Washington & Jefferson College has a zero-tolerance policy on all forms of sexual misconduct on its campus or within its student body. To effectuate its goal, the College upholds a specific Title IX policy against all forms of sexual misconduct. The policy defines what actions constitute sexual misconduct, and what actions the College will take to pursue discipline against students who face these allegations. The disciplinary processes utilized for sexual misconduct are separate and significantly more heavily scrutinized than those used for incidents of standard misconduct.
Sexual Misconduct at Washington & Jefferson College
The process for the investigation and resolution of sexual misconduct complaints will begin once an incident is reported to the Title IX Coordinator. Initial reports will be reviewed to see if action under this policy is necessary. Throughout the process, the individual who files the complaint will be known as the "complainant," while the student who faces the allegations will be known as the "respondent." When an investigation is commenced, the respondent may face certain interim measures. These measures can include a rescheduling of classes, changes to housing, a temporary no-contact order, or even a temporary suspension. The College will offer both informal and formal resolution procedures, however, informal processes must be agreed upon by both parties, and will also not be offered to respondents facing accusations of sexual violence or sexual assault.
If a complaint is to be resolved through a formal investigation, the Title IX Coordinator will appoint an investigator for the case. Investigations will typically consist of separate meetings and interviews with both parties, and any witnesses suggested. The investigator is responsible for gathering all information and allowing both parties to respond to one another as the investigation moves forward. After the investigation has concluded, the investigator will make a finding using the standard of "a preponderance of the evidence." This finding will be evaluated by the Title IX Coordinator, and finalized upon approval.
Throughout the investigative process, and during any meetings with the investigator, students may be accompanied by an advisor of their own choosing. Sexual misconduct allegations can be incredibly serious, and often will carry serious consequences for students found responsible. These consequences can affect a student's academic and professional goals both immediately and also later on in life. For this reason, students should select an attorney to act as their advisor throughout the process. An attorney can make sure a student's rights are not infringed upon during the investigation and the disciplinary process. An attorney can also help a student prepare the best defense possible to the sexual misconduct allegations. In addition, should any adverse consequences follow the allegations at Washington & Jefferson College, an attorney can serve as a legal guide.
Washington & Jefferson College Appeals
In the event of an unfavorable outcome, students may make an appeal. Appeals are to be submitted within five (5) business days of the sanctions being issued to the student. The grounds for appeal are excessive sanctions, new information, or a review of the process that arrived at the decision.