Title IX Training at Marist

 Cartoon by Brenden Davis 

Cartoon by Brenden Davis 

Before coming to Marist freshman year, two years ago, I received an email stating that prior to the beginning of the year, I had to take an online class on Title IX. The class consisted of a series of videos followed by quizzes to ensure I understand Title IX, what falls under that, what defines sexual assault or misconduct, and the resources available if a student is sexually assaulted.

I was happy when I received this email, because I thought Marist was taking Title IX seriously, and doing what they can to prevent it from happening on campus. I was under the impression that the school was making this mandatory with no exceptions, that everyone goes through this training. However, as my sophomore year comes finishes, I learn that many of my peers received an email for this training, however they did not complete it.

Also during freshman year, the RAs of the freshman dorms held programs about sexual conduct on campus; which featured a short animated film about tea. The premise of the short was that if a person does not want to drink tea, you cannot force them to drink tea. If a person has once had tea, that does not mean they are going to want tea again. Based on context, it is not hard to figure out that tea is a metaphor for sex.

Freshman are also required to attend a speech at the beginning of their time here at Marist that further discussed sexual misconduct on campus. However, and unfortunately, similarly to the tea film, this assembly was made into a joke.

Marist does a lot for students entering the college to bring awareness to Title IX, sexual mis- conduct, the repercussions, and the resources available. However, as for the training, I believe the school should make it a serious program all students have to do before attending college, or they are not to be allowed in their classes. In addition, the training should be renewed each year, or students should have to attend an assembly annually about Title IX.

Sexual misconduct and assault is happening on every campus. There are programs put into place to help, but they need to be brought to the attention of students more than they are. It also needs to not be put on a backburner, and be focused on. Therefore, students should know these allegations and situations are not taken lightly. Furthermore, the school needs to follow through with actions to every case that comes forward.

A student’s education, place on a sports team, or anything else is not more important than a student’s right to safety. 

Hannah KirkComment