Sexual Assault Awareness Climate Survey


This document summarizes main findings from the Sexual Assault Awareness Climate Survey conducted at Russell Sage College in Fall of 2023. The survey was administered open from October to December of 2023, utilizing the template provided by the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault. The survey helps identify the extent of sexual violence on our campuses, and helps inform our practices and understanding as we work to educate and protect students.


This survey was administered to all current Sage students. A majority of respondents identified as female (79%), and heterosexual (62%), with 49% commuting to campus from their family homes, 35% living on campus, and 14% living off campus with roommates or friends. 18% identify as the first in their family to go to college, and 18% identify as student-athletes engaged with a varsity sport on campus.

Student Knowledge of Training/Policies/Procedures/Resources

Russell Sage College aims to make all students aware of the many campus resources aimed at promoting sexual health and physical safety, preventing sexual assault, educating students, and, in some cases, supporting victims. 87% of respondents were aware of Sage’s Public Safety services, 76% were aware of Counseling resources, and 67% were aware of Campus Health Services. 58% were aware of Sage’s alcohol or drug use amnesty policy, in relation to sexual assault. Importantly, 67% stated they were fully aware of how to contact the Title IX Coordinator, and 72% stated they knew how to report sexual harassment, and 77% were aware of the definition of “affirmative consent.” A smaller percent were aware of the Office of Student Conduct (43%) or Peer Counselors (40%). Our ongoing efforts to make students aware of resources and training will have to continue: 22% of students indicated that they weren’t aware of having received documentation or training in relation to sexual assault.

Attitudes Toward Potential Responses to Sexual Assault

Reporting of sexual assault on campus is extremely low among victims nationwide, so we are encouraged to see that 76% of students agree or strongly agree that, if they or a friend were to file a formal complaint of sexual violence, Russell Sage College would “provide the student with necessary support.” 70% agree or strongly agree that the report would be taken seriously, and 67% agree or strongly agree that an investigation would be conducted fairly.


We know that reporting rates of victimization, both nationwide and at Russell Sage College, have been historically low. We are hoping that with increased education and training, more students will feel comfortable coming forward and reporting. Beginning in 2023, we’ve changed our climate instrument to include sexual assault and victimization in the digital realm as well as the physical, so in later climate surveys we’ll be able to benchmark in relation to a broader set of definitions. In 2023, 21.5% of students reported having experienced demeaning or unwanted sexual comments or jokes. 13% reported experiencing unwanted sexually explicit digital communications (language, videos, or photographs.) 9%reported unwanted attempted or completed physical fondling. 1% reported someone viewing sexual activity, nakedness, or explicit photographs or recordings without consent. 1% reported some degree of attempted digital or anal penetration. Of all cases of victimization listed above, 12.5% were associated with other members of the Russell Sage campus.

Moving Forward

Sage is committed to be innovative, to engage in complex conversations, and ultimately, to change campus culture and work toward a violence-free community. In the last several years at Sage, we have continued to focus on the issue of sexual misconduct in numerous ways, from providing support to our students to developing strong policies and implementing comprehensive education programs. These include:

  • Increasing training of students about Title IX, NYS’s “Enough is Enough” Law, Sage’s reporting procedures, dating violence, intimate partner violence, sexual violence, stalking, consent, bystander intervention among other related topics;
  • Increasing training of college employees (including student employees) regarding reporting obligations, campus and community resources, and supportive/safety measures;
  • Increasing training of faculty and staff members regarding additional equity protections related to Harassment and Discrimination.
  • Continuing prevention education training across all cohorts at Russell Sage College, in and out of the classroom through collaborative efforts with campus and community partners.

The Title IX Coordinator encourages students to provide feedback and engage in ways to continue making improvements. Our Public Safety Committee* meets each semester of each year and discusses ideas on how to improve campus safety and sexual assault awareness on campus. Students, faculty, and administrators serve on this committee so that Sage can improve its systems with student-driven input and participation. Sage will continue its proactive efforts in educating our community about sexual violence and reducing its occurrence, creating the safest environment possible for its students and employees to learn and grow.

*More information about the Public Safety Committee is available in the “College Policies” section of the Student Handbook.


Acts of discrimination & harassment, including sex/gender based offenses (sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking) can be reported using the Online Reporting Form  or by contacting the Title IX Coordinator – Amanda Bastiani at [email protected][email protected], (518) 244-4809. Reports may also be made in person by scheduling an appointment with the Title IX Coordinator or by mail: Attention: Amanda Bastiani, Russell Sage College, 65 1st Street, Troy, NY 12180.

To learn more about Title IX, contact:

Title IX Coordinator and EEO Specialist