Title IX in 2020: A New Vision

Title IX at NC State

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX) requires that all educational institutions that receive federal funds or financial assistance prohibit sex discrimination in all educational programs and activities, including employment, recruitment, student admissions, financial assistance, housing, access to academic offerings and athletics.

On May 6, 2020, the U.S. Department of Education released new regulations governing campus sexual assault under Title IX, the federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in K-12 settings and in higher education. These regulations specified that updates were to go into effect August 14, 2020.

During the course of the summer, the Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity, led by Vice Provost and Title IX Coordinator Sheri Schwab, worked with campus partners to discuss how to effectively implement the new regulations, including updating policies, procedures and education on topics of sex discrimination. Departments including the Office of Student Conduct, Office of General Counsel and University Human Resources, among others, worked collaboratively to comply with the updated federal law and demonstrate NC State’s continued commitment to address sexual harassment that occurs within university programs and activities.  

The Wolfpack’s student voice was also carefully considered. In July 2020, while many students adjourned for the summer, NC State Student Government hosted a town hall to provide space to discuss the Title IX regulation changes. 

Following approval of the NC State Board of Trustees and the Chancellor’s Cabinet, NC State published its Title IX Sexual Harassment Policy and its accompanying regulation. These documents include detailed resolution options and establishes an institutional definition of consent:

Consent is an affirmative decision to engage in an activity given by clear action or words. It is an informed decision made freely, willingly, and actively by all parties. Behavior will be considered “without consent” if no clear consent, verbal or nonverbal, is given. Consent cannot be procured by physical force, threats, intimidating behavior, or coercion. A person cannot give consent if they are incapacitated as a result of alcohol or drug consumption (voluntary or otherwise), unconscious, unaware or asleep during the act, under the legal age to provide consent, or otherwise lack the capacity to consent. In determining whether a person is incapacitated, the analysis must include whether the Respondent knew or should reasonably have known that the person was incapacitated. Neither silence nor a lack of protest or resistance is a valid form of consent. Consent can be revoked or withdrawn at any time, even during a sexual act. If consent is withdrawn, the act is no longer consensual.

NC State is committed to ensuring that every member of our community has an opportunity to learn and work in an environment free of sex discrimination and sexual harassment. 

  • Resources and support are available for those impacted by sexual harassment. 
  • To report a concern relating to sexual harassment, please contact the Title IX Coordinator at title-ix-coordinator@ncsu.edu, 919.513.0574, or complete the online report form. Additional information can be found online at on the Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity’s Title IX website

April P. Baer, Ed.D., is an equal opportunity officer in the Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity.