Student Policies

Involuntary Leave Policy

Northampton Community College (NCC) is committed to preserving the integrity of its learning environment and protecting its community members from the risk of physical harm. Separation of a student from NCC and its facilities may be necessary if there is evidence that the student poses a significant risk to the health and safety of others.

This policy and these procedures do not take the place of disciplinary actions that are in response to violations of the Student Code of Conduct, nor do they preclude the removal or dismissal of students from the College or college-owned facilities as a result of violations of other college regulations.

Policy Regarding Children on Campus

Children of students and staff are discouraged from being on campus for extended periods of time unless officially registered in a college program. Children under the age of 16 may not be left unattended on campus.

Children are not permitted in class. The classroom instructor has the authority to make an exception to this policy for an emergency circumstance, using the following criteria: if at all possible, students must contact the instructor prior to the class to seek permission; students may not request this special exception more than twice in one semester; children may not be disruptive (i.e.-noisy, moving around, interfering with the teaching-learning process) or they will be asked to leave immediately with their parent/ guardian.

Children accompanying parents to learning environments such as the Library or Learning Center may not be disruptive or they will be asked to leave immediately with their parent/guardian.

Residence Life Policies

Please refer to the residence life handbook for specific policies related to living on campus.

Student Complaint Procedure

Scope of Complaint Procedure

This complaint procedure is for NCC students who have complaints about NCC policies, buildings and grounds, faculty and staff, fellow students, or guests. It does not encompass complaints already covered by other NCC policies and procedure. Please note that other, separate procedures exist for harassment, discrimination, sexual misconduct, disability complaints or accommodation requests, and academic matters, including grades and grade appeals.

Complaint Procedure

1. Complaints about College Policies or Buildings and Grounds. These complaints should be reported to OR OR the Office of Student Affairs (for Bethlehem sites) 610-861-4558 OR the Associate Dean of Student Services Office (Monroe) 570-369-1842.
Student Affairs will forward the complaint to the administrator(s) best able to address it. The student will be contacted within 10 working days of filing the complaint, either to ask for additional information or to be informed of the resolution of the complaint.
If the student accepts the resolution, the matter will be considered closed. If the complaint has not been resolved to the student’s satisfaction, he or she has the right to appeal, using the procedure described below.

2. Complaints about a faculty or staff member. It is generally recommended that the student discuss the complaint directly with the faculty or staff member. This will allow the staff or faculty member to have an opportunity to hear the concern(s) and work with the student to resolve the issue. The student should call or email the individual to schedule an appointment. In the meeting, the student should be specific about what the complaint is and how he or she would like it resolved.
If the student accepts the faculty or staff member’s resolution, the matter shall be considered closed. If the complaint has not been resolved to the student’s satisfaction, he or she has the right to appeal, using the procedure described below.
If there are circumstances that make the student uncomfortable about speaking directly to the faculty or staff member about the complaint, he or she may report it via or or the Office of Student Affairs (for Bethlehem sites) 610-861- 4558 or the Associate Dean of Students Office (in Monroe) 570-369-1842. The student will be contacted within 10 working days of filing the complaint regarding next steps in the process.

3. Complaints about fellow students or campus guests should be reported through Northampton’s See It! Report It! Stop It! Campaign, using the procedures described at


If a student’s complaint is not addressed to his or her satisfaction, he or she has the right to appeal.

Appeals must be submitted in writing to

Appeals must include the following information:

  • Brief outline of steps the student has taken towards resolving the issue
  • Decision given by the person handling the complaint
  • Reason for the appeal
  • Possible solution(s) to the complaint that would satisfy the student
  • Student contact information (phone, email, etc.)

After an appeal has been submitted, the student who submitted the appeal will be provided with information regarding next steps in the process and may be asked for additional information, if necessary, within 10 working days.

Appeals will be sent to the appropriate vice president whose decision will be considered final.


The Office of Student Affairs will track student complaints through the College’s Maxient software. Data will be kept for seven years and will be reviewed no less than once a year to determine if the number and/or pattern of complaints require further institutional attention. Modifications and improvements made as a result of complaints will be documented in the Office of Student Affairs.

Discrimination, Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct Policy

Members of the NCC community, guests and visitors have the right to be free from sexual discrimination, harassment and misconduct. All members of the campus community are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that does not infringe upon the rights of others. When an allegation of misconduct is brought to an appropriate administrator’s attention, and a respondent is found to have violated this policy, serious sanctions will be used to reasonably ensure that such actions are never repeated. This policy has been developed to reaffirm these principles and to provide recourse for those individuals whose rights have been violated. This policy is intended to define community expectations and to establish a mechanism for determining when those expectations have been violated.

