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Our Mission

Southeastern has a responsibility to respond quickly and effectively to address sexual misconduct and any other conduct that is motivated by sex or gender that creates a hostile environment for Southeastern students. Southeastern is committed to prevention of all forms of sexual misconduct as well as the protection and rehabilitation of victims of such acts. Gender-based misconduct includes but is not limited to the following:

  • All forms of relationship violence
  • Sexual misconduct
  • Stalking
  • Any misconduct where someone is targeted because of sex or gender.

What Is Title IX?

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. § 1681) is an all-encompassing federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex of students and employees of educational institutions that receive federal financial assistance. Title IX reads as the following:

“No person in the United States, shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance…” Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and its implementing regulation at 34 C.F.R. Part 106 (Title IX)

For more information, please see SEU’s official gender-based misconduct policy.

Policies

Duty to Report

All faculty and staff play a crucial role in helping create a campus culture at SEU where gender-based violence of any kind is not tolerated. As a campus community, we are committed to education, training and services that encourage healthy, safe and respectful relationships. At SEU, we desire to go beyond compliance with federal laws concerning gender-based violence, and we aspire to provide a survivor-friendly environment.

As part of this commitment, all faculty and staff who become aware of incidences of relationship violence, sexual misconduct, sexual harassment and stalking are required to notify the university.

Faculty and staff are responsible for informing students of their duty to notify the university.

To view the Faculty & Staff Mandatory Reporter Policy, click here.

What Is Covered?

This policy applies to all members of the SEU community. The SEU community includes current undergraduate and graduate students, staff and faculty, administration and any third parties interacting with students, staff, faculty or administration of SEU. The policy covers members of the SEU community regardless of age, race or gender.

This policy covers all activities that occur on SEU’s campus or at its facilities and regional campuses or extension sites, as well as activities off campus where members of the SEU community are involved. It covers all relationships, including but not limited to student with student, student with staff and faculty, student with administration, student with third parties, staff and faculty with staff and faculty, staff and faculty with administration, staff and faculty with third parties, administration with administration and administration with third parties. It covers all SEU-related programs and events, both on and off campus, including international programs.

For more information, please see SEU’s official gender-based misconduct policy.

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Reporting

Options for Reporting

  • Title IX deputy coordinator
  • Faculty or staff member
  • Department of Safety and Security
  • Online reporting form

Confidential Resources

Confidential resources are also available to discuss incidents that have occurred without a report being submitted to the Title IX deputy coordinator. The following are on-campus resources where such confidentiality can be ensured:

Smith Hall
863.667.5205

Smith Hall
863.667.5205
healthservices@seu.edu

  • Campus pastor

Phil Urdiales
Pansler U223
863.667.5064
purdiales@seu.edu

Other than these confidential resources, other faculty and staff are required to report incidents to the Title IX deputy coordinator. If a reporter is unsure how private or confidential a staff or faculty member can keep a report, the reporter should ask prior to disclosure. Faculty and staff are expected to respond honestly and identify alternative resources if needed.

Off-Campus Confidence Resources

Rape Crisis Hotline 863.413.2707
877.688.5077
Sexual assault
Sexual assault
National Sexual Assault Hotline 800.656.4673 Sexual assault
Florida Sexual Violence Hotline 888.956.7273 Sexual assault
National Stalking Resource Center 800.FYI.CALL Dating/domestic violence and stalking
Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence 800.500.1119 Dating/domestic violence

For more information, please see SEU’s official gender-based misconduct policy.

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Anti-Retaliation

Nonretaliation, Intimidation & Coercion

It is critically important that everyone in the SEU community feels free to report information that helps to ensure the safety and well-being of the community. The university will make every effort to ensure that no person will be subject to any adverse action (either by the university or by another person or group) because they report what they honestly believe to be sexual misconduct.

No individual who makes a complaint alleging a violation of this policy or who participates in the investigation or resolution of such a complaint will be subject to retaliation as a result of such activity or participation. Retaliation exists when action is taken against a participant in the investigation and resolution process that

  • Adversely affects the individual’s opportunity to benefit from the university’s programs or activities.
  • Is motivated in whole or in part by the individual’s participation in the investigation and resolution process.

In addition, any acts of retaliation by any faculty, staff, administrator or student taken against a reporting party, reported victim, witness or other individual following and in response to the reporting or investigation of an allegation of sexual misconduct will be considered to be a serious violation of the community standards and will result in appropriate disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal for students and termination of employment for faculty and staff. Retaliation may constitute a violation of this policy even when the initial report does not result in a finding of responsibility.

Also, no officer, employee or agent of the university may retaliate, intimidate, threaten, coerce or otherwise discriminate against any individual for reporting an incident to the university or otherwise exercising their rights or responsibilities in the conduct process in good faith. Any individual who experiences retaliation by a member of the university community is encouraged to report such conduct directly to the appropriate Title IX deputy coordinator.

For more information, please see SEU’s official gender-based misconduct policy.

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Contacts

Title IX Coordinator

Bethany Thomas
Vice President for Student Development
863.667.5039
btthomas@seu.edu

The Title IX coordinator is responsible for the monitoring and oversight of overall implementation of Title IX compliance and the prevention of harassment and discrimination at the university, including coordination of training, education, communication and administration of grievance procedures for faculty, staff, students and other members of the university community.

If you have questions or concerns related to Title IX, you should contact Southeastern University’s Title IX coordinator.

Deputy Title IX Coordinator: For Students

Stephanie Powell is responsible for Title IX compliance in matters involving students, including training, education, communication and investigation of complaints. Contact Stephanie Powell, director of Title IX compliance, at smpowell@seu.edu or 863.667.5236.

Deputy Title IX Coordinator: For Faculty, Staff & Visitors

Betty Kelley is responsible for Title IX compliance in matters involving faculty, staff and visitors, including training, education, communication and investigation of complaints. Contact Betty Kelley, director of human resources, at bakelley@seu.edu or 863.667.5182.

For more information, please see SEU’s official gender-based misconduct policy.

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Local Resources

Peace River Rape Crisis Services
24/7 confidential counseling and forensic examinations
1806 S. Crystal Lake Dr., Lakeland, Florida
863.413.2707 (confidential)
877.688.5077

Polk County Clerk of Court, Domestic Violence Department
To file civil domestic violence reports and obtain “injunctions for protection against domestic violence”
Bartow Branch (Polk County Courthouse)
255 N. Broadway St., Bartow, Florida
863.534.4184

Clerk of the 10th Judicial Court of Polk County Florida
To file injunctions (“order of protection” or “restraining orders”) in response to reported dating/domestic violence, stalking or sexual violence
Polk County Courthouse
255 N. Broadway St., Bartow, Florida
863.534.4000

Lakeland Police Department Victim Assistance
219 N. Massachusetts Ave., Lakeland, Florida
863.834.6914

Policy Information

SEU’s  official gender-based misconduct policy.

 

State & National Resources

National Sexual Assault Hotline: 800.656.4673

Florida Sexual Violence Hotline: 888.956.7273

National Stalking Resource Center: 800.FYI.CALL

Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence: 800.500.1119

Changing our Campus (formerly Not Alone)

An employee or student may always file a complaint with the following:

Florida Department of Human Relations
850.488.7082 or 800.342.8170

U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights
800.421.3481

Office of Civil Rights
800.368.1019

“It’s On Us”
A public awareness and education campaign launched in 2014, “It’s On Us” aims to engage college students and all members of campus communities in preventing sexual assault. The campaign reflects the belief that sexual assault isn’t just an issue involving a crime committed by a perpetrator against a victim, but one in which the rest of us have a role to play. Click here to learn more.