Analysis of Campus Climate Results According to Race/Ethnicity/International Status

March 18, 2016

Dear Members of the Brandeis Community,

In 2013, a task force was established at Brandeis to advise the university on preventing sexual assault and misconduct within our community, responding effectively when such cases do occur, and creating mechanisms to adjudicate these cases and determine disciplinary actions.

A key step toward meeting these objectives was to administer the 2015 Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Misconduct, and conduct research on the scope and nature of the problem on our campus. When we released the initial findings from this research last October, we made a commitment to analyzing specific areas that merited deeper exploration.

Today, the Task Force for Sexual Assault Response, Services and Prevention is sharing the results of the first of these specific examinations, which looked at differences in the experiences and attitudes of our students according to their race, ethnicity and international status. The results are deeply troubling, and must be met with meaningful responses and support.

I want to underscore what I said in October: As painful as these data are, we will not shrink from the self-examination and action they demand. We must use this information to improve. As an institution of higher education, we have a special responsibility to set the standard for responding to and supporting those who have experienced sexual misconduct.

Sexual misconduct is not just an unavoidable byproduct of the culture at large. We denounce the problem, and we must all work together to address it. Everyone on our campus must be able to study, work and live in an environment free from harassment and sexual assault.

I hope you can join us to discuss these findings at a gathering on Tuesday, April 5, from noon to 1 p.m., in Sherman Function Hall.


Lisa M. Lynch signature

Lisa M. Lynch

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Dear Members of the Brandeis Community,

Like similar studies at universities around the country, Brandeis’ Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Misconduct — which was conducted last spring and whose results were released in the fall — discovered rates of sexual assault and misconduct that were unacceptably high and rates of reporting that were far too low.

The Brandeis survey asked participants for data that would permit the Office of the Provost and the Office of Planning and Institutional Research to examine the results according to race, ethnicity and international-student status. (Further analysis, specifically around sexual orientation, is planned for the future.)

Looking at the data according to race, ethnicity and international-student status reveals findings that are deeply disturbing and confirm that different members of the Brandeis community experience sexual misconduct in different ways.

These are some of the key findings:

Please click here to see the complete set of race/ethnicity/
international status data discovered through the Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Misconduct. 

With this new data in hand, the Task Force for Sexual Assault Response, Services and Prevention is working with the Provost’s Committee for Diversity to ensure that the campus community understands the disparities and can respond effectively to them.

We are continuing to expand services, explore increased adjudication measures, broaden campus outreach and education, institute campus policies, and continue research — and to advocate for doing even more along all these lines. For instance:

In addition to the above, the following efforts are underway:

Brandeis is a place where lives can be enriched, habits tested, assumptions challenged, and new commitments made. For positive transformations to happen, the university must be a safe and responsive environment for all.

The Task Force affirms its commitment to preventing instances of sexual misconduct on campus and to protecting all students.


The Task Force for Sexual Assault Response, Services and Prevention

Kim Godsoe, Associate Provost for Academic Affairs, co-chair
Sheryl Sousa, Senior Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, co‐chair
Jessica Basile, Director of Graduate Student Affairs
Lisa Boes, Dean of Academic Services
Bernadette Brooten, Myra and Robert Kraft and Jacob Hiatt Professor of Christian Studies
Sam Daniels ’16, Student
Darren Gallant, Assistant Director of Study Abroad
Monique Pillow Gnanaratnam, Assistant Dean of Students
Peter Kalb, Cynthia L. and Theodore S. Berenson Associate Professor of Contemporary Art
Michael LaFarr, Executive Director of Health and Wellness
Conor Lanahan ’16, Student
Susan Lanser, Professor of English; Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies; and Comparative Literature
Karen Lengler ’16, Student
Janet McIntosh, Associate Professor of Anthropology
Sheila McMahon, Sexual Assault Services and Prevention Specialist
Bette Reilly, Lieutenant, University Police
Carrie Robertson, PhD Candidate, Psychology
Linda Shinomoto, Director of Employment and Employee Relations; Title IX Coordinator
Rebecca Tillar, Esq., Title IX Investigator/Compliance Officer
Rebecca Torrey, Assistant Professor of Mathematics
Timothy Touchette, Director of Community Living
Brendan Weintraub ’16, Student
Elyse Winick, Rabbi, Interfaith Chaplaincy
Steven S. Locke, Esq., General Counsel, ex-officio