Binghamton University’s Health Promotion and Prevention Services (HPPS) is providing mandatory Title IX training sessions for all faculty and staff.
Title IX is a federal law that prohibits discrimination in educational institutions on the basis of sex. The training sessions take place multiple times a week and contain a PowerPoint on the laws and policies regarding Title IX. It also instructs faculty on how to take information and report complaints, according to Kent Schull, chair of the history department and an associate professor of history. He wrote in an email that he finds the training useful because of the amount of information it has.
“The training is very legalistic, but important to know and be regularly refreshed on it so that I can be in compliance,” Schull wrote.
Andrew Baker, BU’s Title IX coordinator and interim affirmative action officer, wrote that Title IX training is imperative for giving staff the proper tools to deal with student Title IX complaints.
“Trainings like this are important because they provide attendees with knowledge and tools to help them respond to student disclosures,” Baker wrote in an email. “An essential element of this training is that attendees are walked through a series of steps that they should follow when a student discloses an incident to them. This expands the number of persons on campus capable of responding and assisting students in need.”
For many faculty and staff, such as Schull, training sessions are provided on a yearly basis. But Sangmoon Kim, a senior counselor at the University Counseling Center (UCC), said his latest training was two years ago. Kim said as a mental health counselor he is very familiar with Title IX regardless of the training, but said he thinks UCC staff are only required to be trained every other year.
According to Baker, all employees are supposed to be provided training every single year with the University Center for Training and Development.
Linda Salomons, parent, family and events coordinator for Parent and Family Programs, said the training is offered to student organization members in addition to faculty and staff every year, either in person or online.
“We do online training every year,” Salomons said. “It includes everything you really need to know about definitions, about how to respond, how to assist students, report, what’s confidential and what’s private — those kinds of things.”
According to Salomons, the training includes definitions of Title IX, different ways one can assist students in their approach, updates of new policies, details on obligation in reporting and the concept of victim blaming.
“I think it’s really good for all of us to be aware of how we can assist and what steps we can take as a bystander and those kinds of things,” Salomons wrote.
Baker wrote that the Title IX office can be flexible when providing personal trainings.
“In addition to that training, departments and divisions periodically request trainings such as these for some or all of their employees based on their own schedules and desires,” Baker wrote. “Individuals and offices seeking training on topics such as Title IX, interpersonal violence prevention and bystander intervention can contact myself, Doris Cheung in the [Office of the Dean of Students] or Dara [Raboy-Picciano] in [HPPS].”