This Policy applies to all HWS community members, including students, faculty, administrators, staff, volunteers, vendors, independent contractors, visitors, and any individuals regularly or temporarily employed, studying, living, visiting, conducting business or having any official capacity with the Colleges or on Colleges’ property.

This Policy is intended to protect and guide all individuals covered by this Policy who have been affected by sex discrimination and harassment, sexual harassment, sexual violence, stalking, intimate partner violence, and sex- or gender-based harassment that does not involve conduct of a sexual nature, whether as a Complainant, a Respondent, or a third party, and to provide fair and equitable procedures for investigation and resolution of reports.

Definitions: When used in this Policy, Complainant refers to the individual who identifies as being a victim or survivor of sex discrimination and harassment, sexual harassment, sexual violence, stalking, intimate partner violence, sex- or gender-based harassment that does not involve conduct of a sexual nature, whether or not the individual decides to proceed with the complaint resolution process.  A Respondent refers to the individual who has been accused of prohibited conduct under this Policy.  A Complainant and Respondent are referred to collectively as the parties.  An alleged perpetrator is someone who is alleged to have engaged in conduct in violation of this Interim Sexual Misconduct Policy but is not yet considered a Respondent because applicable processes under this Policy have not yet been commenced.  (“Perpetrator” is the word used by the White House Task Force in its report:  Not Alone: The First Report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students From Sexual Assault April 2014  A third party refers to any other participant in the process, including a witness to the incident or an individual who makes a report on behalf of someone else.  After receiving a report from a third party, if individual who was the target of the incident does not proceed with a complaint, the Colleges may nevertheless be obligated to proceed with an investigation.

This Policy refers to both reports and complaintsReportis used to indicate the process of giving a spoken or written account of conduct prohibited by this Policy either witnessed or experienced (e.g., “a student reported or made a report to a faculty member that a sexual assault occurred at an off-campus party Friday night.”  Complaintis used to indicate a formal allegation made against a party under this Policy.

All HWS community members are required to follow Colleges’ policies and local, state, and federal law.  This Policy applies to:

  • conduct occurring on HWS property;
  • conduct occurring off HWS property but involving two or more HWS students;
  • conduct occurring at HWS-sanctioned events; and
  • HWS programs that take place off-campus including
    • overseas study abroad programs and
    • internship programs.  

In addition, off-campus conduct  that has a reasonable connection to HWS, meaning it is likely to have a substantial adverse effect on, or poses a threat of danger to, any member of the HWS community or the Colleges is covered under this Policy, including activities that take place at houses of fraternities recognized by the school; study abroad and internship programs; events for school clubs that occur off campus; or conduct that has continuing effects on campus or in an off-campus education program or activity.

Even if the alleged perpetrator is not a member of the Colleges’ community or when the Colleges do not otherwise have jurisdiction over the Respondent, the Colleges will still take prompt action to provide for the safety and well-being of the Complainant and the broader campus community.

When such conduct involves students or employees from the Colleges and another institution, the institutions may work collaboratively to address the conduct provided that such collaboration complies with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act codified at 20 U.S.C 123g; 34 C.F.R Part 99.

There are specific procedures for resolving a report under this Policy against a student, staff or instructional-staff respondent:

  • Complaints against a student will be addressed under the procedures for resolution of complaints against students, which is set forth in the Procedures for Resolution of Complaints Against Students section of this Policy.
  • Complaints against a staff member will be addressed under the Colleges’ Harassment and Non-discrimination Policy set forth in the Employee Handbook.
  • Complaints against a member of the faculty will be addressed under the Colleges’ policy governing instructional staff and related grievance procedures, which can be found in the Faculty Handbook.


Preparing Students to Lead Lives of Consequence.