Northampton Community College is committed to providing a learning, working and living environment that promotes personal integrity, civility and mutual respect in a place free of discrimination on the basis of sex; which includes all forms of sexual misconduct. Sex discrimination violates an individual’s fundamental rights and personal dignity. Northampton Community College considers sex discrimination in all its forms to be a serious offense. This policy refers to all forms of sex discrimination, including but not limited to: sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual misconduct, sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking by employees, students, or third parties.

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits discrimination based on sex in educational programs and activities that receive federal financial assistance. To ensure compliance with Title IX and other federal and state civil rights laws, the College has developed policies and procedures that prohibit sex discrimination in all of its forms.
Northampton Community College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, national origin, veteran status, disability, genetic information or any other basis of prohibited discrimination in its pro- grams and activities. This policy extends to employment, programs and admission to the College.

This policy applies to all faculty, staff, students, and visitors. It also governs student-on-student sexual discrimination, including sexual assault, both on and off-campus.
Persons who experience discrimination, harassment, or sexual misconduct may respond to the experience in many different ways, including feeling confused, vulnerable, out of control, embarrassed, angry, or depressed. The College provides a variety of resources to assist individuals who have experienced discrimination, harassment, or sexual misconduct to address the effects of the incident and to help them determine whether and how to make a formal complaint about the incident. Please visit for the full policy.

All reports of discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation shall be promptly made to the Title IX Officer (or one of the designated Deputy Coordinators).

All College employees shall report all suspected incidents of discrimination or harassment.

Sexual Misconduct

This policy prohibits any form of sexual misconduct. Acts of sexual misconduct may be committed by any person upon any other person, regardless of the sex, gender, sexual orientation, and/or gender identity of those involved. The definition of consent below will be used in the interpretation and application of this policy:

Consent. Consent is knowing, voluntary, and clear permission by word or action to engage in mutually agreed upon sexual activity. Since individuals may experience the same interaction in different ways, it is the responsibility of each party to make certain that the other has consented before engaging in the activity. For consent to be valid, there must be a clear expression in words or actions that the other individual consented to that specific sexual conduct. Consent to a specific sexual contact (such as kissing or fondling) cannot be presumed to be consent for another specific sexual activity (such as intercourse). A current or previous dating relationship is not sufficient to constitute consent. Silence or the absence of resistance alone is not consent. The existence of consent is based on the totality of the circumstances, including the context in which the alleged incident occurred. Individuals can withdraw consent at any time during sexual activity by expressing in words or actions that they no longer want the act to continue, and, if that happens, the other person must stop immediately.

A person cannot consent if he or she is incapacitated. Under this policy, a person is incapacitated if he or she is disabled or deprived of ability to act or reason for one’s self, is unable to understand what is happening, or is disoriented, helpless, asleep, or unconscious for any reason, including due to alcohol or other drugs. Incapacitation is defined as a state where someone cannot make rational, reasonable decisions because they lack the capacity to give knowing consent (e.g., to understand the “who, what, when, where, why, or how” of their sexual interaction). This policy also covers a person whose incapacity results from mental disability, involuntary physical restraint, and/or from taking of an incapacitating substance. A person is incapacitated if the person is temporarily incapable of apprising or controlling the person’s own conduct due to the influence of a narcotic, anesthetic, or intoxicating substance; if a person is unable to communicate an unwillingness to act because the person is unconscious, asleep, or is otherwise physically limited; or if the person has a bodily impairment or handicap that substantially limits the person’s ability to resist or flee.

An individual who engages in sexual activity when the individual knows, or should know, that the other person is physically or mentally incapacitated has violated this policy. It is not an excuse that the respondent to a claim of sexual misconduct was intoxicated and, therefore, did not realize the other person’s incapacity.
The following are types of prohibited sexual misconduct under this policy:

Non-Consensual Sexual Intercourse

Defined as any sexual penetration or intercourse (anal, oral, or vaginal) however slight with any object by a person upon another person that is without consent and/ or by force.
Sexual penetration includes vaginal or anal penetration by a penis, tongue, finger, or object, or oral copulation by mouth-to-genital contact or genital-to-mouth contact.

