The list of behaviors in this section and subsequent sections can constitute a violation of College’s Community Standards. The behaviors listed here are intended to be illustrative rather than exhaustive, students are expected to engage in responsible decision making. The College reserves the right to refer students to Community Standards when a student’s actions disrupt the community.

Academic Integrity

Any behavior that violates the Academic Misconduct Policy, which includes, but is not limited to, cheating, dishonesty, forgery, and plagiarism. Examples of actions that violating the existing academic integrity rules in the context of remote learning include, but are not limited to, falsifying one’s identity in online interactions with classmates or faculty, falsifying one’s identity for class participation, and providing log-in or other credentials to individuals who are not authorized to access class sessions or other academic resources.


Any violation of the College’s Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy specific to alcohol, which includes, but is not limited to:

  • Possessing or consuming alcohol under the legal drinking age.
  • Serving or providing alcohol to individuals that are under the legal drinking age.
  • Being in the presence of alcohol while under the legal drinking age.
  • Over Intoxication including but not limited to needing medical attention, destructive behavior, vandalism, etc., regardless of age.
  • Illegal or unauthorized manufacture, distribution, or social sharing of alcoholic beverages.
  • Providing opportunities for heavy drinking, including but not limited to drinking games, funnels, punch bowls etc. 

Campus Posting Policy

Any violation of the Campus Posting Policy or Student Engagement and Leadership’s Physical Posting Policy.


We recognize historical and ongoing harmful effects of privilege and marginalization reflected in the term “marijuana”. THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD (cannabidiol) and Hemp are all products derived from the cannabis plant. The term “marijuana” specifically refers to THC and is used as the term in most legal documentation. Emerson does not allow the consumption of THC based products on our campus and will refer to such products using the term “marijuana”.

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has approved legislation to legalize recreational use of marijuana by people at or over the age of 21.  Emerson College remains subject to federal law, including the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act, in order to remain eligible for federal funding to the College.

In accordance with federal law, and Emerson’s Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy, Emerson maintains a prohibition on the use of marijuana. This means that for all students, regardless of age, you are prohibited from the use, sale, manufacturing, distribution, possession, and/or social sharing of marijuana on campus.  Prohibited conduct on campus includes, but is not limited to, the following examples:

  • Possession or use of marijuana, including medicinal and recreational on-campus and/or on College property.
  • Possession or use of any drug paraphernalia (i.e. pipes, bongs, hookahs, etc.).
  • Manufacture, or attempted or actual distribution or social sharing of any illegal drug or drug paraphernalia (i.e. pipes, bongs, hookahs, etc.).
  • Attempted or actual sale, distribution, social sharing or manufacturing of marijuana-based products.

The unauthorized duplication or downloading of copyrighted materials. Refer to the Copyright Policy for more information.

Discrimination, Harassment and Sexual Violence (sexual assault, relationship violence, stalking, sexual exploitation)

Any conduct that violates the Policy Against Discrimination, Harassment & Sexual Violence is prohibited. This would include conduct based on any of the protected categories, such as race, color, national origin, ethnicity, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, religion, disability, age, and other protected identities.

Disorderly And Disruptive Behavior

Any behavior or activities that are disruptive to or negatively affect other Emerson community members, the College’s relationships with the city, its community, or other institutions. Including but not limited to virtual and in person disruptions to learning, throwing or dropping items out of windows, any interference with the daily life of our College community.

  • Aiding or abetting any violation of College policy.
  • Intentional or reckless interference of College activities including, but not limited to, teaching; research; administration; police; fire; or emergency services.
  • Bullying or cyber-bullying, including but not limited to, direct messaging on social media platforms, emails, and verbal messaging to other College Community Members. 


