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March 05, 2001 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2001-03-05

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.


OP/ED

5A- The Michigan Daily - Monday, March 5, 2001

V EDITORIAL ANALYSIS

Last month, University President Lee Bollinger approved
numerous changes to the Code of Student Conduct -
the set of policies that governs ude.t discipine on and
off campus. Although the document ha een rem e
Statement of Student Rig ReSpoilts the new tite
masks the oppressive nate of these po iS. Everyone ist
be aware of these secretive ry eedins s-we, the tud...of
the University, can ffecte fgi abosh .se

IN HIS OWN
WORDS:s
How UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT
LEE BOLLINGER RATIONALIZES
HIS CODE REVISION DECISIONS
"There is nothing unfair about using hearsay,
evidence in the arbitration process."
It ought to be self-evident that the use of unsubstantiated gossip and rumor in the
arbitration process is extremely unfair and would not stand up if Code policies had
to follow legal standards. Hearsay evidence can be embellished, false or miscon-
strued; making arbitration decisions with it can lead to skewed and harsh discipli-
nary actions.
"Beyond a reasonable doubt is a standard
exclusively reserved for criminal court
proceedings, and has no place in the
educational process"
During arbitration training, Office of Student Conflict Resolution officials tell reso-
lution officers and student panelists that decisions need to be "clear and convinc-
ing," which equates to 50 percent sure. Given that arbitration decisions can result in
punishments that include expulsion from the University - a decision that can affect
a student for the rest of his or her life - Code proceedings must be held to a higher
"beyond a reasonable doubt" standard. Apparently, Bollinger disagrees with this
accepted legal standard.
"Allowing advocates significantly reduces
the educational mission (of the Code)..."
Under a discipline policy that has the ability to expel students, those accused under
the Code must have access to experienced legal counsel during the process who can
speak on their behalf. Sacrificing a somewhat fair arbitration for the preservation of
the "educational mission" of the Code is, franikly, extremely stupid. Would having a
lawyer speak on behalf the accused during arbitration ruin the "educational" benefits
of the discipline policy? In a letter to the editor ("Daily mislead readers about Code,"
1/29/01), OSCR Director Keith Elkin wrote that "students are permitted to consult
with an attorney at any point during the conflict resolution process, including the dis-
ciplinary hearing." What Elkins failed to mention was that legal counsel are not per-
mitted to speak to the arbitration board or make vocal arguments during a hearing.
"(Punishing students for falsely reporting
violations of the Code) may have the effect
of discouraging students from filing
complaints ..."

UNCOVERED:
THE PEOPLE BEHIND
CODE ARBITRATION
PROCEEDINGS
Through a Freedom of
Information Act request, The
Michigan Daily has obtained a
list of students, faculty and
staff members involved in Code
arbitration proceedings. The
once-secret list details those
who have or will soon complete
arbitration training. Besides the
Office of Student Conflict Reso-
lution staff, the University affili-
ation of the Resolution officers
and Appeals Board members
listed below was obtained from
University directory listings and
Daily research.
Office of Student Conflict
Resolution staff
Keith Elkin
DIRECTOR
Mary Gibbons
ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT
Gwyn Hulswit
INTAKE AND INVESTIGATION COORDINATOR
Brian Jones
HOUSING LIAISON
Brianna Williams
SYSTEMS ANALYST
Resolution officers
Elizabeth Allen
ASSOC. PROFESSOR, NURSING
Kathleen Atkins
MEDICAL ADMINISTRATION STAFF ASSISTANT
David Baum
ASST. DEAN OF STUDENTS, LAW SCHOOL
Alex Bielajew
PROFESSOR, NUCLEAR ENGINEERING AND
RADIOLOGICAL SCIENCES
Tom Braun
ASSISTANT RESEARCH SCIENTIST,
DEPT. OF BIOSTATISTICS
Susan Doyle
LSA OFFICE OF STUDENT ACADEMIC AFFAIRS
Frederic Eckhauser
PROFESSOR, SURGERY DEPARTMENT
Andrew Flint
PROFESSOR, PATHOLOGY DEPARTMENT
Gordon Flynn
PROFESSOR, COLLEGE OF PHARMACY
Pam Fowler
DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF FINANCIAL AID
Ron Gibala
PROFESSOR, MATERIALS SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING
Linda Gillum
ASSISTANT PROVOST FOR ACADEMIC AFFAIRS
Tom Lehker
ASST. DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF CAREER, PLANNING
AND PLACEMENT
Henry Meares
ASSISTANT DEAN, SCHOOL OF EDUCATION
Mark Nelson*
Cathy Jenkins Newton
SCHOOL OF NURSING STUDENT SERVICES
Michelle O'Grady
LECTURER, SCHOOL OF NURSING
Evonne Plantinga
COORDINATOR OF ACADEMIC PROGRAMS,
SCHOOL OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION
Alicia Price
OFFICE OF MULTIETHNIC STUDENT AFFAIRS
Yehoash Raphael
ASSOC. PROFESSOR, OTORHINOLARYNGOLOGY
Satwant Samra
PROFESSOR, ANESTHESIOLOGY DEPARTMENT
Susan TePaske-King
LSA OFFICE OF STUDENT ACADEMIC AFFAIRS
Kalindi Trietley
MEDICAL SCHOOL STAFF COUNSELOR
Albert Wat
OFFICE OF FINANCIAL AID
Wendy Woods
ACADEMIC STANDARDS BOARD MEMBER
Jun Zhang*
Appeals Board members
Claudia Cotca
STUDENT, PUBLIC HEALTH, DENTISTRY
Glenda Haskell
ASSISTANT TO THE RACKHAM SCHOOL DEAN
Marita Inglehart
ASSOC. RROFESSOR, PERIODONTICS/ PREVENTION
AND GERIATICS, ADJUNCT ASSOC. PROFESSOR OF

PSYCHOLOGY, FORMER DIRECTOR OF THE 21STr
CENTURY PROGRAM
Ross Kirschner
STUDENT, LSA SENIOR
FORMER MICHIGAN STUDENT ASSEMBLY REP.
Susan Pritzel
ASST. PROFESSOR, PERIODONTICS/ PREVENTION
AND GERIATICS, DENTAL HYGIENE
Ted Spencer
DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF UNDERGRADUATE ADMISSIONS
Student panelists
Fatina Abdrabboh
Grace Ahn
Magda Bogusz
Theresa Braunscheinder
Dana Brody
Jacqueline Brown
Jeffrey Buchanan
Liza Cadnapaphonrchai
Shannon Carey *
Todd Carmody
Maren Christiansen
Laura Citrin
James Driscoll
Matthew Engelberg
Alison Freeman
Onur Gura
Chris Haizman
Ahmed Hamid
Stephen Heinz
Jennifer Karlin
Sarah Lee
John Lenzen
Kelsey Libner
Maria Lijoi

With no disincentive for complainants to file false reports, the Code arbitration
process can easily be used by spiteful parties against students they might have a
personal conflict with. This, combined with such a low standard of evidence
(see above) for the determination of a student's guilt, makes the Code an ideal
revenge mechanism. It was nothing short of irresponsible for Bollinger to not
support a proposal that would have sanctioned those who make false reports.
"The outcome of a civil or criminal matter
should not be determinative of whether a
complainant can pursue a matter under the
Code."
Obviously Bollinger, who used to be the Dean of the University's Law school,
does not have as much faith in the American legal system as he purports to
have. Otherwise, he would have adopted an amendment to the Code that would
have prohibited a student for being prosecuted for alleged actions he or she had
already been acquitted of in a criminal or civil court. Instead, the University
continues to operate its own legal system under the specious claim that its aim

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