Non-Consensual Sexual Contact

Defined as any intentional sexual touching however slight with any object by a person upon another person that is without consent and/or by force.
Sexual touching includes any bodily contact with the breasts, groin, genitals, mouth, or other bodily orifice of another individual or any other bodily contact in a sexual manner.

Relationship Violence

Defined as violence between those in an intimate relationship (this includes romantic, dating, or domestic relationships). Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • physical assault between two people in a current or prior intimate relationship who do not live together (Dating Violence)
  • physical assault between two people in an intimate relationship who live together (Domestic Violence)


Defined as a course of conduct directed at a specific person that is unwelcome and would cause a reasonable person to feel fear or suffer substantial emotional distress. Examples include, but are not limited to: sending multiple unwanted text messages, phone calls, or electronic communications

  • following, watching, photographing, or otherwise tracking an individual without his or her permission
  • sending unwelcome gifts, notes, or other items to another person


The College seeks to create an environment where its students and employees are free, without fear of reprisal, to use its procedures to determine if there has been a violation of their civil rights. Any act of retaliation will result in appropriate disciplinary action.

Retaliation is defined as any adverse action taken against a person participating in a protected activity because of their participation in that protected activity. Retaliation against an individual for alleging a violation of their civil rights, supporting a complainant, or for assisting in providing information relevant to a claim, is a serious violation of this policy. Acts of alleged retaliation should be reported immediately to the Title IX Officer or Deputy Coordinators.

Other Offenses

This policy prohibits other offenses of a discriminatory, harassing, and/or retaliatory nature not included in the previous sections as follows:

  • Intimidation, defined under this policy as implied threats or acts that cause a reasonable fear of harm in another on the basis of actual or perceived membership in a protected class
  • Hazing, defined under this policy as acts likely to cause physical or psychological harm or social ostracism to any person within the College community when related to the admission, initiation, joining, or any other group-affiliation activity on the basis of actual or perceived membership in a protected class.
  • Bullying, defined under this policy as repeated and/or severe aggressive behavior likely to intimidate or intentionally hurt, control or diminish another person, physically or mentally on the basis of actual or perceived membership in a protected class.
  • Violation of any other College rule, when it is motivated by sex or gender or the actual or perceived membership of the victim in a protected class, may be pursued using this policy and process.

Section 504/ADA Policy and Procedure


Northampton Community College  (NCC) welcomes qualified students with disabilities and endorses the principles of nondiscrimination and reasonable accommodation as described in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (504), the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act of 2009 (ADAA). The College prohibits discrimination against a person on the basis of disability or who has a history or record of such impairment or is regarded as having such impairment as well as persons who are associated with a disabled person. This procedure applies to complaints alleging disability discrimination carried out by students, faculty and staff, and third-party vendors.

The College’s Section 504 Coordinator handles complaints and appeals of accommodation decisions and allegations of discrimination on account of disability. The Section 504/ADA Coordinator is Brett Last, Executive Director, Human Resources. He may be reached at or 610-861-5460.

Procedures for Complaints of Discrimination Based Upon a Disability

If a student feels that he/she has been discriminated against based upon a disability by another student, faculty or staff or a third party, a complaint should be filed with the ADA/Section 504 Coordinator who will conduct an investigation of the allegations in the complaint. If the report alleges misconduct by the ADA/Section 504 Coordinator, then the report should be made to the President.

Within fifteen (15) days the ADA/Section 504 Coordinator will initiate an impartial, adequate, and reliable investigation. In determining whether the alleged conduct constitutes discrimination, the totality of the circumstances, the nature of the conduct and the context in which the alleged conduct occurred will be investigated.

The individual accused of discrimination will be advised of the allegations, the source of the complaint, and then given the opportunity to respond to the allegations. Parties are allowed to present witnesses and other evidence during the investigation. Within 60 days from the date that the complaint was received, the ADA/Section 504 Coordinator, or designee, will prepare a written report, unless additional time to complete the investigation is required. The report will include findings with respect to whether discrimination occurred. If an investigation cannot be concluded within 60 days, the appropriate parties will be advised and a projected conclusion day will be announced.

Should cause be found to support the allegations, the ADA/Section 504 Coordinator will identify appropriate remedial actions which may include disciplinary action up to and including termination, and he/she will report those recommendations to the person responsible for the division/department in which the alleged discrimination/harassment occurred.

The College will also take steps to prevent the reoccurrence of any discrimination/harassment and to correct its discriminatory effects on the complainant and others if appropriate.

