Title IX issues are focus of new WMU training modules, student survey

Contact: Cheryl Roland

Quote from WMU President Edward Montgomery reads: The experience of every student is important to the goal of keeping our campus safe.KALAMAZOO, Mich.—A new online training module and a new campus climate survey—both focused on sexual misconduct—are on tap for the Western Michigan University campus community when students and faculty return Monday, March 12, from spring recess.

Some 6,000 randomly selected students are set to receive an email invitation from President Edward Montgomery to take an anonymous online survey designed to gauge the campus climate and assess student experiences, perceptions, attitudes and behaviors when it comes to addressing sexual violence or sexual misconduct on campus. The survey also asks students about their awareness of campus resources available to help students when it comes to reporting incidents.

"The experience of every student is important to the goal of keeping our campus safe," says Montgomery in his prepared invitation that urges students to complete the survey.

This month's survey marks the second time WMU has opted to become one of about 60 campuses nationwide using Education Advisory Board to assess the campus climate and gauge how it compares to other schools and what issues need the most focus moving forward. WMU enlisted EAB to first do a campus climate survey in 2016—a year after the campus revised and adopted a new campuswide sexual misconduct policy.

The overwhelming majority of students in that 2016 survey said they felt safe and supported by faculty and administrators when it came to addressing sexual violence and other types of misconduct. Results from the newest EAB survey will be available in the fall.

Also in March, a new training module for the WMU community will go live on GoWMU, the University's portal, replacing a module that has been in place for several years. The new online training module has just been updated and strengthened to reflect WMU's policies, procedures and resources and give employees the tools they need to respond when they learn of sexual misconduct and become effective advocates should the need arise. The newest version of the WMU online module is called "Harassment and Discrimination Prevention." The University also offers in-person training several times each semester. To learn more, go to wmich.edu/sexualmisconduct/education.

In addition during March, a training module mandated by the NCAA will become available to WMU student-athletes and intercollegiate athletics staff.

For more WMU news, arts and events, visit wmich.edu/news.