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Policies and Definitions: Student Code of Conduct

The following are terms, policies, and definitions referenced in the Student Code of Conduct.


The University believes that any group or organization (composed of students, faculty, staff, and/or visitors) has the responsibility to create an environment within which all activities are pursued in a respectful and productive manner.

All St. John Fisher University students, faculty, staff, visitors, and guests are expected to comply with federal, state, or local laws. New York state penal law defines hazing as follows: “A person is guilty of hazing in the first degree when, in the course of another person’s initiation into or affiliation with any organization, he or she intentionally or recklessly engages in conduct which creates a substantial risk of physical injury to such other person or a third person and thereby causes such injury” (New York Penal Law, 120.16). A conviction of this offense carries a potential fine of up to $1,000, one year in jail, or both. Hazing in the first degree is a Class A misdemeanor. Hazing in the second degree (a violation) incorporates the same definition as above with the exception that no actual injury to any person needs to be proven (New York Penal Law, 120.17).

The University defines hazing as any action or situation which, in the judgment of the University:

  • Is an activity expected of someone as a method of initiation or pre-initiation into a student organization or group;
  • Coerces, explicitly or implicitly, behavior that demeans, embarrasses, threatens, invites ridicule, or draws inappropriate or negative attention to a member, affiliate and/or group; or
  • Implies one member/affiliate is superior to another.

This definition includes actions which result in the impairment of academic performance, or which cause failure to properly fulfill obligations to University-sponsored groups or organizations.

In compliance with New York state’s anti-hazing legislation, Chapter 676 of the Laws of 1980, the following regulations are in effect:

  • Students, faculty, and staff, as well as visitors and other licensees and invitees on St. John Fisher University property, are prohibited from any action or situation that recklessly or intentionally endangers mental or physical health, or involves the forced consumption of any substance including food, liquids, alcohol, or drugs for the purpose of initiation into, or affiliation with, any organization.
  • These regulations shall be deemed to be a part of the bylaws of all organizations operating on the campus, which shall review annually such bylaws with individuals affiliated with such organizations.
  • Violation of these regulations will result in sanctions as appropriate to the individual’s status on campus and, in the case of an organization that authorizes such conduct, rescission of permission for that organization to operate on campus property.
  • Individuals or organizations in violation of these regulations may be subject to any applicable provision of the penal law, or any other chapter to which a violator or organization may be subject, in addition to any University student conduct proceedings. Any faculty or staff member of the University who becomes aware of hazing activity must report that information promptly to the vice president for student affairs or the Office of Safety and Security. Failure to do so will result in appropriate administrative action against the faculty or staff member by the University.

Hazing Policy last reviewed: 9/10/2018

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Intimidation includes intentionally directing verbal, written, or electronic threats of violence or other threatening behavior(s) toward another person or group that reasonably leads the targeted person(s) to fear for their physical well-being. Intimidation also includes fear inducing behavior(s) that deter or prevent the targeted person(s) from taking legitimate actions that they may otherwise take.

Intimidation last reviewed: 9/10/2018

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Posting Policy

University-Affiliated Postings

Posting of signs, bulletins, flyers, or any advertisement or notice on University property is permitted within the following guidelines.

  • Postings must be related to University-affiliated activities or events.
  • Postings are only permitted on designated campus bulletin boards, on the marble wall located across from the Security Desk in Haffey Hall, and/or pre-approved campus locations.
  • Items must be posted with appropriate materials, including blue painter's tape and excluding duct tape, nails, staples, etc.
  • If the posting causes any damage to any surface the person, organization, club or department responsible for the posting will be financially responsible for the repair.
  • Postings must have the name of the sponsoring organization, club, or department and date, time, and location of event.
  • Postings must comply with all other campus policies and are not permitted to include references to any illegal activity, weapons, or include alcohol or drug logos.
  • Signs, bulletins, and/or flyers may not be distributed under office or classroom doors, in common areas, or on University property without pre-approval.
  • The promotion of credit cards is prohibited.

Due to fire code regulations, safety hazards, and cleaning issues, postings are not permitted on non-bulletin board areas including walls, glass doors, windows, stairwells, or fire doors.

To request an exception to any of these restrictions, contact the Office of Campus Life in writing with your specific request.

