The University of Maryland’s Office of Civil Rights and Sexual Misconduct has brought on a new Title IX investigator and hired two temporary staffers into permanent positions, office director Grace Karmiol said.
In August, the office announced it was enlisting investigators from Husch Blackwell, a private firm, amid staffing shortages. At the beginning of the academic year, there were five empty positions within the office, three of which were investigator roles.
The newly hired investigator will start later this month, Karmiol said.
The office, which investigates complaints of sexual misconduct and discrimination at this university, is interviewing candidates to fill another Title IX investigator position as well as the training manager position, Karmiol said.
In the meantime, the Husch Blackwell investigators are likely to remain, Karmiol said.
“I’m not sure whether we will renew the contract,” she said. “It may be that while we’re still interviewing applicants for the open positions, that we renew the contract for a short amount of time. But we’re doing it on an as-need basis, so it’s not for a timed service.”
Karmiol said she frequently used contracted investigators during her time as Title IX coordinator at Widener University in Pennsylvania.
“I used external investigators for maybe about three of the five years I was there,” she said.