Expelled under new policy, ex-Amherst College student files suit

What do you think about when you think about sexual harassment? A new case out of Amherst College , a prestigious Massachusetts liberal arts college, offers an important reminder that harassment can take many, many different forms and shapes. According to a suit filed by Dimaris Barrios-Beltran, a former lecturer in Amherst’s Spanish department, professors were told to hire teaching assistants TAs who were “pretty faces”—TAs who were then to be encouraged by the professors they assisted to solicit students for sex in hopes of bolstering enrollment in the Spanish department. The Washington Post reports that Barrios-Beltran’s own teaching assistant allegedly called her “in tears” after being treated by a Spanish department supervisor “like a prostitute. Other TAs reported similar incidents. Barrios-Beltran filed several complaints—with a dean, with a human resources representative, with the school’s Title IX coordinator—about the supervisor’s behavior.

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Holyoke Mayor Alex B. Morse during a press conference on July 14, AMHERST — For more than a quarter century — and likely longer — there has been ongoing debate at the University of Massachusetts and on college campuses across the country about the propriety of romantic relationships between faculty and students.

Congressional candidate and Holyoke Mayor Alex B. He is, though, facing claims raised just weeks before the Sept. Richard E.

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In December , Amherst College imposed its first major sanction under a new get-tough sexual misconduct policy, expelling a year-old senior after a disciplinary board concluded that he had forced a female classmate to perform oral sex during an alcohol-infused encounter nearly two years earlier. In April , however, the expelled student presented the college with new evidence — a series of text messages the woman sent to two other male students immediately after the alleged rape, according to a lawsuit.

The accuser testified during the disciplinary hearing that she had texted a friend to come over after the alleged attack. In the 13 months since the expelled student obtained the texts and gave them to college officials, it appears Amherst has taken no public steps to revisit its decision to expel the student. On Friday, his lawyer, Max D. In the weeks after he was expelled and ordered to leave campus, Doe was alerted to the existence of the text messages and obtained copies of both sets of texts with the help of friends, according to Stern.

The text messages are included in the lawsuit. His statement did not address a question from the Globe about whether the college is still confident that the decision was right. The lawsuit is also likely to further fuel an ongoing debate about the tough new standards on sexual assault adopted by colleges and universities under federal government pressure, standards that many legal scholars believe violate the rights of those accused of sexual misconduct.

In the past, Amherst and other colleges had used a tougher standard of proof — clear and convincing evidence of guilt. Meanwhile, the expelled student is in academic and professional limbo.

As Alex Morse defends conduct, UMass policy ‘strongly discourages’ faculty-student relationships

So here you are with this crush of yours, this person for whom you have deep feelings. How do you reconcile the fact that you are attracted to someone, yet still trying to figure out where you fit on the sexual spectrum? It can be quite the bind because your object of affection might like to know where you identify on the sexual spectrum to see if a relationship could work or not. On the other hand, trying to figure out what your sexuality is will make it easier to figure out whom you actually ask out and pursue.

Morse, who has taught as a lecturer at UMass-Amherst since , rejected regularly matched with students on dating apps, including Tinder and Grindr, The College Democrats’ letter claims that students were nervous.

Mount Holyoke faculty have joined together to create a campus-wide policy prohibiting all romantic relationships between faculty and students. Pre-existing faculty-student relationships must also be disclosed to the College under the new policy. Faculty must report any previously existing relationships to their immediate supervisor and remove themselves from those responsibilities if possible. At the time, the sort of pervasive thinking was that students were adults and could make their own decisions about their relationships.

However, regardless of the ability to consent, there is an inevitable power dynamic that is inherent in all of these relationships. The policy is a faculty-led initiative, and campus staff have separately come together to create their own staff-student dating policy. Although the staff-student policy is not as far along in the development process, faculty and staff are engaging in conversations to ensure that both policies are very similar to one another.

Some students think the regulation is unnecessary. News News. On Campus. Five Colleges.

Relationship Restrictions

June 30, Staff Writers. All colleges and universities claim to have campus pride. Believe it or not, most colleges and universities across the country are just now catching up to the academic, social, and mental health needs of the LGBTQ community. Thankfully, an increasing number of schools are ahead of the curve in creating a campus culture that not only protects its LGBTQ students, but allows them to thrive.

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A number of colleges and universities banned faculty-undergraduate dating or otherwise shored up their consensual relationship policies after the Education Department published a reminder letter about sexual harassment liability, in Other institutions had adopted such policies earlier. And while many involved in or affected by these decisions support them as preventing potential abuse, others remain critical of policing connections between consenting adults.

Fear of legal liability and increasing acknowledgement of academic power structures changed that, leading institutions to adopt a mix of policies regarding these relationships. Its rationale for doing so, stated in the policy itself, sums up much of the thinking behind blanket bans on undergraduate-faculty dating. Northwestern previously banned relationships between graduate students and faculty supervisors. There is no hardfast rule about these policies. Somewhere in the middle of the policy mix, the University of Wisconsin System in banned faculty-student dating graduate or undergraduate where an advisory or supervisory relationship, or the potential for one, exists.

Pre-existing relationships must be reported.

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As this school year comes to an end, freshmen and seniors have different priorities and decisions to make, one of them pertaining to the romantic relationships in their lives. Seniors in relationships will have to decide whether they want to maintain them, while those who are single might want to give a thought to settling down. On the other hand, freshmen who have engaged in the hookup culture at school will see if that is something they want to continue to do next year, or if committing to a relationship is a chance they want to take.

Without much hesitation, University of Massachusetts Amherst freshmen Peter Sullivan and Ali Hagenburg said that they did not want a relationship their first year of college. They also did not think other guys and girls their age wanted a relationship either. People want and get the chance to be crazy.

Life at Amherst College, USA – Experience by Kyra Ellis Moore