Office of the Dean of Students
Congratulations on your admission to Belmont. Admission to a university represents a significant experience in a person’s life. After all, the college you choose will have a lifelong impact. Due to this, we want to share a bit about what will make your time at Belmont distinct as compared to another institution.
A number of traditions will shape your experience as a Belmont Bruin: the major you pursue, the student organizations you join, the residence hall you call home, the athletic events you compete in or attend, and much more. However, a tradition that shapes every Bruin’s experience is The Bruin Guide. The Bruin Guide is our Code of Conduct. It both communicates the commitments of our community and the resulting expectations for your time as a member. It empowers you and your peers to progress in a positive direction academically, personally and collectively.
We encourage you to take time now to review the Bruin Guide; you can find it here. You are being offered membership in our community, so it is important to evaluate whether our commitments are congruent with your own commitments. As you look through it, please pay special attention to our Community Commitments, our Substance-Free Campus Policy, our Sexual Misconduct Policy, and our Honor Pledge. Below, we’ve shared a little about why we feel these are particularly important.
Community Commitments. Whenever you have the opportunity to join a new community—whether it be a university, a job, a place of worship, or the like—it is vital to consider if the community fits that which is most important to you as an individual. While a person may influence a community to a degree, it is difficult for an individual to shift the entire course of a community. This may lead an individual to modify and adapt to the community or exit the community. But, then, that is the idea of community. The collective weight of it shapes the individual. Our desire as an institution of higher education is to be a community that challenges the individual to develop in positive and critically considered ways. To this end, our community has embraced five expectations for who we want to be collectively; we know them as the Community Commitments. Take time to read through our Community Commitments. Ask yourself if your values align or are in conflict with our commitments and consider what that will mean for you if you choose to become members of the Belmont community. You can find more information on our Community Commitments here.
Substance-Free Campus Policy. Belmont has a Substance-Free Campus Policy because academic research, our professional experience, and our Christian mission inform us that the choice to use alcohol or drugs has profoundly negative effects on students’ lives, especially those between the ages of 18-25. Accordingly, we respond to violations assertively. Often, we find students who are unprepared to handle situations where drugs and alcohol are present, who believe their prior use will evaporate simply by changing locale, or who never contemplate their drug and alcohol use is incongruent with our community because they more greatly value the other benefits of being a Belmont student. Note, while our efforts and the desires of our students reduce the amount of alcohol and drug use as compared to national trends, we still have alcohol and drug use in our community. Further, change in drug and alcohol use requires internally driven change rather than externally driven change. Finally, members of a community accept all its expectations and benefits; one cannot simply pick and choose. Because violations of our Substance-Free Campus Policy will in some cases result in separation from our institution, it is important you consider the implications of the policy in your own life now.
Sexual Misconduct Policy. One of the most personally damaging experiences for the college-aged population across the nation is non-consensual sex acts. Accordingly, students should learn what constitutes consent and the importance of obtaining it before engaging in any type of sexual act. At Belmont, we believe consent requires an affirmative yes rather than an inferred yes. Consent is the first and most important consideration for you to avoid serious legal and university responses.
Honor Pledge. As you enter college, you take a step toward becoming a scholar. You will be asked to critically consider information, research answers, and present findings to the academic community. Consequently, personal integrity as well as the trust of classmates, faculty, and the public is essential to scholarship. Unfortunately, we often hear students found responsible for acts of academic dishonesty justify it by their lack of time, disinterest in a subject, or desire to please an artificially set standard of excellence. Shortcuts—such as cheating, plagiarism, fabrication, multiple submissions, etc.—to a good grade can have a significant impact on your current studies, hopes of graduate education, and the value of a Belmont degree. An academic reputation can easily be lost by a shortcut, but the road back is long.