YYAS 2024 Code of Conduct for Online and Residential Programming

Yale Young African Scholars (YYAS) will run as both an online and residential program in 2024. Participants agree to be responsible members of our online and residential communities and adhere to our code of conduct.

Additionally, YYAS residential participants who are in violation with YYAS policies, Host School (Zimbabwe) school policies, or any local or federal laws of Zimbabwe will be dismissed from the program, and if applicable, subject to additional criminal penalties.

  1. Respect Others

    • Participants will show respect for others and not engage in any form of harassment, hazing, intimidation, or bullying. This includes any behavior (emails, phone calls, texting, social media platforms, images or other non-verbal behavior of any sort, cyber-gossip, using participants’ names, etc.), intended to offend or intimidate another person, including participants and staff.
    • Participants may not discriminate against anyone on the basis of the individual’s sex, race, color, religion, age, disability, national origin, or sexual orientation.
    • Participants will show respect for others: disrespectful behaviors (such as lying, swearing, threatening, etc.) towards a staff member or fellow participants is not tolerated
    • Participants are expected to respect both community property and the property of others. Theft, the possession or use of stolen property, or the deliberate vandalism, destruction, or abuse of personal or community property, are considered violations of this standard. Ultimately, participants are responsible for the safety of their devices and any other personal property.

    • Bringing external visitors into buildings without permission is not allowed at any time.

    • Lying to a staff member or hiding information about the whereabouts of a student or any other safety matter is also grounds for dismissal.

    • Participants will respect the rules and regulations of the residential buildings YYAS utilizes during the duration of the programThis includes, but is not limited to, abiding by any posted quiet hours, utilizing emergency fire doors only in the event of an emergency, and so on.

    • If you are experiencing harassment, bullying, discrimination, or unwanted contact online or in-person please report it to your parent/guardian, teacher or trusted adult that is physically with you and can help. They will contact the Director of YYAS (african.scholars@yale.edu) as needed.

  2. Academic Honesty

    • Participants are expected to conduct themselves with honesty and integrity. Cheating on assignments, plagiarism, or improper acknowledgment of sources will not be tolerated.
    • Academic dishonesty includes all forms of misrepresentation in academic work, including any form of plagiarism, failure to acknowledge ideas or language taken from others, and the submission of work prepared by another person.
    • Participants will not take content of any kind, including but not limited to papers, in whole or in part, from electronic sources online and must always acknowledge sources, including those from the Internet, and do their best to track down original authors. Plagiarism in any way will not be tolerated.

  3. No Drugs/Alcohol

    • During the duration of the program, participants will not purchase, possess, use, distribute, and/or be in the presence of or paraphernalia of:

      • Any illicit drug including but not limited to marijuana.
      • Alcohol or empty alcohol containers.
      • Any controlled substances not specifically prescribed to the participant. YYAS will accommodate needs for medication that requires refrigeration.
  4. No Smoking, Tobacco, or Vaping

    • Tobacco and all smoking/chewing products, including but not limited to cigarettes, e-cigarettes, and vaping (also of non-tobacco products) are always prohibited. This rule applies to everyone, including any participants who are over 18 years old.

  5. No Weapons or Fire Hazards

    • Weapons of any kind, including firearms, stun guns, BB guns, knives of any sort or martial art weapons, are strictly prohibited and may not be brought to campus.

    • The burning of anything or the use of any open flame indoors (e.g., candles, matches, lighters, incense, tobacco products, etc.) is also considered a violation of this policy, as any risk of starting a fire is considered dangerous and prohibited.  Accordingly, any small appliances that could be a fire hazard will not be allowed.

  6. Check in Protocols and Attendance (Residential Program)

    • Scholars will not leave their room without permission after room check and before 7 am.

    • Scholars may NOT leave the host school campus boundaries at any time, including by foot, public transportation, taxi/car service, or private vehicle.  Scholars may not use any sort of transportation other than walking by foot; use of bicycles, scooters, skateboards, rollerblades, skates, ride-share services, motorcycles, vespas, and so on is expressly prohibited.

    • Scholars will attend required appointments including lectures, seminars, and other meetings, unless they are seeking help from a staff member for health or similar emergency reasons. Failure to attend required appointments or leaving such appointments before they end without a valid reason is grounds for dismissal.

    • YYAS does not permit scholars to miss any part of our programming for any reason; scholars must be present in every part of programming to receive a YYAS Certificate of Participation. Given that YYAS is a 10-day program, every hour of every day counts, and our staff carefully crafts a schedule that is both cohesive and rich in content. Typically, students only leave our program for any amount of time for extreme circumstances (e.g., family medical emergency).

  7. Attendance (Online Program)

    • Participants will attend required program components including seminars, university guidance and other meetings, unless they are excused by program leadership because of internet access, health or other emergency reasons. Participants are to inform the YYAS team of any such excuse via email. Students must attend at least five (5) full days of the program to receive a Certificate of Completion.

    • Since the YYAS program is so condensed, every hour of each day counts, and our staff have carefully crafted a schedule that is both cohesive and rich in content.

