UA President Jim Johnsen joins national leaders at the U.S. Naval Academy to discuss Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment at America’s Colleges, Universities and Service Academies

sidebar menu toggle button UA President Jim Johnsen joins national leaders at the U.S. Naval Academy to discuss Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment at America’s Colleges, Universities and Service Academies

University of Alaska President Jim Johnsen joined the nation’s top military leaders for a two-day national discussion on sexual assault and harassment on the campuses of America’s colleges, universities and service academies. Johnsen was part of a leadership panel with other prominent higher education leaders, and will present at a breakout session on April 4. Nearly 400 people from universities, academies and government are attending the event at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD.

During the April 4 breakout session, Johnsen will lead the discussion on examining how campus leaders should establish appropriate standards, transparency and set the tone for dealing with sexual assault and harassment. He will also discuss actionable research that enables the cultural transformation required for sustaining a positive culture that works to build awareness about sexual assault and harassment.

“The University of Alaska has worked tirelessly to improve our campus culture; create a respectful environment for faculty, staff and students; provide ongoing training; and set expectations for improving the safety and climate on all our campuses,” Johnsen said. “The University of Alaska has led the effort to create a culture of respect at UA. Four years ago, we became the first university in the country to publicly admit our shortcomings in this area, and willingly commit to addressing sexual harassment and assault.”

UA self-identified serious problems and pro-actively launched efforts to correct them. In February 2017, the university signed a Voluntary Resolution Agreement with the U.S. Dept. of Education’s Office for Civil Rights, which reviewed the university’s compliance with federal laws and regulations against sexual assault and discrimination, and outlined specific steps to improve safety and the campus climate throughout the University of Alaska system.

“We have made great strides and remain resolute in our commitment to creating a culture of caring and respect on all our campuses,” Johnsen said. “I am honored to be here and to share with other higher education leaders what we have learned on this journey.”

The National Discussion is a collaborative forum to develop partnerships, share best practices in prevention and leverage research to create safe and healthy learning environments. The goals of the gathering are: to share evidenced-based practices to reduce sexual assault and sexual harassment at colleges, universities and service academies; identify and discuss the positive and negative social and environmental factors and behaviors influencing the conditions‎ surrounding sexual assault and sexual harassment; and to cultivate a network of senior leaders, experts and dynamic thinkers who will continue to communicate towards the goal of reducing sexual assault and sexual harassment at colleges and universities.