Student Rights & Responsibilities
Student Sexual Misconduct Policy & Complaint Procedure

Definitions

  • Students – All currently enrolled students including full- and part-time, degree- and non-degree, as well as applicants for admission, as applicable.
  • Sexual Harassment – Unwelcomed, gender-based verbal or physical conduct that is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with, denies or limits someone’s ability to participate in or benefit from the College’s educational program and/or activities, and may be based on power differentials (quid pro quo), the creation of a hostile environment, or retaliation.
  • Sexual Discrimination – Any distinction, preference, advantage for or detriment to an individual compared to others that is based upon an individual’s actual or perceived gender that is so severe, persistent or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with or limits a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the College’s educational program or activities.
  • Non-Consensual Sexual Contact – Any intentional sexual touching, however slight, with any object, that is without consent and/or by force.
  • Non-Consensual Sexual Intercourse – Any sexual intercourse, however slight, with any object that is without consent and/or by force.
  • Sexual Exploitation - Occurs when a student takes non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for his/her own advantage or benefit, or to benefit or advantage anyone other than the one being exploited, and that behavior does not otherwise constitute one of other sexual misconduct offenses.
  • Retaliation – Any adverse educational, personal, or employment action taken against a person because of the person’s participation in a complaint or investigation of sexual misconduct. 
  • Consent – Actively, clearly, knowingly and voluntarily providing permission to engage in a sexual activity.  Consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create mutually understandable clear permission regarding willingness to engage in sexual activity.  Previous relationships or prior consent cannot imply consent to future sexual acts.  Silence, in and of itself, cannot be interpreted as consent.
  • Force – The use of physical violence and/or imposing on someone physically to gain sexual access; or threats, intimidation and/or coercion that overcome resistance or produce consent; or sexual activity with someone not of legal age or with someone that reasonably is known to be mentally or physically incapacitated.
  • Stalking – Repetitive and/or menacing pursuit, following, harassment and/or interference with the peace and/or safety of a member of the community.
  • Bullying – Repeated and/or severe aggressive behavior likely to intimidate or intentionally hurt, control or diminish another person, physically or mentally (that is not speech or conduct otherwise protected by the 1st Amendment).
  • Remedy – Any action taken by the College, usually prior to the conclusion of an investigation, which attempts to temporarily or permanently solve any potential or existing issues related to the claim of sexual misconduct.
  • Sanction – Any action taken by the College, usually in a disciplinary process after the conclusion of an investigation and typically punitive or educational in nature, which attempts to permanently solve any potential or existing issues related to the claim of sexual misconduct.

Student Sexual Misconduct Complaint Procedure

  1. Reporting
    1. A student who believes he/she has been a victim of any form of sexual misconduct, as defined in Policy 4.07 Student Sexual Harassment, should report the incident to the Assistant Director of Counseling (Deputy Coordinator & Lead Investigator of Title VI, IX and Section 504 Student Issues), Bush Campus Center, Room 204, who will advise the student of appropriate reporting procedures.
      1. If, after reporting the incident, the student wishes to submit a formal complaint, he/she should do so in writing to the Deputy Coordinator.  The complaint should contain the complainant’s name, address, contact information, and a description of the allegations of sexual misconduct.  In general, the complaint should be filed as soon as possible.
      2. If, after reporting the incident, the student does not submit a formal complaint, the Deputy Coordinator will still conduct an informal investigation into the allegation of sexual misconduct.  However, it should be noted that if the student does not wish to submit a formal complaint, the ability to investigate and respond to the incident may be limited.
      3. If the complaint involves the Deputy Coordinator, or if the student is uncomfortable for any reason discussing such matters with the Deputy Coordinator, or if the student is not satisfied after bringing the matter to the Deputy Coordinator’s attention, the student should report the matter promptly to the Chief Student Affairs Officer (Coordinator of Title VI, IX and Section 504), Student & Administrative Services Center, Room 3009.
    2. Often, the incident will be referred to the Deputy Coordinator through a 3rd party (dean, faculty member, residence life staff, friend, etc.).  In these circumstances, the Deputy Coordinator will attempt to reach out to the victim of the sexual misconduct.
      1. If, after making contact, the student wishes to submit a formal complaint, he/she should do so in writing to the Deputy Coordinator.  The complaint should contain the complainant’s name, address, contact information, and a description of the allegations of sexual misconduct.  In general, the complaint should be filed as soon as possible.
      2. If the Deputy Coordinator if unable to make contact or if, after making contact, the student does not submit a formal complaint, the Deputy Coordinator will still conduct an informal investigation into the allegation of sexual misconduct.  However, it should be noted that in these situations, the ability to investigate and respond to the incident may be limited.
  2. Investigation
    1. The Deputy Coordinator will investigate and attempt to resolve the complaints promptly and fairly, with due regard to the interests of both the complainant and the alleged offender. Every reasonable effort will be made to conduct all proceedings in the most confidential manner possible.
    2. If the student complaint contains allegations regarding a College employee who is not a student or who is a full-time employee and is also a student, the Assistant Vice President for Employee Relations (Deputy Coordinator & Lead Investigator of Title VII, IX and Section 504/ADA Employee Issues) will be contacted immediately so a joint investigation can be conducted.
    3. All investigations will be conducted with due regard to the interests of both the complainant and the alleged offender, to include notice of the complaint to the alleged offender and an opportunity to respond to the complaint.
  3. Remedies
    • If necessary, the Deputy Coordinator may recommend, and the Coordinator will impose, any needed actions to promptly and effectively remedy any potential or existing issues related to the claim of sexual misconduct.
  4. Jurisdiction
    1. If the complaint of sexual misconduct is made against a student, the College will investigate and may take appropriate disciplinary action through the Student Code of Conduct. Students who violate this policy will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action, up to and including expulsion from the College.
    2. If the complaint of sexual misconduct is made against an employee, the College will investigate and may take appropriate disciplinary action through the College’s personnel policies.
    3. If the complaint of sexual misconduct is made against a student who is also a part-time employee, the individual will be subject to disciplinary actions in accordance with all applicable policies.
    4. In the case of sexual misconduct by persons other than students or College employees, on College property or in off-campus educational settings, the College will take those steps within its power to investigate and eliminate the problem.
  5. Determination & Notification
    1. Determinations of sexual misconduct will be made based on the preponderance of the evidence (more likely than not).
    2. If it has been determined that sexual misconduct has occurred, the perpetrator and the complainant will be informed in writing.
    3. If it has been determined that sexual misconduct has not occurred, the alleged perpetrator and the complainant will be informed in writing.
  6. Reconsideration
    1. The complainant or the (alleged) perpetrator can request a reconsideration of the findings if dissatisfied with the determination of the Deputy Coordinator(s). 
    2. The request for reconsideration shall be made within 7 business days of the receipt of the written determination and shall be submitted to the Coordinator in writing.
    3. The Coordinator will make a final determination and inform the parties in writing within 7 business days of the receipt of the request for reconsideration.
      1. In extenuating circumstances, the Coordinator has the right to extend this deadline and will so notify the parties.
    4. This level of review will be considered as a final level of internal appeal.
  7. External Complaints
    1. The Deputy Coordinator will inform the complainant of the right to file complaints or charges with the appropriate state or federal agency.

Reference: College Policy and Procedure 4.07

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