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Student accountability: Your actions on and off campus

Aug. 17, 2020, 7:00 AM

Each year, off-campus residents are asked to adhere to the university’s Good Neighbor Guidelines as representatives of Vanderbilt in their interactions with the Nashville community. Students who will live off campus are asked to submit their off-campus address to the University Registrar through YES. An email sent to students last week provides details and instructions related to both of these items.

This year, the principles underlying the Good Neighbor Guidelines are more important than ever.

It is the responsibility of each community member to fully commit to protecting the Vanderbilt community’s collective health and well-being and play their individual part in ensuring a successful fall semester.

Students are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with the Good Neighbor Guidelines, the Student Handbook, and all university policies and protocols designed to facilitate physical distancing and slow the spread of COVID-19, which may supersede certain provisions of the Good Neighbor Guidelines and the Student Handbook at this time.

Of particular note is the Gatherings section of the Vanderbilt Return to Campus protocols. It is imperative that students review these protocols to ensure that their residence is in compliance. Some key points in the Gatherings policy include:

  • While students may host small informal meetups of 10 individuals or less, parties, social events and similar group activities, including those involving alcohol, whether on or off campus, are not permitted and pose a significant public health risk.
  • If students choose to host a small, informal meetup at their residence, compliance with VU’s COVID-19 protocols is required, including physical distancing, wearing face masks/coverings, and other personal safety practices, as well as adhering to any other applicable university policies.
  • Any intentional or reckless disregard for the COVID-19 policies and protocols on or off campus will be addressed through the Office of Student Accountability, Community Standards, and Academic Integrity, utilizing the existing sanctioning considerations found in the Student Handbook, including reviewing the potential impact on the community in the evaluation of the nature and severity of the incident, which may support an enhanced sanction, including probation, suspension or expulsion.

Students also should take note of Nashville’s guidelines surrounding gatherings. Failure to comply with the city’s public health emergency orders can result in criminal penalties. 

If you notice COVID-19 protocols are not being followed, report it by calling the Public Health Hotline at 615-343-1352.