Why does The Citadel need an Office of Institutional Compliance? Don’t we already have compliance people?
We do have folks dedicated to compliance-related activities in specific departments. Since the legal and regulatory environment of higher education is so complex, it is often difficult to determine the right course of action when faced with an ethical dilemma. The Office of Institutional Compliance (OIC) provides resources for employees, faculty, staff and students to use in our daily activities to help clarify those challenging situations and meet our ethical and legal obligations when acting on behalf of the College.
What does the OIC do exactly?
In a nutshell, we are here to make sure you have the resources you need to do your job within the legal, regulatory, and college policy environment. We know that you devote a lot of time and energy to your work every day, and we want to make sure you have the knowledge and resources you need to keep the College running smoothly and in compliance with all laws and regulations.
Isn’t the OIC really just here to find out what people are doing wrong and get them in trouble, like Internal Affairs or something?
Absolutely not! We are a resource, not the cops. Sure, if an audit turns up something that isn’t compliant, we aren’t here to make sure someone is punished, we view the non-compliance as a breakdown of communication or resources, and that is what we fix. Punishment is the responsibility of management.
How do I know if I’m witnessing or hearing about something that should be reported?
That’s the great thing about the OIC, we are here to take the guesswork off of your shoulders. Let us know if you have a concern, and we will check it out.
What happens if I report something that turns out to be nothing?
Actually, we hope that everything that is reported turns out to be nothing! As long as you report something in “good faith,” meaning you truly think there might be something wrong, you won’t get in trouble if it turns out to be a false alarm. However, if you report something false to compliance… maybe to get someone else in trouble or for some other reason, you can face disciplinary action.
I don’t want to report something if it means I might lose my job…how do I know I can make a report and not have adverse action taken against me.
There are two answers to that question. First, you have the option to make a report anonymously. If you visit the Citadel EthicsPoint webpage, it will give you specific information on ways to make a report. Second, The Citadel has a strict zero-tolerance policy regarding retaliation against someone who makes a good-faith report. If anyone, regardless of their position or title, says something or does something that makes you feel threatened or uncomfortable because you made a report, report it to us, and we will investigate. The College, including the President, has made it very clear that this type of behavior will not be tolerated.