The University of Chicago was founded in 1890 and currently has an enrollment of more than 14,000 students. The University maintains compliance with all federal Title IX guidelines. Title IX was implemented in 1972 by the U.S. Department of Education to prevent all forms of sexually-based discrimination in educational institutions.
Title IX Administration and Reporting
The University's Title IX Coordinator is located in the Office of the Provost within Edward H. Levi Hall. A wealth of resources is also available through the Office for Sexual Misconduct Prevention and Support. Complaints may also be submitted electronically using the Harassment, Discrimination, Sexual Misconduct Formal Complaint Form.
According to Illinois law, the legal age for consent to participate in sexual activity is 17. Consent to engage in sexual activity must be made voluntarily through “words or actions.” If a victim states that consent was not given, this assertion is assessed according to “whether a sober, reasonable person in the same circumstances” should have known if consent was given or not.
Obtaining consent is the responsibility of those participating. Consent may not be given by someone that is incapacitated. This applies to those under the influence of drugs or alcohol or those with severe mental impairment.
Possible Administrative Resolution
Allegations of sexual discrimination, harassment, or related misconduct are initially assessed by the Associate Dean. Administrative or “alternative” resolutions are resolved by the Associate Dean. This process is only appropriate for less severe violations that will not result in suspension or dismissal from the institution. These matters are often resolved using mediation if all parties agree to participate.
Referral to Disciplinary Committee and Hearing Process
Parties will be notified 10 days before a disciplinary hearing. Each party may choose a “support person” that may be present throughout the meeting, hearings, etc. The Associate Dean conducts a “pre-hearing” activity that involves reviewing the final investigative report.
The Disciplinary Committee assesses the alleged violations using a preponderance of the evidence standard. If the violations are proven, respondents should expect to be suspended or dismissed from the institution. Students with disciplinary violations will have this information added to their educational records.
The Request for Review (Appeals) Process
Those who wish to pursue a Request for Review must notify the Dean of Students in writing within 15 days. The only grounds for an appeal include that the investigation was improperly conducted or that new relevant information has become available. An appeal may also be made asserting that the sanctions imposed are not proportionate for the violation(s).
Students that are accused of violating Title IX guidelines should promptly retain legal representation. This is also critical when appealing a ruling. Your attorney will be a tremendous asset in drafting a persuasive written appeals document and ensuring your rights are protected.
Title IX Attorney for University of Chicago Students
Have you been notified that you are the subject of a Title IX complaint? In today's academic environment, acts of sexual misconduct are promptly investigated and can result in harsh penalties. Contact attorney Joseph D. Lento at (888) 535-3686 today for assistance.