Student Conduct Policies



Students are expected to use alcohol in a safe responsible manner consistent with federal law and the laws of Pennsylvania. Possession, use, sale, manufacturing, or distribution of alcoholic beverages except as permitted by law and expressly permitted by College policy, is prohibited. Alcoholic beverages may not, in any circumstances be used by, possessed by or distributed or sold to any person under twenty-one (21) years of age.

Students who are 21 or older are permitted to possess or consume alcohol at registered student events held in accordance with the College’s Social Event Policy or in College residences including residence halls, apartments, College houses, and fraternity/sorority houses.

In support of responsible use of alcohol, students are not permitted to serve alcohol from common sources including kegs and punch bowls/containers. Drinking games and any activity contributing to abuse of alcohol are also prohibited.

Please see Sanctioning Guidelines for additional information on sanctions. For information about the College’s alcohol and drug prevention and intervention programs please see the following (LINK).

Animals on Campus

Dogs and other animals are permitted on campus roads, walks, and grounds, as they are in the local community, when they are on a leash and controlled by the owner. The owner is responsible to clean up after the animal, and pets must be licensed and vaccinated in accordance with Pennsylvania state law.

Students are permitted to have service animals or emotional support animals on campus, as approved by the College through its procedures for accommodations. Fish maintained in a bowl or tank that does not exceed 20 gallons are permitted in campus residence halls. If an unauthorized animal is discovered in a student's residential space, the student will be required to remove the animal in a timely manner. Failure to remove the animal from the residence in a timely manner may result in additional consequences and/or removal by animal control services. Harming an animal or failing to provide appropriate care is a violation of this policy.

Disrespect of Property

Students must respect the property of others. Attempted or actual theft and/or damage to property of the College or property of a member of the College community or other personal or public property, on or off campus, is prohibited.  This also includes riding or operating bikes, skateboards, and scooters inside of College buildings. 

Disruptive Conduct

Students are expected to be respectful in their actions and behaviors and not infringe on the rights of other members of the community. Conduct which is disorderly, disruptive, or interferes with the operations of the College, including but not limited to, creating excessive noise, disrupting active or passive programs or activities, obstructing pedestrian or vehicular traffic at a College-sponsored function, demonstrating disorderly or inappropriate conduct in the classroom, lab, or other buildings and premises of the College, is prohibited.


Possession, use, transmission, cultivation, sale, manufacturing, or distribution of marijuana, heroin, narcotics, illicit drugs, or other controlled substances is prohibited. Conspiring or facilitating in the sale of drugs, distribution, and/or manufacturing is also a violation of the Drug Policy. Possession of drug paraphernalia is also prohibited.

Students are prohibited from the use of medical marijuana on campus and at College-sponsored activities. In addition, students must utilize prescription and over-the-counter medication according to the prescribed instructions. Use, possession, distribution, manufacture or dispensing of prescription drugs without a prescription is prohibited.

Failure to Comply

Students are expected to comply with the directives of College staff, including student staff, in performance of their duties. Failure to comply includes:

  • Failure to comply with expectations of the College or the directions of College officials or law enforcement.
  • Failure to comply with directives of Campus Safety officers or other College employees acting in performance of their duties, including student staff.
  • Failure to identify oneself when requested to do so by such officials or officers.
  • Providing or possessing false identification or information to these persons when requested to do so.
  • Failure to comply with College mitigation efforts related to exposure to a contagious disease, e.g. COVID-19.
  • Unauthorized possession, duplication or use of keys to any College premises or unauthorized entry or use of College premises including accessing roofs.


Students are responsible for their guests and must ensure that their guests comply with the Community Standards. Failure to assure the proper conduct of a guest is considered a violation of this policy and student hosts may be subject to conduct action.


Students are expected to demonstrate respect to other individuals of the community as they pursue their academic goals and live on the campus. Harassment is a violation of policy and will not be tolerated. Harassment includes any written, verbal or physical acts (including electronically transmitted acts) that is sufficiently severe, pervasive and persistent and is reasonably perceived as creating a hostile learning, living, or work environment; causes bodily harm; or unreasonably interferes with the learning or living environment particularly if the behavior is repeated and/or if it continues after a person is informed of the objectionable nature of the behavior. Harassment can be a single incident, or a series of repeated incidents. Bullying is a form of harassment that consists of unwanted, aggressive verbal, social or physical behavior by a person or group that involves an observed or perceived power imbalance. Cyberbullying is a form of bullying and includes the use of an electronic medium to harass through the use of embarrassing images or content or the use of hostile, degrading, or fictitious information or content. 

Harassment that falls within the Title IX Policy or the Sexual Misconduct Policy will be addressed through the applicable policy. 

Harm to Persons

Students are required to engage in responsible social conduct that reflects the College community’s goals and expectations of students to contribute positively to the campus and greater community. Violence, in all forms, is a significant violation of the mission and goals of Gettysburg College. Violations of this policy include, but are not limited to:

  • Physical assault, physical abuse, fighting, threats of or attempted violence or harm. All parties engaged in a fight may be in violation of this policy irrespective of who initiated a fight. Individuals engaged in a physical assault can expect the College to take interim action which could include interim separation during the course of an investigation. Students found responsible for Physical Assault should expect to be suspended from the College, minimally, for a period of one semester.
  • Intimidation or coercion to harm a person.
  • Conduct which threatens or has the potential to endanger the health or safety, or wellbeing of any person including oneself.
  • Conduct reasonably perceived as causing severe emotional distress or fear of severe bodily injury or death.
  • Knowingly or recklessly exposing others to a contagious disease, e.g. COVID-19.

