Harassment is any unwelcome and persistent or pervasive conduct directed toward an individual or against a group that is based on that person’s or group’s actual or perceived race, color, age, ethnicity, national origin, immigration status, socioeconomic status, political affiliation, veteran status, pregnancy status, genetic information, or religion. Behavior based on an individual or group’s gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability is addressed under the University’s Student Sexual Misconduct Policy or Student Disability Grievance Procedures. The conduct may be verbal, nonverbal, written, electronic, or physical behavior and/or communication.
To constitute harassment, the unwelcome behavior or communication must have the purpose or effect of being sufficiently serious as to:
- create an intimidating, hostile, or demeaning educational, living, or work environment, or
- deny or limit a person’s work performance or a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from an educational program.
In addition, to constitute harassment, the conduct must include something beyond the mere expression of views, words, symbols, or thoughts that some person may find offensive. The conduct will be viewed from both a subjective (the complainant’s) and an objective (reasonable person’s) viewpoint, and take into consideration all surrounding circumstances. Such conduct does not need to be directed at or to a specific individual in order to constitute harassment, but may consist of generalized unwelcome and inappropriate behaviors or communications based on one or more of the aforementioned protected categories.