Carleton faculty and staff have significant interactions with students and can play an important role in making sure that students who experience sexual misconduct are connected to resources through Title IX.
Accordingly, Carleton’s Sexual Misconduct Policy requires all faculty and staff who learn of possible policy violations to report that information either directly to the Title IX Coordinator or the Title IX Deputy for Faculty and Staff or through a Community Concern Form.
Responsible Employee role
A 15 minute video is available that reviews Title IX basics, reporting requirements, and your role as a responsible employee.
Including Responsible Party Status in Your Syllabus
All Carleton community members are protected by the college’s Policy against Sexual Misconduct. For faculty who wish to support their students who have experienced sexual misconduct, syllabi present a unique opportunity to educate every student about their rights and resources on campus.
Carleton’s counselors and health service providers at the Student Health and Counseling Center and clergy who serve as College Chaplains are the College’s Confidential Campus Resources. Individuals involved in sexual misconduct matters may seek confidential support from these resources, who will maintain complete confidentiality of all information shared with them. Confidential Campus Resources have a responsibility to report non-personally identifiable information about sexual misconduct for the purpose of statistical reporting, as required by federal law.
Generally, climate surveys, classroom writing assignments or discussions, human subjects research, or events such as Take Back the Night marches or speak-outs do not provide notice that must be reported to the Title IX Coordinator by employees, unless the reporting party clearly indicates that they wish a report to be made. Remedial actions may result from such disclosures without formal College action.
Sexual misconduct issues, including sexual harassment, intimate partner violence, and stalking, can affect employees in the workplace, not just students. The College is committed to providing a safe workplace for all employees, which includes addressing issues of sexual misconduct that occur within the workplace and providing assistance to employees who may be experiencing the effects of sexual violence in their personal lives. Depending on the issue, the College may also provide accommodations, like changes to the work environment, a designated parking space, or a campus escort.
To report sexual misconduct in the workplace, employees may contact the Title IX Deputy for Faculty and Staff or fill out a Community Concern Form. An employee who wishes to discuss an issue confidentially may contact the Chaplain’s Office or the College Ombuds Office, or may make use of the Employee Assistance Program available to all employees.
Director of Human Resources
- Carleton Security 507-222-4444
- Northfield Police 911 (non-emergency: 507-645-4477)
- Northfield Hospital 507-646-1000 (main number)
- HOPE Center (support and advocacy) 507-332-0882
24-hour Safeline 1-800-607-2330
Find more information and other resources on the Legal Resources page. Carleton’s Statement on Consensual Relations can be accessed in the Campus Handbook.
How to respond to a student who may have experienced abuse or an assault
As a faculty or staff member, you may find yourself in the position of suspecting that a student has been impacted by sexual assault, relationship abuse or stalking. You may also be faced with responding to a direct disclosure. Statistically, we know that 1 in four women between the ages of 16 and 24 have been victims of sexual assault. We also know that 1 in 6 men have experienced abusive sexual experiences before age 18. According to the National Center for Victims of Crime’s Stalking Resource Center, 18- to 24-year-olds also have the highest rates of stalking victimization.
These types of experiences can be very traumatic for any individuals, including students. They can impact students’ ability to eat, sleep and concentrate in class or on their assignments. Over time, trauma can have serious long-term, negative effects on a student’s educational experience. Faculty and staff often are among the first to notice that a student is struggling. However, they may not fully understand what they are seeing or know how to help. In these situations, faculty and staff members can play an important role in helping a student access the support and resources that can help the student begin to heal.
Recognize, Respond, and Refer: Working With Students Impacted By Trauma
In some instances, a student may disclose an assault or other trauma they have experienced either verbally or in writing. When this happens, the student is letting you know that they have made the decision to trust you. This can feel like both an honor and a responsibility. In other instances, a student may not disclose, but you may begin to notice subtle or not so subtle changes in a student’s behavior or academics that suggest that something might be wrong. These may occur immediately after the incident or weeks or even months later. They may include:
- Lack of attendance – the student may stop attending class or attend intermittently. This may be caused by depression or irregular sleep patterns brought on by trauma
- Incomplete or missing tests and assignments – trauma can impede a person’s ability to concentrate, making it difficult to study or complete assignments
- Withdrawal – the student may become noticeably less social, no longer participating in events, conversations and activities as s/he did in the past
- Increased risk taking – in contrast or in combination with being withdrawn, the student may begin to engage in more high risk behaviors such as excessive drinking or self- harm as a means of coping or escape
Research conducted over the past several decades consistently confirms the therapeutic importance of supportive, non-judgmental responses to disclosures of sexual and relationship violence. When a survivor discloses, the most important thing you can do is listen and show your compassion and concern. Responses like “I am so sorry,” “what happened wasn’t your fault,” and “how can I support you?” help promote survivors’ healing and let them know that they are not alone. Survivors report that responses that appear to blame the victim or that attempt to investigate or resolve the situation may cause the survivor to shut down or avoid seeking further help or support.
If you suspect that a student may have been impacted by a traumatic experience, but haven’t received confirmation through a disclosure, it can be helpful to reach out to the student and simply ask if there is something wrong. Many students don’t feel that they can ask for help, especially from faculty members. When approaching a student, let them know that you have noticed something that concerns you and you just want to make sure they are okay, or if not, if they need help. It’s important to let the student know up front that, if they disclose to you that they have experienced sexual misconduct, you will need to share that information with the Title IX Coordinator. If the student would like further assistance, you can help them connect with an office on campus where they can talk confidentially (Student Health and Counseling or Chaplains) or they can report a concern (Title IX Coordinator).
Title IX obligates any faculty and staff by law, except those protected by confidentiality (Student Health and Counseling and Chaplains) with knowledge of a sexual assault/act of sexual violence involving a student to report that information to the Title IX Coordinator directly or in a Community Concern Form.
Faculty and staff members play an important role in assisting students who have experienced trauma from sexual and relationship abuse. As first responders, faculty and staff can let students know that there are support resources available to them. Remember that it is not your role to provide counseling or take on the problem for the survivor.
Students who have experienced physical or sexual assault should consider seeking medical attention, even if they don’t report feeling injured. Students who report being in immediate danger or who want to report a crime should be referred to campus security or the police. More information can be found on the Get Help page.