|Timestamp||What Happened and When? (Feel free to include incidents that happened to you or to others close to you in your program/department/campus/lab/disciplinary group)||What Was Your Status When the Incident(s) Happened?||What Was the Status of the Perpetrator(s) (Particularly, relative to you)?||What Type of Institution Was It?||(Optional) What Was The Name of the Institution(s)||Your Field/Discipline|
The Gender of the Harasser
|Institutional Responses to the Harassment (If Any)||Institutional/Career Consequences for the Harasser (If Any)||The Impact of the Harassment on Your Career||The Impact of the Harassment on Your Mental Health||The Impact of the Harassment on Your Life Choices/Trajectory||Other Comments You'd Like to Add (If you'd like me to know your name or the name of the perpetrator, please email me privately at email@example.com. The purpose of this survey is to gather anonymous information to give a sense of scale. As always, I will publish no information without explicit permission and extensive prior discussion)||What Was the Gender of the Harasser?|
|12/1/2017 14:59:39||There were rumors (unsubstantiated, just gossip) that my advisor had an affair with one of his female graduate students before I was a student here. An older grad student who supposedly knew of the affair told me I was a “typical _____ student” because I was a woman, conventionally somewhat attractive, and young (22 when I came into my PhD program).||22||Senior grad student, someone who was about to graduate||Other R1||History||None; I didn’t realize how insulting it was until later||None||Just self doubt (yay for impostor syndrome!)||See above||Makes me more aware of my status and position in power relationships||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:01:54||When I was in grad school a male faculty member "joked" to a group of three female PhD students (myself included) who had just mentioned how stressed we were about comps, that "all [we] had to do was wear tight, low-cut dresses and [we'd be fine." Several years later a male faculty member stared at my breasts repeatedly, whenever I passed him in the hallway, etc, to the point where I had to sit on the same side of the table as him during meetings so as to not keep catching him doing it when I was on the opposite side|
PhD student/Assistant Professor
|At least Associate, if not Full at that point||More Than One Institution (feel free to elaborate in "Comments")||York University in Toronto and University of Lethbridge in Lethbridge||History||None||None||As a PhD student I learned that when senior men want to harass you and make disgusting "jokes" there was nothing I could do about it, and was reminded of that lesson when the U of L faculty association said it could do nothing about the man who was harassing me. It was a powerful lesson about not really belonging in the academy.||It is one more thing I have to think about, worry about, feel unwelcome about, as a woman in the academy.||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:02:01||A senior colleague made overt sexual comments to me, including describing himself naked and having sex||Assistant Professor||Full Professor||More Than One Institution (feel free to elaborate in "Comments")||History||None||None||The harasser also later plagiarized my work.||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:04:24||Kissed on the mouth in front of entire board of a prize committee at dinner following conference (I was the one receiving the prize)|
Visiting Assistant Professor
|They were a tenured prof at another university||More Than One Institution (feel free to elaborate in "Comments")||History||None||None||No longer wished to be part of that professional association; it happened in front of the most important person in my field of study who laughed as the incident occurred so I no longer sought his mentorship||I was mostly annoyed, not scarred, but it made me feel like the professors in my male-dominated area of study mainly saw me as a piece of ass, not an emerging scholar||I left academia, not because of this incident alone||I actually do not know the name of the person who did this to me - he just walked up in the middle of me taking my leave from a dinner and grabbed me||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:16:35||Stalked, harassed, threatened by a colleague who also threatened the safety of my toddler daughter.|
Adjunct instructor with half time appointment in program administration
|same. He was a colleague with identical appointment||Other R1||University of Nebraska||rhetoric and composition||after I filed an EEOC claim I was placed under the direct supervision of the harasser. Informed that if I complained I would be fired. Wound up fired anyway (as I assumed would happen)||None.||I was subsequently RIF'd and did not work for 18 months. Ultimately settled for another adjunct position at a different institution. Based on my salary at the time of dismissal,lost income after fifteen years is ~$500,000||Impossible to assess. Worst thing that has ever happened to me ( worse than divorce, worse than breast cancer). I went down fighting for respect and ideals.||Again, inestimable. Entirely undid my career to the extent that it took five years to regain my footing, restart research, restore faith in the professoriate and myself.||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:18:58||An email detailing sadomasochistic acts being done to me.||Undergrad TA||Random student||R2||UM-St. Louis||Physics||“You don’t want to spoil this nice young man’s life do you? It was just a joke”||He was told to go back to his home institution, an R1.||NA||Random emails make me nervous.||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:20:08||Professor of graduate course made sexual jokes about students in class; forced students to answer questions about sexual experiences as “fun ice-breakers.”||Graduate student||Professor||Other R1||Told I could pursue sexual harassment charges formally through the university but the professor would know my identity. Chose not to for fear of career.||None||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:21:54||It did not happen to me, but was passed Down by femal grad students||Grad student||Tenured Professor and on degree committee||Other R1||Iowa State University||Physics||NA||NA||I did not go to him for help when I struggled and as a consequence failed the qualifier||Impacted my ability to get help and be successful||*** was “grabby” and inappropriate||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:24:07||Sexual harassment (unwanted touching and comments about pregnancy and pregnant body)||ABD||Department Chair||Other R1||Sociology||Dean told me to "grow a thicker skin"||None||None of job outcomes; shaped my view of academia||Made pregnancy and degree completion very difficult||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:24:28||Male students locked me in a supply closet.||Instructor||Students||Other Type of School||Western Iowa Tech CC||Science||Never told||I passed them all.||I quit teaching and went back to grad school.||I have PTSD from it.||I am never teaching again.||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:28:00||Lied about title iX. Sent inappropriate/emotional texts||Research Assistant||Boss||Elite Institution/Ivy League||Writing||None||None||None, but lots of fear that it will later||I was afraid to walk on campus||I don't know yet||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:29:12||Several women masters students (I'm male) told me about a senior tenured male professor who made mild to utterly obscene sexual comments to them. I looked up university policies and procedures around this and identified courses of action, but none wished to pursue anything and did not want me to act on their behalf. The university required them to lodge a complaint as anything I said would be hearsay, so no action was taken. The professor is now head of department.|
Graduate (masters) student.
|Professor, unconnected to my research, but pals with my former supervisor and most of the senior male staff. They hang out together, and some say used to use the department email list to trade in vile sexist jokes.||Elite Institution/Ivy League||University of Alberta||Social sciences||None.||None.||None.||Some. It still is, years afterward, distressing to hold information that I am unable to act on. I find myself angry and frustrated when I think about it.||Picked my PhD carefully.||I have heard of other incidents. A colleague is staff in an institution where a serial abuser has recently been fired under police investigation. Allegations go back years and involve numerous male-on-male sexual assaults by a well known professor who groomed and assaulted his graduate students. Staff had reported numerous times over the years to the university administration that something awful was happening, but the institution failed to act, and thus did not remove the abuser from access to the people he was abusing. In a separate instance, someone relayed to me observing a sexuality studies professor expose himself to students at a conference.||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:39:58||Gender based harassment||TT||TT||Regional Teaching College||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:40:49||Conference - male PI put his hand down my pants||Postdoc||Random PI from another lab||More Than One Institution (feel free to elaborate in "Comments")||Plant Biology||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:43:04||A professor I wanted to work with met with me in his office and told me he was no longer having sex with his wife, suggesting he was looking for that role to be filled. When I nervously and unbelievingly laughed, he dismissed me and wouldn’t work with me.|
First-semester grad student
|Professor in the grad program I was working in||Elite Institution/Ivy League||Comparative Literature||None||None||Left that grad program||Doubt of my academic abilities||Significant — got a Ph.D. years later at a much less prestigious school. Cannot get a job with this Ph.D.||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:49:12||At the beginning of my Ph.D. program, I would stop by the office of a professor whose work I admired. It was my second semester in the program and I was enrolled in his course. As we were talking, he asked me who I was TA-ing for. I told him and he then asked if "the freshmen boys thought she was attractive?" I felt blindsided by this question and uncomfortable. I responded with "Why would I know that?" I found it creepy, but shook it off as an older man trying to be funny. On another occasion, he lamented to me how the undergraduates now were all too busy on their phones between class instead of "going back to their dorm rooms to get to know each other better." He would always pepper our conversations with comments like these which made interacting with him uncomfortable. I was hoping to get some kind of guidance and mentorship as I went through the program since he is recognized name in the field. I never felt like I was taken seriously because of his inappropriate comments. Another time, I was dressed up to give a lecture in a tasteful outfit which included a knee-length pencil skirt and knee-high boots--holdovers from a previous job in an non-profit office setting. He came up to me in a hallway and stood much too close to tell me how "sexy" he thought my outfit was and how I should dress like that more often. That was the last time I ever wore a skirt. The rest of the time in the program, I dressed androgynously in jeans and over-sized t-shirts. I also stopped going by his office. Whatever contacts or advice he could have given me was not worth having to listen to his creepy comments about his loneliness or how he'd love to have his female students to his apartment, but "the bed is much too small." I felt that he was testing the waters to see if he could get away with more than just saying something questionable. I decided I never wanted to be alone with him, ever. Comparing notes with other females students, I found out he did it to almost every women he encountered, but since he was a decades-long member of the faculty, nothing was ever done about his behavior.He may have received a slap on the wrist about 15 years ago, but that's about all. I changed the direction of my study so I would not have to take his courses, or include him on my dissertation committee. It caused me stress and made me doubt myself and my worth as an academic.||Ph.D student||Full professor||Other R1||History||Never reported it.||None.||It made me question why I was in academia in the first place.||Overall stress.||Moved into another subfield so as to avoid him at the university and at conferences.||The worst part of all this is that I am a 1st gen graduate student and a WOC and this person makes a big show of being a friend to women and underrepresented groups in academia. I can see how he can be manipulative, especially with younger women who may not know how the professor/student relationship is supposed to work. He is retired now and has since moved out of the area.||Male|
|12/1/2017 15:59:07||Verbal sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviour. |
Lewd comments, lewd questions, disclosure of their personal sex history, life, questions, desires, quandaries.
Inappropriate commentary on female students.
Questioned me about my own sex life, practices.
Commented on my appearance every time they saw me, one way or another.
Told stories of past inappropriate behaviour with students and provided justifications.
Sexualized comments about my students.
Ranking other departmental members by their looks and intelligence, in addition to ranking students in similar ways. Good looks = intelligence. Some of my students were better looking than me, according to him, and therefore more intelligent than me as well. It's a real ego boost to know that your colleague thinks that your 19 year old students out shine you in the realm of intellectual achievements.
One day we were walking down a hallway in a classroom building and a young female student walked by. He turned his head, looked her up and down, and said - Damn, why do they have to be so cute? Couldn't they tone it down to make life easier for us?
