Newswise – The University of West Florida has joined the eighth cohort of NASPA’s Culture of Respect Collective. The two-year program supports colleges and universities committed to ending sexual violence through an evaluation and action planning framework that will further strengthen response and prevention initiatives on campus. UWF joins a group of 15 colleges and universities from across North America participating in the program.

“Participation in the Culture of Respect Collective will help UWF develop a stronger and more collaborative approach to addressing issues related to sexual violence,” said Dr. Greg Tomso, vice president for academic engagement and student affairs. “We place a high priority on violence prevention and response so that all of our students, faculty, staff and visitors have a safe and welcoming experience on our campus.”

Over the next two years, UWF will undergo a self-assessment to examine the university’s current work related to its Title IX programs. An advisory committee comprised of students, faculty and staff will help conduct an initial “CORE Assessment” of over 155 questions to assess the effectiveness of the Title IX program in preventing and responding to sexual violence. The committee will discuss the findings in detail and identify areas for improvement and strategic growth. The Advisory Committee will then propose new programs, resources and policy changes to improve compliance and support for the campus community. At the end of the program, the Advisory Committee will reassess UWF’s effectiveness by evaluating the newly implemented programs.

“This is the perfect time to evaluate our processes, priorities and programs and strategically address expanding our prevention and response efforts under new regulations,” said Jenny Hamilton, deputy director and Title IX coordinator.

Hamilton and other Title IX program staff will participate in monthly meetings with representatives from the other cohort institutions. These meetings provide program direction and professional development, including discussions of national trends and research, program resources, training opportunities, and roundtables on campus topics.

“Membership in the cohort builds UWF’s support network with other institutions’ Title IX offices, which is invaluable for such nuanced work through policy improvements, case consultations and campus educational resources,” Hamilton said.

“Ultimately,” adds Dr. Tomso added, “our entire campus and student body will benefit from this effort as our primary goal is to maintain a supportive and respectful campus culture.”

For more information about UWF’s Title IX programs, visit

For more information about NASPA’s Culture of Respect Collective, visit Culture of Respect Collective website. NASPA is the nation’s largest higher education student affairs organization.

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