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But administrators, professors and students alike say that the issue of faculty-student dating is a complex one.
Some say that the unequal power in a relationship between a student and a faculty member -- particularly one who is in a position to grade or make recommendations about the student he or she is dating -- is inherently exploitative.
For college students, academic performance and romance are two of the most stressful elements of day-to-day life.
It's even more difficult when those things become intertwined.
The recent decision of the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal in the case of Fariba Mahmoodi, a student who accused her professor of sexual harassment, has once again focussed attention on a controversial issue. Mahmoodi complained to the tribunal that Donald Dutton, a psychology professor at the University of British Columbia, and UBC as his employer, had sexually harassed her.
The tribunal agreed, awarding her a total of ,000 including ,000 for injury to her dignity, feelings and self-respect, and ,200 for counseling expenses.
He kept telephoning and texting her, according to the suit.
It is the subject of gossip and idle conversation, and from time to time, of something more.
When they turn sour, the risks to all parties to the relationship can be very high.
If the student complains of sexual harassment, the risks to the faculty member and the university are high indeed.
A survey of Westchester colleges and universities revealed that no formal policies addressing faculty-student dating are in place, but many schools said that a prohibition against such relationships is implicit in other policies regulating professional conduct.
"We view this kind of relationship as inappropriate," said James Bryan, Dean of Students at Manhattanville College.