The Code of Conduct applies to any covered person as that term is defined in the Code.
CONDUCT ADMINISTRATOR AND CONDUCT PANEL
1) The conduct administrator shall determine the composition of conduct panels and determine which conduct panel shall be authorized to hear each case. Where a multi-person panel is used instead of hearing by a conduct administrator, the conduct panels shall include, at minimum, three eligible members of the RUSM community.
a. The Honor Council may review Complaints between students or by administration that occur either on or off campus.
b. The following types ofcomplaints may not be referred to the Honor Council: (1)
i. Complaints that arise under the Non-Discrimination policy; (2)
ii. Complaints that allege any violations of the Sexual Misconduct Policy; or(3)
iii. Complaints concerning acts of academic misconduct.
c. The Honor Council may facilitate mediation on covered matters and issue non-binding resolutions that have been mutually agreed upon by the Parties.
i. All Parties to the Complaint must agree in order for the resolution to beimplemented and as such is not subject to appeal.
d. TheHonor Council may not impose disciplinary actions.
e. At its sole discretion, the Honor Council may also determine at any point in the process of hearing a Complaint, that the Complaint should be referred to a Grievance Committee or conduct administrator.
i. In cases in which a multi-person panel is used, the recommendationof all members of the conduct panel, referred to as the Grievance Committee, shall be considered by the conduct administrator. Following the hearing, the conduct administrator or designee shall advise the respondent in writing of the determination, the sanction(s) imposed, if any, and appeal procedures
f. The Grievance Committee may hear any type of matter and may impose any type of disciplinary action, up to and including expulsionnon-academic dismissalfrom RUSM.
g. The decision of the Grievance committee is binding, unless overturned on appeal.
2) The conduct administrator shall develop procedures for administration of the Code of Conduct and for conducting hearings which are consistent with the provisions of this Code of Conduct.
3) Decisions made by a Grievance Committee and/or conduct administrator shall be final, pending the appeal process.
4) In appropriate situations, the Grievance Committee and/or conduct administrator may also provide a respondent who is subject to the hearing process with referral information for external counseling or other services available within the greater community that may help the respondent to ameliorate his/hertheirconduct to prevent further violations of the Code of Conduct.
Scope or Purview
The Code of Conduct applies to behavior that affects the RUSM community, irrespective of where or when that conduct may occur. Discipline may extend to off-campus activities and locations (including but not limited to
off-campus activities, events, and housing) when the actions in question adversely affect the RUSM community and/or pursuit of its objectives.
Conduct – Rules and Regulations
Any respondent found to have committed misconduct, including the following types of misconduct, may be subject to disciplinary sanctions outlined in Sanctions.
1) Acts of dishonesty including, but not limited to, the following:
a) Furnishing false information to any University official, faculty member or office.
b) Forgery, alteration or misuse of any University document, record or instrument of identification.
c) Computer piracy, including duplication of computer software, copyright infringement and unauthorized computer entry.
2) Disruption or obstruction of teaching, research, administration, disciplinary proceedings and other University activities, including its public service functions on or off campus, or other authorized non-University activities, when the act occurs on RUSM premises.
3) Physical abuse, verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, and harassment including, but not limited to, sexual harassment, coercion and/or other conduct that threatens or endangers the health or safety of any person, either on or off RUSM premises or at any University-sponsored activity.
4) Bullying and cyberbullying, which is using one’s power to control or harm individuals who cannot defend themselves including, but not limited to, face-to-face interactions and any electronic communication (communication transmitted by means of an electronic device, including, but not limited to, a telephone, cellular phone, computer, or pager) whether it be a single incident or a series of incidents.
5) Attempted or actual theft of and/or damage to property of the University or property of a member of the RUSM community or other personal or public property.
