The Student Conduct & Community Standards Office's purpose is to help all members of the college community achieve successful academic and social outcomes. This is carried out by:

  • providing information about student conduct expectations, rights, and responsibilities;
  • working with community members to address low-level concerns to prevent them from becoming emergencies;
  • investigating allegations of misconduct in a prompt, thorough, and fair manner;
  • receiving and routing formal student complaints and grievances;
  • working with students to undo harms that they have caused.

See detailed information about these topics below. Student Conduct & Community Standards Director  Scott Jaeschke is also glad to speak with you by phone or email: scjaeschke@gtcc.edu, or 336-334-4822, ext. 50572.

To submit a conduct report or appeal, here is a quick link to our portal:

Community Standards Reporting Portal

Student Rights

Free Speech

The First and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution acknowledge your individual right to free speech and free expression when dealing with the government. Because GTCC is a public college, i.e. the government, we have to honor your free speech rights. All of the college’s policies and procedures are designed to do this. In order to understand how, you’ll need to know about the limits that the courts have defined on protected speech.

The courts have determined that three types of speech are not constitutionally protected:

  • obscenity
  • defamation
  • incitement to violence

As a general rule, words that would get censored on the radio or TV are obscenity. Seeking to harm a person’s reputation or livelihood with untrue information is defamation. And engaging in speech that causes others to be physically harmed (whether intentional or not) is incitement. You never have an automatic right to engage in these types of speech.

The courts have gone on, though, to say that even these types of generally unprotected speech may be protected when they have artistic merit or political relevance. The courts have also affirmed that colleges can restrict the time, place, and manner of protected student speech in order to achieve specific educational outcomes.

  • In a classroom setting, you will not have the right to disrupt instruction with your speech or expression.
  • In areas of the campus such as hallways and lobbies you will not have the right to hinder students from getting to or from class with your speech or expression.
  • In public areas outside (to include each campus’s designated free speech zones) you will have the greatest access to your speech rights provided that factors such as sound amplification volume are not interfering with instruction in nearby buildings.

If you have questions about your speech rights, or if you wish to stage a protest or demonstration, please contact us for a live consultation.

Due Process

The Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution gives you the right to procedural due process when something goes wrong in your business with the government. If college officials believe that you should be placed on some type of suspension (academic, Financial Aid, general, etc.) or otherwise penalized in some way then we have to follow a process that includes the following steps: 

  • notifying you of the concern in writing;
  • giving you a chance to respond to the concern officially;
  • notifying you of our decision in writing;
  • and giving you access to a defined appeal pathway.

All of the college’s policies are designed to comply with these due process requirements. If you have questions about your appeal rights please contact us for a live consultation or referral.

Privacy

Privacy is generally understood to be an implied constitutional right: the word "privacy" doesn’t appear in the Constitution, but citizens and residents of the republic must have at least a basic right to privacy in order to enjoy all of the rights that are spelled out.

It’s often hard to say exactly how much privacy you have in a situation. What we can say here at GTCC is that you should not have an expectation of privacy regarding college property (e.g. program lockers) or college information networks.

You do have a general expectation of privacy regarding your private property: your backpack or bag, your cell phone, etc. If a college employee can show good cause for why your private property should be searched, such a search will only be conducted by qualified law enforcement personnel. If a college employee can show good cause for why your private property should be confiscated, this will only be facilitated by qualified law enforcement personnel.

College employees do not seek to entrap students but are empowered to act based upon information they glean from plain sight searches.

More Information

For more information about your civil rights, consider the following external resources: 

  • The American Civil Liberties Union maintains a Student Speech and Privacy web page. Please note, many of their citations refer to high school cases. At the college level, you likely have even more protections on your speech/expression than they suggest.
  • The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (the FIRE) publishes a set of guides pertaining to student rights on college campuses. The opinions expressed in the guides do not always line up exactly with our state and institutional interpretations, but they serve as a good starting point for discussions.

