Dear USF Community,
In the message sent to the USF community on Friday, July 17, Fr. Fitzgerald and John Nicolai, chairman of the USF Board of Trustees, announced that two external, independent Title IX investigators were being hired to conduct an investigation into the culture of the USF men’s soccer team and the university’s response to allegations of sexual misconduct.
These two external investigators — Rachel S. Hulst and Gabrielle Handler Marks of Hulst & Handler LLP — have now been engaged and are at work. The scope of their thorough and impartial investigation will include an examination of the overall culture related to the men’s soccer program, including any new complaints of sexual misconduct and the university’s response to prior allegations of sexual misconduct involving the soccer program. The investigators specifically are reviewing all individual complaints related to the 2015 case of a member of the men’s soccer team who was found responsible for sexual misconduct involving another USF student. The investigators also will collect community feedback about USF’s established processes and procedures — both within Athletics and university-wide — for responding to reports of sexual misconduct.
I encourage all members of the community who have complaints or information relevant to this investigation to reach out directly to the investigators at email@example.com.
We know and respect the courage it takes to revisit painful experiences and want to make sure that anyone who would like to share information feels supported to do so. Reports can also be made with the Title IX office or our anonymous whistleblower hotline.
As stated in the message from Fr. Fitzgerald and Mr. Nicolai, the investigators’ work will also provide resources to our Title IX office so that our existing expertise is enhanced and holds the administration accountable to implement more and better actions related to reporting and communications. The final report from the investigators will be made public and published on the USF website (without compromising any confidential information). I expect that the investigation will move quickly, but not hurriedly, over the coming months.
I will continue to keep you updated on this investigation and the subsequent public report.
Vice President, Student Life