6) RUSM specifically prohibits any organization, chartered or otherwise, officially or in fact, from participating in the activity of “hazing,” defined as any action taken or situation created which, regardless of intent or consent of the participants, may reasonably produce bodily harm or danger, mental or physical discomfort, embarrassment, harassment, fright, humiliation or ridicule, or otherwise compromises the dignity of an individual; compels an individual to participate in an activity that is unlawful and or contrary to University rules, policies and regulations; will unreasonably or unusually impair an individual’s academic efforts, and/or occurs on or off campus. Hazing is further defined as an act that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student, or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation or admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for, continued membership in a group or organization. Such activities and/or actions prohibited include, but are not limited to: tests of endurance; submission of members or prospective members to potentially dangerous or hazardous circumstances; any activity that by its nature is so intense that it would cause severe mental anxiety, mental distress, panic, human degradation or public embarrassment; creation of excessive fatigue or a late work session that interferes with scholastic activities or deprives persons of the opportunity for sufficient sleep (six hours per day), decent edible meals and/or access to means of bodily cleanliness; forcing or coercing a person to consume alcohol or other substances, in any amount; any requirement that compels an individual to participate in an activity that is illegal, perverse or indecent; and compelling individuals to engage in sexual behaviors, sexual or racial harassment or slurs, or exhibitionism.
7) Violation of conduct guidelines, including those in student leases and housing handbooks, applicable to University-controlled housing.
8) Gambling on RUSM premises, at University functions or through the use of University equipment.
9) Failure to comply with directions of University officials or law enforcement officers acting in performance of their duties and/or failure to identify oneself to these persons when requested to do so.
10) Unauthorized possession, duplication or use of keys, or unauthorized entry to or use of premises.
11) Violation of published University policies, procedures, rules or regulations.
12) Violation of any applicable federal, state or local law.
13) Use, possession or distribution of narcoticnarcoticsor other controlled substances, except as expressly permitted by law,a valid doctor’s order, and the University, or being under the influence of such substances. Please note in particular that even where otherwise permitted under local law, marijuanaor other psychotropic substanceuse, possession, or influence on University premises, at University events, or that adversely affects the RUSM community, is prohibited.
14) Use, possession or distribution of alcoholic beverages, except as expressly permitted by law and University regulation; or public intoxication. Use, possession or distribution of alcohol on any RUSM premise is prohibited.
15) Illegal or unauthorized possession of firearms, explosives, other weapons or dangerous chemicals.
16) Participation in a demonstration that disrupts normal operations of the University or infringes on rights of other members of the RUSM community; leading or inciting others to disrupt the scheduled and/or normal activities within any University building or area; intentional obstruction that is unreasonable and interferes with freedom of movement and/or free flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic.
17) Conduct that is disorderly, disruptive, lewd or indecent; breach of peace; or aiding, abetting,or procuring another person to breach the peace.
18) Aiding, abetting,or inducing another to engage in behavior prohibited by the Code of Conduct.
19) Theft or other abuse of computer time, including but not limited to:
a) Unauthorized entry into a file, to use, read or change contents, or for any other purpose.
b) Unauthorized transfer of a file.
c) Unauthorized use of another individual’s identification and password.
d) Use of computing facilities to interfere with work of another student, faculty member or University official.
e) Use of computing facilities to send obscene or abusive messages.
f) Use of computing facilities to interfere with normal operation of the University computing system.
g) Introduction, reproduction and/or promulgation of any computer virus.
20) Abuse of the disciplinary system, including, but not limited to:
a) Falsification, distortion or misrepresentation of information before a conduct administrator and/or conduct panel.
b) Disruption or interference with orderly conduct of a conduct proceeding.
c) Knowingly instituting complaint or conduct proceedings without good cause.
a. Attempting to discourage an individual’s proper participation in, or use of, the complaint or conduct procedures.
d) Attempting to influence the impartiality of a member of a conduct panel prior to, and/or during, the course of the conduct proceeding.
e) Harassment (verbal or physical) and/or intimidation by a student of a participant in the conduct or complaint processes prior to, during and/or after a conduct proceeding.
f) Failure to comply with sanction(s) imposed under the Code of Conduct.
g) Influencing or attempting to influence another person to commit an abuse of the conduct or complaint procedures.
21) Cheating: Any intentional misrepresentation of another’s work as one’s own or a misrepresentation of the circumstances under which the work was done. This violation includes, but is not limited to, copying, plagiarism, unauthorized collaboration and unauthorized divulging of test contents or the violation of any academic and Exam Center policies pertaining to the exam process.
22) Toleration:Failure of a student to report acts of dishonesty, cheating or other proscribed conduct may be viewed as a violation of the Code of Conduct.
