Sheridan, Gillette Colleges Follow Federal Requirements

Sheridan and Gillette Colleges follow federal Title 9 guidelines in responding to complaints of sexual violence.

Both colleges are operated by the Northern Wyoming Community College District, whose Vice President Cheryl Heath said the goal is to protect students and the campus community and follow up on any complaints that are received regarding sexual conduct.

A look at how Sheridan and Gillette colleges handle reports of sexual misconduct was prompted by a report last month that federal officials are investigating how Northwest College at Powell responds to complaints of sexual violence.

Heath said she couldn't speak to how Northwest College handles such situations, but for the colleges in Sheridan and Gillette, the goal is awareness and vigilence.

She said the college puts a lot of resources into training people in how to respond to reports of sexual misconduct and sexual violence. The college district has three Title 9 deputy coordinators. Heath used one of them, Jennifer McArthur, as an example of the training they receive.

McArthur and another of the deputy coordinators are on the Sheridan College campus, and one is at the college in Gillette. But Heath said a total of 10 people go through the training to deal with Title 9 issues, and there are two trained counselors who don't investigate but work with students who want to remain anonymous.

In a 2015 document posted online, Sheridan College reported one forcible sex offense in 2013, and one rape in 2014. Gillette College reported one forcible sex offense in 2012 and two instances of stalking in 2014. The report covered the years from 2012 through 2014.