Academic Conduct

Video: Introduction to Academic Integrity at GTCC

The college's Academic Integrity Policy describes the behaviors that the college considers to be academic misconduct. Students must refrain from engaging in these behaviors or else face the possibility of sanctions from their instructors up to assignment or course failure.

Recognizing that plagiarism can be one of the hardest forms of academic misconduct for students to recognize and avoid, the college's Center for Academic Engagement has developed an online plagiarism course.

To report academic misconduct or to appeal an academic misconduct finding, please visit our Community Standards Reporting Portal.

General Conduct

Listed in the Student Handbook each year, the college's Student Code of Conduct describes the behaviors that the college considers to be inappropriate for students to engage in on campus, at campus-sponsored events, and while representing the college in the community. Students must refrain from engaging in these behaviors or else face the possibility of sanctions from this office up to suspension or expulsion from the college.

To report general student misconduct, please visit our Community Standards Reporting Portal.

Frequently Asked Questions about Student Conduct at GTCC

Don’t panic. You will have a chance to tell the investigator your story in a private interview. As part of this interview you will be able to share evidence in your defense and to name witnesses to be interviewed who will support your claims.

If the investigator still finds you responsible for a violation that you believe you did not commit, you will have the right to appeal that decision to a hearing committee and then ultimately to the vice president for Student Services.

The college only reports student conduct matters on a transcript when they lead to suspension or expulsion based on high-level violence or extreme illegal acts. Students who wish to transfer will often need to have a conduct certification form completed as part of the transfer process.

Just having a conduct record will not automatically prevent you from successfully transferring. Other factors such as whether you are currently in good standing and whether you are eligible to re-enroll with us are often the things that transfer institutions care about most.

You can appeal the investigator's decision to a hearing committee made up of students, faculty members, and staff. If you disagree with the committee’s decision, you can continue your appeal to the vice president for Student Services.

No. When you signed your enrollment agreement, participating in the student conduct process if required was one of the things you were signing your agreement to do.

No. The student conduct process is an internal administrative procedure and not a legal one. A lawyer will have no special standing and will not be able to answer questions on your behalf.

Please feel free to report any matter – regardless of how trivial it may seem – to the Community Standards Office. We have discretion to respond in a variety of ways; not every report leads to a formal conduct investigation. If reporting something to us will help you to have peace of mind, then please do so.

The biggest mistake that students make is thinking they have to stand up for themselves in the moment no matter what and, therefore, refusing to comply with instructions from a college official.

It can feel very frustrating, but if you are directed to do something you disagree with by a college official, it is best to either comply temporarily or to exit the situation and then come see us to make a verbal complaint.

We can talk through the situation with you to help you determine whether you wish to file a formal written complaint. It may also end up that we help you to understand that you were not being mistreated or disrespected.

Not unless you ask us to notify them or you are a minor and the situation is of a high-level nature that requires parental notification (e.g. assault).

It is as confidential as we can make it. We don’t discuss conduct investigations with employees or students unless they have a clear "need to know" reason under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Whenever possible, we withhold the identities of witnesses and reporting parties during an investigation. That being said, if you are the only person who witnessed something and it gets reported to us, then the student you report will probably be able to figure out what happened.

In all investigations we are clear with student participants that retaliation for reporting or for participating in the process is punishable by severe sanctions such as suspension. If you have additional questions about this, please reach out to us for a consultation.

A Note on Civil Disobedience

Sometimes students come to a conduct investigation interview having prepared a civil disobedience argument (see Thoreau: Civil Disobedience [1849]). They violated a college policy either because they found it to be unjust (and, therefore, felt a moral imperative to ignore it) or because they did not feel bound by a policy when their consent to it had not been sought.

We don’t want to wholly discredit these arguments – they are after all the arguments that abolitionists used to defy slavery in this country. Please know, though, that neither of these arguments will ever work for you at GTCC. Our policies have been vetted by the state system office and by our accreditors to be just; and you gave us your consent to abide by our policies when you signed your enrollment agreement.