Within 15 days from the date that the report is prepared, the ADA/Section 504 Coordinator will provide notice to both parties of the findings, including the findings with respect to wrongdoing, and the outcome resulting from the complaint, including the final remedial actions and the basis for the decision. The notice provided will include the procedure to appeal.

Appeals of Results of Complaints of Discrimination Based Upon a Disability

Both parties may file an appeal if there is a disagreement with the findings and/or remedies of the complaint. An appeal must be made in writing.

All appeals must be filed with the President or his/her designee within 10 working days of the receipt of the Coordinator’s decision. The appeal must state why the appellant believes the result and conclusion is unsatisfactory. The President or his/her designee shall review the record and investigate further if deemed necessary. Within 30 working days of the date of the filing of the appeal, all parties will receive notice of the President’s or his/ her designee’s decision in writing.

The President’s or his/her designee’s decision will be final and binding on all parties.


All actions taken to investigate and resolve complaints through this procedure shall be conducted with as much privacy, discretion and confidentiality as possible without compromising the thoroughness and fairness of the investigation. All persons involved are to treat the situation with respect. To conduct a thorough investigation, the investigator(s) may discuss the complaint with witnesses and those persons involved in or affected by the complaint, and those persons necessary to assist in the investigation or to implement appropriate disciplinary actions.

No Retaliation for Filing a Complaint

Retaliation against any individual for making a complaint of disability discrimination, or for assisting in the investigation of such a complaint is a violation of this policy and will not be tolerated. Any acts of retaliation will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action, such as but not limited to reprimand, change in work assignment, loss of privileges, mandatory training or suspension and/or immediate termination.

Student complaints related to accommodations and disability related concerns should be addressed with NCC’s Chief Diversity Officer and ADA Coordinator, 610-861-5300 or TTY/TDD 1-800-654-5984.

Complaints can also be sent to the Director of the Office of Civil Rights, Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights, Washington, D.C. 20201.

Title IX Officer and Deputy Coordinators

The Director of Equity and Inclusion, Scott Blair, 610-332-6411 serves as Chief Diversity Officer, ADA Coordinator and the Title IX Coordinator for the College, and is available to anyone seeking additional information or wishing to file a complaint. The office is located in College Center Room 207. In the absence of the Director of Equity and Inclusion, the College’s Executive Director of Human Resources serves in the aforementioned capacities and may be reached at 610-861-5460.

In addition, the following people have been designated to handle inquiries regarding these policies:

Title IX Deputy Coordinator
Belinda A. Austin, Associate Dean, Student Services Keystone 131 Monroe

Title IX Deputy Coordinator
Brian J. Shegina, Associate Director, Human Resources 4th Floor, College Center

Title IX Deputy Coordinator
Janelle L. Howey, Associate Dean of Student Life College Center 206B

Title IX Deputy Coordinator
Amy Porter College Center 201

Complaints and reports should be made as soon as possible after an incident.

If you are the victim of a sexual assault:

  1. Seek immediate medical attention. Do not change clothing, shower, bathe, brush teeth or douche. Delay the above and going to the bathroom (if possible) until you are examined as this preserves evidence of the assault. Medical attention should be accessed at a local hospital.
    • Easton Hospital: 610-250-4000
    • Muhlenberg Hospital/LVH: 610-861-2200
    • St. Luke’s Hospital: 610-954-4000
    • Pocono Medical Center: 570-476-3351
  2. Seek emotional support. It is important that you talk about this issue and that you tell someone you trust.
               On-campus you may contact:
    • Counseling staff 610-861-5342 (Bethlehem) or 570-369-1870 (Monroe)
    • Health and Wellness Center staff (Bethlehem) - 610-861-5365
    • Residence Life staff – 610-861-5324

      Off-campus you may contact:
    • Crime Victims Council/ Sexual Assault 24-hour hotline (Bethlehem)– 610-437-6611
    • Women’s Resources Hotline (Monroe)– 570-421-4200
    • North Penn Legal Services - 610-317-5317
  3. Options for filing a report include:

Formal Reporting

Complainants are encouraged to speak to College officials, such as the Title IX Officer or Deputy Coordinators, NCC Public Safety and/or the local police to make formal reports.

