiously as possible, usually within thirty days from the date that the Formal Complaint was filed, and will deliver the Findings to the Complainant and Respondent. In cases where the Respondent is a student, the Director will deliver the Formal Complaint to the Dean of Students, who will proceed according to the Procedure in paragraph 3c below.
3.a. The Director of Human Resources will then forward the Formal Complaint and the Findings to the Appropriate College Official. ("Appropriate College Official" as used herein, shall mean (i) the Dean of the Faculty when the Respondent is a member of the faculty, and (ii) the Vice President for Business Affairs and Treasurer, if the Respondent is anyone other than a student or faculty member.)
b. The following procedure will be followed when the Respondent is a faculty member with continuous tenure or an unexpired special or probationary appointment:
Upon receipt and review of the Formal Complaint and Findings, the Dean of the Faculty (or the President, if the charge is against the Dean, or the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, if the charge is against the President), prior to making a preliminary determination on the matter, will consult with the Respondent to ascertain whether a mutually acceptable resolution to the Formal Complaint exists. If there is no mutually acceptable resolution then the respective college official responsible for handling the Formal Complaint will consult in confidence with an Advisory Committee of tenured faculty about the Complaint and Findings, about strategies for resolution of the Complaint, and about possible sanctions against the Respondent. The Advisory Committee will be the three members of the Faculty Affairs Committee with the longest time in service at the College, but not the Chair, who may later be called upon to serve on the Hearing Committee. Following consultation with the Advisory Committee, the Dean will make a preliminary determination as to whether the Complaint, if found to be true, would be likely to result in the severe sanction or dismissal of the Respondent. Copies of the preliminary determination will be delivered to the Complainant and Respondent.
After the Dean has made a preliminary determination, the Dean may wish to suggest that the matter be submitted for mediation, or the Complainant and Respondent may themselves elect to submit the matter to mediation by a mutually acceptable mediator. Under some circumstances, when the College deems it appropriate, the College may assume some or all the costs of the mediation. If the parties mediate and agree with the outcome, the results of the mediation will be entered as the Final Determination of the case.
If the Dean's preliminary determination inclines towards severe sanction or dismissal, unless the Respondent requests in writing that the matter be resolved as the Dean has proposed, the Dean, prior to proceeding as described in paragraph 4 of this section, will forward copies of the Complaint and Findings, together with the preliminary determination, to a special ad hoc committee of tenured faculty, to be called herein the "Hearing Committee," comprising the chairs of the following faculty committees:
Faculty Affairs Committee
Academic Affairs Committee
Committee on Professional Development
Gender Issues Committee
Student Affairs Committee
(The Complainant or Respondent may request that up to two members of the Hearing Committee be replaced peremptorily. If the Complainant or Respondent objects to additional members as interested parties, the objection must be communicated to the Director of Human Resources within three days of the formation of the committee, and the Director of Human Resources will rule on the validity of the objection. If the objection is ruled valid, or in the case of the chairs excused peremptorily, or in the case of committee members who are not tenured, the affected faculty committee will designate an alternative tenured member of the faculty to serve on the Hearing Committee. Ex officio and student members of these committees will not participate in the process of designating an alternative member of the Hearing Committee.)
The Hearing Committee will study the Complaint, the Findings, a statement from the Respondent, the Dean's preliminary determination, and conduct its own investigation, and will then advise the Dean, in writing, of its recommendation (a) on the merits of the allegations, (b) on whether overriding questions of academic freedom are at stake, and (c) on whether the Dean's preliminary determination should go forward.