EQUAL OPPORTUNITY &
AFFIRMATIVE ACTION

In accordance with the South Dakota Board of Regents Policy 1:19, the institutions under the jurisdiction of the Board of Regents shall offer equal opportunities in employment and for access to and participation in educational, extension and other institutional services to all persons qualified by academic preparation, experience and ability for the various levels of employment or academic program or other institutional service, without discrimination based on sex, race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, gender, gender identification, transgender, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, genetic information or veteran status or any other status that may become protected under law against discrimination.  

The Board reaffirms its commitment to the objectives of affirmative action, equal opportunity and non-discrimination in accordance with the state and federal law.  Redress for alleged violations of those laws may be pursued at law or through the procedures established by the provisions of 1:18 of this policy.

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Title IX

Title IX of the U.S Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”) is a federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs and activities. Discrimination based on sex, race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, gender, gender identification, transgender, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status or on any other status that may become protected under law against discrimination is likewise prohibited.

Under Title IX, discrimination on the basis of sex can also include sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual violence, stalking and sexual coercion.

*The university will strive to keep all reported information confidential; however, it may not be able to guarantee such a request if in doing so may potentially jeopardize the safety of the campus community or if other legitimate reasons may necessitate such disclosure.

Compliance

The University of South Dakota is dedicated to fostering an environment that respects the rights of all individuals and values the promotion of both work and educational environments free of gender bias. In accordance with federal and state laws and the policies of the South Dakota Board of Regents, the university takes an active role in addressing sexual violence both on- and off-campus. This approach includes but is not limited to: the offering of effective programming designed to help prevent sexual assault, the prompt and efficient investigation of all reported incidents, and the providing of resources and services as well as any other reasonable assistance requested under Title IX.

At USD, the University Title IX Coordinator serves as the point of contact for those seeking information or wanting to report violations of human rights, acts of discrimination/harassment, sexual harassment, sexual violence, stalking and other forms of sexual misconduct. If you have been subject to any type of sexual misconduct or would like more information on how the university can assist you, contact the Title IX Coordinator

File a Complaint

Any person who either files a complaint or is a witness and or involved in any stage of the investigative process will not be subject to harassment, interference, intimidation or retaliation.

Title IX: No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance - Title 20 U.S.C. section 1681

Resources

The University of South Dakota is committed to providing equal opportunity without discrimination based on sex, race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, gender, transgender, sexual orientation, religion, age or disability. Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to contact our office with questions and concerns relating to equal opportunity issues on campus.

South Dakota Board of Regents Policy Manual

The South Dakota Board of Regents provides policies prohibiting sexual harassment, which can be found below.

The following can be found in the myUSD portal:

  • Harassment and Discrimination Policies and Procedures Brochure
  • Legal Basis References
  • Web Resources

SD Board of Regents Policies

Title IX Resources

Title IX Training

The University of South Dakota is dedicated to fostering an environment that respects the rights of all individuals and values the promotion of a work and educational environment free of gender bias. This is a university-wide effort that requires full participation and understanding, so we thank you for taking the time to work through USD's Title IX training materials.
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A Statement From the President of the University of South Dakota

"Any form of harassment or discrimination hinders the learning process and disrupts the work environment. The University of South Dakota seeks to prevent harassment and discrimination through education and open dialogue, and where harassment and discrimination exists, to thoroughly investigate all claims."

 

- Sheila K. Gestring, USD President

 

Contact Information

Jean Merkle
Director of EEO/Title IX Coordinator
414 East Clark St
Slagle Hall 205
Vermillion, SD 57069
Jean.Merkle@usd.edu