Office of Title IX and ADA Compliance

Preventing Sexual Assault, Gender Inequality, and Discrimination

About Us

Since its founding in 1886 as a women’s college, Winthrop University has placed a top priority on the education and safety of students. The university upholds Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, that states, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. 20 U.S.C. §1681”. Gender equity for individuals on college campuses is multifaceted and requires diligence in equal programming, opportunity, and personal/bodily autonomy.

As recent studies have suggested, sexual misconduct, harassment, and violence on college campuses is all too common. Preventing injustices wherever possible and holding to high standards of accountability those who abuse others are critical components to providing a safe environment for students to make the most of the college experience. Winthrop provides many services and resources in support of Title IX which may be found on the left panel. There, students, faculty, and staff will find a variety of avenues in order to report Title IX violations, ask questions, or schedule trainings for either themselves, their students, or their office.

Mr. Kevin R. Sheppard, Sr. serves as Winthrop’s Title IX Coordinator / ADA Compliance Officer. He is responsible for coordinating the university’s compliance with Title IX, including policy recommendations, overseeing all complaints of sex/gender discrimination, and identifying and addressing any problems that arise during the review of such complaints. Questions or concerns may be directed as follows:

Mr. Kevin R. Sheppard, Sr.
Title IX Coordinator/ADA Compliance Officer
105 Tillman Hall
803/323-3928 or 803/833-7743

On-Campus Office Hours: Wednesdays and Thursdays 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Virtual Office Hours: Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Available via e-mail at and telephone at 803/833-7743.


About Title IX

The Education Amendments of 1972, later renamed to the Patsy Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act in 2002 after its most prominent author, was a collection of amendments to congressional acts of the early 1960s. The most notable and enduring of those was Title IX, which prohibited any educational institution receiving federal financial assistance (including federally subsidized student loans) from discriminating on the basis of sex.

As with most legislation over time, there has been some evolution in Title IX as federal judges make decisions and create precedents regarding the law. In its current state,

“Title IX protects students, employees, applicants for admission and employment, and other persons from all forms of sex discrimination, including discrimination based on gender identity or failure to conform to stereotypical notions of masculinity or femininity. All students (as well as other persons) at recipient institutions are protected by Title IX—regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, part- or full-time status, disability, race, or national origin—in all aspects of a recipient’s educational programs and activities.”
~U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, Title IX Resource Guide (Apr. 2015).

Equality on campus is far more nuanced than many might think. It includes, but is not limited to, recruitment, admissions, counseling, financial assistance, athletics, treatment of pregnant and parenting students, discipline, employment, and the classroom environment (faculty comments, assignments, and participation opportunities). Perhaps most important is the inclusion of sexual harassment and violence as a form of discrimination, and Title IX mandates that educational programs “take immediate and effective steps to end sexual harassment and sexual violence.”

As a result, educational institutions should make constant and ongoing improvement to safety on campus as well as ensure that the justice system on campus will place the needs of the student first. This is to foster an environment that emphasizes personal autonomy, equality, and the capacity to reach one’s full potential without fear of another’s undue influence. Winthrop University is serious about Title IX compliance and implores anyone affiliated with the university or community to report any incidents of harassment or discrimination, as well as feel welcomed to make suggestions and facilitate conversations about potential steps towards making the university as safe and inclusive as it can possibly be.