University of Portland President Fr. Mark Poorman has appointed a committee of faculty, staff and students to review the University’s Title IX policies, procedures and practices.
Title IX is a federal law that prohibits sex and gender discrimination in educational institutions receiving federal funding.
It has long been associated with athletics, but in recent years has become more high-profile when it comes to sexual assault, sexual harassment and gender issues. Currently, the federal government is investigating more than 200 institutions for not adhering to Title IX requirements, according to Chronicle of Higher Education database. The University of Portland is not among them.
Poorman announced the committee in an email to faculty, staff and students on Tuesday.
“It is critically important that our policies keep up with relevant considerations comparable to our peer institutions and that we are pursuing them with integrity as a faith-based institution,” Poorman said in the email.
He specifically assigned the committee to evaluate Title IX training for faculty and staff and the support systems for those who report and are accused of violations. Poorman also requested a review of UP’s student conduct process, policies and sanctions. The committee will also review the athletic department’s processes of following NCAA policies and will draft an analysis comparing UP’s Title IX practices to those at similar colleges and universities.
The chair of the committee, Associate Dean and history professor Elise Moentmann, said it is too early to discuss the committee’s responsibilities and work.
“Since the committee has just been formed, we have yet to meet and develop a more comprehensive idea of the scope of our work,” Moentmann said in an email to The Beacon.
The members of the ad hoc Title IX university committee are:
- Elise Moentmann, Chair, Associate Professor and Associate Dean for Students, College of Arts and Sciences
- Sandy Chung, Director of Human Resources
- Tim Doughty, Associate Professor, Shiley School of Engineering
- Gerry Gregg, Director of Public Safety
- Nick Krautscheid ’18, Student
- Megan Launceford ’17, Student
- Sarah Meiser, Associate Director of Housing, Residence Life
- Karen Peters, Sr. Associate Athletic Director, Athletics
- Matt Rygg, Associate VP of Student Development, Office of Student Affairs
- Anne Santiago, Assistant Professor, Political Science
Poorman, who has requested a final report by the end of March, said he believes it’s important to take a proactive approach in promoting a campus environment free from harassment and retaliation.
“I’ve convened this committee of our community members to review our policies, practices and procedures surrounding Title IX in conjunction with the continually developing understanding of Title IX best practices at universities nationally,” Poorman said in an email to The Beacon.