23) Conduct unbecoming of a medical professional:Any behavior deemed inappropriate of a medical professional that would otherwise reflect poorly upon RUSM and its representatives. This violation includes, but is not limited to, behavior in contradiction to the Technical Standards, behavior in contradiction to the AMA Code of Ethics,illegal use/possession/distribution/sale of drugs, public intoxication to a gross extent and public indecency. This is not an exhaustive list and may be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
Involvement of Law Enforcement or External Judicial Authorities
Complainants who believe that they are victims of crime or other violation of law (for example, assault, battery, sexual misconduct) may notify and seek assistance from the University, local law enforcement and/or other community resources concurrently. The conduct administrator can provide information about how to contact local law enforcement or other local community resources.
The University is committed to maintaining an environment that is safe for all members of the RUSM community.
Safety concerns, including those arising out of Code of Conduct proceedings, should be brought to the attention of the campus incident commander or the conduct administrator for evaluation of any appropriate measures to be taken by the University to promote security. Complainants may also seek protective, restraining, or “no-contact” orders from an external law enforcement or judicial authority; complainants who do so should notify the conduct administrator or campus incident commander so that the University can cooperate as appropriate in the observation of the order.
The University may institute Code of Conduct proceedings against a respondent charged with violation of applicable law without regard to the pendency of civil litigation or criminal arrest and prosecution. Proceedings under this Code of Conduct may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with, or following civil or criminal proceedings. If a code of conduct violation is also a civil violation (e.g. rape), we may be obligated to report it to civil authorities, regardless of the victim’s preference.
If the alleged violation of law is also the subject of Code of Conduct proceedings, the University may advise external authorities of the existence and status of the Code of Conduct proceedings. The University cooperates fully with law enforcement and other agencies in enforcing law on University property and in the conditions imposed by criminal courts for the protection of victims and the rehabilitation of violators. Individual students, staff, or faculty members, acting in their personal capacities, remain free to interact with a governmental representative or law enforcement official as they deem appropriate.
CONDUCT COMPLAINT AGAINST STUDENT – POLICY & PROCEDURES
Complaint and Hearings
1) Any member of the RUSM community or the University itself may make a report against any covered person alleging misconduct. Notice of a possible violation may result in complaints being filed by the University whether or not the impacted community member wishes to proceed. Complaints shall be prepared in writing and directed to the conduct administrator at the appropriate University location. Any complaint should be submitted as soon as possible after the event takes place.
2) Once complaints have been filed, the conduct administrator will investigate to determine if any of the allegations have merit.
a) If a complaint is found to not have merit it may be dismissed.
b) If a complaint is found to have merit the conduct administrator may either:
i) Attempt to resolve the complaint by mutual consent of the complainant and the respondent on a basis acceptable to the conduct administrator (such as Honor Council mediation, Restorative Justice or other form of alternative dispute resolution). Mediation will not be used for complaints involving alleged sexual misconduct.
ii) The conduct administrator may also issue a conduct warning to a respondent or complainant where a complaint is resolved by mutual consent.
iii) The conduct administrator may hold a hearing individually or refer the complaint to a conduct panel.
3) All complaints shall be presented to the respondent in writing. A hearing before a conduct panel (Honor Council or Grievance Committee) will be scheduled after receipt of the answer from the Respondent. If no answer to the complaint is submitted, the hearing will be scheduled following the deadline for submission (five ([5)]business days). The timeframe for scheduling of hearings may be extended at the discretion of the conduct administrator.
4) The conduct administrator may choose to hold the hearing him/herself, or may require a hearing by a conduct panel. If either the complainant or the respondent believes that a member of the conduct panel has a conflict of interest, he or she should bring this concern to the attention of the conduct administrator, or if the alleged conflict is held by the conduct administrator to the attention of the location’s conduct administrator’s manager.
