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Forensic Fridays Examines Issue of Sexual Assaults at Universities

With more than 150 schools under investigation by the Department of Education for possible violations of Title IX (a federal anti-discrimination law protecting such victims), Duquesne's Cyril H. Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law is partnering with the University's School of Nursing, Department of Public Safety and Title IX coordinator to host the spring semester's compelling, final session of Forensic Fridays.

An interdisciplinary group of experts will be among the presenters at Sexual Assault on Campus: Investigation, Prosecution, Title IX and the Role of Forensic Nursing, which will be held on Friday, May 1, from 1 to 4:30 p.m. in the Duquesne Union's Africa Room. This event comes just one year after the White House launched NotAlone.gov, a website featuring information for students, schools and those seeking resources on how to prevent and respond to sexual assault on college and university campuses and in schools.

Presenters and panelists at the Forensic Friday session include:

  • Laura Ditka, chief deputy attorney general for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and former chief of the Child Abuse/Crimes Against Persons Unit in the Office of the Allegheny County District Attorney
  • Capt. Michael Kopas and Assistant Chief Michael Sippey, Duquesne University Department of Public Safety
  • Anthony Kane Jr., resident director of Duquesne University's Towers Residence Hall
  • Susan Monahan, director of student conduct at Duquesne University
  • Valerie Krasneski-Scheiber, unit director at the UPMC Department of Emergency Medicine
  • Detective Bryan Sellers, City of Pittsburgh Bureau of Police Sex Assault Team
  • Debra Shane, clinician at the UPMC Department of Emergency Medicine
  • Sean Weaver, Title IX coordinator and director of anti-discrimination policy and compliance at Duquesne University.

The topics addressed at the session include Title IX and campus sexual assaults; coordinating campus and criminal investigations of reported sexual assaults; the role of the sexual assault nurse examiner in investigations of sexual assaults; and prosecuting campus sexual assaults.

Dr. Kathleen Sekula, professor in Duquesne's School of Nursing and a psychiatric mental health expert, will moderate the session's concluding panel discussion on Interdisciplinary Considerations in the Reporting, Investigation and Prosecution of Sexual Assaults on College Campuses, which will feature all of the presenters.

This Forensic Friday session has been approved for three hours of both Continuing Legal Education and Social Work Continuing Education credit. Approval for Nursing Continuing Education Units is pending. In addition, Sexual Assault on Campus: Investigation, Prosecution, Title IX and the Role of Forensic Nursing may be accessed by relevant professional session registrants in a distance learning format.

Additional sponsors for this event include the National Institute of Justice-sponsored Forensic Technology Center of Excellence at RTI International; Pittsburgh Action Against Rape; Pittsburgh's Center for Victims; the University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work; and RTI, International.

For more information, including costs, registration, distance-learning requirements continuing education details, call 412.396.1330 or email wechtinstitute@duq.edu.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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