Information Technology Policies

Misuse of computers, network, login credentials/password, and computing facilities or using computing facilities and College resources to send or intentionally receive obscene, harassing content, or other content violating law or College policy is prohibited. Please see the Computer Network Use Policy for additional information on IT and computing policies.

Integrity of the Student Conduct System

Students should engage with the student conduct process in an honest and forthcoming way to resolve concerns around alleged behavior that is inconsistent with the expectations of the College. The following are examples of violations of the integrity of the student conduct system:

  • Failure to appear for a conference or administrative hearing.
  • Falsification, distortion, or misrepresentation of information in the investigation or before an administrator in the resolution process.
  • Disruption or interference with the resolution process.
  • Initiating an investigation or conduct proceeding in bad faith.
  • Attempting to discourage an individual’s participation in the student conduct process.
  • Attempting to influence the impartiality of or harassing/intimidating an administrator during the investigation or conduct process.
  • Influencing or attempting to influence another person to commit an abuse of the student conduct code system.

Life and Fire Safety

Life and fire safety equipment on campus promotes the protection and safety of all members of our community. Tampering with life and safety equipment such as fire extinguishers, covering or disabling smoke detectors, pull stations, and sprinklers is prohibited. Failure to evacuate a building during a fire alarm or drill is also a violation of this policy.


Acts or attempted acts to retaliate or seek retribution against anyone who has reported an alleged violation of policy or who has participated (or is expected to participate) in any manner in an investigation or resolution proceeding is a violation of policy. Prohibited retaliatory acts include, but are not limited to, intimidation, threats, coercion, or discrimination.

Unauthorized Fraternity or Sorority Membership

Students are not permitted to join a social fraternity or sorority if 1) the student is not eligible according to established College standards, or 2) if the organization is not recognized by the College. Unauthorized membership includes, but is not limited to, participation in recruitment, new member activities, pledging, joining, or maintaining membership in a Greek organization that is not recognized by the College. Organizations will also be charged when an individual is charged with unauthorized fraternity or sorority membership.

Unauthorized Recording

Students are expected to follow Pennsylvania law for capturing recordings of another person. It is a violation of Pennsylvania law to create an audio recording of another person without their consent if reasonable expectations of privacy exist. Gettysburg College prohibits all unauthorized recording in any context in which a person has a reasonable expectation of privacy. Normally, reasonable expectations of privacy exist in classrooms, meeting spaces, office spaces, residential facilities, recreational spaces, restrooms, and locker rooms. Unauthorized recording includes, but is not limited to, the use of an electronic or other device to create an audio recording, video recording, or photo to capture or stream a statement, picture, video, or digital image/information of any person while on College premises without the community member’s knowledge and/or effective consent.

Transmission or publication via the internet, social media, electronic communication, in printed or hard copy, or via any other media is included within this prohibition. Authorized recordings made when reasonable expectations of privacy exist may not be transmitted, as defined above, without express permission from the other party or parties who were recorded.

Classrooms have special considerations regarding recording. Faculty may authorize recordings by students for educational reasons, including academic accommodations approved by the Office of Student Success. Faculty members will be notified of such arrangements through the student’s IEAP. If recording has been approved, the professor is expected to notify the class that discussions are being recorded. Transmission of such recordings and sharing such recordings with any other person is prohibited. A student who is granted this accommodation must destroy the recordings once grades for the class have been finalized.

Amnesty from being charged with a violation of College policy may be provided to a community member or bystander who, in good faith, records another person or persons in an effort to protect the welfare of another individual and/or to prevent or document a crime or policy violation.

Please see the College’s Freedom of Expression policy for additional information about recording programs or events and please consult the Center for Student Success regarding recording in the classroom.

Violation of Other College Policies

Violation of any College policy, rule, or regulation published in hard copy or available electronically on the website. This includes, but is not limited to the following College policies:

  • Anti-Discrimination Policy
  • Anti-Hazing
  • Computer Network Use
  • Dining
  • Library
  • Parking
  • Residential Guidebook (including items prohibited in the residence halls)
  • Sexual Misconduct and Title IX
  • Social Event
  • Smoking

Title IX is defined and adjudicated as outlined in the College’s Title IX Policy. Sexual Misconduct is defined and adjudicated as outlined in the Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence Policy. Academic conduct is defined and adjudicated through the Gettysburg College Honor Code.

Violation of Law

Students are expected to follow federal, state and local laws, and violation of any federal, state or local law or ordinance constitutes a violation of the Community Standards.

Weapons or Explosives

Possession of firearms, firearm ammunition, magazines or other gun accessories, explosives, or dangerous chemicals on College premises, including carrying or storing them in a personal vehicle on College premises, or use of any such item, even if legally possessed, is prohibited.

Other weapons or devices that are capable of inflicting a wound, injuring or incapacitating a person or persons are also prohibited. This includes, but is not limited to, archery equipment, fireworks, BB guns, airsoft guns, pellet guns, paintball guns, slingshots, martial arts devices, switchblade/open-assist knives, knives with blades exceeding 3 inches in length, swords, and clubs.

Martial arts and fencing devices used in College recognized martial arts or fencing teams, clubs or organizations are permitted. The College provides storage for period appropriate Civil War era firearms for members of the Pennsylvania College Guard who are identified by the Director of Civil War Era Studies. The College will not store any type of ammunition, powder or caps. For the purposes of storage, a Civil War era firearm is described as follows: any original or reproduction smoothbore or rifled barreled rifle model year 1863 or older that is fired by way of flint and pan or percussion cap, or any model year 1863 or older rifle that holds and fires one brass encased bullet at a time. Other Civil War era weapons that must be stored include bayonets and sabers. Black powder and percussion caps are not permitted to be stored on campus.