Non-University Related Postings

Non-University postings are only permitted on designated “general posting” bulletin boards that are available throughout campus.

Posting in the Campus Center

All postings must be approved by the Office of Campus Life. Non-University related activities, events, organizations, etc. are only permitted on the designated “general posting” bulletin boards in the Campus Center with the permission of the Office of Campus Life.

Questions may be directed to the Office of Campus Life, located on the second floor of the Campus Center or The suggested number of copies for the Campus Center is no more than 10.

Posting in the Residence Halls

Postings for University-affiliated activities or events must be approved by the Office of Residential Life and distributed to the residence halls through the Office of Residential Life. Postings for non-University-related activities, events, organizations, etc. will not be approved.

Distributing signs, bulletins and/or flyers under residence hall room doors or in common spaces is not permitted.

The Office of Residential Life is located on the second floor of the Campus Center or The suggested number of copies for the residence halls is 57.


Chalking is only permitted when promoting University-affiliated activities or events.

Chalking is prohibited on the following surfaces:

  • Any vertical surfaces including walls, sides of buildings, and stairs
  • Under any awning or other structure that could potentially obstruct rain from washing the chalk away
  • Any street surface including campus roadways and parking lots

University Posting Policy last updated: 8/2/2022

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Public Order

As members of the University community, Fisher students are free, individually and collectively, to express their views on issues of University policy and on matters of general interest to the student body. Expression of personal beliefs and supporting causes may not disrupt or interfere with the regular and essential operation of the University. In the development of policies that will govern St. John Fisher University, the University will promote means that encourage the civil presentation and consideration of views by students, faculty, administration, alumni, parents of students, and interested friends in the Greater Rochester Area.

If members of the University community engage in behavior, individually or collectively, that disrupts the educational process and denies others the intellectual environment that the University seeks to provide, the responsible officers of the University are charged with taking action to restore order and calm.

Members of the University community and all persons present on University premises shall at all times conduct themselves in a manner which does not disrupt the community, infringe upon the rights of others, or prejudice the maintenance of public order.

Public Order last reviewed: 9/10/2018

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Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific individual that would cause a reasonable individual to fear for their safety or the safety of others, or suffer substantial emotional distress which unreasonably interferes with the work or educational environment. Stalking may include, but is not limited to, unwelcomed conduct such as surveillance, following, trespassing, gift giving or property damage, or written, in-person, digital, social media, or other communication directly or through a third party.

Stalking last reviewed: 9/10/2018

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In accordance with state law, firearms, ammunition, and weapons are prohibited on the St. John Fisher University campus. Firearms of any type, switchblades, gravity knives, bows, crossbows, swords and the like are not permitted on campus at any time. This policy also includes the possession or use of projectiles that may result in direct or indirect injury, such as B-B guns, paintball guns, pellet guns, slingshots of all types and the like.

If pepper spray/mace is used in an unintended manner, it is considered a weapon under the Student Code of Conduct.

Any weapons, if found on campus, may be confiscated and turned over to local law enforcement authorities and may not be returned to the owner.

Additionally, any items that may be mistaken for actual weapons, including toy guns, are also prohibited.

Weapons last reviewed: 9/10/2018

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NCAA Policy on Campus Sexual Violence

In compliance with the NCAA Board of Governor’s Campus Sexual Violence Policy, St. John Fisher requires all incoming, continuing and transfer student-athletes to complete an annual disclosure related to their conduct that resulted in discipline through a Title IX proceeding or in a criminal conviction for sexual, interpersonal or other acts of violence.

Transfer student-athletes must also disclose whether a Title IX proceeding was incomplete or pending at the time of transfer.

Failure to make a full and accurate disclosure could result in penalties, including loss of eligibility to participate in athletics as determined by the University.

The University will take reasonable steps to confirm whether an incoming, continuing, or transfer student-athlete has been disciplined through a Title IX Proceeding (including Informal Resolutions) or criminally convicted of sexual, interpersonal, or other acts of violence, St. John Fisher University solicits information from NCAA member institutions in which a student was formerly enrolled.

As per the NCAA expanded Policy, all NCAA member institutions must share relevant discipline information and incomplete Title IX proceedings as a result of transfer with other member institutions when a student-athlete attempts to enroll at a new college or university.