5) Hearings shall be held according to the following guidelines:
a) Hearings shall be held in private. Admission of any person to the hearing shall be at the discretion of the conduct administrator or conduct panel chairperson.
b) In advance of the hearing, both the complainant and respondent will be given access to the identified information that is available before the hearing which will be considered by the conduct administrator or conduct panel.
c) The complainant and respondent have the right to be assisted by any advisor they choose, at their own expense. The advisor may be an attorney. The complainant and respondent are responsible for presenting their own case and, therefore, advisors are not permitted to speak or to participate directly in any hearing before a conduct administrator or conduct panel. The complainant and respondent must provide the names (relationship and title, if applicable) of those attending the hearing with them at least one business day before the hearing.
d) The University, the complainant, the respondent and the conduct administrator or conduct panel shall be allowed to present witnesses, subject to the right of cross-examination by the conduct administrator or conduct panel.
e) Pertinent records, exhibits and written statements may be accepted as evidence for consideration by a conduct panel at the discretion of the conduct administrator or conduct panel chairperson.
f) All procedural questions are subject to the final decision of the conduct administrator or conduct panel chairperson.
g) After the hearing, the conduct panel shall deliberate in private and determine (by majority vote for a multi-person conduct panel) whether the respondent has violated the Code of Conduct.
h) The conduct administrator or conduct panel’s determination shall be made on the basis of whether it is more likely than not that the respondent violated the Code of Conduct.
6) There shall be a single record of all hearings before a conduct panel or conduct administrator. The record shall be the property of the University. Suspensions and non-academic dismissals will be noted in the respondent’s academic file.
7) No respondent may be found to have violated the Code of Conduct solely because the respondent failed to appear before a conduct panel. Even if the respondent does not appear, the evidence in support of the complaints shall be presented and considered. Likewise, a respondent may be found to have violated the Code of Conduct even in instances where the complainant has not participated in the conduct proceedings.
8) The conduct administrator or designee shall notify the respondent of the outcome in writing, and in appropriate cases, shall also notify the complainant. In specific types of cases, such as those of sexual misconduct allegations, the complainant and respondent will be informed simultaneously. Where safety concerns exist, the complainant may be given appropriate notice prior to formal notification.
Sanctions are determined by the conduct administrator or the Grievance Committee following the final outcome of a conduct complaint.
The sanctions listed below may be imposed upon any covered person found to have violated the Code of Conduct. The listing of the sanctions should not be construed to imply the covered person are entitled to progressive discipline. The sanctions may be used in any order and/or combination that the University deems appropriate for the conduct in question.
Sanctions are determined by the conduct administrator or the Grievance Committee following the final outcome of a conduct complaint.
There follows a list of the most commonly imposed sanctions, but RUSM may also choose to impose other sanctions, not listed here, depending on the severity of the misconduct..
a. Warning – A verbal or written notice that the respondent has not met the University’s conduct expectations.
b. Non-academic Probation – A written reprimand with stated conditions in effect for a designated period of time, including the probability of more severe disciplinary sanctions if the respondent does not comply with University policies or otherwise does not meet the University’s conduct expectations during the probationary period.
c. Restitution – Compensation for loss, damage or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement.
d. Housing Suspension – Separation of the respondent from his/hertheirUniversity-controlled housing for a defined period of time. Conditions for returning to housing may be specified.
e. Housing Expulsion – Permanent separation of the respondent from University-controlled housing.
f. RUSM Suspension – Separation of the respondent from the University for a defined period of time, after which the respondent may be eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified.
g. RUSMExpulsionNon-Academic Dismissal– Permanent separation of the respondent from RUSM.
h. Suspension of Services – Ineligibility to receive specified services or all RUSM services for a specified period of time, after which the respondent may regain eligibility. Conditions to regain access to services may be specified.
i. Ineligibility for Services – Permanent ineligibility to receive specified or all RUSM services, and services from other RUSM Education Group institutions.
j. Remediation – Such as counseling and education in the area of noncompliance. Participation in psycho-educational groups and/or assigned educational initiatives designed to assist the student towards compliance.
k. Limiting Order – Restriction on a respondent’s permission to be in the same proximity as the complainant and/or others, with the parameters of the restriction to be defined by the University (e.g., for use with allegations of sexual or other misconduct).
2) More than one sanction listed above may be imposed for any single violation. In each case in which a conduct administrator or Grievance Committee determines that a respondent has violated the Code of Conduct, sanction(s) shall be determined and imposed by the conduct administrator. In cases in which a multi-person panel is used, the recommendation of all members of the conduct panel shall be considered by the conduct administrator.and the decision should be made by majority vote.Following the hearing, the conduct administrator or designee shall advise the respondent in writing of the determination, the sanction(s) imposed, if any, and appeal procedures. In appropriate cases (e.g., allegations involving certain types of sexual misconduct), the conduct administrator, or designee will also simultaneously provide the complainant with written notice of the outcome and appeal procedures.