Spoke regularly of the influence he had on my eventual tenure application.
|1st Year Tenure Track Assistant Professor||Tenured Professor, Senior Professor in Subject Area within department, Designated Departmental "Mentor"||Other Type of School||Psychology||After I had been in the department for many months, someone else in the department came to 'check in on me' to let me know that it was generally known that my harasser was a harasser and they wanted to make sure I was okay. They didn't want to make sure he was reported, or that anything was done to stop it, they just wanted me to know they knew that he was an issue and that he had been an issue in the past as well. ?!?!?!? Taking the perspective of an objective outsider, this is horrific. It is institutional support, knowledge and protection of someone who is a serial offender. As the person experiencing the harassment and trying to make sense of it, I actually felt better after the person spoke with me and I learned that "I wasn't the only one." At least this let me know that 'it wasn't in my head' and it also made me feel somewhat 'off the hook' about whether or not I had a responsibility to report the behaviour. My main concern before had been whether this person was treating other people this way as well or potentially treating the students in the same way. I was worried that somehow I was the only one with this information and that if I didn't tell anyone I would be complicit in whatever other 'bad deeds' he was committing on campus. It sounds ridiculous to actually type this out, but knowing that the department and the administration already knew that this person was a predator took the weight off of me, and therefore made me feel better. It also made me angry. Why did they leave me be for so many months? Why wasn't I warned immediately? And really, why is this person employed at the university? This last question though, seems almost silly. We all know the reasons why. Instead of making a fuss or trying to prove a case, they just sit back and hope that he will retire. The women in the department take on additional students in order to avoid the potential situation of having a known predator serve as a student's primary supervisor. The women in the department teach overloads, have classes filled past the cap because one of the senior, tenured professors is a known predator and therefore cannot be trusted with upper level courses. Honestly, if you cannot trust someone with a room of 20 young girls, why can you trust them with a room of 90 young girls?||None. He is biding his time, pulling in a full professor salary at the top of the grid waiting until it is absolutely necessary to retire. He doesn't have to do research, he doesn't have to supervise students (because they're worried about how he'll interact with them if he does), he doesn't have to teach new courses. He has a great job.||Too soon to tell. I haven't quit yet. I tend to not go to my office very much. I work mostly from home whenever possible. I began doing this so as to avoid his visits to my office. Eventually, it seemed to work. When I do go to my office now, he doesn't seem to come knocking. However, I continue to go rather irregularly, so for all I know, he does still come knocking and I am just not there to answer. In the long run, this could have a negative impact on my career if it has created the impression that I am not around. I know that they tell tenure track people to "look busy" and to "be seen." I've basically done the opposite in an attempt to avoid him as much as possible. Luckily, I think that my track record on paper will make up for this, as there's very little else to find fault with me on other than the amount of time I spend in my office vs. working from other locations.||Starting a new tenure track position is known to be stressful, but honestly, it was this harassment that made the beginning of my position as a professor the most stressful and the most upsetting. I wrote 3 grants in my first year, taught an overload, and published 5 manuscripts. I did not find any of that stressful - I enjoyed my work. What kept me up at nights, what brought me to tears, and what made me hide from my office was the stress and discomfort of wondering what to do about the sexual harassment I was experiencing. Teaching 3 new courses, teaching for the first time ever, writing grants, continuing my research - none of that brought me to tears in my first year. The only thing that brought me to tears was my experiences with this one individual - who was supposedly doing all that he could to 'help' me.||The experience really burst my bubble. I honestly believed that the trope of the 'old creepy male professor' was a thing of the past. I never in my life expected that I would come face to face with the cold reality that this still takes place. It has tarnished what should have been the most exciting part of my career up to this point.||Good idea. the Chronicle of HE seems to be collecting similar info, but you have better questions - so I filled yours out but not theirs.||Male|
|12/1/2017 16:01:40||A much older professor had a lot of graduate students over to his house. He proceeded to drink to much and request over and over that I massage his shoulders. This was in front of all the other graduate students. I relented and massaged his shoulders a little. He loudly and playfully moaned. Everyone laughed. I was really embarrassed.||Masters studebt||My professor||Regional Teaching College||Biology||I never said anything about it to anyone. But another graduate student told a different professor who jokingly referenced the incident to me later.||Male|
|12/1/2017 16:07:28||I was invited to coffee by a senior faculty member that ended up as drinks at a restaurant. The course of the evening became progressively worse as this man twice my age promised to advance my career while he suggested other perks. He went on to explain how his marriage was stale and how cute I was and how he had to get to know me the monent he saw me. I was a visiting faculty member at an R1 public university who had just finished my dissertation. I trued to steer the conversation away from sexual inuendos but the senior faculty member would not let up. I had to state that my fiance was picking me uop and that I had to leave. He said he would live to see me again. I smiled politely and walked away. I told a permanent faculty member who expressed shock but that's it. I was only there for a yar and avoided this maan for the rest of my time there. No one else ever sought me out.||Visiting Lecturer||Tenured favulty||Other R1||University of Michigan||Religious Studies but this was a Near eastern Studies program||Shock. This was just a minor offender. There was a worse offender in the department who also still had his job.||None||None||Self doubt and general suspicion of senior men||None||Male|
|12/1/2017 16:10:04||Professor sexually harassed another professor||graduate student||professor in department||Small Liberal Arts College||Women's and Gender Studies||None||None||N/A||N/A||N/A||woman professor harassed another woman professor in the department but faced zero consequences.||Female|
|12/1/2017 16:20:29||Senior colleague hit on me, made overt sexual advances on several occasions—including in his own home with his wife & child in rooms down the hall.||Untenured||Tenured—In affiliate department (But on my review & reappointment committee)||Small Liberal Arts College||Religious Studies||Did not report||N/a||He left within a year or so & I did a few years later. No lasting professional consequences.||Has made me question my place in the academy||N/a (thankfully)||Male|
|12/1/2017 16:33:11||a young gay graduate student often touched the bodies of female graduate students because he believed he could have access||grad student||younger grad student in an MA program||Other R1||indiana||communication studies||he is a darling of the field||Male|
|12/1/2017 16:34:50||Cohortmate became fixated on the idea that I "hated men" and had forced his last OKCupid date, coincidentally a friend of mine, to decide she didn't want a second date. Screamed at me in our office.||MFA student||We were both students but he had a very close friendship with the program director.||Other R1||creative writing--master's||Program director told all my classmates to stop speaking to me, and many of them did. She also waited until a night when I was sick to tell everybody how much I earned for my fellowship. I attempted to use a medical excuse (I was seeing a therapist to deal with the fallout) to miss a class, but then she told everybody I was in therapy.||none||I cannot get letters of rec from any of my former professors and will never be a professor of creative writing. My program director warned all new hires about me during a time of high turnover so I could not have good relationships with most faculty.||I became suicidal thinking that the years of my life I had put into academia would now mean nothing, and that I had no friends in my program. I had to start therapy.||I got into a different academic field in which I have yet to be harassed, took my last year of the degree to study that field on another campus (while writing my novel at the same time), and am trying to get into PhDs in my new field. Maybe this sort of derailing harassment will take place again, but I'm mostly just not speaking to male colleagues now in hopes of avoiding their attention. I also don't trust women faculty members who seem to get along with men too well, to be honest.||MFAs are so rife with this shit. It might be the false notion that artists are all progressive liberal feminists (admins who believe this assume I'm lying about my professors' and classmates' not-at-all-feminist behavior), the fact that a person can be pretty stupid and reactionary and still write good enough poems to get into one of the many programs that exist, the notion that as artists we don't have to conform to the same rules as everybody else. |
Someone at a campus across the country refused to write me a recommendation letter to Sewanee two years ago because she didn't "think it was safe for young women." She was talking about ***. Famous writers with tenure track positions at many different universities knew about *** for many, many years, and didn't do shit. I mean, sometimes they said vague stuff to their own students about not thinking Sewanee was safe, but mostly they didn't do shit.
