Sexual Misconduct

Utah State University (USU) affirms its commitment to create and maintain an environment free from acts of sexual misconduct and to foster within that environment respect for the dignity of all members of the community. All forms of sexual harassment, including sexual misconduct and sexual assault interfere with this mission.

We encourage students to report sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator in the Office of Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity so we can address the effects of sexual misconduct, take measures to stop any ongoing harassment and prevent future harassment. Reporting and all follow-up activity will be handled in a manner that protects the privacy and confidentiality of those involved.

University Response

When the University learns of sexual misconduct, we will take immediate and appropriate action to determine what occurred. We will take prompt and effective steps to end sexual misconduct, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects, whether or not the sexual misconduct is the subject of a criminal investigation. The University will take steps to protect an individual filing a complaint. Retaliation against anyone reporting sexual misconduct or otherwise providing information about sexual misconduct is strictly prohibited.

The AA/EO Director/Title IX Coordinator utilizes online reporting for incidents of discrimination and harassment listed below:

Click Below to Report

For Students


Sexual Misconduct 

This form should be used by any person to report an incident involving an alleged violation of the USU Sexual Misconduct Policy (sexual harassment, sexual assault, gender-based harassment, intimate partner violence, domestic violence, and stalking). This report form can be utilized by students wishing to file a report on their own behalf or by anyone wishing to file a report on behalf of any person who may have experienced sexual harassment, misconduct or violence.


Discrimination/Harassment Reporting 

This form is used to report discrimination or harassment based on protected categories such as race, color, religion, sex/gender, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual misconduct (including harassment), pregnancy, sexual orientation or gender identity/expression, genetic information, or retaliation.

For Faculty & Staff (Responsible Employee)


Sexual Misconduct 

This form should be used by any person to report an incident involving an alleged violation of the USU Sexual Misconduct Policy (sexual harassment, sexual assault, gender-based harassment, intimate partner violence, domestic violence, and stalking). This report form can be utilized by Faculty & Staff (Responsible Employees) wishing to file a report on behalf of any person who may have experienced sexual harassment, misconduct or violence.  This report form can also be utilized by anyone wishing to file a report on their own behalf or on behalf of another person.


Discrimination/Harassment Reporting 

This form is used to report discrimination or harassment based on protected categories such as race, color, religion, sex/gender, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual misconduct (including harassment), pregnancy, sexual orientation or gender identity/expression, genetic information, or retaliation.

Assistance

If you have experienced sexual harassment, including sexual misconduct and sexual assault, we encourage you to utilize the support services available at CAPS (Counseling and Psychological Services) and SAAVI (Sexual Assault and Anti-Violence Information Center). You may seek assistance from campus employees, including the Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Title IX Coordinators, faculty and staff. In order to ensure that the University can do everything possible to provide assistance and stop sexual harassment, University employees are required to report information they receive about allegations of sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator.

AA/EO General Handout
Campus Crime Statistics
Campus and Community Resources
Definitions
Reporting Options
Resource Handout
Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Handout

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What should I do if someone tells me they are a victim of sexual misconduct or sexual assault?

A: Offer support

If someone comes to you for help, recognize that he or she might be struggling. Provide support and give assurance that campus resources are available to help. Offer to assist in accessing University resources such as the Title IX Coordinator, counselors at CAPS or SAAVI, and/or campus police.

Maintain confidentiality

Maintain an appropriate level of discretion in all of your interactions with others. Campus employees may not guarantee confidentiality, because they are obligated by University policy and federal law to report information about sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator. However, communications about a student with persons other than University officials authorized to receive such information, including family members or friends, cannot occur without prior permission of the student.

If you are a University employee, you must inform the Title IX Coordinator in the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action about any reports you receive about sexual misconduct involving students. The Title IX Coordinator will contact the victim with information about supportive resources and the University investigative process. If the victim does not want to be contacted by the Title IX Coordinator, the Title IX Coordinator will work with you to ensure that the victim knows about available resources.

Inform the victim of available resources and reporting options

Counseling and Psychology Services (CAPS) provides free and confidential counseling and crisis intervention to students who have experienced sexual misconduct. CAPS is dedicated to working to remove barriers that keep individuals from seeking services and informing students of all of their options while supporting them to make whatever decisions are right for the individual. Counselors at CAPS can maintain confidentiality without triggering University action/investigation.

Sexual Assault & Anti-Violence Information (SAAVI) provides free and confidential counseling to students who have experienced an incident of sexual misconduct. SAAVI is dedicated to working to remove barriers that keep individuals from seeking services and informing students of all of their options while supporting them to make whatever decisions are right for the individual. Counselors at SAAVI can maintain confidentiality without triggering University action/investigation.