Local Police - 911

Public Safety and Campus Security:

  • Bethlehem Campus – 610-861-5588
  • Monroe Campus – 570-369-1911
  • Fowler – 484-390-3240

Complainants have the right, and can expect, to have complaints taken seriously by the College when formally reported and to have those incidents investigated and properly resolved through these procedures. Formal reporting still affords privacy to the reporter and only a small group of officials who need to know will be told. Information will be shared as necessary with investigator(s), witnesses, the respondent, and a hearing board if deemed appropriate. The number of people with this knowledge will be kept as few as reasonably possible to preserve a complainant’s rights and privacy.

Anonymous and Third Party Reporting

The Title IX Officer and Deputy Coordinators accept anonymous and third-party reports of conduct alleged to violate this policy and will follow up on such reports. The individual making the report is encouraged to provide as much detailed information as possible to allow the Title IX Officer or Deputy Coordinators to investigate and respond as appropriate. The College may be limited in its ability to investigate an anonymous or third party report unless sufficient information is provided. (See

Confidential Reporting

If a reporting party would like the details of an incident to be kept confidential, the reporting party may speak with counselors, health service providers, victim services advocates, domestic violence resources, local or state assistance agencies, or members of the clergy who are permitted by law to maintain confidentiality (except in extreme cases of immediacy of threat or danger or abuse of a minor). These sources may submit anonymous statistical information for timely warning and Clery Act purposes. If a reporting party is unsure of a resource’s ability to maintain confidentiality, the reporting party is advised to ask them before talking to them.

NCC counselors for students and/or the Employee Assistance Program for employees are available to help free of charge and can be seen on an emergency basis.

Private Reporting

Reports to College employees who are not confidential resources (i.e., Health & Wellness Center and Counseling staff) will be treated with the maximum possible privacy. If a reporting party is unsure of a resource’s ability to maintain privacy, the reporting party is advised to ask them before talking to them. The resource will be able to explain the resource’s reporting obligations and help a reporting party make decisions about who is in the best position to help. If personally identifiable information is shared, it will be shared with as few people as possible under the circumstances and efforts will be made to protect privacy to the greatest extent reasonably possible.

Criminal Reporting

If someone is in immediate danger or is a victim of a crime, call 9-1-1. Some acts of discrimination and harassment may also be crimes, such as sexual assault or stalking. Allegations of criminal conduct should be reported to law enforcement even when it is not clear whether the conduct rises to the level of a crime. Regardless, law enforcement can assist with obtaining medical care, getting immediate law enforcement response and protection, connecting with victim advocate services and counseling support, initiating a criminal investigation as appropriate, and answering questions about the criminal process.

In cases where students involved in sexual assault accusations are brought to a disciplinary hearing:

Upon receipt of the investigative report, the Title IX Officer will forward it to the Vice President for Student Services and Enrollment or designee for an appropriate hearing per the Student Code of Conduct procedures. During a hearing:

  • Both the complainant and the respondent will receive equivalent notice of the process.
  • The complainant will have the opportunity to be present throughout the entire Hearing.
  • The complainant will be entitled to the same opportunity to have others present during a Hearing as is provided to the respondent, including residence hall staff and/ or a College Support Person;
  • Both the complainant and the respondent will have the opportunity to present witnesses with information pertinent to the alleged sexual harassment, sexual misconduct or sexual assault, and any relevant information to the Hearing panel during the conduct process;
  • The complainant will be provided options for reasonable alternative arrangements if he or she does not want to be present in the same room as the respondent during the Hearing;
  • Testimony regarding any party’s past sexual conduct will ordinarily not be permitted, except in those instances where there was a prior sexual relationship between the parties and the testimony may be relevant to the issue of consent. If the respondent is found responsible for the conduct alleged in the complaint, his or her past sexual misconduct, if any, may be considered in determining the appropriate outcome.
  • The College will document the proceedings.

Following the hearing, the decision of whether a policy violation has occurred will be determined by using a preponderance of the evidence standard. A finding of a policy violation by a preponderance of the evidence means that it is more likely than not that the policy violation occurred. If, following the hearing, the decision is that no policy violation has occurred the process will end. Regardless of the outcome, the complainant, the respondent, and the Title IX Officer will be notified of the finding in writing.

If, following a hearing, the student is found to have violated College policy, appropriate disciplinary sanctions will be determined after consultation with the Title IX Officer. The Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment (or designee) will notify the respondent, the complainant, and the Title IX Officer in writing of the Vice President’s decision. This written decision must be issued within fifteen college days of the date of receipt of the investigative report from the Title IX Officer.


