Assistance for Survivors of Sexual Misconduct

Sexual misconduct can undermine a person’s autonomy and trust in others.

If it happens to you, seek support. Talking to a trained counselor can help in processing the immediate and longer term emotional impact of an assault.  Staff at Counseling Services, Health Services, and Sexual Assault Support Services of Mid Coast Maine can provide confidential support. The Office of the Dean of Student Affairs or Security can also provide information to you regarding action under the Sexual Misconduct Policy or through local authorities.

Know your options: The steps listed below offer optional assistance to a survivor of sexual  misconduct. These steps help with immediate and ongoing medical needs and legal issues as well as to provide support to the survivor in regaining a sense of control over his/her life.

  • It is important to preserve physical evidence.  Do not shower, douche, or change clothing prior to seeking emergency medical care or calling the police. 

  • Obtain a medical examination as soon as possible. While acute, immediate post-assault treatment is provided in the Parkview and Mid Coast hospitals’ emergency rooms, the Health Center offers follow-up care, including health care services for students who have chosen not to seek care immediately after an assault.

  • Whether or not the assailant is known to you, document the details of the assault: the person’s clothes, hair, any identifying marks such as scars or tattoos, and the height of the person in relation to you. Keep a record of all you can recall about the events and the location even if you choose not to pursue immediate action.

  • Report the incident to the Brunswick Police Department and/or the Safety and Security Office as soon as possible. A student may also contact the dean-on-call or SASSMM Hotline for a general explanation of what to expect at the Emergency Room and when filing a police report. If requested, the dean-on-call will assist the student in notifying Campus Security and the Brunswick Police Department and will continue to support the student as long as the student wishes.

  • Remember, delayed reporting makes it more difficult to find and prosecute an assailant.  You are advised to file a report with the police, which does not oblige you to press charges or pursue legal action. 

Dean, Doctor, and Counselor-on-call —ext. 3314 or 3500.

A student who is a survivor of sexual misconduct is urged to call Bowdoin Campus Security. Bowdoin Campus Security will respond at once, and at the same time notify the dean-on-call, doctor-on-call, and the counselor-on-call. All three parties may be reached directly through Bowdoin Campus Security by dialing 3500 from any College phone, or 725-3500 from off-campus, and asking for the dean-on-call or counselor-on-call. The student is not required to give a reason for calling the dean-on-call or counselor-on-call, nor does contacting them oblige the student to make a report with the police.

The dean-on-call, doctor-on-call, or counselor-on-call will contact the student or, if appropriate, will go to the Emergency Room to offer assistance. The student may ask the on-call staff to leave and not become further involved, but should recognize that doing so will make it more difficult for the College to provide coordinated assistance.

The dean-on-call will work to ensure that the resources of the College are available to assist the student. The dean-on-call will work with others to make reasonable efforts to accommodate changes in academic and living arrangements requested by the student because of a sexual misconduct. The dean-on-call or counselor-on-call will also contact the student in the days following to offer assistance and support and will remain in contact with the student as long as the student wishes.

Resources

The College is committed to providing information regarding on- and off- campus services and resources to survivors of sexual misconduct.  Any of the resources listed below can assist a student to access the full range of services available.

On-Campus Resources

Off-Campus Resources

Community Education about Sexual Misconduct

The Office of the Dean of Student Affairs will undertake educational efforts to make all students aware of the policies and procedures contained in this document. Such efforts will include:


  • Notifying students of the conduct that is proscribed by the Sexual Misconduct Policy.

  • Informing students of the options and procedures for addressing possible violations of the policy.

  • Providing special training for professional staff who give advice and administer campus procedures under the policy.

  • Sponsoring programs that further awareness of the issues of sexual harassment, sexual assault and sexual misconduct and lead to their prevention.

  • Reporting periodically to the community on the number of incidents that have been brought formally or informally to the attention of the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs.

Safe Space

Safe Space is a group of trained students dedicated to supporting people who have experienced sexual harassment, and sexual misconduct. Safe Space offers people who have experienced sexual harassment, and sexual misconduct an opportunity to share their experiences in a confidential and supportive atmosphere. Members of Safe Space are trained by counselors from the Sexual Assault Support Services of Midcoast Maine and can be reached through campus mail, e-mail, or by telephone to answer questions and provide support. As part of their mission of support, Safe Space members sponsor a number of activities throughout the year aimed at educating Bowdoin students about sexual harassment and sexual assault. Members are available to discuss these issues with all students and members of the community. Names of members are available from Proctors and Resident Assistants as well as the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs, Counseling Services, Health Services, and Security.

Bowdoin College Anonymous Report Form for Sexual Misconduct (MS Word)