|12/1/2017 16:47:54||As an undergrad music major I had to take private lessons with the piano teacher. He sexually assaulted my best friend, also a piano major who was very very homesick and had no way to get home. He was from her hometown. He got her when she was drunk and high. She wouldn’t report but I left the piano studio. He kept touching my arm. I would wear my hair down on the side he sat in to hide my face. He would try to brush it back or told me to pin it up. I couldn’t take it anymore and left.|
|Professor of piano, which was my major instrument then.||Regional Teaching College||English||None. I was too afraid to tell. They were all men and all friends.||None.||Changed to another instrument I wasn’t as good at and then left the school.||I don’t like to play piano anymore.||Not sure||Male|
|12/1/2017 16:53:38||Senior white male colleague from another department (we share a building) came into my office & closed the door. He wanted to talk to me about my reappointment file (pretenure 3rd year review). He told me he was shocked it took so long to achieve 3rd yr review (it wasn’t: I was on time), looked at my pregnant body & said “well it’s because of all your pregnancies, no doubt.” (I’d been pregnant once.) told me I was “brave” to be so far behind (again: I was not) & “knocked up.”||Assistant professor||Full professor, on tenure & promotion committee||Other R1||Male|
|12/1/2017 16:55:49||Touched without consent repeatedly in a social situation.||Assistant Professor||Emeritus professor. Had been part of search committee.||R2||Cultural Studies||I distanced completely from a person I thought was invested in my success. I don’t have any other real mentors in my department, and I’m less interested in asking for support from male colleagues.||It’s made me paranoid of interaction with male colleagues, and men in general.||Male|
|12/1/2017 16:56:40||Senior white male colleague knocks on door, brings female undergraduate with him. Announces that he is going to hug her, needs “any woman to witness,” before I can say anything has full-bear-hugged this undergrad. I protest, saying this is inappropriate and, in a joking tone to diffuse the sfuddnt’s Obvious discomfort, I can’t undo harassment for him by virtue of being a woman. He, still touching the student, said: “But it sure makes this look friendly, doesn’t it.”||Assistant professor||Full prof, endowed chair||Other R1||Humanities||None||None||None||Male|
|12/1/2017 17:12:49||Sexually harassed, assaulted and raped by a professor when I was an undergrad. This was in the 70's.||Undergrad student.||Chair of the department I majored||Regional Teaching College||Theatre||PTSD||I was young. This experience early in my life was a real bloc to my success for many years.||Male|
|12/1/2017 17:14:23||In my first tenure track job, my colleague (same rank, hired at same time) repeatedly posted highly innappropriate and offensive misogynist materials and comments on social media— where he was linked to all of our senior colleagues. No one else said anything.||Assistant professor||Same rank||Other R1||I left the institution the following year. His presence (and the lack of response from senior colleagues) made my work environment feel toxic.||I spent too many days worrying about what he had done, what he’d do next and how I should respond. I lost many writing days to this anxiety and anger.||Left my R1 TT position for a TT at a smaller institution.||Male|
|12/1/2017 17:20:01||I started a new job as a visiting assistant professor and within the first month I got an email to my faculty email account from a source I couldn't trace back to that told me the sender had been watching me since I started working there ,found me very attractive and knew I was married but was interested in pursuing an affair with me. I wrote back to say I had no plans to cheat on my marriage.|
First month of a three year visiting assistant professor line
|I got the impression it was a fellow faculty member||Small Liberal Arts College||Math||I never told anyone but my husband||None||I will never know. I had been told on my hiring that my three year visiting position had a 99% chance of converting to tenure track but in fact, it did not and there was never a reason it didn't.||It's been 18 years since this anonymous email and I still remember it and feel affected by it. For the next three years after receiving this email, I never knew who had sent it and felt that they had some right to suggest that I violate my marriage vows. I felt guarded around colleagues wondering if they sent it. I felt concerned about my interactions with colleagues lest they think I was flirting or being too friendly.||Other than still wondering to this day who it was, it hasn't affected my life choices. I was happy once the position ended and I found a tenure track job and could get away from whoever had made his unwelcomed advance and uncomfortable working environment.||Unsure (if harassment was anonymous, for example)|
|12/1/2017 17:36:42||I have never personally been harassed or assaulted by anyone in my department. However, I would definitely say that my department and my graduate student colleagues have certainly contributed to a hostile work environment within the department. When I entered, the graduate cohort definitely felt like a "boys club" where the students with the most power were men, and their behavior fueled socializing and hierarchies in the department. Most of their socializing consisted of drinking and taking drugs until losing all control of themselves. It was not uncommon for them to exposing themselves at parties and even public places like bars.||Ph.D.||Most of them were graduate students, although at least one professor contributed to this environment by making out with a Ph.D. student in a departmental party at a conference.||Other R1||Indiana University||Communication and Culture||None||Little||I've been scarred by the behavior of these people. I don't want to relate to my colleagues like this but it's been very difficult to forge connections with this toxic group. I avoid attending social or even professional departmental events because of this. I also feel that my own career as a student has suffered because I haven't been given the same level of recognition as the department.||I have anxiety and depression that have been exacerbated by these experiences.||This experience within the department has definitely hampered my completion and my comfort moving ahead in the field.||Please do not ignore hostile work environment. It's very common and often overlooked as a problem.||Male|
|12/1/2017 17:38:46||My male boss (mid-50's) described his sexual attraction to a celebrity. On another occasion, he commented that it would be less expensive to hire women to do the job his wife did (cook, maid, prostitute..) He would constantly commend a female graduate student on what a good job she did "taking care of her body". This happened in a STEM lab in the last 5 years.|
graduate student and undergraduate student
|tenured full professor||Other R1||Chemistry||did not turn him in||Avoided discussing topics outside of research||I felt judged for my appearance and that I had gained weight in graduate school due to stress and having kids. My boss also favored the graduate student he found attractive, which made the other lab members resentful.||None, but I am more aware of the harassment that occurs. At the time, I thought this was normal and did not realize that it was very inappropriate for a male PI to discuss his sexual preferences with his students.||Male|
|12/1/2017 17:39:01||It was my first national conference that I would be presenting at. Being a grad student, I didn’t have a lot of money so I volunteered to help run the conference in exchange for my entry fee being waved. One of the coordinators of the conference, after setting up, suggested we all go eat. So we did and the conference’s organization paid for the dinner and the very expensive wine. The second bottle of wine wasn’t finished by the group and so the organizer took it back with him saying he didn't want to waste good wine. That night, the conference organizer in question sent me a text (he had all the volunteer numbers) suggesting that “this bottle of wine wasn’t going to drink itself.” I remember feeling immense fear but I ignored the text, locked my door, and said the next day that I had put my phone on “do not disturb.” The next day, I was invited to dinner by a prominent scholar that I wanted to talk to about her work. To my surprise, several people, including the conference organizer were invited also. As long as I am with the group, I thought, it should be fine, and it was, until it was time to go back and four of the group entered a taxi and I found myself alone, in a city I had never been to before, with this man. We wandered around the Harvard campus and my brain was close to panic. I was creeped out, trying to keep the conversation casual, and wondering how to get away. This was before the time of Uber and Lyft. It was hard to think and I belatedly realized how much my wine glass kept being refilled. He eventually proposed sex which I refused… again, and again. Somehow, I was grabbed and his lips were on mine. I pushed him away and strongly said “no.” We eventually made it back to the hotel where I went to my room, alone, and sobbed. |
My presentation at the conference was well received. I was hailed as “impressive” and “brilliant.” Yet, all I could think of was avoiding the conference organizer.
Grad Student (Masters)
|Conference Coordinator||Other R1||Music||none||I became depressed and withdrawn.||Male|
|12/1/2017 17:43:12||In grad school, I was paid $7500 for 9 months. After bills and rent, I didn’t always have money left over to eat. So, when a PhD student at the same grad school who had also gone to my undergrad years before me offered to get dinner after one of his classes, I was relieved. We got dinner and drinks. The conversation was fine and I was thankful for the food. He complimented me on my intelligence and said I was pretty but that was it for that night.|
When he offered dinner after class again, I was, again, thankful that I would eat that night. This time, however, he kept pressing martinis on me and I kept saying no to more drinks and he then asked if I would fuck him. I said no, and he told me that he wanted some sort of compensation for the amount he was paying in dinner and drinks. I remember his hand on my thigh trying to get higher and him boasting about his, um, speed and that he could be “like a jackhammer.” Somehow, I got back to my apartment and then sobbed.
When I would see this man in future years, my stomach would turn every time and when he got a job at a nearby college, I nearly threw up
Grad Student (Masters)
|PhD Student||Other R1||Kent State University||Music||none||none||I became depressed, withdrawn, and fearful whenever I would see him or even just knowing that he is around young students, both high school and college.||I want to be more active in my field but I don't want to interact with him at conferences, and he is reasonably well-known in my field now and continuing to grow in prominence.||Male|
|12/1/2017 17:49:34||1. The Chair of the French Department tried to follow me home, with the intention of initiating sexual relations with me (Fall 1981); 2. I was propositioned repeatedly by a senior colleague (1986-1990); 3. I was groped by one senior colleague (1990) and propositioned by another (1990-1991).|
1. Graduate Student (1981); 2. Assistant Professor (1986-1990); 3. Assistant Professor (1990-1991).
|1. Department Chair and Chair of major awards committee; 2. Senior Colleague; 3. Senior Colleagues. All could decide to end my employment and deny grants or awards.||Elite Institution/Ivy League||1. Yale; 2. Brandeis; 3. Cornell||French||1. Did not report (harasser was one of the most powerful people in the profession; had told friends of mine he harassed that he could destroy their careers); 2. Was told that nothing could be done, as the harasser was too powerful; 3. Did not report - there was no mechanism to report harassment at the time, and one of the harassers was protected by administrators at every level of the university.||None.||1. Was denied a dissertation completion grant; 2. left the second institution; 3. Mentors of harassers (also friends of harasser in incident #1) tried to interfere with the tenure process to block my tenure, but did not succeed.||Stressful. I no longer trust the institution I work for (also because of insistent protection of harassers of students, and willingness to destroy students' careers in order to achieve that protection).||Left first job because of it.||Male|
|12/1/2017 17:50:45||I was stalked for a year||A PhD student||My ex-boyfriend and a fellow grad student in my program||Other R1||A U Cal campus||Interdisciplinary Humanities||For various reasons I don't have good memories of this, but I know that he eventually left or was asked to leave the program. But it was not an immediate action, even after I received a restraining order.||I don't think he even finished his doctorate. Not sure what he is doing now.||Delayed the completion of my dissertation, I emotionally and physically/geographically distanced myself from my program (including my fellow students, advisor, and committee members), and university.||PTSD, depression||Male|
|12/1/2017 18:02:04||When I was a grad student, a professor tried to make out with me at a party that was pretty well-attended by the people in our department. I told him two or three times that it was a really bad idea, but he didn't let up. When he said "Kiss me!" and grabbed my behind, I pushed him aside, ran away, and hid behind a couch. I later found out that the very next thing he did was to sexually assault another student in a more egregious way. When she filed a complaint, I stepped forward as well.||Graduate Student||Assistant Professor. He wasn't on my committee, and, by that time, I wasn't taking any of his classes.||Other R1||The administration took the complaint seriously: Within a couple of days, he was banned from campus, and his tenure pack was frozen. He was eventually offered the choice to either resign or to undergo the university's disciplinary process. The department didn't handle it as well. In an effort to protect our privacy, they neglected to tell his students that he wouldn't be returning to campus for the foreseeable future, and didn't say much more to the faculty. I know of two faculty members who weren't aware of the gravity of the situation until some grad students clued them in.||He chose to resign rather than face the disciplinary process. Last I heard, he was working in someone else's lab.||Considering how much professional networking occurs at mixers where alcohol is served, this experience has added another dimension to my networking nervousness. That said, I'm lucky that we're in different subfields, so the direct impacts are very limited.||In the first week afterwards, I spent an afternoon under my desk feeling like I was at the bottom of the ocean and nothing was real. It's the only anxiety attack I've ever had. Paradoxically, it had a lot to do with the swiftness of the university's response. Over the course of 48 hours or so, I went from wondering if the university would take us seriously to knowing that I'd played a part in getting him removed from the university. It was some seriously heavy emotional whiplash.|
I definitely developed an emotional trigger around workplace/academic sexual harassment. Several years later, I was a real mess for a week after #metoo went viral.
