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Spelman College

President's Letters to the Community

Title IX Update


October 7, 2016

Dear Spelman Community,

As we approach the midpoint of the semester, I want to share several updates regarding new resources and developments related to Spelman College’s Title IX efforts. We remain committed to providing a safe and inclusive learning environment. We’ve continued to work to enhance our education, training and infrastructure. Recent enhancements that we have made in this area are as follows:

Staffing

Title IX & Compliance Assistant and Web Content Specialist Aisha DeBerry was hired on September 1, 2016. Aisha will serve as a focal point for communication and general support, while maintaining an up-to-date and interactive website to meet the needs of the College community and federal standards, procedures and protections. 

Raised in Jackson, Mississippi, Aisha has a continued interest in the area of human rights. She received her Bachelor of Science in economics and political science from Northeastern University. After graduation, Aisha started a career in admissions at her alma mater that eventually led her to Atlanta to work in the areas of admissions and student affairs at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine-Georgia Campus, focusing on enrollment and retention of a diverse student body. She later received her Juris Doctorate from Lincoln Memorial University, where she served as president of the Black Law Students Association, and held leadership positions in organizations such as the Women’s Law Society, Immigration Law Society and OUTLaw, an organization to support the LGBTQIA community. As a final project, she served as co-editor for the book “Human Trafficking” (Taylor-Page, Piatt, Jr. Carolina Academic Press, 2016), which addresses the legal, psychological, and moral effects of sex and labor trafficking. Aisha recently comes to us from Breeding and Associates, LLC., in Knoxville, Tennessee. 

Assistant Director for Prevention and Response Nicole Johnson was hired on September 26, 2016. Nicole operates within an empowerment model of support, aiming to provide survivors/victims with on and off campus resources and facilitating whichever path the student feels will be most helpful. Nicole will play a critical role in a coordinated community response to sex discrimination including sexual assault, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence and stalking. Her primary responsibility will be supporting the student community by initiating and directing student advocacy and case management following a report or incident of sexual or gender based violence. Additionally, Nicole will develop and implement educational outreach on topics for students, staff and faculty.

A native of Vestal, New York, Johnson has lived in Atlanta for eight years. She brings a wealth of experience in student development and engagement. Johnson has served in various roles in student affairs, including residence life, victim assistance, health promotion, and student advocacy. Johnson received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Social Work from the University of Pittsburgh, and is a passionate advocate for student success.

Nicole received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Social Work from the University of Pittsburgh. She is passionate advocate for student success. While at Georgia State University she assisted with the development and implementation of a food pantry for low income students and was recently awarded the Avon Foundation “National Leadership Institute: Changing the Narrative on Campus Gender‐Based Violence” grant.

Terri Reed, Ph.D., Spelman’s secretary of the College, continues to serve as the interim Title IX director while we search for a permanent director. As you know, it is critical that we find someone who not only has the right experience, but will also be a good fit for Spelman and I appreciate your patience while we continue the search.

Faculty, Staff and Student Engagement

This semester we launched the Healthy Relationships Program. Approximately 50 upper class students have been selected to participate as Peer Health Educators for the program. These students committed to 16 hours of training that was conducted by Center for Disease Control staff members and Morehouse School of Medicine’s School of Public Health professor Tina Davis, Ph.D., C’2001. The PHEs have learned about consent, STDs, female health, and healthy relationship communication skills, and will present this information to first year students on October 13, 18, and 21.The one-hour sessions will be followed by residence hall discussions in the evening.

The Student Commission on Sex Discrimination is planning activities for Homecoming week to educate the campus community on the importance of consent. 

The Faculty Advisory Committee, co-chaired by Cynthia Neal Spence, Ph.D., C’78, and Beverly Guy-Sheftall, Ph.D., C’66, has met twice and the chairs have begun the necessary engagement with our Institutional Research Office in preparation for an early spring student survey. The Committee has expanded and is comprised of dedicated scholars whose passions and interests are informing our strategy and practices. The faculty members joining the committee this year include: Munira Charania, Ph.D., Kathleen Phillips-Lewis, Ph.D., Erica Williams, Ph.D., and Alix Chapman, Ph.D. Nami Kim, Ph.D., and Angelino Viceisza, Ph.D., are continuing their service.

As always, if you or someone you know has experienced sexual violence, or has information about a sexual assault, we are here for you. We will fully investigate all reports and will provide the appropriate support and services.

  • Support: Spelman Sexual Assault Hotline 678-873-5884
  • Reporting: Spelman Dean of Students Office 404-270-5133, Spelman Title IX
    Office 404-270-4005
  • Confidential Reporting and Support Services: Counseling Services 404-270-5293, Student Health Services 404-270-5249, Women’s Health Clinic 404-270-5247

Sincerely, 
Mary Schmidt Campbell

*********************************** 
Mary Schmidt Campbell, Ph.D. 
President
Spelman College 
350 Spelman Lane, SW 
Atlanta, GA 30314-4399