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Michigan State University

Driving Change Through Education

Tanya Jachimiak in studio

Driving Change Through Education

Charged with bringing about change, MSU’s new AVP and Title IX coordinator, Tanya Jachimiak, prioritizes self-examination of strengths and weaknesses, recalibrating attitudes, relinquishing old habits that do not work, and embracing new ideas and methods.

As I stepped into the position of associate vice president for the Office for Civil Rights and Title IX Education and Compliance at Michigan State just six months ago, I met a team with an unwavering commitment to creating a safe and healthy campus.

The unconscionable acts that came to light over the past several years clearly show that all universities must prioritize resources aimed at preventing harassment and violence in all their forms. What drew me here was the solid foundation in both the areas of prevention and response and a community ready for change unlike any other.

First is the success of the Prevention, Out-reach and Education department. They were recently recognized by the Everfi Impact Award for Excellence in Sexual Assault Prevention. Having this team honored by an international organization acknowledges the significant impact our educational programs have had—in 2020 more than 90% of the campus community participated in POE training.

Additionally, the Resolution Office has created a groundbreaking hearing process and the Office for Institutional Equity has implemented practices that are grounded in care and fair process for all parties.

I have sought to learn about how the office has operated and what drives the individual members of the team. I have sought to hear from community partners and students. I have been inspired to explore ways to fully integrate my office with the campus community. What does this mean? This means that we remain open and willing to meet the needs of the campus community. It means that we lead our work with compassion; we seek to cultivate an inclusive environment for all; and we ensure equity and fairness in all that we do. This means that we approach each day by asking ourselves how we can be of service to the community and remain grounded in our principles.

As President Samuel L. Stanley, Jr., M.D., creates a strategic plan for the university I will align my office with this plan to solidify our mission and ensure that our campus community’s needs are met around issues of violence and harassment prevention and response. Additionally, I have been restructuring and reallocating our talent and resources to ensure that community members receive timely, caring responses. We also began to track instances of bias by subcategories, which will allow us to understand patterns and address systemic and climate issues. My priority is to continue to develop relationships across the university and to implement improvements to make campus a safe, inclusive space.

Hear from Tanya Jachimiak in this episode of MSU Today with Russ White


Contributing Writer(s): Tanya Jachimiak

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