The Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program was first introduced in 1916 by the United States Army as a part of the National Defense Act. Countywide, there are now an estimated 1,700 post-secondary institutions that have ROTC programs for the branches of the military.
Students who have been accepted into these programs must adhere to a variety of written rules and requirements of both their school and the military. A potentially serious violation that a student could be accused of involves federal Title IX guidelines, which pertain to sexual discrimination.
Students found to have committed these violations are subject to suspension or dismissal from their college or university. Those participating in ROTC may also then face disenrollment from this program based on a breach of contract. In these situations, students are encouraged to promptly consult with an attorney that is familiar with this unique area of legal practice.
What is Title IX?
Title IX was implemented in 1972 by the U.S. Department of Education. This was an amendment requiring all schools to establish and develop written policies and procedures related to handling accusations of sexually-based discrimination. Institutions that do not comply with these guidelines risk losing eligibility for federal education funding.
All schools will name a Title IX Coordinator that manages the process of investigating claims, making rulings, and imposing sanctions and penalties when necessary. Violations of the provisions may occur in various ways. Sexual discrimination occurs when someone is prevented from participating in programs or impedes equal access to benefits based on their gender or sexual orientation.
Acts of sexual harassment are also prohibited. Examples include promoting false stereotypes and making unwelcome sexual advances. Harassment may also be escalated to more serious levels involving violence such as in rape or coercion, which may also have criminal implications.
Title IX Investigative Process and Burden of Proof
When the allegations are supported by some evidence, the school will host a hearing. All parties are summoned and may issue statements and review testimony from witnesses. Students are entitled to be accompanied by an advisor that will lend support and accompany them throughout the proceedings.
The majority of schools employ a “preponderance of the evidence” standard to assess alleged violations. Schools also have the option to use a “clear and convincing” evidentiary standard.
Potential ROTC Disenrollment
Students that are participating in ROTC who violate Title IX are then subject to disenrollment. The U.S. Code §2005 contains a summary of the potential consequences as follows:
- The revocation of eligibility for receiving an officer commission
- An order to repay the financial assistance received including tuition and scholarships
- A requirement to complete their active-duty military service obligation
How Your Attorney May Assist You
Your attorney will be of tremendous importance in your preparation. You will be better prepared to confidently deliver statements and effectively respond to questions. He or she will closely scrutinize the evidence to potentially identify weaknesses or inconsistencies. Your attorney will work diligently to protect your right to due process.
Effective Representation for ROTC Students Facing Disenrollment for Violating Title IX
ROTC students that are facing campus disciplinary actions may have their plans abruptly shattered. Title IX attorney Joseph D. Lento has the experience to strongly defend you and pursue a positive outcome. Contact his office today at (888) 535-3686 for assistance.
Utah colleges and universities where Joseph D. Lento can help as your or your ROTC student's Title IX advisor during investigations, hearings, and appeals include, but are not limited to, the following schools (schools in bold have Army, Navy, and/or Air Force ROTC programs or are affiliated with schools where students can take ROTC classes):
- AmeriTech College Draper
- Argosy University Salt Lake City
- Brigham Young University Provo
- Broadview Entertainment Arts University
- Broadview University Layton
- Broadview University Orem
- Broadview University West Jordan
- DeVry University Utah
- Dixie State College of Utah
- Eagle Gate College Layton
- Eagle Gate College Murray
- Eagle Gate College Salt Lake City
- Fortis College Salt Lake City
- Independence University
- ITT Technical Institute Murray
- Latter Day Saints Business College
- Neumont University
- Park University
- Provo College American Fork
- Provo College Provo
- Salt Lake Community College
- Snow College
- Southern Utah University
- Stevens Henager College of Business Provo
- Stevens Henager College Logan
- Stevens Henager College Murray
- Stevens Henager College Ogden
- The Art Institute of Salt Lake City
- University of Phoenix Utah Campus
- University of Utah
- Utah State University
- Utah State University College of Eastern Utah
- Utah Valley University
- Weber State University
- Westminster College
All students must be extremely mindful when accused of sexual misconduct at their college or university; ROTC students in particular, however, can have even more concerns at all stage of Title IX proceedings because the stakes are higher yet – When first contacted by their school's Title IX office, when a sexual misconduct investigation begins, when facing a hearing or an appeal, or when seeking further recourse by filing a Title IX complaint with the Department of Education Office of Civil Rights when necessary. For ROTC students who are facing a Title IX case and their families, it is critical to take the necessary precautions as soon as possible, including having an experienced attorney advisor, when accused of sexual misconduct. Unfortunately, some students, not being as familiar what is at stake and also their rights in the process, will mistakenly believe that if they "just explain what happened," everything will work out. Title IX cases can be won, but students and their families must recognize, however, that achieving a favorable in a Title IX case requires a dedicated and intensive approach best handled by a professional who has a track record of successes in the Title IX disciplinary arena.
Fighting passionately for the future of students at colleges and universities throughout the nation for over a decade, Joseph D. Lento knows how important it is to mount the strongest defense because he understands that an ROTC student's academic future and future commission and military career is at stake. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. Joseph Lento is a licensed attorney in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, is admitted as an attorney pro hac vice in state and federal court if needed when representing clients nationwide, and serves as a Title IX advisor to students facing sexual misconduct investigations, disenrollment proceedings,and disciplinary cases in Utah and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National Title IX attorney Joseph D. Lento today.