Title IX 50th Anniversary

Posted by Eduardo Peñalver, President Natasha Martin, VP for Diversity and Inclusion on Thursday, June 23, 2022 at 12:06 PM PDT

Dear Campus Community,

June marks the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the landmark civil rights law that banned sex discrimination in education. Though the effects of Title IX have been far-reaching, one of the more visible areas of impact has been in the realm of sports. USA Today reports, Girls' participation in high school sports rose from 7% to 43% since the passage of Title IX in 1972. Still, opportunities for girls and women in sports at both the high school and collegiate levels remain highly unequal. Female coaches, for example, are underrepresented in female sports, and issues of pay inequities between female and male coaches persist.  

The metamorphosis of Title IX has come to envelop sexual violence as a key barrier to realizing the goals of Title IX in the eradication of gender discrimination at colleges and schools. Most sexual misconduct issues that arise in institutions continue to go unreported, yet the impact of sexual violence on students in regard to their education, retention, and achievement is profound. The lasting effects of suicidal ideation, shame, fear, and hopelessness are evident in the research. Sexual violence on college campuses is a pervasive indignity that requires the resolve of the entire campus community to eliminate; as an institution predicated on student-centered education, we demand no less.

At Seattle University, given our Jesuit mission and values, we take seriously our aim to educate the whole person and to create inclusive spaces for learning and engagement. The contributions of women since the passage of Title IX have only enhanced educational environments, and we look forward to the next generation of female educators and leaders. We understand it will require the dedication and persistence of all members of the community to create a brave space for addressing issues of inequity, a culture of intolerance for sexual violence, and a collective response to address such issues on our campus, while caring deeply for those impacted.  Additionally, the resolve of our campus community to eradicate all forms of gender and sex discrimination is paramount to the continued health, wellness, growth, and prosperity of our collective humanity.

As you reflect on this historic anniversary, we offer this short video with our colleagues celebrating the impact Title IX has had on educational opportunities and access for women. The video reminds us that, together, we can achieve the promise of Title IX.

Title IX - 50 Year Anniversary from Seattle University on Vimeo.

Sincerely,

Eduardo Peñalver, President

Natasha Martin, Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion

Jill Moffitt, Interim Assistant Vice President for Institutional Equity/Title IX Coordinator