Any violation of the College’s Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy specific to drugs, which includes, but is not limited to:

  • Possession or use of other illegal drugs (i.e. cocaine, MDMA, heroin, hallucinogens, etc.).
  • Attempted or actual sale, distribution, social sharing or manufacturing of illegal drugs (i.e. cocaine, MDMA, heroin, hallucinogens, etc.).
  • Impairment as a result of the use of illegal drugs or misuse of prescription or over-the-counter medication.
  • Unlawful possession, unlawful use, abuse, or attempted or actual distribution, social sharing or manufacturing of any controlled substance (i.e. prescription drug) or over-the-counter medication or non-prescription synthetic drugs.
  • Knowingly being in the presence of someone using an illegal drug.
  • Over Intoxication including but not limited to needing medical attention, destructive behavior, vandalism, etc.

Endangering the Health or Safety of Our Community and Other Individuals

Any behavior that threatens or endangers the health and/or safety of oneself or others, which can include physical, verbal, or electronic abuse, intimidation, harassment, coercion, and/or other conduct which threatens or endangers the health or safety of any person or the community.

  • Physical abuse or assault. Abusive communication (written or verbal), threats, intimidation, stalking, harassment or coercion. Also read the College’s policy against Discrimination, Harassment & Sexual Violence.
  • Infliction of or threat of physical harm that endangers the health or safety of members of our community, harms property or disrupts community members' enjoyment of their rights or engagement in the community.
  • Not following and/or refusing to observe any health and safety regulations which unnecessarily endangers or threatens the health and/or safety of any student or the community.

Failure to Comply

Failure to comply with policies established to maintain the health and safety of the community and/or Failure to comply with the directions of College officials acting in the performance of their duties. College officials include, but are not limited to, Office of Housing and Residential Education staff, Office of Community Standards staff, and Emerson College Police Department.

False Identification or Information

  • Knowingly furnishing false information, including but not limited to:
  • Forgery, altering official documents or identification with intent to defraud.
  • Making a false report of any emergency (i.e. bomb, fire, medical, etc.) on or off campus by means of activating a fire alarm or in any other manner.
  • Misleading or making false reports or giving false information in any formal College investigation or proceeding.
  • Knowingly providing false identification, or failing to identify oneself, to College staff, including student staff, acting in the performance of their duties.

Fire Safety

  • Unauthorized or reckless use of candles, incense, or any open flames College facilities.
  • Intentionally or recklessly misusing or damaging fire or other safety equipment.
  • Causing or attempting to cause a fire or adding to unauthorized fires.
  • Any storage, possession, or use of items that are widely known to be a fire risk in any College owned or leased facility, vehicle (including transportation buses), or at any College-sponsored event. Such items include but are not limited to: hover-boards, self-propelled and electric scooters, electronic bikes, or similar devices. 


Gambling, including the sale of raffle tickets. Refer to the Gambling Policy for more information.


Students are responsible for the actions of their guests. Any guest visiting a College residence hall must be at least 17 years of age. Refer to the Guest Policy for current guest policy information.


Any behavior or activity that violates the Hazing Policy

Invasion of Privacy

All forms of invasion of privacy including but not limited to the audio or video recording, filming, photographing, viewing, transmitting, publishing, or producing the image or voice of another person without the person’s knowledge and expressed consent while in an environment that is considered private or where there is a reasonable expectation of privacy.

Local, State, Federal, & International Laws, Regulations, & Ordinances

Violations of local, state, federal, and international laws, regulations, and ordinances, whether occurring on or off campus.

Misuse of College Resources and/or College Property

  • Misuse or abuse of College resources.
  • Trespassing or any unauthorized presence in/on or forcible entry into a College facility or College-related premises, including College building roofs or fire escapes.
  • Unauthorized use or misuse of College property including, but not limited to, equipment, thermostats, technology, or keys.

Published College Policies

Violations of published College policies, rules, regulations, or the student and student organization rights and responsibilities.


