Professionalism

Date: July 2018

Policy: Bowdoin College seeks to maintain a professional atmosphere in which students, employees, parents, donors, visitors and members of the public can participate in its educational and other programs. Employees are, therefore, requested to maintain appropriate dress, personal appearance and demeanor consistent with their position responsibilities. Similarly, employees are expected to keep their work areas orderly, consistent with access, efficiency, safety, health and environmental requirements.

Although the College does not have a formal dress code, it is the responsibility of each employee to report for work in a neat and clean manner consistent with the work being performed or customary professional standards. Some departments have specific uniform/dress requirements based on service and/or safety regulations and guidelines. Each supervisor or department head is responsible for establishing and enforcing reasonable standards of dress appropriate to the work performed in that area.

Employees who violate College policy or abuse their position of trust by engaging in illegal, unethical or unprofessional conduct are subject to College discipline up to and including termination of employment. The College policies and procedures promote prompt recognition, reporting, and remedying of bullying or harassing workplace conduct with the goal of eliminating such conduct quickly and effectively, even in cases in which the reported conduct may not rise to the level of harassment actionable under the law.

It is not possible to list all forms of behavior that are considered unacceptable in the workplace, but the following are examples of infractions of the rules of conduct that may result in disciplinary action:

  • theft, destroying, defacing, or inappropriate removal or possession of property
  • falsification of data or timekeeping records or other acts of dishonesty
  • breach of confidentiality
  • improper use of network and computer resources (such as inappropriate use of copyrights and licenses, and attempting to gain unauthorized access) that put the integrity of computer-based information in jeopardy, exposes the College to possible  liability or that threatens the rights of other information resource users
  • use of Bowdoin College supplies, equipment or property to carry out private business ventures or to conduct inappropriate personal activities
  • behavior that threatens the health and safety of the employee or others
  • fighting or provoking a fight, intimidating, threatening or violent behavior, or engaging in “horseplay” which could result in harm to others in the workplace
  • indecent behavior or insensitive language or actions that demean, provoke or humiliate others
  • negligence or improper conduct leading to damage of College, student, or employee property
  • insubordination or other disrespectful conduct
  • sleeping on the job
  • possession, distribution, sale, transfer or use of alcohol or illegal drugs in the workplace, while on duty, or while operating College-owned vehicles or equipment
  • gambling, lotteries, playing cards for money, booking bets, or any other form of gambling while on College property, during work or non-working hours
  • duplicating or loaning College keys or access cards
  • supplying false or misleading information on the employment application, personal information or benefits forms, or altering or falsifying and college records (e.g. attendance, financial, student grades, etc…)
  • violation of local, state or federal laws while on College property or while working as an employee of the College

Employees of the College have an ongoing obligation to inform Human Resources of any misdemeanor or felony conviction during the course of employment.

Employees should be aware that they represent Bowdoin College while at work, whether in person, through written communication, or telephone interactions. Others may form their first and only impression of the College based on the way employees interact with them – all employees are expected to act professionally at all times.