NON-ACADEMIC STUDENT DISCIPLINE
There are times when it is necessary to take formal disciplinary action against a PACIFIC WEST student whose non-academic conduct raises serious questions as to his/her fitness to enter the legal profession. When such matters are brought to the attention of the PACIFIC WEST administration, they are normally referred to the Dean for the decision as to whether or not a formal hearing should be convened on the matter.
If an affirmative decision is made, the Dean then notifies the student in writing, delivered in person or by regular mail, of:
- The specific charges;
- The names of witnesses; the opportunity to call them on the student’s own behalf and the opportunity to examine adverse witnesses;
- The student’s right to be represented at the hearing by outside counsel of the student’s choice or by counsel whom the student may obtain from the PACIFIC WEST faculty or student body (if he/she consents to so serve)’
- The hearing place, time and date, which shall not be less than five days nor more than ten days from the date of receipt of the notification by the student; and
- The consequence which may include cancellation of an examination, denial of course credit, suspension and dismissal.
The hearing shall be conducted by a panel appointed for such purpose by the Dean, who shall not be a member of the panel. The panel shall consist of at least three members of the faculty or the administrative staff. In addition, when requested by the student and at the discretion of the Dean, the panel may also include one disinterested PACIFIC WEST student as voting members.
The hearing shall be conducted in an orderly but informal manner and have as its goal the clarification of facts and the narrowing of issues to attain the truth of the situation. The student shall be given every opportunity and right to explain fully the situation. All reasonable doubt shall be resolved in favor of the student, who shall have the right to question any witness, either personally or through his/her counsel, if present.
DELIBERATION AND FINDINGS
When the hearing is concluded, the panel shall go into executive session to deliberate and to reach a conclusion (by majority vote.) The panel’s written findings shall be given to the student by regular mail within ten working days of the termination of the hearing.
The written final determination will include a statement of the facts, conclusions and sanctions, if any.
A copy of that letter may also be furnished to the California Committee of Bar Examiners under the provisions of the C.B.E’s Rules and Guidelines. Students should be aware that such notification to the C.B.E may result in a delay in their admission to the California State Bar after they have passed the California Bar Examination.
In addition, at the discretion of the Dean, a notice of the panel’s findings may be posted on the Official Bulletin Board in the form of “Discipline Imposed.” Such notice shall not reveal the name of any student involved.
Nothing in this section precludes the student from waiving his/her hearing, pleading guilty to the allegations and submitting him/herself to appropriate disciplinary action by the Dean, who may consult with or arrange to be joined by such other members of the PACIFIC WEST administration whom he or she considers appropriate.
Upon final adjudication where a student had been issued an administrative dismissal, such administrative dismissal will be reflected in the student’s transcript of records by affixing a notation “X – Administrative Dismissal”. No specifics as to the detail of the non-academic conduct or offense will be disclosed in the student’s transcript of records.
This student discipline policy does not apply to academic probation or disqualification; other failures to meet academic standards; or failure to pay tuition, fees, or charges billed to the student.