Missouri University of Science and Technology will receive $300,000 over three years through the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Violence Against Women (OVW) Grants to Reduce Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence and Stalking on Campus Program. The funding will allow Missouri S&T to strengthen and formalize education, policies and procedures, and messaging to prevent and respond to sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking.
“We were fortunate to be awarded the OVW grant from the Department of Justice,” says Shenethia Manuel, vice chancellor for Human Resources, Equity and Inclusion at Missouri S&T. “This funding will make it possible to provide opportunities for our campus community to better understand the impact of sexual harassment and sexual violence on the educational environment.”
Through the grant, Missouri S&T will improve coordination of campus and community partners to enhance the campus response to allegations of sexual violence and stalking. Efforts will include ensuring that processes, policies, protocols and training content used throughout the campus and among community partners are consistent and well-understood.
The university will also improve access to specialized programming for international students, who arrive on campus with varying levels of English proficiency. Many come from countries where gender equity and other social norms are radically different from those accepted in the United States.
Manuel, who is also the university’s Title IX coordinator and chief diversity officer, is a co-primary investigator on the grant with Neil Outar, director of institutional equity, diversity and inclusion and deputy Title IX coordinator. Outar is responsible for the overall management and fiscal oversight of the project.
Andrew Pepper, educational program coordinator, will coordinate grant activities and work with the Coordinated Community Response (CCR) Team to ensure goals of the program are met.
Missouri S&T is coordinating with several local victim services and law enforcement partners on this project, including the Russell House, Phelps County Regional Medical Center, Rolla Police Department, Phelps County Sheriff’s Department and the Phelps County Prosecutor’s victim advocate services.