2015 Archives

An important message to students from President Turner


The following was sent to SMU faculty members on January 28, 2015.

January 28, 2015

generic SMU letterhead

January 28, 2015

Dear SMU Faculty Member,

As we begin a new semester, we’d like to remind you of important resources, policies and procedures that support our campus community’s safety.

SMU is committed to maintaining an educational environment that is free from sexual misconduct, including sexual and gender-based harassment and violence. All community members have a responsibility to support this commitment and to be familiar with University policies that prohibit and address sexual misconduct.

Information is available on the SMU Live Responsibly website and in the online Live Responsibly brochure, which was made available in fall 2014 for downloading and printing.

Discrimination, harassment and sexual violence also are addressed in two online tutorials for faculty and staff. If you received access to the training in November, please remember that the deadline to complete the tutorials is January 31, 2015. You will continue to receive weekly email reminders from our vendor, LawRoom, until you complete this important training.  Questions about accessing the tutorials should be directed to the Department of Human Resources at DevelopU@smu.edu.

We ask you to please pay careful attention to the information provided in these resources about Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the federal law that requires universities to investigate reports of sexual harassment and violence, and to have internal grievance procedures to address Title IX violations. SMU takes very seriously its obligations under Title IX and will vigorously pursue any violations. SMU’s Title IX Coordinator, Samantha Thomas, and seven Deputy Title IX Coordinators are available to assist you and other community members who have questions or concerns, or who wish to file a complaint under SMU’s Title IX policy. Call 214-768-3601 or email accessequity@smu.edu.

In addition to SMU’s Title IX Coordinator, campus and community resources include:

  • SMU Police, 214-768-3333, or pick up a blue-light phone on campus
  • The Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Program at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, 214-345-6203
  • Trained confidential counselors at SMU’s Psychological Services for Women and Gender Issues, 214-768-4795; Counseling and Psychiatric Services, 214-768-2277; Office of the Chaplain, 214-768-4502; and the Dallas Area Rape Crisis Center, 972-641-7273
  • The Office of the Dean of Student Life, 214-768-4564
  • The Women & LGBT Center, 214-768-4792

In the event of sexual assault or other forms of sexual violence, all community members are urged to immediately call police and seek medical care.

If you receive a report of sexual misconduct from a student, please follow the procedures for faculty and staff outlined on the Live Responsibly website, including notifying SMU’s Title IX Coordinator as soon as possible. If you have non-emergency concerns about a student’s health or safety, you can share them confidentially through the Dean of Students’ Caring Community Connections online form.

Finally, we would like to thank the faculty, staff and students who have helped lead efforts to combat sexual misconduct, including those who have helped to implement the recommendations of SMU’s 2012-13 President’s Task Force on Sexual Misconduct Policies and Procedures. We thank each of you, as well, for your contributions to a safe and supportive environment.


R. Gerald Turner

Paul W. Ludden
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs


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