On Compliance: Living Our Values

We are a diverse community, where respecting rights and abiding by responsibilities is absolutely essential. As we move forward in the development of our 2015-18 Strategic Plan, compliance with state and federal statutes is a key element of Stewardship, Engagement, Adaptability, and Learning. In short, we comply with laws and regulations not because we fear penalties, but because doing so speaks to the core of who we are—it is the right thing to do.

Update on Campus Safety

Of special importance in our compliance efforts is the issue of sexual assault on campus, which was the subject of a White House conference call I attended recently, along with college and university presidents from around the country. Middle Georgia State University (MGA) is committed to ensuring that our faculty, staff, and students understand their rights and responsibilities when it comes to sexual assault on campus and related issues of harassment, misconduct, and alcohol use.

Earlier this summer, Chancellor Huckaby announced the recommendations of a system-wide Campus Safety and Security Committee. I am pleased to report that we have begun implementing the USG Committee’s recommendations, as follows:

  • Chief Shawn Douglas, our Assistant Vice President for Risk Management and Police Services, serves as MGA’s Clery Coordinator and leads our Clery Coordinating Committee, which consists of: Chief Douglas (Police), Frances Davis (Legal), Jennifer Brannon (Student Affairs), Brian Harrell (Residence Life), Michael Stewart (Student Conduct), Dr. Lisa Borroughs (Human Resources), and Cheryl Carty (Communications). Chief Douglas will also represent MGA on a standing USG Clery Committee, led by the System’s Clery Coordinator.
  • Frances Marine Davis, our University Counsel, will continue to serve as MGA’s Title IX Coordinator and lead our Title IX Working Group, which consists of: Deputy Coordinators Dr. Lisa Borroughs (Human Resources), Dr. Andre Nicholson (Faculty), and Leigh Ann Tribble (Student Affairs); Investigators Stephanie Lampp (University Police), Ashley Turner (Financial Aid), and Ruth Hagemann (Counseling); Faculty members Mimi Ford (Business) and Dr. Chip Rogers (English); and Staff members James Hagler (Athletics) and Demetrius Smith (Registrar).

Mandatory Training on Sexual Assault & Alcohol Awareness

Starting today, Middle Georgia State will provide mandatory online training in cooperation with the USG to arm employees and students with specific information related to reporting incidents, requests for confidentiality, and other matters related to the prevention of sexual misconduct. You will receive your individual log-in for training via email. The good news for Middle Georgia State is that, according to a Climate Survey conducted by the Education Advisory Board across our campuses earlier this year, 92% of our students feel safe on campus and 81% of students believe our faculty care about their well-being.

Structure to Address Emerging Issues

New regulatory complexities—related not only to issues of campus safety and sexual assault, but to areas impacted by technology, such as access for people with disabilities and intellectual property issues—will require us all to work together as we continue to strengthen our campus culture. To that end, I am pleased to announce the creation of the Middle Georgia State University Compliance Commission, a group that will work along with our subject-matter experts, Faculty Senate and Staff Advisory Council to strengthen institutional compliance and policies through shared governance.

Thank you, in advance, for your support of these efforts.  If you have any questions regarding the Compliance Commission, please send them to policies@mga.edu. To learn more about the efforts of the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault, visit the website 1is2Many. And if you have concerns related to sexual harassment, misconduct, or assault, including questions on policies, process, and training here, please send them to titleix@mga.edu.

Middle Georgia State stands for values that are about social responsibility as much as individual growth.  Our compliance system is designed to support both those goals in a context of public and legal accountability.