Next Review Date: 11/04/2024
Issuance Date: 11/04/2021
Issuing Office: Academic Personnel Services
PPM 230-017-0 Policy
It is a violation of this Policy for a UC San Diego academic appointee (except academic appointees who are also currently enrolled graduate or undergraduate students) to enter into a romantic, dating, or sexual relationship with an undergraduate student for whom the appointee has, or may reasonably expect to have, academic responsibility (instructional, evaluative, or supervisory). In addition, it is a violation of this policy for faculty members to engage in a romantic or sexual relationship with any undergraduate student from their department or program.
This policy applies to all academic appointees as defined by Academic Personnel Manual – Section 110- 4. (APM 110-4(2)) who work on the UC San Diego campus, except academic appointees who are also currently enrolled graduate or undergraduate students. A UC San Diego academic appointee, so defined, is therefore subject to discipline if they enter into a romantic, dating, or sexual relationship with any UC San Diego undergraduate student for whom the appointee has, or may reasonably expect to have, academic responsibility or, if a faculty appointee, the undergraduate student is in the appointee’s own department or program.
The duty to avoid a romantic, dating, or sexual relationship with an undergraduate student lies with the academic appointee. Therefore, this policy will not be grounds for discipline of an undergraduate student who enters into a romantic, dating, or sexual relationship with an academic appointee.
PPM 230-017-2 Purpose
This policy exists to ensure that all academic appointees, even those not governed by the APM-015 Faculty Code of Conduct, may be subject to discipline for engaging in romantic or sexual relationships with undergraduate students as prohibited by this policy’s terms.
b. Related University Policy
In addition to this policy on romantic or sexual relationships between Academic Appointees and Undergraduate Student, academic appointees must comply with all University policies involving consensual relationships with students (this includes, among other policies: APM 015 The Faculty Code of Conduct; PPM 200-11 Conflicts of Interest Arising Out of Consensual Relationships; PPM 200-19 Policy for Reporting and Responding to Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment, and University of California SVSH Presidential Policy.
PPM 230-017- 4 Scope
This policy applies to all academic appointees who work on the UC San Diego campus, except academic appointees who are also currently enrolled graduate or undergraduate students.
Academic appointee is defined as provided in APM 110-4(2) (https://www.ucop.edu/academic-personnel- programs/_files/apm/apm-110.pdf).
Faculty appointee is defined as provided in APM 110-4(15) (https://www.ucop.edu/academic-personnel- programs/_files/apm/apm-110.pdf).
Academic Personnel Manual (APM) means the currently operative version of the Academic Personnel Manual issued by the UC Office of the President. See https://www.ucop.edu/academic-personnel- programs/academic-personnel-policy/.
The Office for the Prevention of Harassment and Discrimination (OPHD) is responsible for receiving complaints and investigating suspected violations of this policy and for providing appropriate training to the campus community.
Academic Personnel Services (APS) is responsible for ensuring that the disciplinary process for violations of this policy is handled in accordance with the Academic Personnel Manual and campus delegations of authority.
PPM 230-017-8 General Principles
The APM - 015 Faculty Code of Conduct prohibits “conduct which is not justified by the ethical principles and which significantly impairs the University’s central functions.” One of the central functions of the University is “to provide and sustain an environment conducive to sharing … knowledge.”
The possibility that an academic appointee might enter into a romantic, dating, or sexual relationship with an undergraduate student undermines the educational environment for undergraduate students.
Undergraduate study is a time of intellectual growth and discovery, in which students should be free to explore all of the educational opportunities offered by the University, without concern that they might become the objects of romantic or sexual attention of the University academic appointees.
Romantic, dating, or sexual relationships between academic appointees and undergraduate students are inconsistent with an environment conducive to sharing knowledge because such relationships close off potential areas of academic study for the student by making it necessary for the undergraduate student to avoid creating an academic supervisory relationship. For undergraduate students who have ended a romantic or sexual relationship with an academic appointee, such students may feel compelled to avoid certain classes or research opportunities to avoid awkwardness and discomfort or to avoid potential retaliation from a former romantic partner.
Because undergraduate study is intended to be broad, undergraduate students may come under the academic supervision of any academic appointee. Undergraduate students regularly change majors, take on multiple majors and minors, take courses in many different departments and divisions, work in laboratories or undertake projects with academic appointees in disciplines both in and outside their majors, and encounter academic appointee mentors across the campus.
Moreover, the mere possibility of romantic, dating, or sexual relationships between academic appointees and undergraduate students has the potential to alter how students interact with academic appointees. Undergraduate students may need to be on their guard and consider whether attention from an academic appointee might have a romantic or sexual component. This potential second-guessing of motives can create a barrier to full enjoyment of the campus’ educational opportunities.
Importantly, because of the inherent imbalance of power between academic appointees and undergraduate students, there is a significant danger for manipulation, coercion, or prohibited sexual harassment within a romantic, dating, or sexual relationship that begins as consensual.
PPM 230-017-80 Procedures
Suspected violations of this policy should be reported to the UC San Diego Office for the Prevention of Harassment and Discrimination for investigation.
Discipline for academic appointees who violate this policy will be handled as designated in the Academic Personnel Manual (APM) – Section 016.
2021-09-29 New policy issued.
2021-11-04 Policy revised and reissued.