Sexual Assault Resource Coordinator (SARC) 484-343-6028 (24/7)
A SARC can review the options available to a survivor of any form of sexual violence, including sexual assault, sexual exploitation, stalking, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, retaliation, incest, and statutory rape. A SARC can connect a student to a variety of resources, (medical care, reporting, counseling), and can accompany a student to campus and/or community services to ensure that he/she receives appropriate care and follow up information in the wake of sexual violence. If someone is not sure whom to talk to, connecting with a SARC is a good place to start. The SARC team also welcomes phone calls from friends seeking for information on how to support a friend or loved one following an incident of sexual violence.
When an incident of sexual misconduct is reported to the University, the University will conduct an investigation. Students, faculty and staff deemed relevant to the case may be asked to participate in an investigation, and when asked, they are expected to find time to meet and share information with the investigator.
Investigations of all sexual misconduct involving a current student: The Assistant Director of Public Safety (to whom the Title IX Investigator reports) will typically oversee the administrative investigation of all sexual misconduct reports where the Respondent is a current student.
Investigations of sexual harassment involving a University employee: The Sexual Harassment Complaint Officer or their designee will typically oversee the investigation of all reports of sexual harassment involving a Respondent who is a University employee (faculty or staff). The Sexual Harassment Complaint Officer may be assisted in the investigation by the Human Resources and/or Public Safety Departments.
Investigations of other sexual misconduct (other than sexual harassment) involving a University employee: The Assistant Director of Public Safety (to whom the Title IX Investigator reports) will typically oversee the administrative investigation of sexual misconduct reports where the Respondent is a University employee.
Criminal investigations: The Director of Public Safety & Chief of Police or their designee oversees the criminal investigation of all sexual misconduct reports conducted by the Department, regardless of the Respondent’s affiliation with the University.
Normally, investigations will include interviewing the parties, interviewing witnesses as appropriate, and collecting relevant documentary, electronic, or other evidence. A criminal investigation may also include the collection of physical and/or forensic evidence, and that evidence may also be presented in an administrative hearing.
At the conclusion of investigations, reports are shared with the University authorities empowered to act on violations of University policy. The specific resolution process will be determined by the role of the Respondent, as specified in this Policy:
For additional information on reporting, see the Title IX Notice.
Once the University has taken appropriate steps to investigate, which may depend on the specific facts and circumstances of the matter, and the Complainant has decided to pursue the complaint, either the Complainant or the Respondent may request voluntary resolution in lieu of disciplinary resolution. All requests for voluntary resolution must be in writing. The parties are not required to attempt voluntary resolution, and voluntary resolution is not appropriate for all types of alleged conduct. The University shall determine if the matter is eligible for voluntary resolution.
If the University has determined the matter is eligible for voluntary resolution and both parties consent to the process in writing, the matter will be referred to the appropriate University official or third party engaged by the University to facilitate the process. Both parties may consult with an Advisor before and during the voluntary resolution process, and the Advisor may accompany the Complainant or Respondent to any meetings in connection with the process. Any agreed upon resolution reached by the parties is subject to the University’s final approval. This includes any resolution reached by the parties without the University’s active participation or involvement.
At any time, either party may elect to discontinue the voluntary resolution process by providing written notice to the designated University official. The University reserves the right to discontinue the voluntary resolution process: if information becomes available which makes the matter ineligible for voluntary resolution; if there are health or safety concerns that have not been adequately addressed; if an acceptable resolution cannot be reached between the parties; or under other appropriate circumstances.
Once the voluntary resolution reaches an agreed-upon conclusion, which must be approved by the University and acknowledged by the parties in writing, the matter will be considered resolved and not eligible for further voluntary or disciplinary resolution. The voluntary resolution is not subject to appeal. Alleged violations of the terms of the resolution, retaliation, or other violations will be considered a new and separate matter and will not reopen the original matter.
Although the University encourages a Complainant to talk with someone directly, the University does provide an anonymous on-line reporting option, and an anonymous phone reporting option (855-236-1443). This report will prmopt an investigation. However, the University's ability to respond effectively may be limited by the level of information provided and/or the anonymity of the complaint. All anonymous reports of sexual misconduct will be referred to the Title IX Coordinator.
The University is committed to protecting the privacy of all people involved in a report of sexual assault, sexual harassment or other sexual misconduct. Information related to a report to the University of sexual assault, sexual harassment or other sexual misconduct will be kept private by the University unless disclosure is required by law; thus, it will be shared only with those University officials with a designated interest in order to assist in the investigation and/or in the resolution of the matter. Under no circumstances will the University release the name of the Complainant to the general public without the express consent of the Complainant.
Whenever a report of sexual assault, sexual harassment or other sexual misconduct is made, Villanova has an obligation to take steps to ensure it is providing a safe, non-discriminatory environment for all members of the Villanova community. If a Complainant discloses an experience of sexual misconduct and requests that no further investigation into a particular incident be conducted or disciplinary action taken, the University will weigh the Complainant’s request against its obligation to provide a safe and non- discriminatory environment for the University community.
In conducting an appropriate investigation, University investigators and administrators are sensitive to the privacy of those involved. Incidents will always be handled as private matters; confidentiality cannot be guaranteed unless disclosed only to a confidential resource (listed below). To conduct an effective investigation and fully assess the ongoing safety of the community, it may be necessary to gather information related to the incident. The Complainant is always free to decide whether and how they want to be involved in the investigation and the disciplinary process, if any, that follows. When a person requests that their name not be shared as part of an investigation, that request will be considered, balancing the need for a meaningful investigation.
University employees are responsible for maintaining a safe community for all of our members and, most especially, our students. When a student discloses any incident of sexual misconduct to an employee, the employee should take the following steps to support the student and to report to the University. [The only employees exempt from this expectation are those who are required by law to maintain confidentiality, including University Counseling Center staff and priests in a pastoral capacity]
The University process and the criminal justice process are separate and independent courses of action. A Complainant who wishes to pursue a criminal complaint is encouraged to make a report to law enforcement. Incidents occurring on campus are within the jurisdiction of Villanova University Department of Public Safety. Actions occurring off campus are within the jurisdiction of one of several surrounding townships, most of which are listed in Off Campus/Community Resources. If the Complainant does not know in which municipality the incident occurred, the Complainant should contact the Sexual Assault Resource Coordinatorr, Public Safety or 911 for assistance. Upon request, the Sexual Assault Resource Coordinator on call or a representative of the Department of Public Safety can accompany a Complainant to the police department with jurisdiction and assist a Complainant in making a criminal report. Notifying municipal law enforcement will generally result in the Complainant, and in some cases the Respondent, being contacted by a municipal police officer. The police will determine if a criminal investigation will occur and if the case will be referred for prosecution. Unless there are compelling circumstances, the University will typically not file an independent police report without the consent of the Complainant.