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FAQ

1. What is The Campus Climate and Culture Initiative?

Launched in January 2019, The Campus Climate and Culture Initiative (C3I) is a comprehensive set of actions that aims to create a learning environment free from sexual misconduct and abuse of power. Specifically, the initiative is designed to foster healthy, professional, and nurturing relationships among faculty, staff, and students.

We have embraced and expanded upon the recommendations for institutions of higher education in the groundbreaking June 2018 report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM), called Sexual Harassment of Women: Climate, Culture, and Consequences in Academic Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

The initiative’s wide-ranging actions will work, in part, to address the three kinds of sexual harassment the report identifies: gender harassment (sexist hostility and crude behavior), unwanted sexual attention (unwelcome verbal or physical sexual advances), and sexual coercion (when favorable professional or educational treatment is conditioned on sexual activity).

The actions address every one of the NASEM report’s recommendations, and are categorized in five key areas: campus climate, academic and professional development, recruitment, resources, and mandatory reporting. More information on the specific actions is available on the Purpose and Goals page.

2. Why was C3I created?

We believe a campus can reach its potential as a learning environment only if it is safe and inclusive, and we are continually striving to reach this ideal.

While many of the C3I actions were begun more than a year ago, the serious allegations made against three former members of the Psychological and Brain Sciences faculty in 2017 strengthened our resolve to ensure that our learning environment is free from sexual misconduct and abuse of power and is safe and inclusive of all of its members.

C3I is an opportunity to set a higher standard for ourselves in creating a more respectful culture across our campus.

3. What is C3I’s relationship with Moving Dartmouth Forward and Inclusive Excellence?

These three initiatives are closely interlocked; together, they form a broad-based program to ensure that behaviors and relationships in all contexts on campus are consistent with our values.

We see C3I as the third pillar in our comprehensive set of initiatives established to create a more welcoming, inclusive, and equitable environment for all Dartmouth students, faculty, and staff.

C3I aims to foster healthy, professional, and nurturing relationships among faculty, staff, and graduate and professional students, and it builds on our two other critical initiatives:

  • Moving Dartmouth Forward, launched in 2015, which takes aim at sexual assault, high-risk drinking, and other harmful and exclusionary behaviors within the undergraduate social scene; and
  • Inclusive Excellence, rolled out in 2016, which seeks to create a culture of inclusion and equity, and to promote diversity among faculty, students, and staff.

4. Who developed the plan?

C3I was developed in conjunction with campus constituents by President Hanlon and the administrative and academic leadership team.

The plan benefitted significantly from the work of the Presidential Steering Committee on Sexual Misconduct launched in January 2018.

We have embraced and expanded upon the recommendations for institutions of higher education from the groundbreaking 2018 report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM), called Sexual Harassment of Women: Climate, Culture, and Consequences in Academic Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

The report provides the first evidence-based exploration of the damaging toll of sexual harassment on both research integrity and on retaining talented students and faculty.

5. Did you consider input from the Dartmouth community?

Yes. Many of the action steps in the C3I plan had been initiated or under review in the last several years based on input and suggestions from the community.

The faculties and appropriate committees at each of the schools, including Arts and Sciences, are currently reviewing the proposed unified sexual misconduct policy.

The Presidential Steering Committee on Sexual Misconduct, composed of representatives from across the institution, provided invaluable input for a number of the initiatives including the unified policy on sexual misconduct. The Steering Committee consulted with all campus constituencies, studied the work of peer schools, and reviewed best practices. The Committee also held six individual listening sessions to solicit direct input from members of the Dartmouth community. Sessions were restricted by affiliation (i.e., staff only, faculty only, students/postdocs only) and a session for each affiliated group was held in both Hanover and Lebanon (DHMC).

We also established an electronic site in which individuals could post comments and ask questions either anonymously or as identified members of the community. That feedback has also been incorporated into C3I.

We will continue to encourage and solicit input on C3I from students, faculty, staff, and alumni throughout the plan’s implementation.

Over the coming weeks and months, and in a variety of settings including faculty meetings and department events, we will be available to hear your thoughts, answer any questions, and provide more information and updates. You can email us at C3I@dartmouth.edu with comments, questions, and suggestions at any time.

6. Who is sponsoring the initiative?

Dartmouth’s senior leadership team is jointly sponsoring C3I and will be directly accountable for making sure that Dartmouth has the resources to successfully implement the program.

The board of trustees, led by Board Chair Laurel Richie, has given their full support to this initiative.

7. How will you measure progress?

We are committed to measuring and sharing our progress publicly. An External Advisory Committee will provide an annual update to the board of trustees and the public.

The committee will be led by Gilda A. Barabino, dean of the Grove School of Engineering at The City College of New York (CCNY) and member of the task force that authored the NASEM report. Dartmouth-Hitchcock CEO and president, Joanne Mather Conroy, MD, ’77, and Susan Finegan ’85, chair of the Pro Bono Committee at the law firm Mintz Levin, have agreed to serve on the advisory committee. Additional members are being identified.

In addition, we will establish key performance indicators to measure progress and impact in providing a healthy learning environment for all students, faculty, and staff with input from the Provost’s Working Group; more details about this will be posted on this website.

8. How long will it take to complete the initiative?

Change doesn’t come easily to any institution, and Dartmouth is no exception. We know that there are no easy, quick-fix solutions to these issues, but we are totally committed to creating an environment that is safe and inclusive of every member of our community. This will take years, not weeks, and we are dedicating the time and resources necessary to achieve our goals.

9. What will success look like?

We will know that we have been successful when our community tells us that Dartmouth is a place where—without exception and across all disciplines—members of our community can advance their academic careers in a campus-wide climate that is productive, nurturing, professional, and supportive. An important tool for measuring this will be campus climate surveys, which we will continue to do on a regular basis.