|None so far||Even though I stood up for myself, the other student, and who knows how many future students, I don't feel proud or empowered. Even though consequences happened where consequences were due, it isn't a happy situation and it never will be.||Male|
|12/1/2017 18:13:17||In summers 2002 & 2003, my first 2 summers after beginning PhD program, I went into the field to work on a large language documentation project. One of the program directors (and biggest name in the entire field) made it perfectly obvious within the first day of my arrival that he was "available." He hit on me repeatedly, which freaked me out b/c he was much older and had all the power. I did a lot of "laughing it off," and swatting of hands. I played the coquettish thing so he would not be offended by my rebuffs and haaaated myself for it. I was terrified of being alone with him but often had to take meetings with him (in his hotel room-- that's where we were based). He often offered wine. Nothing happened, right? I was just constantly uncomfortable and needing to protect myself and my place in the project.||Early PhD student||He was without question the biggest name in the field.||Other Research Agency||Linguistics||Didn't report||None||I changed entirely the direction of my research, which set me back and stressed me out. I also had to grieve the loss of my dream field of study. I still grieve it even though I've moved well beyond it||I had a mini breakdown during my second summer on the project and left early. Never to return.||I changed what I chose to study and wrote a thesis on something entirely different but which I'm still proud of. I mostly felt ashamed. Ashamed that I had to titter and laugh when I really wanted to yell at him and tell him to knock it the fuck off and that his "flirting" was scary and weird. Ashamed that I couldn't take it anymore and flipped out and left the project (it was embarrassing).||Male|
|12/1/2017 18:20:31||On my very first day as a Teaching Fellow, an older male faculty member told me that the best piece of advice he could give me is to always erase the chalkboard up and down, rather than side to side-- that way "my ass won't shake." Similar comments have continued ever since. Now at adjunct status, I feel relatively powerless and generally just grin and bear it.||Teaching Fellow||Colleague||Small Liberal Arts College||English||Male|
|12/1/2017 18:20:48||1989 (a long time ago) professor at Harding University (a Christian school associated with Church of Christ denomination) had side hustle of photography and his office was covered in photos of young college women that he had taken. Whenever I went to him with a question in his office, he would say, "ok I'll answer your question but first give me a hug" and, being the obedient Christian girl that I was, I would oblige and he would give me a two-armed full body hug. Happened numerous times but I was socialized to feel like he was just being fatherly. Then one Saturday I was driving next to the science center and saw him in the parking lot and drove over to say hi. Rolled window down and exchanged a few words and then he sticks his head inside the car and kisses my cheek. I was stunned and didn't know quite what to do so just drove away.|
Undergrad student, one of his students
|My professor||Other Type of School||Harding University in Searcy Arkansas||Don't want to say||None, not reported and I never heard of anyone reporting him although I'm sure he did it to others||None||None||None||None||Male|
|12/1/2017 18:24:24||Soon after starting my graduate program, one of my intended dissertation committee members approached me at a "welcome" party for new graduate students to ask if I had any same sex encounter that I wanted to tell him about as he gave me a very creepy smile and backed me into a corner and grabbed me by the waist. Later I found out he had a reputation for sexually harassing and assaulting female graduate students.||PhD Student||associate professor- dissertation committee member||Other R1||History||Another committee member suggested that since he was the only professor in one of my intended minor fields, I should consider changing that minor field. I did.||None.||The subfield I initially planned on would have helped me in the job market right now.||I had to take a class with him a year and a half later. I hated every second of it. He stared at me constantly and once told me I shouldn't wear heals if I didn't want "boys" to stare at me. I also ended up switching major professors because my first major professor was friends with the harasser. I feared he would end up being the same way, and again I'd have no recourse.||I changed my subfield and major professor. It's hard to measure what long term impact these changes had.||Male|
|12/1/2017 18:25:45||A senior professor in my partner's department was drunk and he saw me from across the room and stumbled and fell over my child's train set on the floor and landed on my leg. Then when the host introduced me to him, he held onto my hand and wouldn't let go and started talking about a rape case he had heard of on the news in Pakistan. This man was drunk and falling all over me, while my small child was next to me and my partner was nearby. We were at a department party at a another senior faculty member's home. For a while the host just stood there with a grin on his face and then he then alerted my partner that there is a senior faculty who is drunk and talking to me. My partner then rushed to my side and saved me from further conversation with this man. I felt pressured to stay in the conversation because he was a senior faculty member in my partner's new department.|
I was an adjunct professor in another department.
|He was a tenured, senior professor in my partner's department. My partner was untenured at the time and I was not tenure track yet.||R2||Dartmouth College (fyi, this faculty member is different from the ones under investigation at the college)||None. He is a lawsuit waiting to happen but it will never happen.||I was scared for a long time. I took an adjunct course in his department for one term and was scared to run into him. I also felt gross and violated after the event. I felt objectified and sexualized, even though my partner and small child were also present at the event. It was disgusting.||I saw him in the hallway after the incident in my partner's department and it felt like he was following me. I ran out of the building and still saw him in my peripheral vision. I no longer visit my parter's building let alone his office.||Male|
|12/1/2017 18:36:59||I apologized for not immediately recognizing a colleague in the hallway, explaining that he looked different due to a new pair of glasses. I said that I also appreciated unique glasses. He said, "It's kind of the same thing as you wearing fancy lingerie under your clothes." I said, "no, not really the same thing at all" and walked away. The creepiness and inappropriateness only hit me later|
an untenured assistant professor
|a full professor in another, related department (who has, incidentally, never been able to tell me and another female colleague apart - we came to the university at the same time and are both relatively young, but that's where the similarities stop. And yet he insists on saying we are the same person - something he has said to us multiple times as well as to other colleagues.)||Other R1||History||None (I did not officially report it)||None (I did not officially report it)||None (this was, in part, why I did not officially report it).||I definitely think twice about being anywhere near this colleague and resist being in the same room with him. It made me second guess the way that all of my male colleagues speak to and look at me.||I refuse to let his offensive comments dictate my life choices or career trajectory.||I feel like there are countless examples of gender bias and discrimination that few people would clearly identify as "sexual harassment" but are none the less troubling. They are even more frustrating to document or prove. I'm irritated at myself and my institution that I didn't feel confident enough to report this person. But it's the daily insults and condescension and gender discrimination and misogyny that really makes my blood boil. And, it seems to me, that is what makes the more blatant examples of sexual harassment and assault permissible - at least at my institution.||Male|
|12/1/2017 19:03:35||I don't even know where to start, so many things happened when I was a graduate student. One professor made wildly inappropriate comments and discussions about his sexual past in class. Every class. He once asked me, when I came to class with a bruise on my face from falling off of my bike, "What? Does your boyfriend beat you or something?" (in front of the entire class). Another professor physically assaulted me by slapping my arm hard and grabbing it to get me off of a wheelchair ramp (I didn't realize it was a wheelchair ramp, and there wasn't a wheelchair user coming). He later screamed at me in front of undergraduate students. I had a male graduate student peer smack me on the backside with his backpack when were were standing in front of an entire lecture hall full of undergraduates. When I was an undergraduate a departmental admin. assistant started a rumor that I was sleeping with a male professor. Oh, I have also faced some awful harassment from some male undergraduates, when I was a graduate student and again as a Visiting Assistant Professor.|
graduate student, undergraduate student, VAP
|full professor *2, graduate student, assistant professor, undergraduate||More Than One Institution (feel free to elaborate in "Comments")||English||None. I didn't even know who to talk to. I think when I was an undergraduate, I talked to my adviser about the rumor. She said she'd look into it, I think.||None.||I am currently an Assistant Professor, but it has been a long, agonizing road of self-doubt, self-blame, self-hatred, impostor syndrome, etc.||Inestimable. I don't even have words to describe the levels of anxiety, soul-crushing depression, and thoughts of suicide. It's significantly impacted my physical health as well.||Left that field entirely, though that was a majorly positive outcome.||Male|
|12/1/2017 19:12:23||At the time, I was a 27 year old female. On a phone interview for a tenure track position at a top tier liberal arts institution, the older male interviewer (only person on the call with me), talked to me for over an hour (this was supposed to be a 15 minute phone chat) about his personal life, culminating in him telling me a story about how he and my graduate advisor (another older male) wore speedos to seduce women in a hot tub at a conference. I felt incredibly uncomfortable, but did not end the call because it was a tenure-track job interview. I was not invited to an on-campus interview. I was advised to report him to HR, but did not pursue that for obvious reasons.|
6th graduate student on the job market
|Interviewer; full professor and big name in the field||Small Liberal Arts College||I prefer not to answer||It made me more likely to target jobs where the majority of the people in the department were female, but given the current market, there really wasn't much that I could change.||Male|
|12/1/2017 19:19:26||Was sexually harassed (lewd comments, inappropriate evaluations of my work and person) for years. Reported. Nothing was done. Witnessed a tenured faculty member physically assault a student in his office. Reported. Nothing was done. Had students show me firsthand, irrefutable evidence of multiple faculty members and administrators soliciting them for inappropriate relationships (sexts, etc.). Reported. Nothing was done. Was consistently body shamed, humiliated, and plagiarized by female colleagues who were complicit in (or afraid to challenge) the "boys club." Reported. Nothing was done. Finally left academia after a decade of trying to power through the toxic culture of my institution. Spent a year in therapy. Lost friends, was blamed or told I was overreacting by former colleagues. Feel embarrassed and frightened to maintain friendships with former colleagues who were sympathetic to my plight. Had to completely rebuild my life. I was a good teacher, a good colleague, a good scholar. My former institution, and my discipline, lost a lot when they lost me.|
Fulltime faculty, untenured
|Professor, Associate Professor, Director, Department Head, Program Director||Regional Teaching College||Humanities||None||None. Most were rewarded with tenure.||I left my career.||Had to go into therapy||Totally changed my life trajectory.||Academics are, by and large, people with poor social skills, little experience in professional/private sector working environments, minimal management training, and an inflated sense of their importance. They also don't recognize that intellect is NOT a substitute for emotional intelligence, and therefore they do a lot of mental gymnastics to justify their abusive and predatory behavior. This includes faculty members who believe they are 'in love' with their victims. Using someone, especially someone who needs your mentorship or supervision, for emotional validation is NOT love.||Various incidents with people of different genders|
|12/1/2017 19:37:28||One of our "rockstar" faculty members was known to have slept with every single female Asian grad student in our department.|
I found out about it at the Christmas party in the first year of my PhD when my practicum leader told us over wine that she'd performed oral sex on this professor in his office.
