Don't see what you've experienced described here?

Contact Jane Hendriksma, our Title IX Coordinator, for more information or a referral.


Unequal, adverse treatment of an individual because of a protected legal status, such as race, age, gender, sexuality, ethnic origin or ability/disability that is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive such that it unreasonably interferes with, denies or limits someone’s employment access, benefits or opportunities, and/or the ability to participate in or benefit from the college’s educational program and/or activities, and is based on power differentials (quid pro quo), creates a hostile environment or constitutes retaliation.


Unwelcome verbal or physical conduct. Examples of harassment include, but are not limited to:

  • epithets, slurs, denigrating jokes or negative stereotyping;
  • threatening or causing physical harm, extreme verbal abuse, or other conduct which threatens or endangers health or safety;
  • written or graphic material that degrades or shows hostility or aversion;
  • pranks or horseplay intended to embarrass or humiliate;
  • imposing submission to unwelcome verbal or physical conduct;
  • stalking, bullying, hazing;
  • any other action that is motivated by the actual or perceived membership of the victim in a protected class.

Any adverse employment or educational action taken against a person because of their participation in a report or investigation of harassment or discrimination of any kind. Retaliation against an individual for alleging harassment, discrimination or sexual misconduct, for supporting a reporting party or for assisting in providing relevant information related to a claim or investigation is a serious violation of Calvin's policy and will be investigated and sanctions may be given, from a written warning to suspension or expulsion, depending on the severity of the retaliation.

Non-consensual sexual contact

Intentional sexual touching, however slight, with any object, by one person against another without consent.

Relationship violence or domestic/dating abuse

A pattern of controlling behaviors that may include physical assaults, sexual assaults, emotional abuse, isolation, threats, stalking, manipulation and/or intimidation. These behaviors are used by one person in an intimate relationship to control the other. The partners may be married, engaged, separated or dating; heterosexual or LGBT+; living together or not.

Abuse can happen to anyone regardless of someone’s religion (or lack thereof), gender identity or expression, age, race or nationality, cultural background, class, ability and/or education.

Types of abuse can include physical, psychological, emotional, verbal, sexual, economic and spiritual, among others.

Women ages 18–24 are most commonly abused by an intimate partner.

Safe Haven Ministries is a local Christian domestic violence organization that is able to provide resources, advice, counseling and information about options available to you in a confidential environment.

Call their 24 hour hotline at (616) 452-6664.

(Source: Safe Haven Ministries and National Coalition to end Domestic Violence)

Find more information about how to help a friend or family member in an abusive relationship.

Romantic and/or consensual relationships between individuals of unequal power

Relationships between two people of unequal positions such as faculty and student or supervisor and employee have inherent power imbalances, even if they are consensual. The unequal power dynamic increases the vulnerability of the person with less power and heightens the potential for coercion and abuse.

Sexual exploitation

Taking sexual advantage of another person without consent, including recording intimate activity, distributing intimate pictures and lewd exposure.


Unwelcome behavior directed against a person that violates a person’s reasonable expectations of privacy and causes fear or anxiety. Stalking can be a pattern of following, harassment or other unwanted communication.