Any individual who was not a witness to the behavior in question can serve as an advisor. The advisor may be an attorney retained by the student at their personal expense. The advisor's role is to provide private advice and counsel to the student during the hearing, but the advisor will not be allowed to address the Hearing Board, the Judicial Officer, or otherwise participate in the hearing.
The best thing an advisor can do is to become very familiar with the Student Code of Conduct, as it defines the hearing process, behavioral standards, and possible sanctions. Advisors may also contact Student Conduct & Community Standards with questions related to the process or their role within it.
The Family Educational Right to Privacy Act (FERPA) does not allow the university to share student information without first having a signed release from the student. Once the signed release is in place, Student Conduct & Community Standards can share information about the case directly with the advisor.
A conduct hearing is very different from what happens in a court of law. The conduct process is educational and corrective in nature and exists to determine whether or not a student or student organization violated a university regulation. The burden of proof utilized in conduct hearings is a preponderance of the evidence, also described as the "more likely than not" standard.
Anyone creating a disruption to the hearing process will be removed at the discretion of the chair of the hearing board. This includes an advisor who fails to act within the scope of the role.
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