BOSTON Williams College is coming under growing pressure from alumni who are pushing for the school to expel students who commit sexual assaults.
The petition was started by Lexie Brackenridge, who as a freshman two years ago reported to Williams that she was raped.
The college found that her alleged assailant violated its policy on sexual misconduct, and suspended him for three semesters.
Brackenridge’s petition asks Williams to change its policy to mandatory expulsion for rape, for attempted rape when the assailant tries to get the victim drunk, and for repeat offenders.
More than 600 people, including alumni and parents of current students, have signed the petition so far.
Sarah Bolton, a dean at Williams, says in a letter on the school’s website that mandatory expulsion for sexual assault can result in social pressure that discourages survivors from reporting and makes school officials less likely to find assailants culpable.