Factors considered when determining a sanction may include:

  • The nature of, severity of, and circumstances surrounding the violation
  • The respondent’s disciplinary history
  • Previously founded complaints or allegations against the respondent involving similar conduct
  • Any other information deemed relevant by the Title IX Officer
  • The need to bring an end to the discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation
  • The need to prevent the future recurrence of discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation
  • The need to remedy the effects of the discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation on the victim and the community

For examples of the range of potential disciplinary sanctions against students, see the section of the Student Handbook entitled Disciplinary Actions.


Appeals of the decision of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment or designee (for students) or the Vice President/President (for employees) may be filed by the complainant, the respondent or both. All requests for appeal considerations must be submitted in writing to the Title IX Officer within five college days of the date of the final written notice.

Appeals are limited to allegations of the following:

  • A procedural error or omission occurred that significantly impacted the outcome.
  • There is new evidence, unknown or unavailable during the investigation, that could substantially impact the finding or sanction. A summary of this new evidence and its potential impact upon the investigation must be included in the appeal.
  • The sanctions imposed are substantially disproportionate to the severity of the violation.

The original finding and sanction/responsive actions will stand if the appeal is not timely or is not based on the grounds listed above, and such a finding and sanction/responsive action(s) are final. When a party requests an appeal, the other party (parties) will be notified and given an opportunity to respond.

For students: In cases involving student conduct, a person designated by the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment will review the appeal request(s).

Where the designee finds that at least one of the grounds is met, and proceeds with the appeal, additional principles governing the hearing of appeals include the following:

  • The original decision will only be changed when there is a compelling justification to do so.
  • Appeals are not intended to be full re-hearings of the complaint. Appeals are confined to a review of the written documentation or record of the original hearing and pertinent documentation regarding the grounds for appeal.
  • Sanctions will not be imposed pending the outcome of the appeal. Interim and/or protective actions may be imposed and/or continued as appropriate.
  • The designee will render a decision within ten college days to the Title IX Officer who will normally provide written notice of the appeal to all parties within three college days from the date of the appeal review.
  • All parties will be informed of whether the grounds for an appeal are accepted and the results of the appeal decision.
  • Once an appeal is decided, the outcome is final: further appeals are not permitted under this policy.

Statement of Rights for Complainants and Respondents

Both complainants and respondents will be afforded the following rights under this policy:

  • To be treated with respect by College officials
  • To take advantage of campus support resources (such as Counseling Services and College Health Services for students, or EAP services for employees)
  • To experience a safe educational and work environment
  • To have an advisor (students) or representative (employees) during this process
  • To refuse to have an allegation resolved through informal procedures
  • To be free from retaliation
  • To have complaints heard in substantial accordance with these procedures
  • To reasonable and necessary participation in the process

Risk Reduction Tips

Risk reduction tips can often take a victim-blaming tone, even unintentionally. With no intention to victim-blame, and with recognition that only those who commit sexual violence are responsible for those actions, these suggestions may nevertheless help you to reduce your risk of experiencing a non-consensual sexual act. Below, suggestions to avoid committing a non-consensual sexual act are also offered:

  • Know your sexual intentions and limits. You have the right to say “NO” to any unwanted sexual contact. If you are uncertain of what you want, ask your partner to respect your feelings.
  • Communicate your limits firmly and directly. If you say “No,” say it like you mean it. Avoid giving mixed messages. Back up your words with a firm voice and clear body language. Do not assume that someone will automatically know how you feel or will eventually “get the message” without your having to say anything.
  • Understand that some individuals may inappropriately assume that one is willing to engage in sexual relations based upon behaviors or appearances (e.g. drinking or the way in which someone dresses). Be clear up front about your intentions and boundaries in such situations.
  • Listen to your gut feelings. If you feel uncomfortable or think you might be at risk, leave the situation immediately and go to a safe place.
  • Don’t be afraid to “make waves” if you feel threatened. If you feel you are being pressured or coerced into sexual activity, don’t hesitate to state your feelings and leave the situation.
  • Attend large parties with friends you trust. Agree to “look out” for one another. Leave with the group, not alone. Avoid leaving with people that you don’t know very well.
  • Take care of your friends and ask that they take care of you. A real friend will challenge you if you are about to make a mistake. Respect them when they do.

