For purposes of this policy, the following terms have the definitions provided below. Please note that some of these terms may also be used in other contexts, such as in connection with concurrent legal proceedings, and that they may have different meanings in those contexts.
An individual who reportedly experienced sexual misconduct, regardless of whether that individual participates in the disclosure or review of that report by the University at any point.
Clear and unambiguous agreement, expressed in mutually understandable words or actions, to engage in a particular activity. Consent can be withdrawn by either party at any point. Consent must be voluntarily given and may not be valid if a person is being subjected to actions or behaviors that elicit emotional or psychological pressure, intimidation, or fear. Consent to engage in one sexual activity, or past agreement to engage in a particular sexual activity, cannot be presumed to constitute consent to engage in a different sexual activity or to engage again in a sexual activity. Consent cannot be validly given by a person who is incapacitated. For purposes of this policy, the issue is whether the Respondent knew, or should have known, that the activity in question was not consensual.
Lacking the physical and/or mental ability to make informed, rational judgments. This may have a variety of causes, including, but not limited to, being asleep or unconscious, having consumed alcohol or taken drugs, or experiencing blackouts or flashbacks.
An appropriately trained individual, who may be a University employee, who reviews and investigates reports of sexual misconduct under this policy.
An individual who reports to the University a concern regarding possible sexual misconduct. A Reporter need not be a Complainant.
An appropriately trained staff member in the Office of Student Conflict Resolution who is assigned to each case to facilitate appropriate resolution/sanctioning processes.
A University official, recommended by the Faculty Senate or Vice President for Student Life, who is trained to review reported violations of the Statement of Student Rights and Responsibilities and of this policy.
A University student or participant in a University Program who is reported to have engaged in sexual misconduct. This term also includes individuals whose identities are unknown if (a) there is reason to believe that they may be a University student or participant in a University Program or (b) the Complainant or Reporter is a student.
Umbrella term used to encompass unwanted or unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that is committed without valid consent, including sexual assault and sexual harassment. Sexual misconduct may occur between people of the same sex or between people of different sexes. Sexual misconduct can include both intentional conduct and conduct that results in negative effects, even if those negative effects were unintended. Sexual misconduct can also include retaliation in connection with a Complainant’s or Reporter’s allegations under this policy. Sexual misconduct may include the following:
- Sexual Assault: Unwanted or unwelcome touching of a sexual nature, including hugging, kissing, fondling, oral sex, anal or vaginal intercourse, or other physical sexual activity that occurs without valid consent.
Sexual Harassment: Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature if: (1) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s education, living environment, employment, or participation in a University-related activity or University Program; (2) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for or a factor in decisions affecting that individual’s education, living environment, employment, or participation in a University-related activity; or (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s educational performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, offensive, or abusive environment for that individual’s education, living environment, employment, or participation in a University-related activity.
- Examples may include, but are not limited to, the following: unwanted sexual statements; unwanted personal attention including stalking and cyber-stalking; unwanted physical or sexual advances that would constitute sexual assault, as defined in this policy; electronically recording, photographing, or transmitting intimate or sexual utterances, sounds, or images without the knowledge and consent of all parties involved; touching oneself sexually for others to view; and voyeurism (spying on others who are in intimate or sexual situations). More information about sexual harassment is available on the sexual misconduct policy website.
- Conduct reported as sexual harassment will be evaluated by considering the totality of the particular circumstances, including the nature, frequency, intensity, location, context, and duration of the questioned behavior. Although repeated incidents generally create a stronger claim of sexual harassment, a serious incident, even if isolated, can be sufficient. For example, a single instance of sexual assault can constitute sexual harassment.
An individual or individuals chosen by a Complainant, Respondent, Reporter, or witness to provide support during the review of a report of possible sexual misconduct under this policy. The person(s) chosen may not already be directly involved in the investigative process (for example, as a Complainant, Respondent, witness, or Reporter) and may not speak on behalf of the person they are supporting, but instead may be present only to provide assistance or advice to the individual they are supporting.
Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX) (20 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq.; 34 C.F.R. Part 106) (as amended) is a federal law that prohibits sex-based discrimination, including sexual harassment and sexual assault, in education programs that receive federal financial assistance.
Title IX Coordinator
The University official charged with ensuring the University’s overall compliance with Title IX and related University policy.
A University-sponsored activity that primarily includes elementary, secondary, or postsecondary student participants.