Changing Title IX Coordinator Position

After Cara Wald leaves her position, Bethel is looking for someone to fill a role focused on Title IX enforcement and support for victims of sexual assault.

By Soraya Keizer

Since its passage as part of the Education Amendments of 1972, Title IX has protected individuals from discrimination on the basis of sex for education programs and activities that receive federal financial assistance.

The Civil Rights Act states that “No person in the United States shall, because of sex, be excluded from participation in, denied benefits, or subjected to discrimination in connection with any program or service.” ‘an educational activity receiving federal financial assistance’.

Title IX obligations encompass many different aspects of the education system, including recruitment, admissions, counseling, financial aid, and athletics. Much of the law deals with sexual assault and other forms of sexual violence.

Bethel University remains consistent with Title IX and, as stated on Bethel’s website, is “committed to maintaining a Christ-centered community free from discrimination, including sexual harassment in all its forms.”

All members of the Bethel community are expected to comply with Bethel policies regarding sexual misconduct and sexual harassment. If this does not occur, community members may report instances of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment to Bethel’s Title IX Compliance Coordinator/Officer. Employees are required to report cases unless they are Confidential Contacts. These people include employees in Counseling Services, the Office of Christian Training and Church Relations, and Health Services.

Cara Wald, who previously served as Title IX Coordinator/Compliance Officer as well as Vice President of People and Culture, announced her resignation on October 15, 2021, with her last official day being November 19, 2021. Since On November 17, 2021, Dean of Student Success and Retention for the College of Adult and Career Studies, Ryan Gunderson served as Acting Title IX Coordinator. He has taken on Title IX coordinator responsibilities in addition to his position in Bethel’s CAPS program and will continue to do so until someone new is hired.

The Title IX Coordinator position was posted on Bethel’s job postings in early February and was updated on February 11th.

Vice President of Finance Amy Blaz was in charge of the hiring process. However, President Ross Allen announced on February 10 that Blaz would step down from his position. Blaz expects another cabinet member to become the head of the Title IX coordinator hiring process in the coming weeks.

Asked about the position, the hiring process and the need for an interim coordinator, Blaz said, “At Bethel, we are committed to maintaining a Christ-centered community free from sexual misconduct, sexual harassment and harassment. sexual violence. Our Title IX Non-Discrimination Policy serves to protect students and employees from discrimination based on gender. The Title IX Coordinator position specifically manages this process for us and is also required by Title IX legislation. »

Gunderson did not respond to inquiries from Clarion regarding these matters.

Blaz hopes the position will be filled by mid-March. Until then, Gunderson remains the point of contact for all matters relating to sexual harassment or Title IX and its policies.