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Title IX

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 requires that all entities in receipt of any federal funds or financial assistance must prohibit sex discrimination in their education programs and activities. Sexual harassment is a form of prohibited sex discrimination. The Title IX Coordinator, Deborah Sanders, is the individual responsible for ensuring compliance with the law in this area.

Title IX requirements apply to all aspects of education programs and activities at GRCC, including student admissions, financial assistance, access to academic offerings, and athletics. The law also applies to all aspects of GRCC’s employment process, including hiring, tenure, compensation, and training.

GRCC is obligated to:

  1. Provide assurances that all education programs and activities are in compliance with Title IX
  2. Designate a Title IX Coordinator to oversee compliance efforts
  3. Establish procedures to resolve student and employee Title IX complaints
  4. Provide notification to students and employees that sex discrimination is prohibited within its programs
  5. Ensure that all administrators, managers, deans, and program directors, familiarize themselves with, and implement Title IX provisions

Responsibilities of the Title IX Coordinator

GRCC’s Title IX Coordinator’s responsibilities involve the development, implementation, and monitoring of efforts to comply with Title IX legislation, regulation, and case law.  The Title IX Coordinator monitors the application of GRCC policy and Title IX law in relation to complaint procedures.  This includes notification, investigation and disposition of complaints; creation of educational materials and training for the campus community; ensuring a fair and neutral process for all parties; and monitoring all other aspects of the GRCC’s Title IX compliance.

Complaints under Title IX

Under Title IX, Grand Rapids Community College is required to prevent and address discrimination which includes unfair treatment based on a protected characteristic, harassment because of a protected characteristic, denial of an entitled reasonable accommodation under State and Federal laws, or retaliation because of a complaint about discrimination or assistance in a discrimination investigation or lawsuit. The Title IX Coordinator is responsible for supervising investigations of potential gender discrimination, sexual harassment, and sexual assault.  Accordingly, complaints of gender discrimination, sexual harassment, or sexual assault should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator in the Office of the General Counsel. 


Sexual harassment includes but is not limited to any unsolicited, offensive behavior that uses sexuality to disadvantage another, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when submission to sexual harassment is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment or academic admission or advancement, or submission to or rejection of sexual harassment is used as the basis (or threatened to be used as the basis) for employment actions or academic decisions or evaluations, or such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or educational performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work or learning environment.  Unsolicited, offensive behavior may involve harassment of women by men, harassment of men by women, and harassment between persons of the same sex. Complaints alleging sexual discrimination, sexual harassment, or sexual assault should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator.  Complaints may also be reported to the Grand Rapids Community College Campus Police, or any College official.  Complaints of sexual misconduct between GRCC students or where the individual allegedly committing the misconduct is a GRCC student are governed by the GRCC Student Code and applicable state and federal law.

All Grand Rapids Community College Employees

Any College employees with complaints alleging gender discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, or violation of GRCC’s Misconduct, Sexual Misconduct, or Harassment Policies should report them to the Title IX Coordinator.

If you have any questions regarding your rights, please contact the Title IX Coordinator.

Deborah Sanders
Assistant to the General Counsel, Title IX Coordinator and EEO Officer
Mable Engle