Title IX

The college's Title IX page provides full details about how the college seeks to prevent and respond to sex-based misconduct. To report a Title IX matter, including your pregnancy, please visit our Community Standards Reporting Portal

Statement of Civility

As GTCC Titans, we believe that all members of our community – students, staff, faculty and administrators – have a duty to conduct themselves with civility toward one another at all times. We value the special talents and contributions of each member of our community. We further affirm the worth and dignity of each member and the shared responsibility of all to treat each other as individuals, with respect and courtesy. This statement, therefore, shares our mutual expectations for how to engage in the work of leaving our community stronger than when we entered it.

  • We believe that our right to speak freely comes with a responsibility to speak thoughtfully and respectfully. We reject escalation, argument for its own sake, and combativeness as being beneath the standards of a Titan.
  • We recognize the worth and dignity of everyone in the learning community. We have all earned our place here and we will gladly treat one another in ways that honor this effort.
  • We understand that disagreements will occur and that they do not have to become arguments; as Titans we will trust each other enough to practice honesty and good will in resolving our differences fairly. When we feel that our concerns are not being heard we will consult the college’s policies and procedures to find and use the appropriate communication channels.
  • We support each other socially and academically as members of a specifically defined community. When members’ needs exceed those boundaries, we will involve the appropriate Colleges services to provide support rather than taking on these burdens ourselves.

Complaints and Appeals

You have the right to file formal complaints and appeals with the college. The Student Policies & Information page provides links to the student complaint policy and to our two primary complaint forms: for grade-related complaints and for non-grade related complaints.

If you believe that you have a complaint pertaining to discrimination based on protected class, please feel free to contact us for a consultation.

The college provides a process for you to appeal Financial Aid suspension due to (less than) satisfactory academic progress (SAP).

Drug and Alcohol Abuse and Prevention

In recognition of the threat that alcohol and drug abuse pose to student success and to the institution’s goals, GTCC has a Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention Program (DAAPP or "the Program") to promote the safety, health, and well-being of all campus constituents. The Program is a collection of events, reports, and resources that address the various dangers and consequences of drug and alcohol use. Below are details about each of these measures meant to provide one-stop access for anyone who has a substance-related concern.

Campus Events

All of GTCC’s student events are drug and alcohol-free. The College includes annual events in its programming calendar which provide social opportunities with guaranteed substance avoidance.

Students seeking peer-to-peer support for managing an addiction can get involved with Titan Recovery. Per its description,

"We are the GTCC chapter of Collegiate Recovery. Our purpose is in accordance with the Collegiate Recovery Mission Statement: Change the trajectory of recovering students' lives by connecting, developing, and sustaining collegiate recovery through collaboration, guidance, and expertise. Titan Recovery provides a place for students living in recovery or who have been affected by substance abuse, thus fulfilling GTCC’s mission statement to provide for our diverse community. Our Chapter works closely with the Counseling Center to bring awareness to the students about services provided on campus and to spread awareness about substance abuse with our fellow students as well as in the communities GTCC serves. In addition, we enrich our community by assisting the less fortunate, the elderly, and the homeless. Through our efforts, Titan Recovery provides students a way to overcome the social stigma regarding living a life of recovery."

Biennial Reports

The College is required to prepare a report every two years that details the ways in which we have expanded the Program and that assesses it for effectiveness. Please review the 2020 biennial report here (PDF).

Additional Resources

The College's Student Code of Conduct (PDF) specifies that possession or use of drugs and alcohol on-campus or at school-sponsored activities is prohibited. Students who fail to abide by the Student Code of Conduct can be investigated by the Community Standards Office and may face sanctions when found to be responsible for a violation. The Student Code of Conduct can be accessed in the College's Management Manual as policy IV-3.1.1 and it can be found in the Student Handbook, linked above in the "Key Policy Documents, Forms and Information" section of this page.

Resource links and information sources about substance use/abuse and addiction include:

In Greensboro:

In High Point:

Other Locations:

  • Daymark
    205 Balfour Drive
    Archdale, North Carolina 27263
    336-431-0700

Additional questions and concerns can be directed to the campus's Student Services Office: