Community Standards

Grounds for Disciplinary Action

Hofstra University developed its Code of Community Standards in an attempt to ensure the rights of individuals in the context of a community. The following is a list of actions that are prohibited under the University’s Code of Conduct. Any student who commits, aids, or attempts to commit any of the following acts on University property or during the course of a University activity is subject to disciplinary action under the Code of Conduct.

The following offenses are prohibited under the University’s Code of Conduct.

Aiding and Abetting

Helping, procuring or engaging another person to violate the Student Conduct Code; any other University policy; or any federal, state or local laws, rules or regulations.


See Policy on Alcohol, Illegal, and Other Controlled Substances


Causing or intending to cause physical injury to a person.

  • Simple Assault – Intentionally or recklessly causing physical injury to a person.
  • Aggravated Assault – Intentionally causing a serious physical injury to a person (e.g., loss of consciousness, broken bones, loss of teeth), or intentionally using a dangerous weapon with the intent to cause a serious physical injury to another person whether or not an injury results.
Bias Motivated Interaction or Contact

Behavior, whether physical or verbal, or in person or through the use of electronics or by any other means, that is motivated by bias based on actual or perceived race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression, age, national or ethnic origin, physical or mental disability, or marital or veteran status, that has the effect of intimidating, taunting, humiliating, or otherwise impeding on the rights of another individual. Where the behavior comes within the definition of Sexual Harassment or Other Unlawful Harassment, then the offenses shall be governed by the Student Policy Prohibiting Discriminatory Harassment, Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct.


Compelling or inducing another person to act in a certain manner through physical or psychological threats. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • threatening to cause physical injury to a person or damage to property; or
  • threatening to file a complaint leading to a conduct charge against a person without a proper basis; or
  • threatening to expose a secret or publish information that may subject the person to hatred, ridicule, contempt or embarrassment.
Conduct Unbecoming

Behavior unbecoming of a Hofstra student, including but not limited to behavior that violates the University's Mission Statement, the Core Values of the Division of Student Enrollment, Engagement, and Success, or that exhibits flagrant disrespect for persons, flouting of common standards of decency, or contempt for the generally accepted values of the intellectual community.

Damage or Vandalism

Intentionally or recklessly taking actions that: a. reduce the value of the property of the University or another individual; or b. result in defacing, damaging or destroying the property of the University or another individual.

Disruptive Conduct

Acting singularly or in concert with others, in a manner that obstructs, disturbs, interferes with, or impairs the normal operations, processes and functions of the University, including University classes, departments, facilities, events, representatives, and/or individuals or groups. Failing to follow University policies when planning protests, demonstrations, etc.


See Policy on Alcohol, Illegal, and Other Controlled Substances

Failure to Comply

Failing to comply with a directive or request from a University official or department. Failing to comply with a University or departmental policy.


Providing any false or misleading information with the intent to defraud, deceive or injure another or to circumvent University procedures/policies and/or the University conduct process. Altering or destroying accurate information on any University record or any record submitted to the University.

Fire and Emergency Safety

Acting in a manner that endangers, or may potentially endanger, the life or safety of others. Examples of fire safety violations include, but are not limited to:

  • Improper Evacuation – Failing to immediately evacuate any facility when a fire alarm has been sounded or hindering or impairing the orderly evacuation of any University facility; or
  • Noncompliance with Safety Personnel – Disobeying a directive given by any University or fire safety official in connection with a fire alarm or other safety matter; or
  • Jeopardizing Equipment – Tampering with, misusing or damaging fire or safety equipment (e.g., alarms, fire extinguishers/hoses, smoke detectors); or
  • Unintentional Fire – Causing a fire through the use of prohibited items as outlined in The Living Factor; or
  • False Report – Falsely reporting a fire, bomb threat or other safety hazard; or
  • Malicious Fire – Intentionally setting a fire; or
  • Laws/Policies/Guidelines – Violating New York State laws on fire safety as well as the University’s fire safety guidelines and all related policies as outlined in The Living Factor.

Participation in any unauthorized lotteries, raffles or other games of chance where some form of payment (monetary or otherwise) is exchanged for a chance to win a prize. These activities are not to be conducted by organizations or individuals, or in connection with University-sponsored events, except for appropriately authorized raffles held in accordance with the University’s raffle policy.

Guest Policy

Students are responsible for their own conduct as well as the conduct of their guest(s). In matters where a student's guest violates University policies, the University will hold the student host responsible for the guest's behavior and may, in appropriate circumstances, impose sanctions as if the student had committed the violation.


Any of the following constitute harassment:

  • Physically or emotionally threatening or taunting another person; bullying another person; whether these actions are taken in-person, electronically or by any other means.
  • Engaging in a course of conduct or repeatedly committing acts that alarm or seriously annoy such other person(s) and that serve no legitimate purpose.

See Policy on Hazing

ID Policy

Failure to abide by any regulations applicable to the Hofstra ID card, including, but not limited to:

  • failure to carry the Hofstra ID card at all times while on campus; or
  • failure to present the Hofstra ID card to University officials on request; or
  • unauthorized use, alteration or duplication of the Hofstra ID card.
Infringement of Rights

Violating or disregarding the rights of another member or guest of the University community. Examples of infringement of rights include, but are not limited to: a. with the freedom of movement, freedom of speech, the right to personal privacy or the ability to otherwise function within the University community; or b. causing unreasonable noise that disturbs or interferes with other community member(s) or violates the quiet/courtesy hours policy as outlined in The Living Factor; or c. using obscene and/or profane language or gestures or speaking in a way that is inconsistent with the Hofstra Code of Community Standards (see also the P.R.I.D.E. Values).