|Tenured full professor||Other R1||Social Sciences||None to me, but he did end up marrying a (European) student whose dissertation committee he had served on||🖓||I was ABD after my 4th year, and have since taken a medical leave of absence for issues related to preserving my mental health. I was not a victim in this incident, but it was a first drop in what would later become an overflowing bucket of ambient departmental toxicity.||Male|
|12/1/2017 19:54:05||While an undergraduate, I was sexually assaulted by a fellow student and began an adjudication process. Part of this process was having the school's Title IX coordinator email my professors with vague details (i.e. that I was working with the office and might need some extra help and that professors should reach out to me and be flexible). I felt very lonely during this process and the professor in question emailed me offering to be a friend and ally. I desperately needed supportive people in my life and I was more than happy to try and take him up on his offer. He came on very strongly in class and in emails to me, complimenting my work endlessly. Eventually, during my senior year, he became my undergraduate thesis advisor in the department. In our meetings together he would often make strange comments about "not wanting me to get the wrong idea." For instance, he told me that he didn't want to shut the door when we met and that he didn't want to read more suggestive lines of my poetry out loud to me when giving critique "in case someone walking by heard." Also in these meetings, I would catch him looking at my chest, thighs, and other body parts in a sexualized way before averting his eyes. He told me inappropriate things about his childhood and tried to insert topics like incest into our conversations, perhaps because he had read my sexual abuse into my poetry or because he knew I was pursuing a Title IX case. He would constantly try to bring up my father or compare himself to my father (i.e. "I know I'm not your dad, but I'm really proud of you"). He would constantly compare me to his girlfriend, later wife, and set up a meeting between us for unknown reasons. He seemed thrilled that it had gone well. He would ask me deeply personal questions about my case and my life and I would leave these meetings feeling as though I had something taken from me. He would send emails filled with winky and smiley faces. I felt unsettled by his behavior, but it wasn't until I started talking to others in the department that I learned I wasn't alone. One fellow student told me that she had quit the department because of him and that he "loved little girls" like me. I also found out that he had been sleeping with one of his master's students and dumped her as she was graduating. This relationship was initiated after he invited the student to go out for wine. Later, the professor shared with me the unofficial guide to grad school that he gave all hopeful MFAs. One of the pieces of advice was that "some professors may prefer to meet over wine." Also in the guide was a recommendation that students attend a popular writing conference so that they could "have consensual sex with other writers ;)." Almost every female student I knew that had taken his classes seemed to fall into his web, talking about him constantly and despairing if he criticized their work. One of these students sent the professor a very sexual poem that was explicitly about him, and instead of taking appropriate actions he sent her back an email asking not to write about him because he "had to be careful about these things" because he'd "run into trouble before." This professor is very well-connected in his field and seems to know everyone, especially since he runs a printing press.||Undergraduate student||Professor, thesis advisor||Other R1||University of Arizona||Creative Writing/English||I am sure that the institution knows about the professor's behavior, considering his comments about needing to be careful and to leave his door open. I never reported what happened because I didn't realize the full impact of his actions until after I graduated. I noticed that he no longer seems to teach in-person classes, only online ones, as if he has been relegated to that (instead of being truly sanctioned?)||None that I am aware of, only some that I can speculate about (see above).||I feel wary about going to meetings with male professors alone and find myself overanalyzing everything they say. I feel he has deprived me of access to resources (such as networking) and support that I could have if I did not have these anxieties. He made me doubt my own talents and abilities--are all male professors complimenting me only because they want to sleep with me? This experience along with other institutional betrayals has all but taken away my sense of trust in institutional proceedings, such that I would likely not choose to ever go through them if something else were to happen to me. I lost relationships with other professors in the department and other students who are still in his web because I can't stand to see them enable him and sing his praises as if it's not known that he's a creep and not at all the "ally" he would like us to think he is.||I felt crazy for assuming that he was targeting me because he knows how to do so in a very subtle way (perhaps he's learned that sleeping with his students outright is the fast track to trouble?) His behavior made me feel even more isolated and lonely in a time when I was already struggling. I am angry as hell about his abuses of power and exploitation of those he knows or assumes have already been victimized. I talk about these incidents frequently in therapy and feel stuck--what can I do? how can I fix the situation? who else is he hurting now? I feel an immense burden. I have nightmares in which I try to remedy his behavior, to get back at him, to make him accountable.||I no longer write poetry or have much interest in the field. I chose not to go to one of the prestigious MFA programs I got into because the two faculty members I wanted to be my advisors were both friends of this professor (as are most poets). However, I'm now in the PhD program of my dreams--one he did not write me a letter of rec for.||Male|
|12/1/2017 20:09:57||When I was a grad student, a group of us - older grads and younger faculty, but some 40 and 50somethings too - from various universities went out for drinks and food after a conference reception. It was probably 11pm, we were in an upscale chain place in a major city. The bulk of the group were from a particular university. A married associate prof, male, hot shot in field, had a grad student on his lap (his advisee, not yet ABD), both were pretty drunk, and they started making out. It was pretty uncomfortable for all of the rest of us. We were waiting for food tho and a group of us promptly left. I was with a few other female grads and female committee member of mine and she was mid 40s at that point. We discussed how fucked up that was.|
I had a co-author who had been a grad student in that program and they told me that this faculty member did hot tub parties regularly with undergrads, slept with grads, etc.
A couple years later I brought this up to a good friend who was this guy's advisee. She knew nothing of it and I believe her. I felt weird about telling her about it.
Now, fast forward at least 5 years, and the grad student left the program but did publish with him.
He's still a big name.
I have no idea if he and his wife had an agreement about infidelity. And I'm still not totally sure to what degree this was wrong. But it isn't like he could write her a recommendation letter, right?
I feel weird around him.
|Grad student||Distant senior faculty||Elite Institution/Ivy League||Male|
|12/1/2017 20:10:27||I was groped at a conference, during an evening off-site event. |
(specifically, I was standing next to a food truck by the beach, which was across the road from the conference hotel in Gulfport.)
The harasser sidled up next to me as I talked to someone else and then tried to grab my butt and then my breasts. I faked a phone call to get away from him.
Graduate student, PhD
|Emeritus professor from another university||More Than One Institution (feel free to elaborate in "Comments")||Perpetrator was from Ole Miss, the conference was sponsored by U of Southern Miss at an offsite location||English||None; I was told that there was no process in place to take action at an off-site conference. The professional organization who hosts this conference, however, did adopt harassment policies about four years later, directly in response to my experience. (An acquaintance of mine was on the conference committee that year, and she told them [with permission] what had happened to me.)||None that I know of. He may have been blocked from attending that same conference a few years later, but I haven't gotten a clear answer about that. |
A person who left the field recently "named names" in a Facebook post last year, and he was one of the four ID'd. I have no idea if he suffered any consequences from that, either, seeing as he's now retired.
|The "Big Conference" in my specialty was the following March and I was unable to network with anyone because he was trying to interfere with me the entire time. I had to avoid my own diss director's session. I ended up avoiding him by hiding off in a corner with a couple and their toddler during the final reception.||I was already depressed at the time, and this made it much worse. I became even more disillusioned with grad school after my diss director (male) tried to minimize the incident, seemingly viewing the incident from the harasser's perspective and thus panicking. (It's OK now. He and I have had discussions about sexual harassment after that and he gets it now.)||I did finish my degree. I seriously considered quitting grad school, however; for a time I lost my trust for other older, male academics who, up to that point, had been great mentors to me. I have also become very outspoken about sexual harassment's effects on graduate students. My field in English is the one that had the "big public blowup" recently about sexual harassment and misogyny, and that opened conversation encourages me to stay in the field.||I know for a fact that my run-in was pretty darn tame in comparison to others, but what really makes me mad is that I was one in a decades-long string of incidents. The same person who harassed me that night harassed newly-hired TT professor about an hour later. I later found out from a colleague at Ole Miss that he had been a known harasser for years, and that their response to his bad behavior was to only allow him to work with male graduate students. |
I mean, think about it for a minute: no woman at the main research institution in that state could do dissertation work in his field, but he had male students graduate and go on to get jobs. How is that fair?
|12/1/2017 20:14:09||A faculty member, ***, Department of Anthropology, cornered women at parties, kissed and groped them.||Graduate student||Faculty||Elite Institution/Ivy League||University of Chicago||Ancient Near East / Anthropology||Irrelevant - This was the 1970s||None. So far asa I know||None, aside from the bitter memory. Not the same for his students.||Male|
|12/1/2017 20:30:47||A colleague attempted to attack me in his office. I had to physically push him off of me and run out of the room.|
Visiting Assistant Professor.
|Full Professor, Boss.||Small Liberal Arts College||Philosophy||“He’s just like that. It was harmless. He must have thought you wanted to get together.”||None.||Hard to quantify.||Had to start taking anti-anxiety meds just to be at work.||Still dealing with it. Didn’t change careers. Definitely lost faith.||Male|
|12/1/2017 20:48:50||Professor made inappropriate sexual comments to me in class. Just blurted it out. After that point he graded me extremely harshly. I should have reported him.||Graduate student||Professor||Other R1||He'd done it to others. That's it - just told me that. He still teaches there, years later.||None||Luckily, just a lower grade than I should have had.||I felt gross- he'd been thinking about sec with me IN CLASS. Then he punished me for it. I've had excellent male professors in my PhD program but it takes me a long time to trust.||I finished my degree but later changed disciplines. My daughter is at that school now and I'll be telling her to stay far away from him.||My experience was so mild compared to what others have endured. But it was still disgusting and it still sticks with me today. I had to decide to reject everything he said and wrote about me. He tried to tear me down for *his* mistake, and because I didn't need him for my degree, I didn't have to let him. Like I said - lucky.||Male|
|12/1/2017 21:27:27||When I was an undergraduate, the head of the department slapped my behind with a rolled up newspaper while I was walking down the hall. Another time, I caught him staring at my chest while we were having a meeting about planning an undergraduate event.||Undergraduate||Department Head||R2||A Canadian University||Prefer not to say.||n/a||None. In fact, the harasser ended up marrying a graduate student.||Made me extremely uncomfortable as an undergraduate student.||The episodes upset me. As a young student, barely out of her teens, I felt confused, angry, disgusted and ashamed.||One of the many instances that made my resolve to address gender issues in academia even stronger.||Male|
|12/1/2017 21:30:03||(happened to friend, fellow student, late 90s): Clergy at R-1 university crossed boundary with friend who was seeking a conversion process under his counsel; interactions became more uncomfortable as clergy made inappropriate remarks, and violated personal space. Perpetrator leaned in to kiss friend, they ducked. Friend dropped conversion process (of course), university admin discouraged victim from reporting, but friend realized perpetrator had a known history of inappropriate behavior and university did nothing. Perpetrator (white) prided himself in being a race/civil rights advocate, went on to retire comfortably and remain 'beloved' in the public. Revolting.|
grad student (friend and confidante of victim)
|Nothing||Other R1||R-I in Massachusetts||History||Discouraged reporting, admin. knew perpetrator had a history of inappropriate behavior.||None. Retired comfortably, 'beloved' in the community (might be dead now, for all I know).||It shook my friend. We were MA students; friend went on to pursue PhD in other university & is now a tenured professor.||On me? Made me further realize what a horror show academia was.||No other comment.||Male|
|12/1/2017 21:42:05||Intimidated by sports coach. I was in the school weight/machine room and watched a school coach get really close and make inappropriate comments to university female students he was training (this was back in the late 90s/early 200s, I don't remember exactly what he said). I mentioned to a young woman working out next to me (she didn't seem to be part of that group the coach was training) that I didn't like the way he spoke to the women. Next time I went to the gym the coach menacingly cornered me saying "I hear you've been saying things about me and I'm not going to have that." I answered, with my pulse racing at unimaginable speed and with the most clueless expression I could muster "I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about." He looked at me hesitatingly for what seemed an eternity (probably just a few seconds) and walked away but warned me to watch what I said. I never reported this incident to anybody for reasons I stated above.||Grad student||I think he was a university coach (but nothing in relation to me).||Other R1||R-1, Massachusetts||History||Didn't report||Frightened me. I was on an F-1 visa and I was terrified enough as a foreigner and as doctoral student. Didn't need more trouble and fear.||Male|
|12/1/2017 21:59:26||Did not directly happen to me but to people around me. Lab head regarded male students as future colleagues, female students as sexual object. So no matter the merits, the men were treated to behaviors that would foster their professional careers, while women were objects of use or scorn. Said lab head was banging a student he also supervised.||graduate student||head of lab/holder of grants/professor||Other R1||public health||none (teachers are explicitly allowed to date students)||none||I left the field||I didn't understand what was happening at the time||I left the field. Far less talented men have had excellent careers fostered by this individual.||Male|
|12/1/2017 22:20:45||I had to meet with a professor after I received a poor grade on a writing assignment. The class was on a topic of great interest to me, but outside my department. He told me it was because I wasn't smart enough. I tried to argue that I'd done the research, and he started laughing and said "you know, you're smarter than you look." At the end of the semester, we had mandatory individual meetings and again the comments about my appearance and how I couldn't be taken seriously because I wasn't attractive to men.||Undergraduate||Professor of my course. Untenured, assistant.||Regional Teaching College||I never told.||I'm now in a fully funded PhD program, but we'll see||I couldn't talk in classes for the rest of the semester. I'm still terrified of meeting professors one on one. My anxiety and disordered eating flared up.||I really admired this professor's work to the point that I had been considering switching disciplines. But I ended up trying to go into a career with as little human contact as possible||Male|
|12/1/2017 22:52:02||At two separate conferences a faculty member made unwanted advances, including verbal propositions and groping under the table and in a shared cab. I know from conversation he would do this to more than one student at any one conference.||Graduate student||Tenured faculty - not my institution||Small Liberal Arts College||History||None - not reported||None that I know of||None - but I learned that in general I was expected to just shrug this off as "normal"||I am more wary of talking one on one in conference settings and find myself nervous when isolated with male faculty I don't know... even those who pose no risk.||Male|
|12/1/2017 23:11:55||A student routinely made sexist remarks in class, creating a toxic environment for me and other students. In spite of several discussions telling him to stop and many complaints to superiors, nothing was done. The semester just ended.||Full time instructor||A student in my course||Regional Teaching College||Social sciences||People ignored, deflected, minimized or denied his behaviour. It just became 'my' problem.||It's hard to know all of them, but I know he never experienced a formal reprimand that removed him from courses.||I had to change my teaching schedule & workload to avoid this student, which negatively impacted my plans.||The harassment increased my stress. It made me irritable and combative and caused hardship on my partner and our relationship. It also created problems with the student in my courses; they became harder to control and deal with because they were always in classes with a chaotic student. |
I experienced disappointment, mistrust and alienation by the institution's behaviors. My motivation and productivity decreased.
