Monday, October 2, 2017

Dear Howard University Community,
On September 22, the U.S. Department of Education announced an update regarding Title IX as it applies to college and university campuses. With this announcement, the Department ofEducation withdrew specific guidance that the previous administration issued and announced that the Department would begin preparing replacement guidance. The replacement guidance will go through a government rule-making process that includes an opportunity for public comment.  This can sometimes be a lengthy process, and the University will continue to closely monitor any developments or changes that affect Title IX law.

In the meantime, the Department of Education also issued a Q&A document which provides some insight into areas of Title IX enforcement that the Department has identified as particularly important.  Many of these areas were also addressed in the withdrawn guidance, and are specifically covered within the University’s existing policies.

Although certain guidance from the previous administration has been withdrawn, Title IX itself, and much of the guidance that has been issued, remains in effect.  Thus, Title IX still serves to protect all Howard University students from sexual assault, sexual harassment, and harassment or discrimination based on their gender.  In addition, there are other federal laws that remain in effect that protect students from gender-based conduct and domestic violence.

Howard remains committed to providing all students with an academic and living environment that is free from all forms of sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, and gender-based discrimination. The University will continue to uphold its policies regarding such conduct. Howard will also continue to provide resources to students affected by interpersonal violence. Students who have questions about the applicable policies or the available resources are encouraged to contact:

  • Title IX Coordinator, Ms. Candi N. Smiley: (202) 806-2550
  • Interpersonal Violence Prevention Program Director, Dr. Akosoa McFadgion: (202) 836-1401
  • Dean of Student Services, Dr. Elaine Bourne Heath: (202) 238-2420

Students should also continue to directly contact the following offices that provide University resources and support:

  • Department of Public Safety: (202) 806-1100
  • Howard University Counseling Services: (202) 806-6870
  • Howard University Student Health Center (202) 806-7540

I will continue to provide updates regarding developments from the Department of Education to ensure that all students remain fully informed regarding this important area of university life.

Excellence in Truth and Service,
Wayne A. I. Frederick, M.D., MBA