12.3.8. Definition of Roles (in Alphabetic Order)

12.3.8.1. Advisor

An Advisor is an individual who serves in a support role throughout the grievance process. Typically this individual is outside of the University community, or is someone within the University community who is not specifically trained on Title IX. Both the Complainant and the Respondent have the right to an Advisor of their choosing. Members of the Hearing Panel or those who will be serving as witnesses in the case may not serve as an advisor. The role of the Advisor throughout the process and during the hearing is to provide support and advice to the student. At the student’s request, the Advisor may be present any time their advisee is meeting with the Hearing Panel or other member of the University staff regarding the case. The Advisor may not speak on behalf of the student; the student must speak on their own behalf. The Advisor must maintain the confidentiality of the entire grievance process. Proceedings will not be rescheduled to accommodate an Advisor.

12.3.8.2. Advocate

By request of either party, the Title IX Coordinator will arrange for an Advocate who is within the University community, is trained in Title IX matters, and is knowledgeable about the policies and procedures set forth in this policy. The Advocated serves in a support role throughout the grievance process. The Complainant and/or Respondent may choose not to utilize the Advocate. At the student’s request, the Advocate may be present any time their advisee is meeting with the Hearing Panel or other member of the University staff regarding the case. The Advocate may not speak on behalf of the student; the student must speak on their own behalf. The Advocate must maintain the confidentiality of the entire grievance process. Proceedings will not be rescheduled to accommodate an Advocate.

12.3.8.3. Complainant

The Complainant is a person who makes a complaint of an alleged violation of the policy on sexual misconduct.

12.3.8.4. Conduct Officer

At various places throughout this policy there will be references to a “conduct officer.” In this context, “conduct officer” means either the chief conduct officer or an individual who, by virtue of previous training concerning the Sexual Misconduct Policy, is qualified to substitute for the chief conduct officer.

12.3.8.5. Confidential Resources

Employees and officials at the University are responsible employees and required to report incidents of sexual misconduct. Students age 18 or older seeking confidential resources may consult with the University Counseling Center. In the State of Georgia licensed counselors and clergy are the only parties that may be allowed to maintain confidentiality.

12.3.8.6. Hearing Coordinator

The Hearing Coordinator is a conduct officer. The Hearing Coordinator’s responsibilities include, but are not limited to, convening and chairing the hearing panel, communicating with the parties about the date, time, and location of the hearing, disseminating the panel’s decisions, and facilitating any appeal. The Hearing Coordinator ensures that the process and procedures are followed and rights and responsibilities of those involved in the hearing process are respected. The Hearing Coordinator is present during hearing panel deliberations but does not have a vote.

12.3.8.7. Hearing Panel

The Hearing Panel hears complaints of alleged violations of the policy on sexual misconduct, makes determinations of responsibility in such cases, and determines sanctions and remedies, if applicable. A hearing panel is composed of three members of the Oglethorpe University nonstudent community who have been trained in Title IX matters and who serve on the faculty-staff judicial board. Potential panel members may be excused from a hearing in the event of a conflict of interest, lack of availability, or other valid reason, as determined by the Hearing Coordinator.

12.3.8.8. Investigator

The Investigator is a trained individual, typically a University employee, who is responsible for interviewing the Complainant, Respondent and any witnesses. The Investigator gathers all evidence and assembles an investigative report that is provided to the Hearing Panel. A case may be assigned an additional assistant investigator to support the principal investigator.

12.3.8.9. Respondent

The Respondent is a person who has been charged with an alleged violation of the Sexual Misconduct Policy.

12.3.8.10. Title IX Coordinator

The Title IX Coordinator is the University official who is designated to coordinate efforts to comply with and carry out the University’s responsibilities under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 which prohibits sex discrimination in education programs and activities. The Title IX Coordinator is responsible for coordinating the University’s policies and responses to all reports and complaints involving possible sex discrimination. This includes monitoring outcomes, identifying and addressing any patterns, and assessing effects on the campus climate. The Title IX Coordinator will be involved in managing proper policy and procedure throughout any grievance process and appeal.

12.3.8.11. Witnesses

Witnesses are individuals who have knowledge relevant to a determination of responsibility of a policy violation in a given complaint. A Complainant and Respondent may submit the names of witnesses to the Investigator to be interviewed for the investigative report.

At the hearing, witnesses previously submitted by the parties may be called to sit before the panel. If called, witnesses shall be in the hearing room only during the time they are testifying. Witnesses will answer questions from the Hearing Panel, the Complainant, and the Respondent. If there is good reason that a Witness cannot attend a hearing, the Hearing Coordinator may submit questions to them in advance for written response.