When a report is made, the Title IX Coordinator can investigate, address inquiries and coordinate the University’s response.  The University reserves the right to designate a different investigator or more than one investigator when the Title IX Coordinator has a conflict or when deemed appropriate by the Dean of Students, Title IX Coordinator or the Associate Vice President of Human Resources.  Complaints can be made by mail, orally or in writing, to the Title IX Coordinator, a Deputy Title IX Coordinator or a responsible employee.  Often, sex and gender-based complaints and other discrimination complaints, include other potential University policy violations.  Whenever there is a report of sex or gender-based discrimination or a report of any other form of discrimination, this policy shall apply. 

Complaints should include as much of the following information as possible:

  • the name, email address and phone number of the complainant;
  • a detailed statement describing the conduct which is the basis of the complaint;
  • name(s) of the respondent(s);
  • the date(s), time(s), and location(s) of the conduct;
  • the name(s) of any witness(es); 
  • a statement on how the alleged conduct affects the complainant’s education or employment; and
  • any supporting documentation and evidence. 

If the Title IX Coordinator or designated investigator believes that the complaint is incomplete, additional information may be requested.  Prompt filing of a complaint is strongly encouraged. The University reserves the right to not investigate a complaint that is made more than 120 days after the alleged incident, as a lengthy period between an alleged occurrence and an investigation may make fact finding difficult or impossible.  A complaint may be withdrawn at any time after it is filed.  However, withdrawal of a complaint will not necessarily result in the termination of the University’s inquiry or investigation.  


Cooperation with and Confidentiality of Investigations

Current students and employees without a privilege are required to cooperate in a University inquiry or investigation as a condition of enrollment and/or employment. The University encourages reports to be made, but will not tolerate intentional false reporting of incidents.

The University will share information from a complaint or an investigation only with those who have a need to know and/or are responsible for implementing measures or remedies.  The privacy of all parties will be respected to the extent possible, in accordance with the law and so as not to interfere with a University investigation.

Preliminary Inquiry

The Title IX Coordinator or designee may conduct a preliminary inquiry to determine if the allegations fall under this policy, or to otherwise determine whether a formal investigation is warranted.  During the preliminary inquiry, the investigator can meet with witnesses, receive statements from the complainant(s), respondent(s) and/or other witnesses, and gather information regarding the allegations.  The Title IX Coordinator or designee will decide whether to proceed with an investigation.  If there is insufficient evidence to warrant an investigation, or if the University does not have jurisdiction over the issue, the inquiry will be closed with no further investigative action.  The University can offer additional resources and/or interim measures if appropriate. The University reserves the right to reopen an inquiry at any time.

Investigation

If the Title IX Coordinator or designee determines an investigation should proceed, the University will conduct a prompt, fair, and impartial investigation.  Prompt means that the investigation is completed within reasonably prompt timeframes, generally within seventy five (75) days.  Fair means that the investigation is conducted in a manner that is consistent with this policy and transparent to the complainant and respondent.  Impartial means the investigation is conducted by an individual who does not have a conflict of interest or bias for or against either party, and who is trained on issues related to all forms of discrimination and sexual misconduct and in conducting an investigation.  The investigator can extend the timeframe to complete an investigation for good cause with written notice to the complainant and respondent of the delay and the reason for the delay.  Examples of good cause for extensions include but are not limited to: 1) the complexity of the case requires it; 2) there are several parties involved; 3) the witnesses or the parties are unavailable or uncooperative; and 4) if a University investigation would compromise a law enforcement investigation.  

The investigator will conduct the investigation as follows:

  1. Determine the identity and contact information of the complainant, any witnesses and the respondent, if they can be identified;
  2. Identify the policies allegedly violated. The investigator will also send a copy of this policy to the parties;  
  3. Send notice of investigation to the respondent. The notice must contain
    1. summary of the allegation; 
    2. nature of the conduct upon which the complaint is based; and 
    3. date(s) or approximate date(s) when the violation allegedly occurred. 
  4. The investigator will interview both parties, witnesses as appropriate and review of relevant information;  
  5. If the evidence gathered leads the investigator to believe that the respondent may have violated the policy, based on preponderance of evidence, the investigator will communicate the findings to the respondent.  The investigator will make reasonable efforts to inform the respondent of the date, place and nature of the conduct if this information is available.  
  6. The complainant and respondent will have an opportunity to present witnesses for the investigator to interview.  The investigator has the discretion to determine if a witness has relevant information.  The investigator will not meet with character witnesses as part of this process if they have no relevant factual information;
  7. The complainant and respondent have the right to have an advisor of their choice present for any meeting with the Title IX Coordinator or designated investigator. This provision only applies to investigations of sexual misconduct.
  8. Preponderance of evidence is the standard of proof.  This standard is described as whether the alleged fact is more likely than not to have occurred.  Rules of evidence do not apply to this investigation;
  9. Once the investigation is complete the investigator will write a report;
  10. Where the respondent is found not responsible for the alleged violation(s), the allegations will be dismissed and a final report will be sent to a deciding party; 
  11. Where the respondent is found responsible for violating University policy, the report will be sent to a deciding party.  The deciding party for student respondents (including student employees) is the Dean of Students, or designee.  The deciding party for employee respondents is the Associate Vice President of Human Resources or designee.  When the respondent is both a student and employee the sanctions will be imposed by the Associate Vice President of Human Resources, or designee;
  12. The deciding party shall review the findings and may take one of the following actions:
    1. Request that the investigator reopen the investigation to consider additional information and resubmit the report to the deciding party; or
    2. Accept the investigator’s findings.
  13. In the event that the respondent is found responsible for an alleged violation, the deciding party shall determine sanctions; and
  14. Once the deciding party reviews the investigation report and applies a sanction as appropriate, a summary of the findings and the sanctions, if applicable, shall promptly be communicated to the parties by the deciding party.  The University will make reasonable efforts to communicate to the parties simultaneously.  The complainant shall only receive notice of any sanctions against the respondent that pertain the complainant’s personal safety or protection.

Informal Resolution

Informal Resolution is not appropriate for complaints of the following forms of sexual misconduct:  sexual assault; dating violence; domestic violence; or stalking.  For other complaints of discrimination parties may voluntarily seek resolution of a complaint informally.  The University does not require an individual to contact the person directly whose behavior is unwelcome, and responsible employees should always contact the Title IX Coordinator or Human Resources prior to any attempt to resolve a complaint.  However, if informal resolution is desired by a complainant, the following are possible approaches:

  1. Communication directly with the person whose behavior is unwelcome; or 
  2. Mediation.

If the situation is not resolved informally or if the complainant chooses not to engage in informal resolution, the complainant may initiate a formal complaint using the procedures found by clicking here.