Why Standards of Conduct?
As a Christian community, Trinity has characteristics and structures which express its nature, enhance its purpose, and provide for the life and growth of its members. The distinctives of the Trinity community include commitment to the authority of the Word of God, the dignity of persons and the mutual support of fellow believers. These characteristics of community life are based upon:
- Principles derived from Scripture
- Insights discerned from various academic disciplines
- Awareness of contemporary societal trends
- Appreciation for the evangelical heritage of the divinity school and its constituency
Membership in the Trinity community offers unique privileges and implies unique responsibilities. These privileges include opportunities for academic, personal, and spiritual growth within a sound and balanced setting. These responsibilities involve both general patterns of community lifestyle and particular requirements regarding specific activities. The standards of the Divinity School and Graduate School are very demanding, beyond normal societal standards. In signing an application for admission, students assume the responsibility to maintain the Trinity Standards of Conduct as outlined below and others as announced. These standards, much like the training rules of an athletic team, allow students to affirm the authenticity of their commitment to the community, to learn to trust themselves and to let their word be trusted, that is, to grow in integrity by maintaining congruence between their life and these high standards.
What are the Patterns of a Christian Lifestyle?
Scripture sets the overall parameters for Christian community that include love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, tolerance, and self-control. In relationships with each other, community members are expected to practice compassion, to bear one another’s burdens, to forgive one another, and to encourage one another. In relation to the material world, they are expected to exercise good stewardship and appropriate use of resources.
These expectations are in contrast to sins such as jealousy, gossip, conceit, greed, the sowing of discord, and the expressing of prejudice based on race, creed, ethnic origin, sex, and/or socio-economic status. All such sins are an affront to God and are destructive to the community.
Specific Requirements of Standards of Conduct
Scripture does not provide specific teaching regarding all human behavior. Consequently, controversy regarding individual practices has arisen throughout the history of the church. Any set of community standards may contain elements with which some members may disagree. Nevertheless, out of a desire to encourage an environment appropriate to its purposes, respect for its heritage, and concern for the values of its constituency, Trinity has established the following behavioral guidelines for all full and part-time students while being both on and off-campus (unless otherwise stated):
- Practices, which are specifically forbidden in Scripture, will not be condoned, such as dishonesty, theft, pre-marital sex, abortion, adultery, homosexual behavior, and use of pornography, profanity, gossip, racism, and infringement upon the rights of others.
- In a Christian academic community, academic dishonesty, including cheating, plagiarism, and misappropriation of library materials, is regarded as a serious violation. Please see the policy on Academic Dishonesty for more information.
- Trinity International University is a drug-free and alcohol-free campus. Possession or consumption of alcohol and tobacco on-campus is not permitted. Please see the policy on Alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drugs for more information.
- Abuse of one’s body is inappropriate for a Christian. Accordingly, students will be required to refrain from the possession or use of harmful substances such as non-prescribed stimulants and depressants, and hallucinogenic drugs. Please see the policy on Alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drugs for more information.
- Trinity values a community environment that is free from all forms of discrimination and harassment. Trinity will not tolerate sexual harassment of any kind. Those found to have engaged in sexual harassment will be subject to discipline that could include dismissal from the University. Please see the policy on Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault for more information.
- Discrimination and harassment of any type toward any individual (including domestic relationships) will not be tolerated by the institution. This includes any form of verbal, physical, written (including electronic transmissions) abuse, threats or stalking. This also may include a persistent pattern of behavior directed at another individual that distresses, frightens, or is in some manner inappropriate or threatening. Examples of this include, but are not limited to, hate speech, abuse because of one’s race, religion, nationality or disability. In the event of threats or the potential of stalking, TEDS/TGS reserves the right to contact law enforcement agencies. A formal complaint procedure has been established to respond to allegations of discrimination and harassment and is available to all students from the Graduate Student Life department. Those found in violation will be subject to disciplinary action.
- Any form of gambling, including but not limited to lotteries, betting, and any casino-related activity where money is at stake is not permitted.
- Unauthorized presence on or use of any TIU property is prohibited (ie. Vacant rooms, suites, or apartments), as is unauthorized visitations in residence halls (ie. Violation of visiting hours) or intentionally trespassing in areas from which individuals have been banned by previous order. Law enforcement authority will be contacted if individuals who have been banned from campus property are seen on campus.
- Scripture explicitly teaches respect for governmental authority. Students are therefore expected to uphold the laws of the local community, the state, and the nation except on those occasions where obedience to civil authority would require behavior directly in conflict with other Scriptural principles.
- Sexual misconduct is prohibited and includes but is not limited to sexual activity outside of marriage, adultery, indecent exposure, voyeurism, or homosexual behaviors.
- Destroying, defacing, or damaging of university property, owned or leased, and property belonging to students, faculty, staff, or guests of the university will not be tolerated, including but not limited to misusing computer equipment or programs, vending machines, or personal property.
- Theft and possession of stolen property is prohibited. Any unauthorized taking or keeping of items of university property, items rented, leased, or placed on the campus, property leased by the university, items belonging to students, faculty, staff, or guests of the university, using another student’s or employee’s username and password, or possession of suspected stolen property is prohibited. Theft over $250 in value and any involving credit cards are automatically reported to Deerfield Police Department, while all others are reported at the request of the victim.
- Deliberate refusal to comply with a clearly stated, reasonable directive issued by any school personnel, including faculty, RAs, Security staff, Creative personnel, acting in the performance of their duties, is prohibited. Disrespect by word or manner of conduct to any school employee or any officials at all school events is also prohibited.
- Any of the following are considered disorderly conduct and are not acceptable: lewd, indecent, offensive, annoying, obscene, or inappropriate conduct or expression thereof on school-owned property or at school-sponsored events; the disruption of any student function or activity; conduct on or off campus that is in conflict with the welfare and integrity of the school and that identifies the student as an unfit associate for other students; any unauthorized demonstrations.
- No form of hazing will be tolerated. Hazing is defined as the infliction of physical violence on any individual; any activities calculated to be embarrassing, harassing, or imposing physical, emotional, or mental strain on any individual; or any activity that would, in any way, jeopardize the physical, moral, or scholastic well-being of any individual. This also includes harassment by requiring unnecessary work and harassment through banter, ridicule, or criticism.