|I have looked for work at other institutions. I don't trust certain people. I will never allow problems to be handled informally again.||Women can experience gender-based harassment & violence from subordinates, including students. In some cases, these circumstances can be even more difficult to understand, name and stop. We often think talk about harassment as if it occurs because people have occupational power they can wield. But men in lower positions still have patriarchy, rape culture, sexism, etc.||Male|
|12/2/2017 0:13:58||Two incidents to report. First, I (male, then in late twenties) had a peer make remarks concerning my appearance of a clearly sexual nature. The second incident was one witnessed: another of my peers ranted about our Department giving funding to women "so they could become pregnant".||PhD Student||Rough peers- one PhD student, another PhD candidate.||Other R1||History||Both incidents were reported to faculty at the time. In the first case, I was advised by the Department chair to let him know if any future incidents occurred, but no direct action was taken in this incident. In the second case, I had to use a different and sympathetic faculty member to submit it for me, as the student who had made the threatening remarks was a favorite student of the Department chair (a different one than the first chair) in question. As far as any of us could tell, nothing was done.||No direct impact for either of these two- the one who harassed me ultimately did not receive his PhD and is now deceased, while the one who made the threatening remarks received his PhD and is currently in the private sector.||None- I obtained my PhD, and the issues I have faced in my career appear to have nothing to do with these incidents.||The event that actually happened to me was one I recovered from quickly (it helped that I never encountered that student again)- however, the item I had told to me has been mentally bothering me for years, as I do not think I did enough and let fear curb me.||No direct impact on either life choices or my trajectory- however, there is a degree of continued paranoia present, as the second Department chair (currently not Department chair, but a prominent figure in his field and a major wheeler-dealer in campus politics) is a powerful man who could ruin me if he found out I was discussing this.||Thank you for offering this- I needed this outlet badly.||Both male|
|12/2/2017 2:27:46||someone put a tip of finger at my back,||student||professor||Other R1||CMU||engenering||self confidence||poor choices||no impact||Male|
|12/2/2017 3:35:10||I was at a departmental function -- Christmas drinks or or some such -- during my time as a masters student and witnessed an undergrad crying because a prof had just pinned her against a vending machine and tried to put his hand up her skirt. The prof was verbally reprimanded by a senior faculty member at the event itself, but nothing else was done about his behaviour.|
Masters student; the student this guy harassed was an undergrad.
|He taught classes that I and the undergrad in question took.||Other R1||History||No formal response||Absolutely none||Male|
|12/2/2017 3:42:15||Found out that one of my colleagues had slept with one of our undergrad students. This was consensual, but still makes me hugely uncomfortable.||tenure track||also TT||Other R1||History||None; our institutional policy explicitly allows sexual relationships with students.||None.||Male|
|12/2/2017 3:51:37||Shortly after I had started my post, I was out for drinks with a few members of the department. The head of department told a story about a professor in the department and a postgraduate student. This prof had touched this student inappropriately, and she had complained. But the HOD then said that this student had previously had a (consensual) relationship with another member of faculty, as if to imply that her complaint about inappropriate touching could therefore not be taken seriously. The whole thing was relayed like a big joke about this prof -- who is, for good reason, the butt of many departmental jokes -- and not like the serious incident it really should have been treated as.||tenure track||head of department||Other R1||History||None||None||The way this story was told to me made me lose confidence in my HOD. I felt that, if something happened to me, I couldn't trust him to treat it sensitively. I also eventually stopped going to these regular departmental social events, because I felt really uncomfortable with the tone of some of the conversations.||Male|
|12/2/2017 4:07:53||When I was applying to do my PhD, a senior (female) member of the department to which I was applying, and an ex-PhD student of the adviser with whom I was considering working both invited me for informal meetings to talk about my application. They both warned me that this particular adviser had a history of bullying his female postgraduate students; I later heard that this prof had caused at least one of his female students to leave the academy because of sexual comments and other bullying behaviour.||PhD applicant||Potential adviser||Other R1||History||None||None||This prof is a senior figure within my field, and I am wary of working with him in any capacity.||Because of the warnings, I got in contact with a potential adviser at a different institution, and went elsewhere. This turned out to be an excellent life choice; she was awesome. I am forever grateful to those two female academics for warning me about that prof.||Male|
|12/2/2017 6:10:13||Textbook grooming (I know now) while trying to write my undergraduate thesis. It was all about the control -- wanted me to quit all other activities, dictate my schedule, etc. Absolutely used my lack of self-confidence to try to make me think I was dependent on him for any possibility of career advancement, then failed me when I didn't want to agree to his rules. That's without getting into the many inappropriate conversations, comments, and touching.|
|Tenured professor, thesis advisor.||Small Liberal Arts College||Many years later and I still don't want to say.||I never reported it.||None that I know of.||I don't know. It did take me years to come back to academia, so I absolutely could have been further along at this point, but there are positives to that. I don't like that that choice was essentially made for me, obviously, but I don't regret coming back to grad school with more life experience under my belt.||I ended up traumatized and in therapy. My confidence still sucks.||I don't know. Life never goes how you want it to go and I did interesting things, learned a lot more about myself, and messed up in a lot of ways outside of academia, which is probably for the best. How can you go through life regretting what it was, you know? If anything, I'm probably more independent and more conscious about making decisions for me...||Male|
|12/2/2017 6:22:22||I was assisting my faculty mentor at a conference -as I had many times previous - with his walker/wheelchair, and while I had caught him watching me before, this time he was drunk (I guess he had been drinking that afternoon, because it was only 5:00 pm or so). He leered at me as I bent over to adjust the equipment and said, “You know what I like best when women bend over to help me out? The view...” and he tried to look down my blouse. I moved away, appalled, and his roommate/buddy looked away and said nothing. I excused myself and left. Later I asked some of his former graduate students about the incident (all women), and they confirmed he had said similar things to them while leveraging his disability to ask for their help.|
Second year assistant professor.
|Full professor, my assigned faculty mentor||Other R1||English||Did not report||None. He retired six months later due to worsening health.||He was a poor mentor to start with, did not take the time to read my work or advocate for me properly during two annual reviews, and because of the added harassment I avoided him as much as possible and could not advocate for myself. Without the intervention of the department chair who hired me during those review meetings, it is well possible I could have been reprimanded even though I had met all expectations. It has also caused me stress since, as I feel like I’m carrying an awful secret and I’m supposed to respect my elder and help him with his disability but I can’t stand to be anywhere near him now. I feel betrayed. That retirement party was awful to get through.||A lot of extra stress worrying about getting tenure, at least until he retired and I was reassigned to a much better mentor. And feeling the mental pretzel of performing respect while being utterly repulsed when I knew how he was enjoying the situation.||I refused to let him budge me, since my position was so hard-won, but I feared I would not be able to keep it because of his poor advocacy and I feared what would happen if I reported it (because everyone felt sorry for him because of his health problems). I couldn’t trust him. But the only thing that really allowed me to stay, in some ways, was his retirement.||Again, I spoke with other women who had worked with him and they had similar experiences. His health was terrible, but he clearly leveraged the pity and desire to help from young women (grad students, new assistant profs, staff) into something that was sexually satisfying to him.||Male|
|12/2/2017 6:26:51||Postcolonial studies professor in my department (English) introduced me to another student as "the graduate student I would most likely have an affair with."||Ph.D. Candidate||Associate Professor (not in my area--thankfully--so I could avoid coursework with him, etc.)||Other R1||University of North Texas||English||I reported this week (close to three years later). Department chair took it very seriously. Forwarded to Office if Equal Opportunity. I am waiting to hear from them, although I'm not sure they'll need to contact me.||None.||None, thankfully.||Significant, in that it was triggering and demoralizing, and added to my ongoing anger towards the academy, which doesn't protect women from harassment or emotional labor. This anger is snowballing now that I am in a TT job and seeing the problem from this angle.||At this point, it's adding to the fuel that is compelling me to speak up.||Male|
|12/2/2017 6:28:45||I was asked to coffee by a famous visiting professor who proceeded to put his hand on my leg and asked me to sleep with him.||Graduate student||Senior visiting faculty||Elite Institution/Ivy League||Biblical studies||None||None||Chilling affect on approaching and engaging senior scholars||Was made to feel as though I brought this on myself since no action was taken||My network of more senior scholars is as a result limited||Male|
|12/2/2017 6:30:50||I was a witness. A graduate student contacted me a year after I happened to walk in on her and her department chair. At the time I had a sense I had interrupted some type of physical intimacy. When the student called me a year later, she told me she had been very happy to see me at that moment because I had interrupted something very awkward. She was going to sue the harasser and asked if I would testify to seeing them together within arm's reach. However, I didn't hear from her or her lawyer again.|
The victim was a female graduate student. I was a tenured professor in another department.