In certain circumstances, the University may impose a RUSM and/or housing interim suspension or No Contact Agreement (NCAOrder (NCO) priortoa hearing.
1) Interim suspension may be imposed:
a. to ensure the safety and well-being of members of the RUSM community or preservation of University property; or
b. if the University deems that the respondent poses a threat of disruption of or interference with the normal operation of the University
2) During the interim suspension, the respondent may be denied access to RUSM premises (including online and onsite classes) and/or all other University activities or privileges for which the respondent might otherwise be eligible, as the University may determine to be appropriate. In appropriate cases, the University may notify the complainant of a respondent’s interim suspension status.
3) A No Contact Agreement (NCA)A NCOcan be put in place by the conduct administrator, or designee, between covered persons involved in a conduct investigation in order to:
a. De-escalate conflict.
b. Assist covered persons in refraining from actions that could be considered a violation of the Code of Conduct.
c. Address concerns raised as part of a sexual misconduct investigation.
d. NCO shall not be lifted on the request of the complainant and/or respondent. However, a NCO may be lifted with mutual consent by the complainant and the respondent.
e. If any party (complainant or respondent) is found to be in violation of “No Contact Order”, it will be considered as breach of code of conduct and appropriate disciplinary sanction, up to, but not limited to, suspension/dismissal from the University will be imposed.
Lifting of Non-academic Probation: Non-academic probation is lifted after the time period specified, when a) no further violations are committed; and, b) all terms specified in the disciplinary decision have been successfully completed.
Lifting of Interim Sanctions: Interim Sanctions are lifted following the issuance of a formal or informal disciplinary decision (which may result in a further Suspension sanction) or a successful appeal to a decision. An interim sanction may also be lifted following the assessment of new information. Where conditions are placed upon a student’s return, those conditions must be approved and verified as fully completed before the student will be allowed to register for a future semester.
Lifting of Suspension: Where conditions are placed upon a student’s return, those conditions must be certified as fully completed before the student will be eligible to register for a future semester. The completion/fulfillment of conditions shall be verified and approved by Associate Dean of Student Affairs or their designee. A suspended student, upon return to campus, will be on automatic disciplinary probation for either a designated period of time, identified at the time the original sanction is issued, or until graduation from RUSM.
Non-Academic Dismissal: Non-academic dismissal means permanent termination of student status. A dismissed student is no longer permitted to attend RUSM or any of its affiliated institutions. A student dismissed on disciplinary grounds is not eligible for re- admission.
Records of Sanctions
Any sanctions imposed are recorded in the student’s disciplinary file, and, where appropriate, also noted in permanent educational records. Information regarding probations, suspensions and non-academic dismissal are readily available to RUSM officials as needed to assure administrative compliance with those sanctions.
In the event a student withdraws or is dismissed prior to the disposition of a disciplinary action, documentation of a pending disciplinary case without final determination will be included as part of the student’s educational record.
Notifications during Suspensions/Non-Academic Dismissals
RUSM may be obligated to take into account the interest of the following parties when resolving a disciplinary matter:
1) A decision of a violation of the Code of Conduct and the sanctions reached by the Grievance Committee or imposed by the conduct administrator may be appealed by the respondent or complainantwhen applicable (see SEX AND GENDER-BASED MISCONDUCT RESPONSE AND PREVENTION policy)to the person identified in the determination letter within 7 calendar days of the date of the appealing party’s receipt of the determination letter. Such appeals shall be in writing. Receipt of the determination letter is presumed to be three days after mailing (for letters sent via US mail), the date of delivery (for tracked delivery), or the date of electronic transmission (for email).sent via email to ConductAppeals@Rossu.edu. The results of the appeal to the person identified in the determination letter shall be final.
