New Title IX coordinator officially hired


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Photo credit: Kathleen Creedon

Photo by Kathleen Creedon

Angela Miranda-Clark, class of 1989, began work as the Title IX coordinator and compliance officer on April 15. Students, faculty and staff worked together from the end of last semester to the beginning of April to review candidates for the newly-created dual position, ultimately hiring the Trinity alum.

“[Miranda-Clark] is going to be working on Title IX issues for faculty, staff and students, but when you look at the breakdown of what kind of cases the school really handles, it’s predominantly students. You want students to feel like they have someone that they feel comfortable talking to and that they have confidence in,” said senior Julia Shults, the student representative on the hiring committee that also included employees from Human Resources, athletics and other university departments.

Previously, the assistant vice president of Human Resources, Pam Johnston, also handled Title IX and equal opportunity issues. Johnston is set to retire this month, which the university took as an opportunity to separate her HR and Title IX duties into two positions.

“I think it gives it the recognition it deserves in the university. Trinity cares about their students and their wellbeing; I think the Title IX position is not just about sexual assault but its about athletics and so much more than just these key pop-up words,” said sophomore Cecelia Turkewitz, a member of the Coalition for Sexual Justice leadership panel.

After graduating from Trinity with a degree in philosophy, Miranda-Clark worked as a chef, teacher, investigator and then went to law school. For over 10 years, however, she has been working in equal opportunity services.

Prior to law school, Miranda-Clark was a teacher in south San Antonio for bilingual pre-K. Her experiences there made her want to attend law school at the University of Texas at Austin for their Children’s Rights Clinic.

“My interactions with the kids and their families when I taught bilingual pre-K made me want to help them more than I could as just a teacher,” Miranda-Clark said. “I worked in that field for more than 10 years and then got a little burned out on child abuse in neglect and moved to Albuquerque, and that’s when I started in equal opportunity services. It was a really round about way, it was not planned at all.”

After working in human resources and equal opportunity services, Miranda-Clark moved back to her hometown of Houston to work as an investigator at the University of Houston (UH). At UH, she and her team responded to reports of sexual misconduct, discrimination and harassment. Her new position at Trinity will concern similar things.

“My chief responsibilities will be centered around Trinity’s Title IX responsibilities. I am currently observing the processes in place to determine what areas require or would benefit from policy and/or procedural changes to keep us in compliance and improve Trinity’s efforts in these areas. I am also reviewing and observing the policies and processes relating to complaints involving faculty and staff for the same purpose. I will also be responsible for handling complaints about discrimination and harassment based on all protected classes under the university’s non-discrimination and anti-harassment policies as well as education, policy and compliance matters related to these and other related areas. Given this new role on campus, what is unclear at the moment is what role I will eventually play in the investigative process and what procedural changes will come,” Miranda-Clark said.

Sophomore Ryanna Chouman, a member of the Coalition’s leadership panel, hopes that the new position will help their organization out as well.

“As Coalition, we have been shouldering a lot of the burden in terms of education, prevention, research — it’s all lying on pretty much four or five students. The job to change campus climate from the top-down is not a job that students should have to shoulder on top of their already rigorous academic schedule. We’re hoping that the new Title IX coordinator will be able to be an ally for us,” Chouman said.

Miranda-Clark hopes to use this position to help everyone experience Trinity to their fullest.

“I had a great time when I was at Trinity and I want everybody to have as wonderful of an experience as I did. I’m very happy that my experiences have coincided with the creation of this job,” Miranda-Clark said. “I’m excited about the prospect of helping define this role at Trinity and being able to serve the community in a way to make everybody feel more safe and heard.”