Some raise ethical arguments about agency and consent, even calling blanket bans anti-feminist.
Neil Mc Arthur, a professor of applied philosophy at the University of Manitoba wrote a paper last year arguing against blanket bans (while urging caution to those who engage in such relationships), “because adults have a fundamental right to engage in intimate relationships without interference,” for instance.
But as institutions increasingly came under scrutiny for their enforcement (or lack thereof) of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which prohibits gender-based discrimination in education, other campuses followed suit.
In one example, Northwestern University -- which saw a case of alleged assault involving a professor and an undergraduate (and, later, a graduate student) -- banned dating all undergraduates in 2014.
Other legal experts say it is costly — up to 0,000, on average — to get rid of a faculty member found to have violated a policy, whether in quiet agreements or litigation.
Pollack announced that that she’d largely accepted campus input on student-faculty relationships, and that the institution was banning sexual or romantic relationships between faculty and undergraduates altogether.
Romantic relationships between professors and graduate or professional students “whenever the faculty member exercises direct academic authority over the student or is likely to in the foreseeable future,” also are prohibited.
Brett Sokolow, who advises campuses on security and legal issues as executive director of the Association for Title IX Administrators, also opposes blanket relationship bans.
“Quid pro quo harassment is already prohibited on every college campus" and behaviors “that cross the line are already addressable under existing policies,” he said.