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Report: Nearly 2/3 of MSU Female Undergrads Were Sexually Harassed In 2018-19

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Nearly two-thirds of female undergraduates at MSU reported they were sexually harassed during the 2018-19 academic year.

Almost two-thirds of female undergraduates at Michigan State University say they were sexually harassed in the 2018 academic year.  That’s according to an independent survey of the campus climate at MSU. 


More than 65 percent of undergraduate women reported incidences of sexual harassment.  Thirteen percent said they’d been sexually assaulted. 


The survey by the nonprofit RTI International questioned more than 15,000 students, faculty and staff. 


MSU assistant professor of social work Carrie Moylan led the study.  She says it closely mirrors what she and other researchers have heard anecdotally from survivors.


“Certainly, having exact numbers and the level of detail adds to that picture,” Moylan says.  “But overall, I would say the results are not terribly surprising.”


When asked whether they felt MSU would treat them with dignity if they themselves experienced sexual misconduct, 86 percent of undergraduate men said yes.


On the low end, 70 percent of female faculty members believed they would be respected.




Kevin Lavery served as a general assignment reporter and occasional local host for Morning Edition and All Things Considered before retiring in 2023.
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