|The perpetrator was the victim's department chair.||Other R1||University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center||Public Health||I don't know.||I don't know. Ironically, the perpetrator was a member of the campus committee on sexual harassment. Years later he lost his chairmanship but this was attributed to absenteeism.||The victim didn't complete her degree.||As a witness and not the victim, I don't know.||The victim was a promising student who didn't complete her degree.||Male|
|12/2/2017 6:31:16||Inappropriate sexual advances at a work Christmas party at my own institution in the UK. The perpetrator had a reputation for this and approached another member of staff in the same way that night.|
Junior member of staff on probation
|Senior member of staff. Not head of department but was part of my/all staff annual review||Elite Institution/Ivy League||History||Some action after a long campaign of complaint. A note on his record, training, an apology etc.||None. His position has improved since then.||Long term period of stress and a lot of time spent on the complaint which I could have used in much more valuable ways||Lots of stress||Male|
|12/2/2017 6:36:07||Emailed a lewd photograph||Graduate student||Famous senior professor not at my institution||Other R1||Biblical studies||Dean collected information anonymously from myself and other victims||None||I cannot ask this person for a recommendation||Anxiety||Limits the interaction with this person and their network||Male|
|12/2/2017 6:47:26||Several white male faculty members that have been participating in the annual summer institute harassed and groped women, me included, but I've heard from several other women since.||Graduate student||Tenured faculty||Elite Institution/Ivy League||Dartmouth||American studies||Not reported||None||I felt uncomfortable attending any further events with the perpetrators which greatly reduced my ability to network and socialize||Added to my depression and feelings of inadequacy||Male|
|12/2/2017 7:21:09||This happened in the 1990s, shortly after I received tenure and shortly after the senior professor in my sub-discipline (who had been a mentor to me) passed away. A male full professor in my department sexually harassed/assaulted several female graduate students in my department.|
I was a recently tenured associate professor.
|He was a full professor, and with the death of my mentor, he became the senior professor in my sub-discipline.||Other R1||Social science||Our chair had recently been promoted to a deanship and her hand-picked successor became our department chair. The dean said that she would handle it. It took a long time, and the end result was that the harasser was required to take a year-off without pay. By the time the case was adjudicated, the statute of limitations had run out so the students involved could not initiate a criminal case.||One year without pay. He is still a full professor in our department.||I was collateral damage. Two of the women students involved never finished their PhDs. The other members of my sub-discipline (female) were criticized frequently by the chair--why don't you all get along? It took me a long time to be promoted to full professor, and I still have to work with the harasser.||I am a tough lady, but this annoyed the hell out of me.||I had to work with my colleagues to re-build the sub-discipline.||I trust that you will not identify me in any way. This could cause a lot of trouble for me.||Male|
|12/2/2017 7:23:00||Repeated gender-based harassment||Ph.D. Candidate||Professor||Other R1||Music||None, although I tried reporting the incident||None||I will no longer be pursuing a career in the academy. I cannot support an institution that thrives on harassment and abuse.||Substantial. PTSD.||I avoid certain buildings and classrooms on campus and am looking into alternative career options due to the emotional damage this has caused me.||Male|
|12/2/2017 7:35:36||2012. Professor in philosophy course (mostly male students) went on long digressions during lecture about how he liked Springtime because he enjoyed looking at undergraduate women’s legs in skirts. This happened more than once and he would elaborate on how undergrad women shouldn’t cover up too much, which races he prefered, etc. He used the phrase “sexually aroused” more than once. Students around me (all men) seemed to think this was hilarious and laughed.||Undergraduate||My professor||Elite Institution/Ivy League||University of Chicago||Anthropology (currently, was undergrad at the time)||None||None||Decided not to major in philosophy||I spent a huge amount of time that year thinking about it, especially when I was getting dressed or saw this professor on campus.||Male|
|12/2/2017 7:39:17||My mentor asked me to go to a hotel with him. I laughed and hoped he was joking. He wasn't. He sabotaged my applications to graduate school. When I complained, he got a slap on the hand and I was counseled by the man who handled the complaint that I was not allowed to talk about the matter to anyone else. Of course, I was slandered at my alma mater by the mentor. It took decades to recover and totally altered my chosen career path. Ten years later I was in graduate school in a totally different field.||Graduating Senior||He was my mentor, a soon-to-be tenured Professor of Art.||Small Liberal Arts College||Austin College||Art||I was silenced and punished.||He got a warning and Tenure.||I lost a lot of time, confidence, and ended up in a different field.||I'm still recovering after years of counseling. Lots of self doubt, despair, depression.||This completely altered my career path.||This sort of thing is still going on - teachers commonly sleep with their students. I only know of one prof who was fired for his behavior. Otherwise, it's well tolerated and excused.||Male|
|12/2/2017 7:47:33||1. a professor stared at my chest while alone in his office as a new graduate student, for like 10 whole minutes 2. a faculty colleague performing my teaching evaluation (he was tenured, i was not yet), stood side up against me in front of my students in my classroom and lectured me on the definition of rape, saying i had it wrong and shouldn't include 'rape' as part of my definition of sexual harassment in my syllabus|
1. grad student 2. untenured tenure-track faculty
|1. professor 2. colleague||More Than One Institution (feel free to elaborate in "Comments")||University of California, community college||social science||none||none||avoidance of the two males involved, when in case 1 the professor could have helped me develop certain areas of my doctoral research and case 2 feeling uncfomortable and becoming a silent shell when required to work with this colleague; feelings of uncertainty, powerlessness, anger||a major obstacle to process; it takes time and a commitment to deciding how to move forward at work (what clothes to wear, what to do if he acts like this again, who to share this with, etc.) and the stress of processing takes a physical toll manifest in eating issue, insomnia, and unhappiness||none||Male|
|12/2/2017 7:48:52||Pregnancy discrimination: I am not sure if this counts as sexual harassment, but it was highly gendered and obviously the result of sexual behaviour. I was asked to resign my postdoctoral position for the entire academic year in which I would give birth. I spent the better part of the fellowship term fighting the Organization’s effort and researching my nearly non-existent legal right to keep the award they were trying to revoke.||Visiting Scholar||Director of the Institution (female), CFO of the institution (male), director of the fellowship program (female).||Elite Institution/Ivy League||Professional Organization||Art History||They fought it every step of the way, finally conceded that I could have time off to give birth, but only if I admitted that it was a favour or special privilege, not a right.||Director was later fired for having faked her academic credentials. press coverage in Boston Globe.||Hard to tell: I left full-time academia, in part because of this episode, but also because I had one, the another kid, and my partner and I decided to prioritize his more family-friendly and better-paying job.||It was stressful; I’m still angry 8 years later.||Female|
|12/2/2017 8:08:38||A professor in our department had a long history of sexually harassing students, usually Master's students. He was initially very friendly with students, wanting to chat with them, learn about them, and offering them opportunities to work with him or share is data. Then it would start getting weird and predatory. He would talk about sexual things (but always have some thin thread of connection to "research", even though he wasn't a sexuality researcher), would randomly touch us (e.g., put his hand on our hands), show us his BDSM character on his computer in Second Life, email inappropriate pictures (again with thin connections to research), would comment on other women's bodies and breasts. Many students who he was supervising ended up filing complaints and then leaving the program because of him. And yet he maintained his position in the department.||Master's student||Professor and department faculty member||Other R1||University of Toronto||Sociology||First the department moved graduate student offices away from his office. Then they had all women students paired with men officemates to "protect" them from him. Then finally they moved his office to a different building. When he then sexually harassed a faculty member he was asked to retire early.||None (asked to retire early although he was already well past retirement age)||none||Anger thinking about why he was never disciplined; stress trying to avoid him in the department.||I changed my research focus because he worked in the area I was interested in.||Male|
|12/2/2017 8:12:39||Inappropriate comments galore. Example: Head of program, a publicly much esteemed elderly man, joking about how much he liked his new glasses because now he could see how much female students were NOT wearing. Chuckles ensued from the other two male faculty members present.||Adjunct Peon||Head of Program, Boss||Other R1||UC||Humanities||Stony face||Male|
|12/2/2017 8:17:07||(2007) As an undergrad, a Professor I took a class from only stared at my chest when talking to me, gave all the women (50% of the class) in the class low grades (men all received A's) and told the women they could raise them if they met him privately in his office. I went once, but left almost immediately because something was off. (2010) Professor who was/is prominent in my subfield at the time just stared at my chest during the entire conversation; (2015) Professor I worked for continually made lewd and inappropriate comments while teaching, and during TA meetings the comments were worse||Graduate Student||Professor/instructor; Professor in my field (not at my school but a Dean at another university); Professor I worked for as a TA||Other R1||History||Institution prevented the first harasser from working at the university based on performance reviews. Others nothing was reported||First one did not work at the university again (as far as I know)||The treatment from Harasser 2 made me decide to switch subfields for my dissertation because I did not want to have to pander to him. Harasser 3 hasn't impacted my career, but my immediate surroundings as I feel uncomfortable being with him. He also is in charge of selecting TA's for my program, and I have had to make moves to ensure that I don't TA for him, or have to meet with him privately.||The objectification of my body by male professors really messed with my body-image issues for a while, and made me more insecure about my work (are they talking to me because of interest in my work or because they like staring at my chest?)||Changed subfields in my career; alter my behavior in my immediate university surroundings to avoid contact with one professor||Male|
|12/2/2017 8:22:03||at a regional conference in 2005, I saw one of the professors in my dept and a chair at a neighboring school plop down $20 bills to a very uncomfortable-looking and probably frightened female undergrad, about 19-20 years old, from a 3rd institution in a hotel bar, as if they were propositioning her. That professor has done other creepy/propositioning things to other students in my department since then.||masters student||professor in my department and instructor in my class||Regional Teaching College||Texas State||Geography||None that I'm aware of||None that I'm aware of||shame for not stepping up and doing the right thing||disgust at the old boy network in my school||a dedication to do the right thing, treat people fairly, and speak up when those in power abuse that power||Male|
|12/2/2017 8:22:18||I was sitting in the audience at conference panel; a professor in field sits next to me, and, things felt weird after a few minutes. It seemed he kept inching even closer to me and then he leans in and says: I hadn't seen such an incredibly sexy woman at an academic conference before.||PhD student||Tenured Professor in my field by had absolutely no relation to the institution where I was getting my PhD.||Main conference in the field||Humanities/Ethnic Studies||Male|
|12/2/2017 8:33:04||My interpersonal communication instructor asked me to have sex with him.|
I was a sophomore in college, aged 19.
