2024-2025 Catalog and Handbook 
    May 20, 2024  
2024-2025 Catalog and Handbook

Student Rights & Freedoms

As citizens, students of MECC will have the same freedom of speech, peaceful assembly and right of petition. As members of the academic community, they are also subject to the obligations granted to them by virtue of this membership.

All students attending Mountain Empire Community College are guaranteed certain rights as follows:

  • The right of free inquiry, expression, and assembly is guaranteed.
  • The right of students to be secure in their persons, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures.
  • No disciplinary sanctions may be imposed upon any student without notice to the accused of the nature and causes of the charges. Upon request the accused shall be granted due process according to established student conduct policies and procedures. The accused may seek the advice of a person(s) of his/her choosing.
  • Evaluation of student academic performance shall be neither prejudicial nor capricious. The student is entitled to an explanation of the basis for his/her grades. This is not to be construed as a means to negate either the establishment of standards by this institution or the student’s obligation to meet these standards.
  • Students are free to pursue their educational goals; appropriate opportunities for learning in the classroom and on the campus shall be provided by this institution.
  • Students have the same rights of privacy as any other citizen and surrender none of those rights by becoming members of this academic community. The institution is neither arbiter nor enforcer of student morals. No inquiry into the activities of students away from campus, where behavior is subject to regulation and control by public authorities is permitted.
  • Students are free to support causes by orderly means which do not disrupt the operation of the institution and which comply with the regulations of student conduct. Public expressions and demonstrations of student groups, however, represent the view (s) of the particular group and not necessarily the views of the College.
  • Student and campus groups and organizations will be allowed to invite and hear any person (s) of their choosing. Invited speakers shall be subject to all established requirements for the use of College facilities. Neither speakers nor topics of discussion are necessarily endorsed by the College or the sponsoring group.
  • Students have the right to peaceful protest. Orderly picketing and other forms of peaceful protest are permitted on the College campus within limitations set by the institution. The institution retains the right to assure the safety of individuals, protection of their property, and the continuity of the educational process. Interference with access to and from institutional facilities, interruption of classes or any College function, or damage to College property exceeds permissible limits.
  • Every student has the right to be interviewed on campus by any legal organization desiring to recruit at the institution. Any MECC student, group or organization may peacefully protest against any outside organization provided the protest does not interfere with any individual student’s right to be interviewed.

Classroom Expression

The instructor should encourage free discussion, inquiry, and expression both in and out of the classroom. In the classroom, students are responsible for maintaining an orderly exchange of ideas on class subject matter.

Student performance will be evaluated solely on an academic basis and not on opinions or conduct in matters unrelated to academic standards. Students will be free to take reasoned exception to the data and views offered in any course of study and to reserve judgment about matters of opinion. Students are responsible, however, for learning the content of any course of study in which they are enrolled. Requirements for classroom participation and submission of written excuses are not inconsistent with this section. Instructors shall keep all personal information about students, i.e. views, beliefs and political associations, confidential and shall not disclose such information to others unless legally required to do so.

Student Protections

Students who violate the law may incur penalties prescribed by civil authorities but institutional authority will never be used to duplicate the function of general laws. Only where the College’s interests as an academic institution are distinct and clearly involved will the authority of the institution be asserted. Institutional action shall be independent of community pressure.