Student Code of Conduct
The essential purpose of the university’s governing of community conduct is to protect and promote the university community’s pursuit of its educational goals. The university, as an educational institution, has a special set of interests and purposes, the protection and promotion of which are essential to its effective functioning. These interests, with respect to the governing of community conduct, include the following:
- the opportunity of all members of the university community to attain their educational objectives;
- the generation and maintenance of an intellectual and educational atmosphere throughout the university community; and
- the protection of the health, safety, welfare, property, and human rights of all members of the university community, and the safety, property, and reputational interests of the university itself.
The university’s role in regulating community conduct is distinguishable from society’s. Therefore, the powers of the university’s judicial boards shall be limited to the enforcement of university conduct regulations and shall not extend to the enforcement of public laws, except to the coincidental extent that such university conduct regulations are similar to provisions of the public law.
The principle of freedom with responsibility is central to Cornell University. Freedoms to teach and to learn, to express oneself and to be heard, and to assemble and to protest peacefully and lawfully are essential to academic freedom and the continuing function of the university as an educational institution. Responsible enjoyment and exercise of these rights mean respect for the rights of all. Infringement upon the rights of others or interference with the peaceful and lawful use and enjoyment of university premises, facilities, and programs violates this principle. The Campus Code of Conduct is the university community’s code, and hence is the responsibility of all community members. All members have a duty to cooperate with university officials in this Code’s operation and enforcement.
The Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards “receives, investigates, and pursues accusations of violations of the Campus Code of Conduct, or of any other regulation as the University Assembly or Board of Trustees may direct” (Title II. Art. II. Sec. A, pg. 11, 2018).
The Office of the Judicial Administrator provides oversight/information about:
- Cornell’s disciplinary system;
- options available under the Code if you have been negatively affected by a member of the Cornell community;
- the process following notice that you or an organization with which you are associated has been referred to the OJA;
- explore what is expected of you if you are a witness in a Code matter;
- support a respondent if you are serving as an advisor or support person; or
- request your conduct history at Cornell.
This website serves as a preliminary resource. We encourage you to contact the OJA if you have any questions, wish to request a presentation, or if we can otherwise be of assistance. We look forward to working with all members of the Cornell community as we strive to uphold one of Cornell’s central principles: “freedom with responsibility.”
Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards
Senior Assistant Dean for Graduate Student Life