Jennifer L. Kent, Esq. has recently been welcomed to the McDaniel College Office of Human Resources as the new Title IX coordinator. This position plays a critical role in helping the College ensure that those affected by Title IX operations are aware of their legal rights and the school complies with legal obligations.
In college, Kent studied political science and was heavily involved in her college’s branch of Amnesty International, including its Women Human Rights Action Program. In addition, she was a fellow for the International Human Rights Institute. Kent has always been passionate about recognizing sexual violence as a human rights issue.
Kent received her legal training in law school and went on to spend about ten years in litigation. She represented people who had been injured in terrorist attacks and various acts of physical violence. Leading up to her employment at McDaniel, Kent was the managing attorney of Free State Justice, an LGBTQ advocacy group, where she was able to contribute to a lot of work involving Title IX.
In 2018, Kent worked on the infamous case of M.A.B. v. Board of Education of Talbot County fighting for the rights of Max Brennan, a boy who is transgender and was denied access to the designated male restrooms and locker rooms. The ruling articulated that transgender students are to be protected under Title IX. As noted by an article on the Free State Justice, this is the first case to put the protection of transgender people in the Maryland state constitution.
“Issues of sexual violence and how systems respond to sexual violence and its partner violence have long been near to my heart,” Kent said.
Kent chose to come to McDaniel for its personal feel and for the opportunity to make meaningful work during her time here. She is committed to getting to know the community, meeting the students, and hearing thoughts on Title IX issues.
She recognizes that the existence of Title IX only gets us half way there, “but if [people] don’t feel empowered to report or empowered to access resources… then what is that policy?” she asked. She hopes to be able to empower people with the policy, bystander intervention, and other pieces of knowledge.
Kent looks forward to speaking further with students and other members of the McDaniel community. She also hopes to work with the C.A.S.E. (Consent and Sexual Education) club and other student organizations. She encourages people to call her Jennifer and reach out to her with their thoughts about the Title IX policy.
Please note that for those who have personal information to share, Kent is a Title IX mandated reporter.