Title IX Office

What is Title IX?

Title IX is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in educational programs, activities, admission and employment. Complaints of sex-based discrimination, sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, and sexual or gender-based harassment are governed by NOVA's Policy on Sexual Harassment and Sexual Misconduct. Title IX states that:

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

Title IX

Educational institutions that receive federal financial assistance are covered by Title IX. In compliance with Title IX, NOVA prohibits discrimination in employment as well as in all programs and activities on the basis of sex.

Here are some things you should know about your Title IX rights at NOVA:

  • NOVA must respond promptly and effectively to sexual violence
  • NOVA must provide support measures as necessary
  • NOVA should make known where you can find confidential support services
  • NOVA must conduct an adequate, reliable, and impartial investigation
  • NOVA must provide remedies as necessary

NOVA’s Sexual Misconduct Policy covers a wide range of behaviors prohibited under Title IX. Sexual misconduct includes sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, stalking, and relationship violence.

Please see the College Policy Page, to read NOVA’s Sexual Misconduct Policy 110.

Learn more about what we can do.

Title IX Frequently Asked Questions

As a reminder, all employees except those with privileged communication per the law are deemed Responsible Employees, per VCCS instruction.

Sexual misconduct includes but is not limited to, sexual assault, non-consensual sexual contact, stalking, sexual harassment, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or verbal and physical conduct of a sexual nature (when behavior is severe or pervasive enough to create an intimidating or hostile environment), threatening to sexually assault someone, cyber-stalking, indecent exposure, or sexual exploitation (which includes taking non-consensual or abusive advantage of others, i.e. taking sexual photos).

Employees are welcome to contact the Employee Assistance Plan. Students, employees, and visitors can also contact any of our community partners, including:

  • Alexandria Sexual Assault Center: 703.683.7273
  • Alexandria Domestic Violence Shelter: 703.746.4911
  • Fairfax County Office of Domestic and Sexual Violence Services: 703.360.7273
  • Stafford County Family Violence and Sexual Assault Hotline: 540.373.9373
  • Prince William Domestic Violence Intervention ACTS/Turning Points, Prince William: 703.221.4951

You are always welcome to explore law enforcement and Title IX options when, how, and if you would like. Keep in mind that Title IX processes are only available if the person who perpetrated the harm is a member of the College community. Law Enforcement officials always encourage individuals who have experienced harm to sit down with an officer to discuss options. The law enforcement options are going to vary depending on when and in what jurisdiction the harm took place.

No. It is very common for individuals to choose to work with local police first before using Title IX resources.

We know that any form of sex-based discrimination can be a difficult experience. You can talk with us at any time, no matter when or where the conduct occurred. We also want you to remember that after speaking with us, learning about all your options, and receiving information about resources, it’s okay if you are not ready to make a decision. We will continue to be here for you.

The College strongly supports a student’s interest in confidentiality in sexual misconduct cases. The College will only disclose information regarding such cases to individuals with responsibility for preparing the College’s response and in accordance with local, state, or federal law.

A complainant may request that their name not be disclosed to the respondent or that the College not investigate or seek action against the respondent. The College will determine whether it can honor such a request while still providing a safe and nondiscriminatory environment for all students, including the complainant. A complainant’s desire for anonymity may limit the College’s ability to stop, prevent or remedy the misconduct.

The College will notify the complainant of its intention to disclose the complainant’s identity if the College decides that providing a safe and nondiscriminatory environment for the College’s community members outweighs the complainant’s right to inaction or anonymity.

No. Title IX can provide individuals who have experienced sexual misconduct with resources and support even if they do not wish to pursue an investigation. These resources are called interim measures because they are options that can be provided in the short term while someone is considering whether to move forward with a process. Academic assistance, No Contact Orders, and referrals to on-campus resources are all considered Interim Measures.

Every situation is different. Interim measures such as academic assistance, referrals, and No Contact Orders are the most frequently requested resources. However, other options and resources may be available.

The College’s goal is not to get someone in trouble but to respond to reports of sexual misconduct, stop the behavior, prevent its recurrence and address its effects. This may include taking disciplinary action against the respondent to hold that individual accountable for their behavior and prevent this from happening again.

Yes. Both complainants and respondents can have a person of their choosing with them throughout all steps in the College’s process.

No. Retaliation is a violation of the College’s Sexual Misconduct policy. It is against the College’s policy to retaliate against any person who exercises their right to file a sexual misconduct complaint or cooperate with an investigation. Any person who experiences or observes retaliation should promptly notify the Title IX Coordinator.

Each party will have an opportunity to appeal if they are dissatisfied with the outcome. The appeal process is described in the Sexual Misconduct policy.

Yes. Interim measures including academic assistance and referrals to medical and counseling resources, are available to respondents. The Title IX office can provide respondents with information about support and resources.

Campus conduct processes are only available if the respondent is a member of the campus community. However, resources like academic assistance and confidential resources are still available to the complainant.

Questions for Responsible Employees

No. Responsible Employees fulfill their reporting obligation by reporting to Title IX. 

No. Responsible employees report instances of sexual misconduct involving any and all NOVA community members.

Check out this handout with basic information for Responsible Employees.

Contact Us

Title IX Office

Dr. Nathan Carter, Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer (CDEIO)

Vacant, Title IX Coordinator