New Title IX Coordinator, Kate Grimes, is on the job

Maddie Liotta, Staff Writer

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.” -Title IX, Education Amendments of 1972.

The Title IX Coordinator must be as skilled and qualified as possible. But what do they really do?

“My role is to coordinate our prevention, education and outreach programs, the administration of our grievance procedures, and monitoring our efforts to ensure we are in compliance with Title IX legislation, guidance, and best practices,” Title IX Coordinator and Clery Act Compliance Officer Kate Grimes said.

A job such as this has lasting importance on college campuses everywhere, and a coordinator can be the single difference between a student remaining at a university or transferring elsewhere. Grimes welcomes students into her office at any time to talk about potential concerns or propose ideas to address campus culture.

“Staying connected and keeping the lines of communication open [for students] is so important. I want them to know they can come to me for help.,” Grimes said.

Grimes also addressed plans to move forward with the issue of sexual assault on campus.

“We plan to conduct a campus climate survey this spring. The information obtained will give me a better idea of where we may be falling short, and where we need to focus our efforts,” Grimes said. 

The University has some valuable resources to address the prevalent issues of sexual assault and relationship violence: The Speak UP peer educators.

“Our Speak UP peers do an amazing job educating students on safe bystander intervention skills and techniques. I strongly encourage everyone to sign up for one of their workshops,” Grimes said. 

While Speak UP education is only mandatory for first-years, it seems like the entire campus could benefit from a refresher on these skills. Speak UP also organizes programs such as Take Back the Night and The Clothesline Project. Both are non-committal and include survivors speaking out about their experiences.

Grimes is very receptive to individuals who might be struggling with unreported sexual assault, stalking, or abusive relationships.

“There are so many people here that want to help. If a student has been affected by one of these situations, I hope they reach out to one of us,” Grimes said. 

During stressful times throughout the semester, it is vital to remember how many resources we have on campus, as well as how many professionals are willing to listen, should we choose to speak up.

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