  8. Health and Safety

    • YYAS will always prioritize the health and well-being of each participant during their time in Harare, Zimbabwe. If a participant is unwell, YYAS will contact the parent/guardian(s) and ensure the scholar is seen by school health staff, depending on the severity of the situation. Additionally, if the situation prevents the participant from participating and/or puts other participants in immediate risk, then YYAS reserves the right to safely return the scholar to their family for additional care.

    • Given the evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic and changing best practices for health and safety protocols, YYAS reserves the right to implement new safety measures (e.g., mask mandates, social distancing) at any time before or during the program. Any new policies will be communicated immediately to participants and their families, and failure to comply risks disciplinary measures (up to and including immediate dismissal).

  9. Online Learning (Online Program)

    • Participants should assure that they have a computer, a tablet or a phone and access to a reliable Internet connection. This will allow for access to the digital platforms that will be used during the program and for full student participation. Zoom will be used for all seminars, university guidance and admissions days under the supervision of YYAS staff. The links for all meetings will be emailed to the students prior to the start of the summer sessions. Google Classroom will host the program’s discussion forums including those to be held on Zoom, and all the preparation materials for seminars, university guidance, test prep, and the social impact project.

    • Participants need to check their personal email provided to the program at throughout each day to access important communications.

    • It is mandatory for participants to join all components of the program from a quiet room and never while they are out and about doing something else.

    • Participants are expected to stop all notifications for other messages by turning notifications to “Do Not Disturb” to minimize disruptions to the program.

    • Participants should set up a clean and professional workspace. When video-conferencing, they should not have personal items or background items in sight that they wouldn’t bring into a classroom. Instructors and program staff will work with students to share guidelines around appropriate and effective video-conferencing behavior for the different components.

    • Participants will prepare their appearance and clothing for class as they would if on campus. We recommend healthy habits for diet, exercise, hydration, hygiene, sleep, and attire, as all these factors impacts their participation in our online community. Failure to do so is grounds for dismissal.

  10. Technology Use and Recording Policy

    • The use of smart phones, laptops, or other electronic devices for reasons outside of the curriculum including (but not limited to) texting, email, games, coding, art, social media, or surfing the internet is prohibited during lectures and other academic components.

    • Cell phones and/or any other device capable of taking photographs or recording video may not be used to take photographs or video without the knowledge of the subject of those images or in any manner that would violate the privacy of others.

    • Video, audio, or digital recording of program sessions including lectures, briefings, seminars, discussion sessions, and presentations is forbidden. Scholars are encouraged to take notes for personal use but recording program sessions without written permission is grounds for dismissal. This extends to material about the program, its programmatic content, handouts, and remarks – written, verbal, or recorded – that are posted to websites, blogs, and social networks. The only exception to this policy is during sessions where recording presentations is permitted, which will be communicated explicitly to Scholars. Students may take photographs during the program for personal use, but not during lectures or workshops.

    • Any electronic device may be confiscated for the duration of the Program if use is in violation of any Program or College policy, or local or federal law.

    • Students may not give out personal information over the Internet, such as dorm location or phone number, to people they do not know.

  11. Sexual Behavior, Sexual Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct

    • Sexual Behavior: Participants are expected to focus on academic work and are strictly prohibited from engaging in any sexual behavior during the program. If this policy is violated, then participants risk disciplinary measures such as notification of parent/guardian and/or immediate dismissal

    • In addition, to ensure the safety of all our participants, Sexual Harassment or Misconduct must be reported to our staff immediately:

    •  Sexual harassment consists of nonconsensual sexual advances, request for sexual favors, and/or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature on or off campus, when: (1) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a condition of an individual’s academic standing; or (2) submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for decisions or for academic evaluation, grades, or advancement; or (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s academic performance or creating an intimidating or hostile academic environment. Sexual harassment may be found in a single episode, as well as in persistent behavior.

    • Sexual misconduct incorporates a range of behaviors including rape, sexual assault (which includes any kind of nonconsensual sexual contact), sexual harassment, intimate partner violence, stalking, and any other conduct of a sexual nature that is nonconsensual, or has the purpose or effect of threatening, intimidating, or coercing a person or persons. When there is a lack of mutual consent about sexual activity, or there is ambiguity about whether consent has been given, a student can be charged with, and found guilty of, committing a sexual assault or another form of sexual misconduct.

    • Much sexual misconduct includes nonconsensual sexual contact, but this is not a necessary component. Threatening speech that is sufficiently serious to constitute sexual harassment, for example, constitutes sexual misconduct. Photographs, video, or other visual or auditory records of sexual activity made without explicit consent constitute sexual misconduct, even if the activity documented was consensual.

    • Similarly, sharing such recordings without explicit consent is a form of sexual misconduct. For example, forwarding a harassing electronic communication may constitute an offense. Taking or sending any type of nude pictures is not allowed. Please note electronic possession and/or distribution of nude, semi-nude or sexualized pictures of minors is considered child pornography, which is a federal crime.