SPARC stands for “Sexual and Interpersonal Violence Prevention and Response Course.” It is an online training program developed by The State University of New York in partnership with The City University of New York, and is delivered on a Blackboard platform. All incoming, transfer, club/organization officers, study abroad participants, domestic overnight travelers, student-athletes, and resident life occupants must complete SPARC.
At the current time, CUNY Central has advised that all students required to take the program must be manually registered. CUNY Central handles the registration of incoming/transfer students, and cohort group advisors manually register members of their cohort groups (clubs, athletics, study abroad, etc.) to complete the training.
I am writing to advise you that any students participating in overnight domestic trips, will need to be registered to take SPARC. I will be happy to register these students if provided with their names and Empl IDs as domestic overnight trips come about. Students are required to complete SPARC before the first domestic overnight trip they attend and to provide a certificate of completion to the trip organizer demonstrating same, which will need to be maintained on file for at least three years. (Copies of these Completion Certificates should be organized by trip and also provided to the Office of Diversity and Compliance once they have all been received.)
If a student has already taken the training for another reason within the year, including a previous domestic overnight trip, that student will not be required to retake it in order attend an overnight domestic trip – just to provide you with a copy of his/her completion certificate. However, if a student took SPARC already at another institution, including another CUNY, and transferred to CSI, that student must retake SPARC at CSI – certificates from other CUNY schools will not suffice.
Please contact those individuals within your School/Division/Department traveling domestically and staying overnight (i.e., an overnight trip to Washington, DC to attend a conference, etc.) to advise them of these requirements and the information they will need to provide to me in order to make sure all appropriate students are manually registered for, and complete, the program.
Additionally, chaperones must complete the employee version of SPARC, called E-SPARC, prior to chaperoning a domestic overnight trip. A chaperone must also receive additional training focused on their role and responsibilities as a chaperone. The Central Office has advised that this should include the handling of reports of sexual misconduct and information regarding who must be contacted in the event any such report is received, along with guidance regarding supportive services that might be offered for the remainder of the trip during which such report is made.
CUNY Central has expressed a preference that chaperones receive this training in person, utilizing the online PowerPoint presentation. Central has also advised that, in the event timing does not permit a chaperone(s) to attend live training, that chaperone(s) should be provided with the attached PowerPoint presentation prior to the trip, and a record must be kept of their acknowledgment of receipt of same for compliance purposes. (Note, this requirement also applies to non-CUNY chaperones attending CUNY-sponsored trips.)
If you have any questions, please feel free contact me.