Skip to main content

Interim Actions

At times, the University may take action to ensure the safety and security of the Northwestern community and its members while resolution of a student conduct case is pending.

Upon receipt of a report, but prior to the resolution of an allegation of misconduct, the Office of Community Standards or designee(s) may take interim action (including protective measures and accommodations) to ensure the safety and security of the University community, University community members, or University property. Interim actions are all placed pending prompt hearing through UHAS. In such instances the University will typically attempt to speak with the Respondent and give them an initial opportunity to respond to the allegation of policy violation prior to issuing the interim actions.

These actions may be applied to the Reporter, the Respondent or the broader University community and include (but are not limited to):

Interim Action Review

In the event the University imposes an interim action, it will provide the Respondent with notice and an opportunity to challenge the interim action decision immediately following its issuance. The Respondent may also request a review as new material information comes to light and as the University reviews these matters on an ongoing basis. In cases involving an interim action for a student organization or group, the University will automatically reevaluate interim actions and issue an updated explanation within 25 business days of the initial interim action notification.

Please note reevaluation of interim actions will be based on both the original and any new information collected related to the safety and security implications for the University community. Should no new, or not enough new, material information be collected to provide enough clarity around safety and security implications for the University community at the time of a review, the original interim action will stand.

Should enough additional information be collected, the University will review both the original and new material information to determine if any interim actions should be changed.

Please note interim action determinations are not directly related to findings of responsibility and that an interim action may be lifted, amended, or upheld, and the Respondent may later still be found either responsible or not responsible for the policies of concern as determined by an investigation.

Interim Relocation or Removal from Campus Housing

The University may issue an interim relocation or removal from campus housing for reasons related to the safety and well­-being of the party(ies) involved, the residential community, or residence hall property. An interim relocation or removal from campus housing may be imposed by the Executive Director of Residential Services, or designee, and shall become effective immediately without prior notice. The Residential Services Executive Director and the Director of Operations and Services may take the same action for students who reside in fraternity/sorority­-affiliated on-campus housing.

Interim Suspension

An interim suspension of a student from the University for allegations of nonacademic misconduct (including alleged violations of the Office of Civil Rights and Title IZ Compliance Policies) may be imposed by the Dean of Students, or designee, in their discretion and shall become effective immediately. Allegations that may warrant an interim suspension include, but are not limited to:
  • Sale, distribution, use, or possession of illegal drugs
  • Possession of dangerous weapons
  • Sexual misconduct
  • Theft of or damage to property
  • Behavior that disrupts the educational process including, but not limited to, the disruption of teaching, research, administration, hearing procedures, or other University activities
  • Action or threat of action that endangers or threatens to endanger the health, safety, or wellbeing or any person (including oneself) or University property
  • Fraud
  • Violations of federal, state, local, or international law, such that the University could reasonably conclude that the student is not fit to be part of the University community

Any student who receives an interim suspension will be required to remove themselves immediately from the residence halls and/or fraternity or sorority residences, will not be permitted to attend class, and will be excluded from University property and University events unless the student’s presence on campus or at University events is explicitly authorized by the Dean of Students or designee issuing the interim action.

Any respondent who has received an interim suspension should expect a prompt and fair formal resolution to their alleged misconduct. The University will balance the need for a prompt outcome with the need to protect the integrity of the system and to ensure a fair, thorough, and equitable student conduct process and outcome.

The University retains the right to postpone a hearing and/or appeal through the UHAS if the University determines the respondent’s presence in the University community would pose an unacceptable threat to the University community or would otherwise significantly disrupt the educational or other activities of the University community. In the event the University postpones a formal resolution procedure, it will advise the student of the conditions that must be met, which may include a forensic threat assessment (see “Interim Actions” above) prior to the hearing and/or appeal through the UHAS or other designated resolution procedure.