If you find yourself in the position of being the initiator of sexual behavior, you owe sexual respect to your potential partner. These suggestions may help you to reduce your risk for being accused of sexual misconduct:

  • Clearly communicate your intentions to your sexual partner and give them a chance to clearly relate their intentions to you.
  • Understand and respect personal boundaries.
  • DON’T MAKE ASSUMPTIONS about consent; about someone’s sexual availability; about whether they are attracted to you; about how far you can go or about whether they are physically and/or mentally able to consent. If there are any questions or ambiguity then you DO NOT have consent.
  • Mixed messages from your partner are a clear indication that you should stop, defuse any sexual tension and communicate better. You may be misreading him/her. The person may not have figured out how far he/she is willing to go with you yet. You must respect the timeline for sexual behaviors with which he/she is comfortable.
  • Don’t take advantage of someone’s drunkenness or drugged state, even if it was self-inflicted.
  • Realize that your potential partner could be intimidated by you, or fearful. You may have a power advantage simply because of your gender or size. Don’t abuse that power.
  • Understand that consent to some form of sexual behavior does not automatically imply consent to any other forms of sexual behavior.
  • Silence and passivity cannot be interpreted as an indication of consent. Read your potential partner carefully, paying attention to verbal and non-verbal communication and body language.

Sexual Offense Educational Programming

Because Northampton Community College recognizes sex discrimination in all its forms as important issues, the College offers annual educational programming to a variety of groups such as: staff, Public Safety, Residence Life, Faculty, incoming students, resident and off-campus students and, members of student organizations. Visit for more information and resources on avoiding and preventing sexual assault.

Sex Discrimination educational programming may address matters such as: a definition of what constitutes sex discrimination, the causes of sex discrimination, myths involved with sex discrimination, prevention, the relationship between sex discrimination and alcohol use, what to do if you are assaulted, the nature of a rape examination, an explanation of the College sex discrimination policy, how to file charges within the College, its conduct system, and/or with the local police department, men’s issues and sexual assault, and campus community resources to assist both the survivor and the accused.

Federal Enforcer

The U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is the federal agency charged with enforcing compliance with Title IX. Individuals with complaints of this nature always have the right to file a formal complaint with the United States Department Education:

Office for Civil Rights (OCR) 400 Maryland Avenue, SW Washington, DC 20202-1100
Customer Service Hotline #: (800) 421-3481
Facsimile: (202) 453-6012
TDD#: (877) 521-2172

Supporting Our Students

At NCC we recognize that students will experiment and be influenced by their friends and society. This experimentation is an important part of becoming self-sufficient and the result of this experimentation can help students to develop lifelong values.
Nevertheless, we also recognize that some experimentation may result in negative consequences. To minimize these consequences we offer guidance and support on a number of issues.


Gambling can become a serious concern and addiction for some students making it difficult for them to be academically focused and financially stable. There is support available at the Bethlehem campus in the Counseling Center (CC250/610-861-5342) and at the Monroe campus in Student Services (570-369-1842).

Social Networking

Being active in social media can help you meet and communicate with other students, but it is important to use good judgment. Familiarize yourself with the terms and conditions of the sites or services you use, and be careful not to post anything that would jeopardize your safety or future job prospects.

Be very careful not to use social media to harass or threaten others or to damage their reputation. It is O.K. to disagree with someone, but differences of opinion should be expressed respectfully. Behavior that is not acceptable on campus is not acceptable online. Infringing on the rights of others or seriously disrupting the educational functions of the College may be in violation of the Student Code of Conduct and may result in disciplinary action. If you have questions about this, please contact the Assistant Dean of Student Life at 610-861-4558.

Smoking/Tobacco Policy

As part of the College’s commitment to the health and well-being of the College community, smoking (e.g., cigarettes, hookahs, e-cigarettes, etc.) and the use of any tobacco products (e.g., chewing tobacco) are prohibited on campus except in your vehicle and where designated by signage. A fine of $100 may be assessed for violating the smoking/ tobacco policy.

Smoking Cessation/Education

Most students recognize the negative effect of smoking on their health. Smoking cessation support is provided through the Health and Wellness Center in CC120 or at 610-861-5365. Education materials and counseling are available.

Drug and Alcohol Use

Most NCC students make responsible choices around the use of alcohol and other drugs.

However, some students will experiment with drugs and alcohol and will end up abusing them. Research has proven that drug and alcohol experimentation can have a negative effect on one’s health, relationships and academic work. Because we want our students to succeed, support for students, whose lives are negatively affected by drugs and alcohol, is available at the Bethlehem campus in the Counseling Center (CC250/610- 861-5342) and at the Monroe campus in Student Services (570-369-1842).
There are counselors available to counsel students, to provide education, to make assessments, to make referrals or to refer students to local Alcoholics or Narcotics Anonymous meetings.

