SCU’s Response to Department of Education’s Title IX Guidance Review
University General Counsel John Ottoboni and Vice Provost for Student Life & Dean of Students Jeanne Rosenberger address the September 7 announcement.
Dear Member of the Campus Community,
Yesterday, the Secretary of Education announced that the Department of Education would open a comment period in order to revise the current guidelines for how colleges and universities handle sexual harassment and sexual violence cases under Title IX. Santa Clara University remains deeply committed to its support of Title IX, the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (VAWA) and our State laws governing campus sexual assault protocols and procedures. Our commitment to preventing and responding effectively to all forms of discrimination, harassment, and sexual violence is not based solely on legal and regulatory compliance. Our commitment is rooted in our Jesuit values, and how we respond to campus sexual violence defines who we are as an educational community.
We reiterate the University’s commitment expressed by President Michael Engh, S.J. at the “One Voice” Campus Sexual Assault Symposium hosted by SCU last November: “We come together today with one voice to say we will not tolerate sexual assault on our campuses; we will work together to protect our students; and we will support victims of sexual assault.” Santa Clara University’s commitment to supporting victims of sexual violence will not waver. Our policies and procedures remain in effect in compliance with current laws and regulatory guidance for the investigation and response to sexual violence. Santa Clara University remains dedicated to ensuring equal dignity, fairness, and equity for victims and the accused.
Santa Clara University’s policies regarding gender-based discrimination and sexual violence are outlined in the Student Code of Conduct and Staff Handbook. Campus sexual assault remains chronically underreported by women and men, and no one should be discouraged from seeking and receiving the support and resources they need. We encourage those who have experienced sexual violence, sexual assault, sexual harassment, dating/domestic violence, or stalking, to seek assistance and/or file a report with the EEO and Title IX Office. Learn more here.
Student Life and the Office of EEO and Title IX will continue to monitor the national discussion on Title IX during the notice and comment rulemaking process. Consistent with our Catholic and Jesuit mission, every member of the campus community has a role to play in building and maintaining a campus culture free from sexual violence. We welcome further university engagement in this conversation on our campus.
John OttoboniGeneral Counsel
Jeanne Rosenberger Vice Provost for Student Life & Dean of Students