2) Except as required to explain the basis of new evidence, an appeal shall be limited to review of the hearing record of the initial hearing and documents considered by the conduct administrator or Grievance Committee for one or more of the following purposes:
a. To determine whether the original hearing was administered fairly in light of the complaints and evidence presented and in substantial conformity with prescribed procedures, giving the complainant a reasonable opportunity to prepare and present evidence that the Code of Conduct was violated, and giving the respondent a reasonable opportunity to prepare and present a rebuttal of those allegations.
b. To determine whether the decision reached regarding the respondent was based on reasonable evidence; that is, without substituting its judgment for that of conduct panel or the conduct administrator, the appellate decision-maker shall consider whether the facts in the case were reasonably sufficient to establish that a violation of the Code of Conduct occurred.
c. To determine whether the sanction(s) imposed were reasonably appropriate for the violation of the Code of Conduct the respondent was found to have committed.
d. To consider new evidence sufficient to alter the decision or sanction which was not brought out in the original hearing because such evidence was not known or available to the person appealing at the time of the original hearing.
The person ruling on the appeal shall notify in writing the complainant and respondent of the outcome of the appeal. If the appeal is granted, the matter can be remanded to the conduct panel (either the original panel or a new panel, as determined to be appropriate by the person considering the appeal) or the conduct administrator for action to be taken in response to the appeal findings.
If the appeal is denied, then the decision of the original conduct proceeding is upheld and final.
CONFIDENTIALITY AND PROHIBITION ON RETALIATION
RUSM wishes to foster an environment in which individuals feel free to raise and discuss concerns. RUSM understands that complainants, respondents, witnesses, and others involved in the investigation process and conduct proceedings may be concerned about the confidentiality of information they are sharing.
In some cases, RUSM may be obligated to take action when it becomes aware of information relating to a complaint. Confidentiality will be maintained to the extent possible and consistent with RUSM’s obligations in investigating complaints and addressing conduct appropriately. While the confidentiality of information received, the privacy of individuals involved, and compliance with the wishes of the complainant or witnesses cannot be guaranteed, they will be respected to the extent possible and appropriate. In particular, when possible and consistent with applicable law, personally identifying information about victims of sexual misconduct will be kept confidential as it appears in the University’s publicly available record-keeping.
RUSM prohibits retaliation against anyone who reports an incident of alleged harassment, discrimination or other unlawful conduct, or any person who assists or participates in a proceeding, investigation or hearing relating to such allegations.
Retaliation includes, but is not limited to, any form of intimidation, reprisal, or harassment. All complaints of retaliation should be reported in accordance with the student complaint procedure available in the Student Handbook. If following the student complaint procedure would result in the student being required to submit their complaint to the person whom they believe is retaliating against him or her, the student may submit the retaliation complaint to the location leader, who will determine an appropriate party to address the retaliation complaint.
Submission of a good-faith complaint or report of harassment, discrimination or other unlawful conduct will not adversely affect the complainant’s future grades, learning, or academic environment. RUSM will discipline or take appropriate action against anyone who retaliates against any person who reports an incident of alleged harassment, discrimination, or other unlawful conduct, or who retaliates against any person who testifies, assists or participates in a conduct proceeding, investigation or hearing related to such allegations.
Campus Safety and Security
A truly safe campus can only be achieved through the cooperation of students, faculty and staff. As members of this academic community, students must report crimes, suspicious activities or other emergencies on campus to the Department of Security and Emergency Management. Students who witness or are victims of a crime affecting the RUSM community should immediately report the incident to local law enforcement in the community, in which the campus is located, and to the Office of Student Affairs or to the chief location administrator. RUSM will investigate such crimes and, when appropriate, bring them to the attention of the conduct administrator and other University officials such as the Title IX Coordinator.
Given public concern about escalating incidents of school violence, the University will take appropriate administrative action to protect the community. Student behavior that causes campus safety or security concerns will typically be addressed pursuant to the Interim Suspension provisions of the Code of Conduct. Accordingly, immediate suspension and eventual non-academic dismissal may result for students who:
Nothing in this policy should be construed as limiting or preventing the University’s discretion to take other action which, in the University’s sole discretion is necessary or advisable to promote campus safety and security.
RUSM takes seriously any threats made to cause harm to others or to oneself. Threats to harm others will be handled through the Code of Conduct, and may involve an interim suspension and/or the engagement of law enforcement officials until conduct proceedings are completed. In the case of threats to harm oneself, the University may call local law enforcement officials or other persons acquainted with the person making the threat for the purposes of checking on that person’s w ith the person to determine available resources and appropriate next steps.