Consensual Relationships Between University Employees and Students

Consensual relationships of an amorous or sexual nature, that might be appropriate in other circumstances, are deemed inappropriate when they occur between an employee of the University and a student for whom he or she has a professional responsibility. For example, such a relationship would be inappropriate between a faculty member, administrator, supervisor, advisor, coach, or residential staff member and a student for whom he or she has professional responsibility. Even when both parties have consented to the development of such a relationship, the relationship can raise serious concerns about the validity of consent, conflicts of interest, and unfair treatment for others and may result in serious consequences.  Employees and students of the University are expected to make responsible choices.

It is the policy of the University that any University employee, who has professional responsibility for students, shall not assume or maintain professional responsibility for any student with whom the University employee has engaged in an amorous or sexual relationship. Whether the relationship predated the assumption of professional responsibility or arose out of the professional association, the University employee shall immediately disclose the relationship to the relevant unit administrator. The unit administrator shall immediately arrange a meeting of the parties to the relationship to discuss alternative oversight of the student, and to attempt to reach cooperatively, agreement on changes that will move professional responsibility for the student to another University employee.   If no agreement is reached, the unit administrator shall determine and direct the best method to deal with the situation.