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Sexual Harassment Reporting Guidelines

What is Sexual Harassment?

Sexual Harassment Is Defined As:

The Following Behaviors Are Some Examples of Sexual Harassment:

(Note: Actions that distinctly would make a reasonable person feel unwelcome, unwanted, scorned, ridiculed, or intimidated on the basis of his/her gender in the academic setting, work environment, or otherwise within the University community may constitute sex discrimination in general and may violate the law. Such actions should be reported to Dr. Marie DeWalt, director of human resources and affirmative action officer, 304-876-5288, or Karen Green, campus ombudsperson, 304-876-5458.)

Who May Be Involved?

Sexual harassment in the campus community can involve:

Anyone can be sexually harassed. While the majority of sexual harassment victims are women, men may also be sexually harassed. Moreover, students or employees may be harassed by members of their own sex, as well as by members of the opposite sex. Victims range from young to old; from non-traditional senior students to first-year students in their first week of classes; from executives to unskilled workers. Student athletes, resident assistants, student employees, and members of Greek organizations or other student groups might all be victims. Victims may also be of any race, ethnic origin, socio-economic class, or sexual orientation.

What Are Some of the Consequences of Sexual Harassment?

Victims of sexual harassment may experience a wide range of emotions as well as physical and psychological distress. Sexual harassment causes a tense and unproductive learning and working environment, the effects of which can be felt long afterward. Students may feel forced to drop a class, change a major, leave a residence hall or student club, or even withdraw from the University. Employees may feel forced to accept the harassment to avoid formal or informal punishment by a supervisor, or may feel compelled to quit their employment.

The University will appropriately investigate any accusations of sexual harassment by a student or employee. If the University finds that an employee has sexually harassed a student, the employee will be subject to sanctions that are relative to the circumstances of the harassment. Consequences of sexual harassment may include denial of a promotion, termination or forced resignation, negative evaluations or poor recommendations for other work, or demotion. Any student who is charged with sexual harassment will be subject to the established student disciplinary process as outlined in the Student Handbook.

Some students or employees may be concerned that, as a consequence of their accusation, they will experience retaliation from their harasser. Forms of retaliation can include, but are not limited to, the arbitrary assignment of poor grades or poor performance evaluations, making the student or employee feel unwelcome, or otherwise refusing assistance or acting in a disrespectful manner toward the student or employee. The University will strive to prevent retaliation from occurring. If a student or employee perceives that his or her harasser is engaging in retaliation, he or she can address the complaint to any member of the Sexual Harassment Policy and Action Team.

What Can The Shepherd Community Do About Sexual Harassment?

Preventing sexual harassment requires each member of the campus community, especially individuals being harassed, to report all occurrences. Here is what you can do:

If you believe you are being or have been sexually harassed, you should take any of the following actions:

Please see Shepherd University Board of Governor’s Policy 4, Sexual Harassment, for more information (

Civility Response Team

An additional resource is the Civility Response Team (CRT). The mission of the Civility Response Team is to promote civility and foster a respectful campus community. Students may contact CRT members for support when they feel an issue of incivility directly or indirectly impacts their experiences on campus. The team is comprised of trained faculty and staff who act as informal supports to ensure affected students can access Shepherd University resources when an event occurs. Current team members and their contact information can be found at