Tag Archives: Institutional Betrayal

Interim President Coltrane’s email response to sexual assault lawsuit

Dear Campus Community,

Today, the University of Oregon was notified about a lawsuit filed by a current student related to a reported incident of sexual misconduct. While unfortunate, this filing is not unanticipated.

The university would prefer not to be in litigation with any student. We have been as respectful and supportive as possible of the student, including immediately implementing support services and appropriately honoring her choice of process, once hearing of her experience.

The university disagrees with the allegations against it and believes that it acted in accordance with the law, including Title IX. This litigation in no way undermines the university’s on-going commitment to support the student inside and outside of the classroom.

It has long been UO’s priority to provide support and services to any student in need and make our campus a safe place for all members of our community. We have regularly reassessed our efforts, implemented changes and added resources to address sexual assault. Our current efforts are guided by recommendations from the University Senate, the President’s Review Panel and a university-wide analysis of prevention efforts, which was coordinated by Student Life. We welcome feedback from the campus on our progress.

To be clear, UO’s review of transfer applications for all students includes an evaluation of academic credentials and potential campus fit. Enrollment decisions are made based on the information made available to us by applicants and our colleagues nationally.

The university has posted a timeline of events, which has been publicly available since mid-May. It outlines the aspects of the university’s response we can share while still protecting the privacy and rights of those involved.

As a community, each of us must work hard to provide support and services to any student in need and make our campus a safe place. Thank you for being part of our community.

Sincerely,

Scott Coltrane
Interim President

Letters to the editor (Kathryn Quina, Ph.D.,)

Letters to the editor (Kathryn Quina, Ph.D.,)

UO VP Robin Holmes recently rejected a request for support for professor Jennifer Freyd’s survey of experiences and perceptions of the UO campus climate. This study has the interest and shared surveys of a U.S. Senate committee and a White House task force, who asked Dr. Freyd to assist in piloting their work. I am sure they are intrigued by the university’s response.

I have published survey development and research on abuse and related topics for more than 30 years. I reviewed the measures in the current survey, several used in my own work. There is nothing unusual, unethical or problematic about the proposed study, and it asks important questions about the impacts of institutional and interpersonal betrayal.

To attack this project for an imagined potential for bias by Freyd further diminishes an administration embarrassed by recent decisions, in local and national press accounts. That scandal occurred after this project was in development; Freyd’s advocacy is the logical result of her many years of widely respected scholarly work. If a famed cancer scientist used her data to testify against smoking, would her research now be criticized? If a professor who had authored a scholarly book on disabilities then advocated for his autistic son, would his work be recast as “biased”?

Scholars around the country are watching with concern that faculty and students who dare to speak out at UO will fall victim to suppression and criticism. Please keep us informed by your reporting.

Kathryn Quina, Ph.D., Hope, R.I.

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: Kathryn Quina is a fellow of the American Psychological Association and a professor of psychology and gender and women’s studies and associate dean at the Feinstein Providence Campus of the University of Rhode Island.

New Research on Institutional Betrayal

Carly Smith and Jennifer Freyd have new research on institutional betrayal and sexual assault forthcoming in American Psychologist, the official peer-reviewed journal of the American Psychological Association and one of the top journals in the field of psychology. 

As readers of this blog know, the University of Oregon administration has refused to fund the campus climate survey that Freyd proposed to conduct in the wake of the most recent sexual assault case.

If you would like to support this important research, you can donate directly by going to this link.