Drug and Alcohol Abuse


The NCC community is committed to fostering an environment in which intellectual exchange and skill development take place within an atmosphere conducive to student learning. In order to maintain such an environment, community members must abide by NCC’s policy on alcohol and other drugs and the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania that pertain to drugs and alcohol.The College considers misuse of alcohol or other drugs to be a serious condition which adversely affects the campus climate.

Policy Governing the Use of Alcohol and Other Drugs

Northampton Community College’s policy prohibits the use, possession, or distribution of controlled or dangerous drugs or other substances as defined by federal, state, and local laws, except as expressly permitted by law. Drinking or possessing alcoholic beverages on campus is prohibited. Members of the College community who are age 21 or older may consume alcohol when it is served, with College approval, at a College sponsored event. However, all individuals, regardless of age, must abide by applicable laws and may not at any time be intoxicated or under the influence of illegal substances on College property, at a College sponsored event or when representing the College. Alcohol containers and drug paraphernalia are banned from campus. Advertisement of prohibited substances cannot be posted on exterior doors or walls or in any public areas (including student residence halls).

Alcohol and Drug Prevention and Intervention

As part of its educational mission, Northampton Community College sponsors alcohol and drug education programs in the form of lectures, workshops and social norms initiatives.

Students who have been identified as having a substance abuse problem, or others who seek help voluntarily, will be assisted by counselors located in the Counseling Center, CC250. The College also promotes alcohol free programs. It is through these educational programs and services that the College hopes to empower students to make wise, informed decisions regarding the use of alcohol and other drugs.

Disciplinary Actions

Any use of alcohol or other drugs on campus is governed by the College’s policy as well as by applicable federal, state, and local laws. Students should understand and respect all guidelines regarding the possession, use, manufacture, consumption, furnishing and distribution of alcohol or other drugs. If suspected to be in violation of any policy and/or law, students should understand that they will be subject to disciplinary action by Northampton Community College as well as by the appropriate governing authorities. It is the responsibility of the student to understand and abide by these laws and policies. In reference to medical marijuana (cannabis), it is a controlled substance under federal law and its possession and use, even for medical reasons, is prohibited on property owned or operated by the College or at College-sponsored or affiliated programs and events.

As outlined in the Northampton Community College Student Code of Conduct, sanctions may be imposed upon students in violation of this policy. Any disciplinary action may include additional stipulations (e.g. fines, rehabilitative procedures such as counseling, and/or community service.) Please note that past history may be taken into consideration when sanctions are being determined.

When deemed necessary, local law enforcement will be involved. If illegal drugs or drug paraphernalia are found, the local authorities will be contacted immediately.

Legal Implications of Alcohol and Drug Use

Members of the campus community should be aware that there are serious consequences for the unlawful possession or distribution of illicit drugs, abuse of alcohol, or underage drinking. Check with your local law enforcement agency if you need more information about the laws governing alcohol and drugs.

Health Risks Associated with the Use of Alcohol and Other Drugs

Health risks associated with the use of illicit drugs and the abuse of alcohol are varied and range from heart and liver damage, to intense psychological or physiological dependence, to death.

Members of the campus community are encouraged to consult information located in the Health and Wellness Center, the Counseling Center, or the US Department of Health and Human Services to review the effects of various drugs and alcohol in more detail.

These additional policies can be found in the current College Catalog:

  • Residency
  • Classification of Students
  • Advanced Placement
  • Repeat Course Policy
  • Waiver of graduation requirements
  • Audit Policy
  • Academic Restart

The Board of Trustees endorses the principle of equal educational and employment opportunities for all people regardless of race, color, sex, religion, ancestry, national origin, age, sexual orientation, or based on an individual’s actual or perceived disability, or on a person’s association with a person with a disability. Furthermore the Board does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, ancestry, national origin, age, sexual orientation, or based on an individual’s actual or perceived disability, or on a person’s association with a person with a disability in the educational programs or activities it operates.

If you require accommodations for College events, contact the Office for Disability Services, 610-861-5342 or TTY/TDD 1-800-654-5984, at least one week prior to your planned visit. Chief Diversity Officer and ADA coordinator: 610-861-5300 or TTY/TDD 1-800-654-5984.