In order for the University to appropriately respond to instances of sexual misconduct involving students, the Title IX Coordinator must be informed about the incident. The Title IX Coordinator will help with interim measures to ensure that a student who has experienced sexual misconduct is safe on campus and obtains any assistance needed to ensure continued productive access to educational programs. The Title IX Coordinator will also provide additional information about options for pursuing a University investigation against a student or employee, as well as options for reporting to local law enforcement.

Contact the Title IX Coordinator if you need more information


The Title IX Coordinator in the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action can assist you in helping and supporting the victim. If you are unsure how to proceed, please call 435-797-1266 or write to stacy.sturgeon@usu.edu for guidance.

City and county law enforcement officers as well as Campus police officers are available 24 hours a day to respond to emergency and non-emergency calls about sexual assaults. In cases of sexual assault, officers can explain the options for medical exams, counseling, advocacy, and reporting assaults as crimes; officers will ask if the student wants an advocate present to help them understand the proceedings. These departments are responsible for all criminal investigations and can answer questions about the legal process. They will also provide information about options for pursuing a University investigation through the Title IX Coordinator.


Q: What is Title IX?

A: Title IX is a federal law that protects individuals from sex discrimination in any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance. 

Q: Isn't Title IX just about athletics?

A: No, not entirely. Title IX addresses discrimination based on sex/gender. Title IX considers sexual harassment a form of sex/gender discrimination and it requires that all incidents of sexual harassment be viewed as discrimination and be investigated. 

Q: As a student at USU, am I protected from sex discrimination?

A: Yes, it is unlawful to discriminate against USU students because of their sex. 

Q: Is it possible to be sexually harassed/assaulted by someone of the same gender?

A: Yes. If you have been subjected to unwanted sexual contact or sexual harassment, your gender and the gender of the alleged perpetrator are irrelevant. Such conduct is prohibited by Title IX. 

Q: What is the difference between a University Process and a criminal process for adjudicating sexual misconduct violations?

A: If a complaint of sexual misconduct is filed with the Title IX Coordinator, the University has an obligation to review the matter to A) determine if there is a preponderance of evidence to demonstrate a violation of policy has occurred, B) if a finding supports that a violation has taken place, the findings will be turned over to one of the following to move forward with disciplinary proceedings (Student Conduct Office if both parties are students; Direct Supervisor if the violating party is a staff member; Department Head/Dean if the violating party is a faculty member) and C) to ensure that the campus community can continue to work and learn in an environment free from any form of harassment, intimidation or violence. This is an administrative procedure, not a criminal procedure.

Contact the Title IX Coordinator, Stacy Louck Sturgeon (435-797-1266; stacy.sturgeon@usu.edu) for additional information about how to file a complaint and the complete investigative process.

If an individual chooses to file a complaint through law enforcement (either USU Campus Police, Logan City Police, Cache Sheriff’s Department, or other law enforcement agency), the standard of evidence necessary to move a case forward in prosecution is “beyond a reasonable doubt”. The appropriate agency will collect evidence, statements from involved parties and statements from any witnesses. This information will then be turned over to the County Attorney’s office for determination about whether to move a case forward in prosecution. Reporting to law enforcement is a criminal/legal procedure, not an administrative one.

USU encourages all individuals to make a report to the Title IX Coordinator and to law enforcement. These options are not mutually exclusive; both internal and criminal reports may be pursued simultaneously. You can pursue either a campus administrative complaint process or a criminal process through local law enforcement – or both. 

Q: Can the University discipline a student for sexual misconduct even if the student is not convicted in a court of law?

A: Yes, the University disciplinary process is unrelated to any criminal procedure. An important difference to keep in mind is that the standard of proof in a criminal proceeding is “beyond a reasonable doubt: whereas the standard for sexual misconduct in a University proceeding is “preponderance of the evidence”. Another important difference to remember is the University investigative process is an administrative procedure – determining whether or not a violation of policy took place, not whether a law was broken. If the findings support that a violation has taken place, the finding will be turned over to the Student Conduct Office (if both parties are students) to move forward with disciplinary proceedings (http://www.usu.edu/studentconduct/contact).  

Q: What should I do if I am accused of committing sexual misconduct?

A: If you have been accused of committing an act of sexual misconduct in violation of University Policy, the Title IX Coordinator or a designee investigates the incident. You will be notified of the accusations against you and provided with the opportunity to respond. The Title IX Coordinator will explain the procedures and your rights and options. You will be able to participate fully in the investigative process. Contact the Title IX Coordinator, Stacy Louck Sturgeon (435-797-1266; stacy.sturgeon@usu.edu) for additional information about the complete investigative process.

 

Title IX Coordinator
Stacy Louck Sturgeon
435-797-1266
stacy.sturgeon@usu.edu
1475 Old Main Hill, Old Main 161
Logan, UT 84322-1475

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