Basic Rights and Obligations

Haverford College holds that open-minded and free inquiry is essential to a student’s educational development.  Thus, the College recognizes the right of all students to engage in discussion, to exchange thought and opinion, and to speak or write freely on any subject.  To be complete, this freedom to learn must include the right of inquiry both in and out of the classroom and must be free from any arbitrary rules or actions that would deny students the freedom to make their own choice regarding controversial issues.

Further, the College endeavors to develop in its students the realization that as members of a free society they have not only the right, but also the obligation to inform themselves about various problems and issues;  and that they are free to formulate and express their positions on these issues. Finally, the College reaffirms the freedom of assembly as an essential part of the process of discussion, inquiry, and advocacy.  Students, therefore, have the right to join existing organizations or to create new organizations, on or off the campus, which advocate and engage in lawful actions to implement their announced goals. Student actions such as those here involved do not imply approval, disapproval, or sponsorship by the College or its Student Body; neither do such actions in any way absolve a student from her or his academic or other community responsibilities.  Similarly, students are expected to make clear that they are speaking or acting as individuals and not for the College or its Student Body. The freedom to learn, to inquire, to speak, to organize, and to act with conviction within the bounds of the law are held by Haverford College to be a cornerstone of education in a free society.

Last modified: September 21, 2011