Retaliation against an individual or group for reporting a College policy violation or cooperation with a College-related investigation. Retaliation is any harmful action taken against a person because of their participation in any part of the conduct process. The College recognizes that retaliation can take many forms, including but not limited to, defamation, verbal/physical intimidation and can happen in-person or virtually within digital platforms and social media. Retaliation can be committed by an individual or a group; and those reporting incidents, responding to incidents, and witnesses can both commit and/or be the subject of retaliatory behavior. 


The use of any device made or constructed to inhale smoke is prohibited in any residential facility, including but not limited to bongs, vape pens, cigarettes, etc.

  1. Smoking, including use of electronic smoking devices in any College-owned or -leased facility or vehicle, or otherwise designated “no smoking” areas.
  2. Any violation of the College’s Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy specific to tobacco, cannabis, or other drugs.

Theft, Receipt, or Possession of Stolen Property

Attempted or actual theft of property or services; knowingly being in possession of stolen property.

Use of Name, Image, Likeness, and Creative Works

A student or student organization may not, on any posting, advertisement, or other communications, utilize the name, image, likeness, or creative work of any other person or entity without express consent of that person or entity. This policy includes, but is not limited to, logos, photographs, artwork, digital media, writings, or artistic renderings. This policy would not be interpreted to prohibit individuals from posting photos of events/activities on social media unless those photographed specifically requested not to be in included.

Vandalism and Damage of Property

Attempted and/or actual vandalism to facilities or personal property. The damage, destruction, or defacement of College property or the property of others.


See the Weapons Policy

  1. Unauthorized storage, possession, and/or use of firearms, fireworks, dangerous weapons, weapons used for sparring or fighting, or hazardous chemicals on College premises or at College-sponsored activities. This includes, but is not limited to, guns, ammunition, nunchakus or karate sticks, switchblades, mace, pepper spray, firecrackers, tear gas, or other dangerous weapons or articles.
  2. Unauthorized storage, possession, and/or use of knives except butter/table knives without a serrated edge or non-locking pocket knives with a single edge no longer than 2.75” in length.
    1. Any prop weapon must be in compliance with the weapons policy and not stored or possessed on Emerson’s campus without proper approval documentation from the appropriate office(s). 
    2. Any multitool that contains a blade must comply with this policy regardless if the intended use of the tool is related to academics, student productions, or any other use.

Help Seeking Policy

In case of an alcohol, cannabis, or drug emergency our primary concern is health and safety for the student(s.) Emerson College’s Help Seeking Policy (HSP) has been established to reduce barriers related to seeking help for those in need. 

If you or a friend is in need of help, please seek assistance from:

  • Building staff (i.e., Resident Assistants, Residence Directors, Desk Staff etc.) 
  • Emerson College Police (617-824-8888) 
  • Calling 911 

Emerson College acknowledges there may be times when students may face medical emergencies due to heavy drinking, cannabis, and/or drug use. In a situation where students seek medical attention for an alcohol, cannabis, or other drugs-related medical emergency, the College will treat the students’ use of alcohol or prohibited substances as a matter of health and safety, not as a violation to the Code of Community Standards. This policy covers the student receiving medical attention, and the student(s) who call for help. In addition, to encourage reporting and seeking help, this policy will be extended to any students who report in good faith that they witnessed or are the victim of a crime or a significant violation of Emerson policies (i.e., Sexual Violence, Hazing) even though they may have been under the influence of alcohol, marijuana or other drugs at the time of the incident.

Students who utilize this policy will have a follow-up meeting with Campus Life Staff. The meeting will serve as a reflective conversation to discuss healthy choices, decision making, and make connections to resources based on the needs of the student(s.) The incident will be noted as a Help Seeking Policy with the Office of Community Standards, no sanctions will be given to students seeking help. 

Please note that this policy does not excuse or protect those who repeatedly or flagrantly violate the College’s policies regarding alcohol, cannabis, or other drugs.  This policy will also not cover students whose conduct placed the health or safety of any other person at risk.