Daily Emerald on new policy on faculty/employee relationships w/ students

Hannah Kanik, here:

Sonja Boos, co-chair of the committee on sexual and gender based violence, said the policy aims to protect students from authority figures abusing power.

…  Going forward, the committee will begin a push to inform students of the policy so they are aware of their rights, Boos said.

“The emphasis is not on policing the sexual behaviors of people. The emphasis is to change the culture where people with power can abuse that,” Boos said.

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4 Responses to Daily Emerald on new policy on faculty/employee relationships w/ students

  1. Juliet and Romeo says:

    “The undergrad is never at fault. That’s super important — this policy is to protect the students,” Boos said. “The fault will always be with the supervisory employee or the instructor.”

    This is cringe-inducing. Undergrads are (almost invariably) adults, and are actually capable of thinking and acting on their own behalf. In some cases they’ll actually be older and more mature than some of their TAs, etc.

    Notwithstanding the many couples who met in the past under just such circumstances, in our current cultural environment, it’s probably the best for all involved to avoid all fraternization at the University.

    But lovers will be lovers. Rather than pronounce in advance who’s to blame, perhaps we should actually look at the facts of each individual case?

    • uomatters says:

      Thanks for this suggestion, really.

      As Senate President, I would be happy to hear a proposal from you for a “Committee on Sex and Romance” to adjudicate potential relationships between faculty and undergrads on a case-by-case basis, with appropriate consideration of how many chili peppers the professor has on ratemyprofessor, etc. Do you think committee members should also be charged with staffing a table at Taylors, to provide quick yes or no decisions in emergencies?

      While we wait for the details of your proposal, I suggest we all stick to some pretty simple rules, as now required by this policy.

  2. Juliet and Romeo says:

    I’ve no problem with the policy, though as summarized in the Emerald, it seems a little over-broad. In fact, I’m surprised that the basic rule (“Don’t date those you can grade”) wasn’t in place decades ago.

    What’s appalling is the sight of an academic proclaiming that they know who’s to blame in a situation prior to investigating even the basic facts. If academia can’t demonstrate the dispassionate process of distilling truth from data, what good are we?

  3. oldtimer says:

    The long established rule has been that exercising authority in the presenc e of even the appearance if a Conflict of interest is prohibited, and appropriate steps shall be taken to eliminate such conflicts of interest. Thatsimple rule is apparently not clear enough for zealots.

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