On a chilly Friday afternoon, I met with Kaylei Goodine (C’ 19), the new Deputy Title IX Coordinator. Throughout her time at Sewanee, Goodine was interested in the role of Title IX on campus. She was at Sewanee when the #MeToo movement occurred. The next semester, the campus was engulfed with debate over Charlie Rose’s honorary degree.
“That switched position of once being a student and now being an administrator gives me a unique perspective,” said Goodine. “I’ve done everything that each student does. So, I know the culture here and I knew what needed to change.”
Goodine was a psychology and women and gender studies double major. For her thesis in psychology, she studied hookup culture at college campuses and sexual double standards under Dr. Terry Fisher. She also researched Title IX policy with the politics department. At Scholarship Sewanee, Goodine presented a total of five different research projects, the most of her year.
As a student, Goodine applied her observations through work alongside Title IX Coordinator Dr. Sylvia Gray. In 2019, with Gray’s support, Goodine helped plan the Student Title IX (STIX) Committee, which was chartered during the second semester her senior year after working with student leaders throughout the year. Upon her return as an administrator, Goodine could see how the committee has already helped the campus environment.
Goodine says that more students understand the role of Title IX on campus and the timeline for reporting sexual assault. “I remember walking into that meeting, and half the people didn’t know what the timeline process looked like. Wow and wow,” said Goodine, a look of horror washing over her face. She said many more people on campus now know the process. “It was kind of amazing to see the kind of cultural change in my 4 years.”
Goodine went further on how the campus environment has changed, specifically after #MeToo.
“As a community, as a component of EQB, we are all supposed to be here living together in unity. Sexual misconduct does not have a place on this campus,” said Goodine. “Having that be spoken and seeing the students continue that momentum and keeping that kind-of centralized in the Community. Sewanee students have such a powerful voice.”
She does think Sewanee is going in the right direction, having recently both hired Maria Michonski – director for sexual assault prevention – and Sibby Thompson-Anderson – the new vice provost for diversity, equity, and inclusion. She also cited Rachel Fredericks, Director of Multicultural Affairs, as another important voice that will strengthen the shared goals of inclusion on campus.
“Having all that kind of, I think, creates a perfect storm for change,” said Goodine.
As the deputy Title IX coordinator, Goodine hopes to serve as a mentor for students and create programming to engage with campus culture around sexual assault prevention, consent, and student empowerment.
The concept of sexual assault prevention is key for Goodine. “So, looking at prevention education, how do we prevent situations from happening before they do? Before we have to have that risk?”
Goodine wants to create programming that speaks to students and starts conversations on potentially dangerous situations before students experience them. Through creative, engaging events like Twilight IX and Tinder Tap Out, preventative measures are being placed in Sewanee’s community surrounding consent and warning signs to unhealthy, non-fulfilling relationships.
“You know, the conversation about consent and mutually satisfying relationships and sexual relationships and hookups,” said Goodine. “We need to start facilitating that conversation. Hopefully, it is beneficial to students.”
Goodine hopes that these conversations will show students that they can work with Title IX.
“The students see our program model and they know we do Domestic Violence Awareness Month. They know we do Sexual Assault Awareness Month,” said Goodine. “They can be a part of it and take over components of that and make it what they want it to be and work with our office. I want them to know that their voices matter, and they can be the voices of change.”