Updates and Communications
On this page, you can find ongoing updates to our work on prevention, education, intervention and response to sexual and gender-based violence. The month of implementation is cited, for ongoing accountability. Some of these updates came about in response to student advocacy in the summer of 2020. We will use this page on an ongoing basis, however, to keep you apprised of recent work on sexual and gender-based violence. This includes updates and plans from multiple offices and departments. If you have questions or concerns, you can reach out to: firstname.lastname@example.org, and our Title IX Coordinator will make sure to direct your question to the responsible director or leader.
The updates on this page are not a complete record of all the resources available to our students, so please explore our website, especially the Resources for Students section!
Student input on policy and process
We believe that systemic change requires active participation and input from those directly impacted by the system. Student input is welcome on an ongoing basis, and you can use the confidential feedback form for all our offices. Some recent changes to policy and process focused on student input and experiences:
In August 2020, Student Rights & Responsibilities (SRR) started a Resident Advisor consultation group: RAs will meet with SRR staff monthly to discuss experiences particular to the RA role.
- In August 2020, we published a revised Sexual Misconduct Policy that incorporated student input.
- In September 2020, the Title IX Coordinator hired two student workers who are focused on designing materials that emphasize transparency and accessibility of information about sexual misconduct reporting, options, and procedures.
Advisors and supports during investigation
We recognize that a survivor’s community of support has one of the biggest impacts on healing and recovery. Community and social support mitigates the impact of trauma and helps us reach a point where a traumatic experience is one part of a full and whole life story. When going through an investigation, a student can utilize their own chosen advisor or a trained advisor free of charge.
In addition to an advisor, any student can have a personal or professional emotional support person at their side when meeting with any college administrator, as well as in an interview, while reviewing evidence collected in an investigation, and at a disciplinary hearing.
- Our Confidential Advocates are available to students, in addition to 24/7 community resources including Call to Safety’s 24-hr hotline, which you can reach at: 1-888-235-5333.
In September 2020, nineteen students began our law school’s first Title IX on Campus course, which included training for the students to act as process advisors.
- In October 2020, we posted the list of process advisors available for students who are considering requesting an investigation, or who are going through an investigation.
- Our Sexual Misconduct Policy, revised August 2020, includes information about Supportive Measures, which are available with or without an investigation or formal complaint.
Restorative or Transformative Justice Program
If you are interested in exploring or helping design a potential program, please contact email@example.com.
Student Rights and Responsibilities and the Title IX Coordinator are committed to using language that accurately reflects the resources and options available to students. We will not use labels such as Restorative Justice until and unless the college has implemented a full Restorative Justice and/or Transformative Justice model that is culturally responsive and trauma-informed.
The Counseling Service is committed to providing effective and compassionate trauma-informed care for all students who seek our services. To that end:
- All counseling staff have had training in trauma-informed treatment.
- All on-campus counseling is free.
- In September-October 2020, to expand access to our on-campus services, we began recruiting for a mental health clinician with a specific focus on BIPOC and/or LGBTQIA+ students.
- Throughout the academic year 2020-21, Counseling Service staff will be engaged in a reflection process so that we can continue to improve our support for students affected by trauma.
- In Fall 2020, with the support of a donor, the Office of Case Management implemented a new student-facing referral platform (MiResource) to make it easier for students to find off-campus resources to meet their needs.
Health Service is committed to improve our services to students experiencing sexual and gender-based violence. To that end:
- In Spring of 2019 all staff participated in sensitivity training for medical offices in caring for and expanding services for trans-spectrum individuals.
- In the Fall of 2019, all health care providers attended a workshop on providing transgender health care.
- In Summer 2020, Health Service worked on updating our clinic policy and procedures to assist students who experience sexual and gender- based violence.
- In August 2020, the College hired an external investigator to investigate allegations regarding the behavior of an individual in the Health Service. The Health Service will await the results of the investigation, and we stand ready to take appropriate action in response to its findings.
In the 2020-21 academic year, the Health Service will be engaged in a reflection process so that we can continue to assess and improve our support for students affected by trauma.
Campus Living conducts regular annual training at the start of each academic year, for Area Directors (ADs) and Resident Advisors (RAs). Campus Living training plans for 2020-21 include:
- In conjunction with the Interpersonal Violence and Prevention Team, providing on-going training and enhancement of current training for ADs and RAs in areas including bystander intervention and dynamics of violence.
- Collaborating with the Associate Dean of Equity and Inclusion and Title IX Coordinator for appropriate training for RAs and ADs regarding their role in sexual misconduct disclosures.
- Collaborating with the Interim Director of Student Rights and Responsibilities (SRR) for both ADs and RAs for training, protocol of reporting, and clarity on the Student Rights and Responsibilities process. This includes establishing on-going meetings with the Interim Director of SRR between the RAs and ADs and distinguishing the difference in expectations and responsibilities. Determining effectiveness of training and addressing any ongoing concerns and/or issues with reporting through evaluation and feedback.
- Collaborating with the Office of Case Management and Counseling Services to ensure there is timely outreach and support for RAs who have had to support residents through mental health crises. This also includes the ongoing training of ADs when supporting students during times of mental health crisis.
- Ensuring all Campus Living staff and campus partners understand that welfare checks are the responsibility of Area Directors and ensure ADs receive adequate training for these checks.
- Continued participation in student life on-call training for Area Directors.
- Working with the office of Inclusion and Multicultural Engagement to develop equity and inclusion training for RAs and ADs.
- Working with the Director of Campus Safety to clarify and revise policy for on-call procedures including when to call the Area Director and when to exclude the RA.
- Working with Campus Living professionals and campus partners towards continued implementation, evaluation, and development of Summer, Fall, Winter, Orientation, and on-going monthly trainings for Resident Advisors and Area Directors.
Prevention and Education
We know that any response after the fact is only a piece of the puzzle, and does not address the deep-seated systemic issues that lead to sexual and gender-based violence. Education and practice on keys to prevention, including consent, healthy boundaries, and bystander intervention, are necessary components.
- Our prevention work received support through a grant from the U.S.. Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) in late 2018.
- Under the grant, the college formed our Interpersonal Violence Prevention Team, and began implementing Lead the Change, our bystander intervention curriculum.
- New students in August 2020 participated in a 90-minute, peer-led Sexual Health and Consent workshop.
Consent workshops have been and will continue to be offered throughout the 2020-21 academic year.
- Descriptions of prevention programming are in the Prevention tab on this website.