Policies and Definitions




An intentional or unintentional act that adversely affects educational opportunities because of a person’ membership in a protected class or association with a protected class (color, religion, race, national origin, age, disability, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, genetic info, marital status, or veterans status)

Equal Opportunity, Diversity and Affirmative Action Plan

Discriminatory Harassment 

Any form of unlawful discrimination including verbal and/or physical conduct based on legally protected characteristics and/or membership in a protected class.

Sexual Harassment

Under this policy, conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following conditions:

  1. An employee of the University conditioning the provision of an aid, benefit, or service of the University on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct; or,
  2. Unwelcome conduct determined by a reasonable person to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to the University’s education program or activity.

Additionally, the behaviors as outlined in subsections (b) through (e) of this section constitute sexual harassment under this Policy.



Sexual Assault

an offense classified as a forcible or non-forcible sex offense under the uniform crime reporting system of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Attempts to commit any of these acts are also prohibited.

  1. Rape- The penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus, with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person without the consent of the victim (or attempts to commit the same). This includes any gender of victim or Respondent.
  2. Fondling- The touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim, including instances in which the victim is incapable of giving consent because of age and/or because of temporary or permanent mental incapacity.
  3. Statutory Rape- Sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent, which is 16 years old in Massachusetts.
  4. Incest- Non-forcible sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.

Dating Violence

any act of violence or threatened violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim; the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors: (i) the length of the relationship, (ii) The type of relationship, and (iii) the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship. This includes, but is not limited to, sexual, emotional or physical abuse, or the threat of such abuse.

Domestic Violence 

includes felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner, by a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction receiving grant monies, or by any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction.


is engaging in a course of conduct directed (directly, indirectly, through a third party or other means) at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to— (A) fear for their safety or the safety of others; or (B) suffer substantial emotional distress. For the purposes of this Policy, the behaviors must be directly related to that person’s sex.

Note: A Title IX violation can occur between people of any gender including female to female, male to male. The examples above are not exhaustive.