FAQs for Parents

What is expected of my student living off-campus?

Gonzaga is a Catholic, Jesuit, and humanistic community of students, faculty and staff set within the urban environment of Spokane, WA. Gonzaga students are expected to live respectfully and responsibly at all times, especially within the context of the neighborhood surrounding the University. The Student Code of Conduct applies to all Gonzaga students at all times, regardless of location. The link below contains information about city regulations for noise, which applies to Gonzaga students as well as local residents of Spokane.

Information on the City of Spokane's noise ordinance - Municipal Code 10.08D

How can I make sure my student meets standards of conduct while at Gonzaga University?

We encourage you to engage your student in open dialogue about their life at Gonzaga, including their behavior, actions, and choices. Talk with your student about their values, as well as how their actions impact their opportunities. As a parent or guardian, you are a valuable ally and support for you student. By encouraging your student to think about the consequences of their actions and holding your student accountable for upholding expectations that you and the University have for your student, you are helping your student grow into a life of leadership and service. For information about Gonzaga University’s Student Code of Conduct, visit the Student Code of Conduct page.

My student is meeting with an Office of Community Standards staff member and I want to know what I can do to help.

First, Gonzaga University’s student conduct process is centered on helping students understand the natural and logical consequences of their behavior and is designed to develop independent critical and reflective thinking, as well as self-advocacy skills. It is designed to be educational in nature and provide a process in which students have the opportunity to be heard. The best way for your student to prepare is to reflect on the events and be ready to describe what happened. Just because we have notified your student about allegations does not mean the student has violated the Student Code of Conduct. A conduct record is not created unless the student is found in violation of University policy.

Second, ask your student about the incident and listen to the response. You can help by encouraging your student to take an active role in resolving the conduct issue and by being supportive while holding your student accountable for the behavior.

We recognize that you may want to intervene on behalf of your college student. Of course, we are available to answer questions about the process, but it is your student’s responsibility to take the lead in working with University through this process. By taking the principal role in the conduct process, your student learns to accept responsibility for their actions while developing confidence and self-reliance that will serve your student well for life beyond Gonzaga University.

What happens if my student is found responsible for misconduct?

When a student is found to have violated Gonzaga University’s standards of conduct, the student will be assigned conduct outcomes.

Click here for more information about conduct outcomes.

My student told me a friend received a different conduct outcome for the same incident. Why is that?

Sometimes students in the same incident receive different outcomes. The circumstances surrounding the behavior, the student’s prior conduct history (if any), the impact of the misconduct on the community, and conduct outcomes assigned for previous findings for violations, are all considerations taken into account when determining the most appropriate outcome. At Gonzaga, each student is treated with care and concern as a unique individual. 

When would the Office of Community Standards contact me, as a parent/guardian?

The Office of Community Standards always encourages students to speak with parents/guardians and many students proactively discuss an incident and the conduct process with their parents/guardians. You are encouraged to engage with your student about the specifics of an incident, including any outcomes that were assigned.

Click here for information about Disclosure to Parents or Guardians for violations of Gonzaga University’s Alcohol Policy or Drug Policy for students under the age of 21. 

Does my student need an attorney and should I attend the student conduct meeting with my student?

Most students participate in the conduct process on their own, however, students may have an advisor present to serve as a support person present during process, who may be a parent/guardian or attorney. The role of the advisor is not to speak for or represent the student, but provide support as students represents his or her self.

The incident happened off-campus or involved law enforcement. Why is Gonzaga University involved?

In accepting Gonzaga University’s offer of admission, students agree that they will conduct themselves in accordance with University standards. The University reserves the right to address off-campus misconduct or violations of law and students are expected to observe the highest standards of conduct, both on and off-campus and while participating in activities and programs sponsored by the University. The Student Code of Conduct holds students accountable for behaviors, especially those that negatively impact their personal development, Gonzaga's living and learning environment, the campus and neighboring community, and the University’s reputation.

Since the University operates under different policies, procedures, and standards, it is not necessarily bound by the findings of a court of law. In instances involving pending violations of law or criminal action, the University conduct process will generally proceed.

Will my student be allowed to study abroad if he/she has a conduct violation?

Conduct history does not necessarily preclude a student from participating and many students with previous violations successfully participate in study abroad programs. After the Office of Community Standards provides information, the Study Abroad Office will determine program eligibility. Depending on the nature/location of the study abroad program, the Student Abroad Office may decide that students who have had multiple violations or violations of a specific nature should be declined acceptance or required to provide additional information. Per University policy, students who are on Conduct Probation (generally less than 1% of the total student population) are not eligible to study abroad. 

Will a Student Code of Conduct violation be listed on my student’s transcript?

No. Gonzaga University does not denote student code of conduct violations on academic transcripts. Click here for information about the Release of Student Conduct Records.

How many students participate in a conduct process each year?

Approximately 11% of the total student population participates in a conduct process. First-year students make up the largest portion of this total. Our recidivism rate is very low and most students only engage with the conduct process one time. Approximately 15% of each year’s processes constitute second or subsequent violations. 

What is the most common violation of Gonzaga University’s Student Code of Conduct?

The most common violations of Gonzaga University’s Student Code of Conduct are related to violations of the Alcohol Policy.

What happens if my student is suspended or expelled from Gonzaga University?

While infrequent, students who engage in misconduct, or a series of misconduct-related incidents incongruent with the University’s standards of conduct, may be involuntarily separated from the Gonzaga University community for a specified period of time (suspension), generally between one and four semesters.

Suspended students who choose to re-apply to Gonzaga University participate in a reintegration process and generally describe their time away as valuable and are more prepared to articulate University mission, the impact of decision making and actions, as well as personal values and goals.

Students who are expelled are not eligible to return to Gonzaga University.

I have specific questions about my student’s case. Who should I contact?

The Office of Community Standards recommends that your first response is always to have a conversation with your student. If, after speaking with your student, you have further questions, contact the Office of Community Standards at (509) 313-4009 or ocs@gonzaga.edu. Staff can answer general questions about the conduct process, however, to address specific questions about your student’s conduct case, the Office of Community Standards must obtain your student’s written permission. For more information about Gonzaga University’s Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) practices, visit the Office of the Registrar's web page