|My instructor was a tenured professor.||Regional Teaching College||St. Cloud State University||Speech Communication||EEO Officer indicated it was my fault.||I think a letter went into his personnel file until I graduated.||Male|
|12/2/2017 8:35:35||Chair of Search Committee for TT job in the department in which I was doing a post-doc|
Post-doctoral student in the department/applicant for TT job in that department
|Tenured professor||Other R1||University of Pittsburgh||Rhetorical Theory/Communication||Defame the victim||None||Left R1 institutions for liberal arts colleges and state universities||Depression/anxiety||Male|
|12/2/2017 8:40:37||As a junior faculty member I asked a senior colleague to read my book proposal. He suggested we discuss it at a bar and proceeded to work through 14 drinks as we discussed it (I started counting when it was getting crazy). He tried to kiss me at the end of the evening. Turns out most other colleagues knew about his drinking problem but I was too new to the institution to have known.|
Second,-year assistant professor
|Tenured member of my department||Other R1||French||Reported to HR, wasn't pursued||None||I have stayed away from him since but I don't think he remembers the actual incident, given how much he had to drink. I decided it was best to leave it at that to avoid any further tensions since he has a vote on my tenure file||I did not feel safe in the department for a while, but have subsequently made peace with it and avoid contexts with too much drinking||I want to stick around and change it!||Male|
|12/2/2017 8:59:59||I was sitting at my desk and suddenly felt hands on my shoulders. A senior faculty member was running my back and talking to me in a child voice, “is everything okay, are you alright, what can I do to make it better.” Several days later this sane person asked if I was suicidal.||Assistant professor||Full professor||Other R1||University of oklahoma||City planning||Title 9 officer: trust the system. Other university staff: get a lawyer.||None.||None so far, this is recent.||Not good.||Considering leaving academia.||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:02:22||I was working on an independent summer research project. I needed a database designed to record responses to a survey I administered, and my advisor directed me to the manager of a division of the Center he ran, which employed a technician who was available to do these kind of supplemental technology policy. When I spoke with the manager about my project needs and how to contact the technician, he explained that the previous technician had graduated and the new one wouldn't start until after the summer ended. Ergo, there was no one on staff to help with my project. However, he added, because the new technician has already been hired and was another (male) graduate student who I knew, I "could probably work something out" (said with a wink and grin) to get my project work done. It was disgusting and uncomfortable.|
first-year masters student
|He was a PhD-holding manager of a program within a Center affiliated with my graduate program. This was a Center where students from my program frequently found employment as graduate assistants either to supplement their teaching work or to continue in funding once their (5-year) teaching assistantships ran out.||Other R1||Ohio State University||English||none (I didn't report it)||see previous||delayed and limited the scope of my research, as I had to find alternate methods of building the tools I needed for my research. so, the impact is hard to calculate. one effect was that--because the project never really went anywhere--it sort of soured my relationship with this advisor and we stopped working together, meaning that I had a find another advisor.||stress related to tanking project and having to switch advisors||again, hard to say. the project could have been that start of something (and therefore changed the trajectory of my career), if it had gone better...||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:05:41||My PhD advisor phoned my late at night, after he'd been drinking, to tell me he loved me and wanted a romantic relationship with me.||PhD student||He was my PhD advisor. He was a tenured, full professor and very senior in the department. I had admired and trusted him as a mentor for several years. At 60 years old, he was twice my age. I had met his wife and his children (who were my age). I had chosen to work with him as my advisor because I thought he was "safe" to work with (in contrast to other profs in the department who had "reputations").||Other R1||--||Arts||Advocate office suggested that my academic career would be negatively impacted (delayed completion, loss of department supports/jobs, no reference letters) if I launched a complaint.||None||Delayed completion. Loss of confidence.||Anxiety and depression.||I stopped wanting to be a TT prof, because the incident revealed to me how poisonous the academy was. I did not want to be a part of it.||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:17:51||On paleontology fieldwork, BLM rep joined our crew for 1 night. He got very drunk and started making suggestive comments to me. Female Senior PI told me to go stay in my tent the rest of the night and sat outside until he had passed out in a lawn chair.|
Undergraduate (19 years old)
|Bureau of Land Management official||Small Liberal Arts College||Paleontology||No report filed||None||Only do fieldwork with female-led crews||None||None||It was a gross event, and I'm glad a female PI was there to re-direct the situation so nothing worse happened to me. I learned a lot about how women in positions of power can and should step in and shut down harassment.||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:17:54||Would go around to women in the program and ask them sexual explicit questions for a “survey” such as “When you give a blow job, do you lick the balls?” Would also publicly show off naked pictures of women who allegedly sent these images to him, all while being in a shared office space where other female collugues could see and hear him. Would loudly refer to women as “gutter sluts” and openly mocked women and minority members. Ranked women in the program by “sexual appeal” and let it be know who he would ranked the highest. Would also loudly make claims women and minority students had an easier time getting into PhD programs due to the “sympathy vote.” All this and more place in just out Fall semester of 2015.|
2nd year Masters level graduate student
|1st year masters level graduate student||Other Type of School||Psychology||We made a report to Title IV and they thankfully responded by putting this student on probation. However the process of reporting was traumatizing in iteself.||Was not allowed to be in the same space as other women who reported and had to take sexual harassment classes through Title IV. They were officially charged with sexual harassment and while on probation, if there were other reports of harassment they could have possibly revived harsher sentences. They continued on and graduated.||The process in itself drained me and showed me how even in academia, women are not treated any different than outside of academia. This was my first real experience with such a profound example of sexual harassment and it has made me much more fearful of future incidents as I have advanced in my career.||The process of going through Title IV was traumatizing. We had to read and respond to their reports so I had to read how multiple men in my program perceived me as a “Feminazi” and a “man hater” and had to read blatant lies made by the perpetrator. He brought in our sexuality to his report and basically had to read us victim blame us on an official document. We had to also read how others in the program thought we are making too big of a deal about this and were made to feel as if were crazy for perceiving these actions as sexual harassment. Faculty also knew what was happening so we did not feel as protected as we were promised to be. I and others had sought out therapy during this time to seek help for the psychological impact it was taking on us. I still am not fully recovered from this incident and this took place back in Spring 2016.||I have seriously considered not joining acedemia as a professor and another woman who came forward was even considering to not go on and get her PhD (which was her dream). It also has shaped my area of interest where I now focus a lot on researching aspects of sexual assault as a way to make things better for other women in the future.||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:22:17||We have had multiple incidents on our campus, most notably in the Biology department, where sexist jokes were allowed at a University sponsored event with no repercussions for those involved (https://www.theverge.com/2017/9/7/16262722/texas-tech-sexual-misconduct-investigation-sexism-biology). Several weeks after that article was released, the Dean of the college had breakfast with all the departments individually. When he came to our department, he went on a rant about how he doesn't think sexist behavior exists on our campus. My department chair also makes underhanded sexist comments. The one that sticks out was when I was asking to be classified differently in terms of summer teaching was divvied up (I'm non tenure track and therefore not the same classification as everyone else), my chair accused me of asking for favors for being a spousal hire. I also get scolded sometimes for having to leave work and go take care of my dogs but the same things do not happen to my husband, who is in the same department.|
Research Assistant Professor
|Dean and our Department Chair||Other R1||Texas Tech University||Psychological Science||None||None||I feel uncomfortable at work sometimes||It is a stressful event, so there is some added stress or anxiety||I have been looking for other places to work but it is hard because I am part of an academic couple||I'm confused as to why what happened in the biology department on our campus was not bigger news. It is especially timely since there is a lot about sexual harassment in the news. Somehow this got swept under the rug largely and I feel the University would have provided a stronger response had their been negative publicity.||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:24:03||I don't have a sexual harassment story. I have an "I'm the Hillary Clinton of my department" story. I'm a feminist researcher in a field (urban studies) dominated by engineers and economists, and I just want to write about the constant microaggressions I experience from my colleagues, from interrupting me and and talking down to me in front of graduate students to saying things like I was being "catty" about a younger, prettier colleague when I tried to get her promotion committee to address a criticism raised in her external tenure letter. When I complained to the Dean and Chair of the department, it was treated like "my little problem" with my colleagues rather than a systematic problem with an environment that is toxic for women, especially female graduate students. We have to warn our female PhD students NOT to seem too smart or too accomplished around one of my colleagues or else he will undermine and attempt to destroy them. Come on! My male colleagues NEVER speak up or confront the behavior.|
Assistant and Associate.
|always senior||Elite Institution/Ivy League||University of Southern California||Urban Planning and Spatial Analysis||I was referred to the OEO, where I was forced to tell my story a bunch of times. Sympathetic, but very clear they had no intention of trying to get the leadership in my department to change the environment. They are about protecting the institution and wearing out victims, not proactively changing the contexts where harassment occurs.||None.||I have done ok. But it's been more of struggle than it should have been.||That is a hard question. I would say that it's added considerably to stress and depression.||I have thought about leaving the academy more times than I can count. I still think about it. Not because I don't love teaching and researching, but because I hate being in a world where I see female graduate students treated so badly.||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:38:17||I was propositioned via text. It was an individual who is the same sex as me. I am happily married with kids.||Assistant Professor||Vice President||Small Liberal Arts College||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:44:56||After repeatedly asking for my graded midterm, my professor insisted that I must come to his office to retrieve it. Once I got there, he insisted that I sit down and go over what I missed. He sat next to me, touched my arms, and touched my hair. He got closer and closer until I finally jumped up and ran away. |
I spoke to two male professors who were my friends. They recommended that I tell the professor that I would report him if he didn't return my tests when he gave back others in class. They also suggested I report him. I was too afraid to do that. I just wanted to get away from him.
The following semester, he harassed my friend. She got a female faculty member to go with her when the student went to collect her test. All the female faculty in his department knew he did this to undergraduates yet did nothing.
|Junior undergraduate||Full professor||Other Type of School||East Carolina University||None - I didn't report. No response (that we could see) when my friend reported.||I could go on and on telling stories about harassment, as could most of your participants, I'm sure. Currently, I'm working in a department where we are constantly bullied by senior faculty. Though I have spoken to our dean, the end result has been that nothing has changed.||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:47:26||I've been lucky in my mentors, but my ability to network with fellow academics (mostly grad students) has been really hurt by the number of men who don't want to work with me as a colleague. A typical scenario:|
I had a research fellowship to do work at a small archive, and there was a male grad student working there as part of the same program. We saw each other every day, and I tried to be collegial because we were working together, he was interesting, and his project was legitimately really good. Eventually we got lunch together, and it came up that I was in a relationship. Immediately the grad student's face fell and he looked ashen. We finished lunch and for the next few weeks, he barely spoke to me. I haven't spoken to the grad student since.
I've had other incidents where male grad students suggest doing conference panels together, working together in writing groups, and sharing networking contacts, but they suddenly vanish when my relationship status comes up. Closing off opportunities like that isn't something that you can report, because really all they've done is wasted my time and energy. It makes me suspicious about networking with male academics, and it was a factor in my decision to seek work outside academia.
|grad student||colleague||More Than One Institution (feel free to elaborate in "Comments")||History||N/A||N/A||I've limited my networking with male academics, and it derailed some joint projects that I thought were interesting.||Distrust toward male colleagues who don't have partners||It was a factor in my decision to leave academia. If my colleagues behave this way when they're grad students, what will they do when they have more power?||Male|
|12/2/2017 9:52:20||Bizarre comment. Over mid-morning coffee on campus cafeteria, a male lecturer colleague said he was going downtown to buy a bed and would I be interested in coming along. I said no, cringing and feeling really uncomfortable. Moments later, an undergraduate female student came over to chat with same man. He also asked her if she wanted to go bed-shopping with him and, moreover, what type (of bed) did she think he should pick? Student rightfully stammered, went bright red and the whole scene was cringe-worthy.||Adjunct||Colleague||Other R1||Public R-1||History||Male|