Skip Navigation

Standards of Conduct

Section 209

Standards of acceptable conduct are necessary for the orderly and efficient operation of the college and for the benefit and protection of the rights and safety of all members of the college community. At Smith College, every effort has been made to assure that the general rules of conduct are reasonable and that the restrictions placed on individual behavior are limited to those governing behavior within a professional setting.


Members of the Smith College community are expected to treat one other with courtesy and respect at all times. The opinions of others are to be respected, and the exchange of ideas and criticism should be handled in a professional manner. Uncivil behavior, including the use of abusive language when addressing other members of the college community or the public, is unacceptable and could result in disciplinary action.

Charitable/Political Fundraising

An employee's decision whether to support a political, social, or charitable cause or fundraising appeal should not be unduly influenced by work relationships. Consequently, the college does not permit employees to seek contributions from one another during work time for charitable or political organizations or the sale of raffle tickets, candy, and magazines to support such efforts. For more information, see Political and Campaign Activities Policy, Solicitation and Code of Conduct (Lobbying).

Contributions for Co-Worker Gifts

Requests for donations to buy flowers or gifts for colleagues on special occasions (e.g., marriage, bereavement, retirement, etc.) may be made with the approval of the department head provided that individual contributions remain confidential.

Sale of Merchandise

The sale of any merchandise (e.g., arts, crafts, Avon or Amway products, Girl Scout cookies, etc.) by employees during work time is prohibited. Work time is defined as the time employees are actually engaged in work and does not include authorized meal time or break time.

Although merchandise may be offered for sale to co-workers before and after work, at lunch, etc., employees are encouraged to leave the items and order forms in staff lounges and coffee areas to avoid embarrassing co-workers who do not wish to contribute. The sale of merchandise in departments and offices by relatives or non-employees is prohibited at any time.

For additional information, please see the college-wide Solicitation Policy. Supervisors and department heads are responsible for ensuring that these policies are applied consistently. Questions should be directed to your supervisor or to the Office of Human Resources.

Dress Code

Reasonable standards of dress and grooming are based on the particular role and operations of an office and are determined by the department head.

Children and Other Visitors at the Workplace

The routine or extended presence of friends or relatives, including children, in offices and buildings creates safety and liability considerations for the college and can be distracting for others, and is therefore normally not permitted.

Pets at the Workplace

No pets are allowed inside college buildings.

Note: This prohibition does not apply to individuals accompanied by seeing-eye dogs or other trained, assisting animals. See Code of Conduct (Safety in the Workplace) for more information.