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Commitment to preventing sexual misconduct

Dear Roadrunners,

Now that the first few days of the new academic year are behind us, I’d like to take this opportunity to address a critically important topic: our unwavering, university-wide commitment to preventing all forms of sexual misconduct.

Sexual misconduct is an issue for universities across the nation, and last year we dealt with some very serious cases of faculty-student consensual relationships on our campus. The faculty involved faced consequences for their actions and are no longer employed at UTSA.

I can’t state this loudly and clearly enough: sexual misconduct is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated at UTSA. Our zero-tolerance policy regarding these behaviors stands firm.

Once more, as a faculty or staff member at UTSA you have a professional obligation to report concerns. If you witness or are aware of suspected sexual harassment, stalking, dating/domestic violence or unwanted sexual contact on our campus, take action by notifying your supervisor or calling the Office of Equal Opportunity Services. You can also report anonymously using UTSA’s hotline.

This individual responsibility goes hand-in-hand with our institutional obligation to ensure reports of sexual harassment or violence are handled as effectively and quickly as possible. We are currently working with an external consultant to evaluate and refine all our Title IX policies and procedures, and a search for a new Title IX Coordinator to oversee this critical area is well underway.

I also want to remind you of UTSA’s new Office of Student Advocacy, Violence Prevention and Empowerment, which we established last spring to provide information and resources to the entire campus community, and especially to survivors of sexual misconduct. The office offers trainings for faculty and staff on building healthy relationships with students and reacting to disclosures of sexual misconduct, among other matters.

The serious nature of this topic—and all the other subjects covered under our Standards of Conduct Training—necessitates frequent reminders. As such, UTSA’s Senior Leadership Team has decided to require that all UTSA employees participate in the training annually, rather than every-other-year. This change will go into effect this fall, and more information will be forthcoming from the Office of Institutional Compliance and Risk Services.    

I trust that all of you hold the very highest standards for yourselves as higher education professionals and will take this message to heart. Thank you for being exemplary role models for our students.

With appreciation,

Taylor Eighmy

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