by Redi Degefa
Most of us (the student body) are familiar with the mandatory sexual harassment training, also known as Title IX. This lengthy course of training (approximately two hours) is provided by CampusClarity and aims to create a hostile-free learning environment. The course contains engaging activities such as videos, quizzes and real-life scenarios to educate students about sexual harassment.
Previously, Title IX was required only for students. Recently, however, PUC has made it mandatory for staff to complete the course as well. Hence, I interviewed some of our professors and other staff members to gather their thoughts and opinions on Title IX. Most of the responses were positive with only a few criticisms regarding PUC’s instructions on how to complete the training.
The staff was appreciative of the course’s well-rounded teaching mechanisms. The videos and the real-life scenarios were extremely interactive, which help test takers easily gain a thorough understanding of the content. The real-life scenarios are also effective in suggesting ways to respond to situations in which sexual harassment occurs. Not only was it engaging, but also informative, including different state (specifically California) and federal laws.
The criticisms centered on the lack of clarity in the instructions that were established by PUC regarding the course. One professor stated, “The guidelines were not clear to the adjunct professors, because no due date was specified for the course, or whether adjunct professors needed to take it.” In the email sent out by HR (Human Resources), the staff was notified that some of the materials in Title IX were not applicable, but the email did not elaborate which materials these were or the reasons for disregarding them. The ambiguity of this email left some staff members confused. Lastly, some found the title of the course itself, “Sexual Harassment Training,” to be misleading because of the negative connotation it carries. A professor suggested that adding the word “prevention” after “harassment” would get the message across in a more positive connotation.