Title IX & VAWA

Maintaining a campus free of sex discrimination, including sexual misconduct and sexual harassment, is important for all students and employees.

Title IX of the Education Amendments (1972) prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any educational program or activity that receives federal financial assistance (20 U.S.C. § 1681(a)). Title IX prohibits sexual harassment, including sexual violence.

The Violence Against Women (VAWA) Reauthorization Act (2013), also prohibits sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. This federal legislation is sometimes referred to as the Campus Sexual Violence Elimination (SaVE) Act.

University Policy 1025: Policy on Harassment, Discrimination, and Sexual Assault is consistent with federal law in prohibiting discrimination on the basis of gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation. Policy 1025 also prohibits discrimination based on gender expression.

A list of important terms and definitions relating to Title IX and VAWA is available.

The Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization of 2013 (VAWA) requires institutions of higher education to comply with certain campus safety and security-related requirements as a condition of participation in Title IV, Higher Education Act programs. VAWA requires institutions to implement policies and processes to address sexual assault, stalking, and domestic or dating violence.

This new regulation amended section 485(f) of the Higher Education Act, otherwise known as the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (Clery Act), which requires the university to compile and report statistics (not personally identifying information) about incidents of dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking, and to include certain policies, procedures, and programs pertaining to these incidents in the annual security report.

Failure to comply with Title IX or VAWA can include the termination of all or part of a university’s federal funding. This includes grants, subsidies, and other program funds from the federal government. In addition to the loss of federal funds, universities may be sued by those seeking redress for violations of Title IX. It is essential that institutions receiving federal financial assistance operate in a nondiscriminatory manner.

The United States Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is charged with enforcing Title IX and VAWA.

Title IX Coordinator
Katie Polidoro
Director of Title IX Compliance 

The Title IX coordinator is responsible for monitoring compliance with regulations and is responsible for receiving complaints of sexual harassment, including sexual assault, sexual violence, relationship (domestic/dating) violence, stalking or other sexual misconduct.

Any concerns about discrimination or harassment on the basis of gender involving a student may be brought to the Virginia Tech Title IX coordinator or the deputy Title IX coordinator:

Title IX Coordinator
Katie Polidoro
Director of Title IX Compliance 

Concerns of possible sexual assault or harassment of students

Sexual harassment is prohibited under University Policy 1025: Policy on Harassment, Discrimination, and Sexual Assault and the Student Code of Conduct.

These policies apply to all students, including undergraduate and graduate students and students who attend classes on the Blacksburg campus, a satellite campus, or the virtual campus. Complaints of student sexual misconduct are addressed by The Office of Student Conduct and are governed by the Hokie Handbook.

Reports of sexual misconduct and sexual harassment by a Virginia Tech student may be filed with the deputy Title IX coordinator or the Student Conduct Office by any person, including both those affiliated and those not affiliated with Virginia Tech. Reports of all other abusive conduct by a Virginia Tech student can be filed with the Student Conduct Office.

Concerns about sexual misconduct or sexual harassment involving a student, visitor or guest alleged to have been committed by a Virginia Tech employee should be promptly brought to the attention of the Office for Equity and Accessibility by any person, including both those affiliated and those not affiliated with Virginia Tech.

For more information, visit the Stop Abuse website.

Concerns of possible sexual assault or harassment of employees

Virginia Tech employees who believe they have been subjected to harassment or discrimination in the workplace should contact the Office for Equity and Accessibility to learn what options are available to them.


Retaliation against anyone who raises concerns of sexual harassment, discrimination, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking is a violation of federal law and Virginia Tech policy.

Requirements for reporting possible Title IX and VAWA issues

Any member of the university community who becomes aware of possible sexual harassment or sexual assault perpetrated by a Virginia Tech student, not acting within the scope of their employment, should contact the deputy Title IX coordinator. All other incidents involving the sexual harassment of students must be reported to the university Title IX coordinator.

Virginia Tech students and employees must notify the Title IX or deputy Title IX coordinator immediately about matters of possible sexual assault, sexual harassment, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking.

The professional staff of the Cook Counseling Center, Schiffert Health Center, and the Virginia Tech Women’s Center are confidential resources and are not required to report allegations of a violation of Title IX or VAWA.

Mandatory workshop

In fall 2014, the university established a requirement that all employees (faculty, staff, wage, student wage, and graduate assistants) complete a workshop on Title IX and Retaliation. Subsequently, the university established the standard that all new employees are required to complete this same requirement within 90 days of becoming employed by the university.

Each employee is required to complete this workshop once every 24 months following their initial completion of the requirement.

The workshop orients employees on the provisions of the University Policy 1025: Policy on Harassment, Discrimination, and Sexual Assault, the requirements associated with Title IX of the Higher Education Amendments of 1972, the Violence Against Women Act (reauthorized 2013), and University Policy 4815: Minors on Campus or Participating in University-Related Programs.

Any employee who would like to verify their status with respect to meeting and maintaining the requirement can log into the Hokie Spa, select “Hokie Team,” and view the “Employment Information” page. The completion and expiration dates are listed under “Training Dates” at the bottom of that page.

A new employee can visit the Employee Dashboard and look for "Title IX Training" listed as a "required" task. The task will either be reflected as complete or incomplete. If it is reflected as incomplete, the employee needs to register for the workshop.

Learn more and register for the Compliance Workshop.