Lewd/Indecent Behavior

Intentionally exposing intimate parts of the body in a public place, or in private premises under circumstances in which the student may readily be observed. This includes, but is not limited to, urinating or defecating in places other than appropriately designated areas.

Physical Altercation/Fighting

Shoving, slapping, kicking or subjecting another person to abusive and unwanted physical contact. Initiating or provoking a physical altercation or fight with another person.

Reckless Endangerment

Engaging in conduct that creates a substantial risk of serious physical injury to another person or to oneself. Examples of reckless endangerment include, but are not limited to:

  • throwing or ejecting an object out of the window; or
  • operating a motor vehicle in a manner that causes or could potentially cause physical harm to an individual or property; or
  • any other conduct that jeopardizes the health or physical/emotional safety of an individual.
Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct

Offenses of relationship violence or sexual misconduct shall be governed by the Student Policy Prohibiting Discriminatory Harassment, Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct.

Safety and Security/Trespassing/Unauthorized Access

Taking any action that compromises the security of the University, its facilities or its community members. Examples of safety and security violations include, but are not limited to:

  • entering campus, facilities, areas or personal spaces without the proper authority/permission or during a time that entry is restricted (including rooftops, athletic fields, labs, etc.); or
  • improperly entering or exiting campus, facilities or personal spaces (including through windows, locked gates, fences, by avoiding turnstiles, etc.); or
  • propping doors of or within University facilities that are not intended to remain open; or
  • using roofs, fire escapes, ledges, balconies, etc., for any purpose other than for escape from fire or threat of fire.

Distributing or providing or inviting someone else to distribute or provide pamphlets, advertisements or other goods or services to members of the University community without the approval of an appropriate University official or in violation of University guidelines.


Taking and/or retaining property belonging to another individual without the explicit consent of the owner. Using services without paying for those services and/or without receiving proper consent for use of those services. Intentionally writing or cashing bad checks on campus.

Unauthorized Possession

Having, borrowing or using property without the knowledge and/or consent of the owner. Examples of unauthorized possession include, but are not limited to:

  • borrowing clothing, electronics, toiletries or other personal items without the owner’s permission; or
  • removing common area furniture, appliances or other items, and placing in private rooms/suites; or
  • taking University signs, equipment, and other items for personal use.
Unrecognized Groups

All groups that fail to gain recognition are unable to gain access to any University facilities and services in the name of the group. This extends to participation in intramural and recreational programs under the name of the unrecognized group or under a pseudonym where 50% of the individuals are members of an unrecognized group. In this case, the director of recreation and intramural sports shall disband the team and disqualify it from further competition.

Actions that will result in being charged as an unrecognized group include, but are not limited to:

  • wearing or displaying the insignia, name or crest of the unrecognized organization; or
  • affiliating the group with Hofstra University or using Hofstra’s name or brand without Hofstra’s written permission either in literature, on the internet, or with an outside source (i.e., restaurant, catering establishment, etc.); or
  • in-taking new members, initiating, receiving or recruiting new members into the unrecognized group; or
  • utilizing University services in the name of an individual or group for use by the unrecognized group.

Participating as a member of a group that has been denied official recognition by the University, suspended by the University, or that has never sought recognition from the University is a violation of University policy.

Examples of participation in an unrecognized group include, but are not limited to:

  • wearing or displaying the insignia, name, crest or other identifying symbol of the unrecognized group; or
  • reorganizing an unrecognized group under an alias; or
  • in-taking, initiating, receiving and/or recruiting new members into an unrecognized group; or
  • affiliating a group using Hofstra University’s name, brand or likeness thereof; or
  • utilizing Hofstra facilities or services for activities in support of an unrecognized group.
Violation of a Ban

Entering any area and/or building from which an individual has been banned or removed by the University. Hosting a banned individual on campus or at a University-sponsored event.

Violations of the Student Conduct Process

Violations of the Student Conduct Process constitute violations of the Code of Community Standards. Violations of the Student Conduct Process include but are not limited to:

  • Failure to comply with a directive from the Office of Community Standards or a designee from another office.
  • Falsification, distortion, or misrepresentation of information before a conduct officer or hearing board.
  • Disruption or interference with an informational meeting or conduct hearing.
  • Falsely accusing a student of a conduct code violation in a way that is intentionally dishonest or made maliciously or without regard for the truth.
  • Attempting to discourage and/or harass an individual who is attempting proper participation in, or use of, the Student Conduct Process.
  • Attempting to influence a conduct officer or member of a hearing board, complainant, respondent, or witness regarding a student conduct proceeding (includes but is not limited to harassment or intimidation) prior to and/or following the proceeding.
  • Influencing or attempting to influence another person to commit an abuse of the Student Conduct Process.
  • Failure to comply with the sanction(s) imposed under the Student Conduct Process.
Weapons, Ammunition, or Explosives

Possessing, using, storing, transporting or concealing any dangerous instrument, ammunition and/or explosives including, but not limited to:

  • fireworks
  • incendiary devices
  • chemicals that are explosive in nature
  • firearms and ammunition of any type (rifles, pistols, air guns, pellet guns, bb guns, etc.); or
  • knives, razors, cutting instruments; or
  • self-defense spray devices; or
  • martial arts materials (e.g. nunchucks); or
  • any other instrument that is adapted, designed or intended to cause harm, or that could reasonably intimidate or cause fear of injury or harm; or
  • any object that is visually indistinguishable from a weapon; or
  • any item that may be deemed a weapon under applicable law.

Dangerous instruments do not include objects that are authorized, designated, and used in accordance with departmental policies for operational, academic and/or recreational purposes (e.g., cutlery used to prepare food, props used in a dramatic production, fencing equipment used in athletics) unless used in a way that is intended to harm another person or property. The University at its sole discretion will grant or deny the authorization and use of such objects.