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Last Updated June 2017

All members of the Middlebury Institute student community shall:

  • Adhere to and help maintain a high level of personal and professional behavior that is respectful of the dignity of all persons

  • Respect the rights and property of others

  • Treat equally the ideas, feelings and opinions of all students who work and study at the Institute and their right to live and study in conditions that support their work and development

  • Refrain from and discourage behaviors that threaten freedom and respect every individual

The Student Conduct Policy promotes a campus environment that supports the overall educational mission of the Middlebury Institute and intends to help protect the Institute community from disruption and harm, to encourage appropriate standards of individual and group behavior, and to foster ethical standards.

The Institute’s approach to policy and to addressing policy violations is guided by the above principles. Depending on their nature and severity, alleged Institute policy violations may be adjudicated and discipline may be assigned by several different administrators and the Conduct and Appeals judicial boards, as detailed in the Student Life Policies. The deans, administrators and judicial boards consider the totality of a student’s history, the impact on community, and the specific circumstances of the event when determining appropriate responses to policy violations. Consistent with the cultivation of an awareness of responsibility and accountability, students found in violation of Institute policies and/or participating in prohibited acts will be held responsible, will be subject to discipline, and/or will be charged for fines and associated costs (such as materials or labor costs for repairs; cost of impoundment; restitution, etc.) as appropriate. Students with unpaid charges may be restricted from registering for classes until their accounts are in order. Please see Student Conduct Disciplinary Process for more information.

Disciplinary outcomes issued in an Institute program may be referred to any other Institute program in which the student is or will be enrolled (see “Scope of Oversight,” below). The student’s ongoing or future enrollment in any other Institute program will be determined in accordance with that program’s policies and processes. Admission to any Institute program may be denied or withdrawn based on the student’s disciplinary history at any other Institute or non-Institute program.

The policies are intended to be read broadly and are not designed to define misconduct in exhaustive terms. Attempts to commit acts prohibited in these policies may also lead to disciplinary action and sanctions.

Institute Initiated Leave of Absence, Emergency Withdrawal, Suspension, or Expulsion

In addition to fostering the growth of its individual students, the Institute recognizes its obligation to promote the welfare of the Institute community as a whole and to take appropriate action when that welfare is jeopardized. To that end, Institute reserves the right, notwithstanding and apart from the procedures described under Student Conduct Disciplinary Process, on an emergency basis, to suspend, expel, or require a leave of absence or to withdraw any student whose presence at Institute is determined by Institute authorities (the vice president for academic affairs/dean of the Institute (VPAA/DOI); the dean of enrollment, advising and student services, the academic deans (as applicable); the associate dean of student services (ADSS); and the Threat Assessment Management Team (TAM) (as applicable)) to pose a danger to the Institute community or its members or to be unduly disruptive of Institute life, or who appears to be unwilling or incapable of effectively and/or safely participating in Institute’ academic or other programs and/or student life. In cases of emergency suspension or required withdrawal, the conditions and procedures for readmission will be determined and communicated in writing to the student at the time of the student’s departure or shortly thereafter. For more information on student status, please see Part II, Section 4 “Leaves of Absence, Withdrawal, Suspension, Expulsion and Graduation” in the Policy and Standards Manual.

Faculty and administrative officials should ensure that positional authority is not used to inhibit the intellectual and personal growth of students.

Scope of Oversight

Students will be held accountable for policy violations that take place between the time they first arrive on campus to begin their Institute program and their graduation or official program completion, or the Institute’s confirmation of their resignation or expulsion. Conduct that takes place on or near Institute premises or property; occurs at or in connection with an Institute-related event; or occurs off-campus but may represent a threat to the safety of the Institute community or its members, the pursuit of its objectives, and/or the educational environment of others, may be subject to Institute’ disciplinary process. In cases where a student is found responsible for a policy violation while participating in any Institute or non-Institute program, the finding of responsibility may also be referred to the appropriate authority overseeing any additional Institute program in which the student is or will also be enrolled for other action as deemed appropriate. This may include but is not limited to: further investigation; additional adjudication under existing policies (using only information gathered in the first disciplinary process, or using subsequently gathered information, or both, as deemed appropriate by the overseeing authority); disciplinary action; or other remedies or processes deemed appropriate by the authority overseeing the additional Institute program.

Students should report Institute employee conduct issues directly to the Human Resources Manager in the Human Resources Department at (831) 647-3520 or hr@miis.edu.

Pending Discipline

A student respondent will not be permitted to graduate from or otherwise be deemed to have officially completed a Institute program in which they are enrolled while a disciplinary matter is pending; the student’s graduation or certification will be held in abeyance until the matter is resolved. If a respondent withdraws with a disciplinary matter, sanction, or appeal pending, the withdrawal will be considered a resignation from the Institute, and the student will have given up the opportunity to return to any Institute program. The student’s official status at the Institute will reflect the point in the process at which they withdrew, and the nature of the finding and sanction, as appropriate. Examples include but are not limited to “Withdrawal with a Disciplinary Matter Pending,” “Withdrawal with a Disciplinary Sanction Pending,” and “Withdrawal with a Disciplinary Appeal Pending.”

In extraordinary circumstances, the appropriate supervisory authority may, after appropriate consultation, review of the case, and consideration of Institute’ best interests, grant permission for a respondent to withdraw from the Institute when a disciplinary matter is pending. If the student is readmitted to Institute, the disciplinary matter must be resolved either before the student's return, or immediately upon the student's return (as determined by the Institute).


Several Student Life policies include deadlines. Unless otherwise noted, “days” indicates calendar days, regardless of whether the majority of the Institute’s administrative offices are open. “Business days” indicates days on which the majority of Institute’ administrative offices are open, and generally connotes Mondays through Fridays. In computing any period referenced in this policy, the day of the act or event (e.g., notification of hearing, issuance of an outcome letter, etc.) from which the designated time begins to run shall not be included. The last day of the period so computed shall be included if it is a business day; when not a business day, the period will conclude at the end of the next business day.

Academic Freedom

Institute is a community of learners and as such recognizes and affirms that free intellectual inquiry, debate, and constructive dialogue are vital to the Institute’s academic mission and must be protected even when the views expressed are unpopular or controversial. The Institute’s Student Life policies are meant neither to prescribe nor to inhibit discussions, in or out of the classroom, of complex, controversial, or sensitive matters, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, race, color, ethnicity, religion, marital status, place of birth, ancestry, national origin, age, or disability, when in the judgment of a reasonable person they arise appropriately and are conducted with respect for the dignity of others. The Institute also recognizes that verbal conduct can be used specifically to intimidate or coerce and to inhibit genuine discourse, free inquiry, and learning. Such abuses, including but not limited to conduct that violate the Institute’s General Conduct Policy, Anti-Harassment/Discrimination Policy, and other policies are unacceptable. The "reasonable person standard" is to be used in judging whether a policy violation has occurred.