Tentatively signaling a major shift in University policy, the Disciplinary Review Committee today approved a change to the Student Code of Conduct that raises the burden of proof standard from “more likely than not” to “clear and convincing.” The change, which must now be approved by Vice President for Student Affairs Todd Olson, would establish a more rigorous requirement to find a student guilty of a Code violation and issue necessary sanctions.
The DRC, comprised of students and administrators, is the primary body tasked with considering possible changes or amendments to the Student Code of Conduct. The current Code states that a student can be found guilty of a violation as long as it is “more likely than not” that he or she committed the offense. The amendment would require evidence of wrongdoing beyond merely the likelihood that a crime was committed.
Former GUSA President and Vice President Mike Meaney (SFS ’12) and Greg Laverriere (COL ’12) spent their executive term fighting to pass the more rigorous “clear and convincing” clause. The two created a Student Advocacy Office as a resource for students facing disciplinary charges. ”Our loftiest goal was to raise the burden of proof, something Georgetown as a student body has been trying to do for years,” former SAO coordinator James Pickens (COL ’12) said. ”We’re hoping that [Dr. Olson] will consider the recommendations favorably.”
The current GUSA Executive, which has supported the efforts of their predecessors, hopes to see the proposal implemented in the fall. “This is a great first step in improving the adjudication process at Georgetown, and we encourage Dr. Olson to follow through on the desire of the duly appointed committee. This is the right thing for students,” GUSA Vice President Vail Kohnert-Yount (SFS’ 13) said.
“Hopefully in the fall we can have it implemented,” GUSA President Clara Gustafson (SFS ’13) said.
Last night students were proposing an alternative Georgetown Day site to continue the celebrations without movement restrictions. Letters were sent to President John DeGioia from students asking him to “please take down the barricades, put a stop to the plan to kettle us, and restore our freedom of movement on Friday.”
“We applaud the planning committee of Georgetown Day 2012 for their work to listen to the concerns expressed by students. We appreciate that the planning committee found a way to incorporate the students’ concerns into the efforts they have made to ensure a safe and fun day,” University spokeswoman Stacy Kerr said.
The Planning Committee’s email called it a “Copley Compromise”:
Wednesday night at 10pm, “Saxa Silence Dogood” and “Cura P. Workinggroup”—ostensibly Georgetown students—created an event called “Georgetown Day Study Group on Leavey Esplanade.” Within the span of three hours, 1,000 had clicked “attending.”
Although the maximum capacity of the Leavey Esplanade remains unclear, it was probably not calculated to include a sixth of the student body—plus kegs and kiddie pools. Or kiddie pools filled with beer. But where there’s a will, there’s a way. If nothing else, Georgetown Day roamers have the will to study.
In any case, given the administration’s resolve to kill all the fun hamper the Georgetown Day festivities, a thousand students and counting are in the market for an alternative to the nostalgic fun-fest fostered by inflatables on the lawn.
Submitted for your enjoyment, dear readers, are some highlights from the “Study Group” wall:
The event creators refer to themselves as “The Committee.”
After recent emails and articles telling us what’s important about Georgetown Day, Vox decided we want to know what our readers think makes Georgetown Day so neat. It’s time to find out what the people really like. So, neighbors, administrators, professors, people who work at Kitchen No. 1, inflatable moon bounce peddlers, and even students, what does Georgetown Day mean to you?
Friday is not Georgetown Day. On Friday, there will be free food and drinks, an awards ceremony, and performances by various student groups, but it will not be Georgetown Day.
In an email to the student body that would make Orwell proud, the “Georgetown Day Planning Committee” announced that Copley Lawn will be barricaded on Friday. No liquids will be allowed to pass through the metal barriers, which will be monitored by the fun police hired security guards, DPS officers, University administrators, and student volunteers. Presumably the barricades are to keep fun in, not out.
While Coca-Cola is a sponsor of the event, that doesn’t mean you’re allowed to bring their products onto Copley Lawn. Woe betide anyone who attempts to drink a carbonated beverage on Copley Lawn Friday afternoon. The Committee also gleefully warned that anyone who attempts to climb over a metal barricade to access Copley Lawn will receive a citation from the fun police.
While the “all-student planning committee” sent the email, this group has existed for less than a month, and the email itself was sent from The Division of Student Affairs’ email address. It was the head of Student Affairs, Jeanne Lord, who expressed concern in March about the transformation of “a celebration of the campus community” into “a celebration by…the student community.” Students can celebrate the end of the school year, but only in University-approved ways. Even if the University has approved of the standard Georgetown Day celebrations for several years, they’re not going to fly this year.
Our ultimate aim is to celebrate Georgetown – its ideals, values, institutions, its teachers, staff and students.
Until this year, Georgetown Day did celebrate Georgetown. At the end of a long year, community members came together to have fun and celebrate their accomplishments over the previous two semesters. When GAAP weekends have coincided with Georgetown Day, potential students were attracted, not put off, by the carnival-like atmosphere.
As the generation who grew up with Woody, pretended to be Buzz Lightyear blasting off into space, and cracked up at Mr. Potato Head’s snarkiness, we can’t turn down one last Toy Story adventure. (Accompanied by appropriate movie theater munchies, of course.)
So, there’s apparently there’s a show called Glee that’s tapped into the nation’s love of a capella. To celebrate the show’s season premiere, GPB is hosting a watch party in the Village C Alumni Lounge on Tuesday, beginning at 7:30 p.m. As if the Alumni Lounge’s five big screen TVs isn’t enough to tempt you, GPB promises snacks, a costume contest, singing competition, and trivia.
Come Home to Bagels
Homecoming is this weekend and while there’ll be plenty of entertainment—Mr. Georgetown, anyone?—you may not want to spend money after splurging on a Homecoming ticket. So, why not ease your wallet with a free bagel brunch hosted by the Program for Jewish Civilization? Check it out next Sunday from 10 a.m. until noon in the ICC Galleria.
Actually being in the SFS or Jewish: not necessary. A love of carbohydrates: required.