Montana State Finds Prof Sexually Harassed Student

September 6, 2011

A Montana State University investigation has found that Shuichi Komiyama, who is conductor of the orchestra at the university, had an "intimate" relationship with a student, and violated policies against sexual harassment, The Bozeman Daily Chronicle reported. The investigation found that a female student has a "reasonable belief" that Komiyama has "considerable power over her success" at the university and in gaining admission to graduate school, and so felt she had to give in to sexual advances. Further, the report found that otehr female students said that Komiyama had made sexual advances toward them, and investigators concluded that "there is a preponderance of evidence supporting these allegations." Komiyama has denied the allegations. A lawyer for the professor told the newspaper: "I think it's sad this matter is being treated opportunistically by a former student.... I think this is probably a case of hurt feelings that unfortunately is being turned into something else. These are complicated relationships, particularly in the arts."


Komiyama, 47, a charismatic conductor credited with breathing new life into MSU's orchestra and jazz programs, has denied all the allegations.


The investigation concluded the female student had a reasonable belief that the professor had "considerable power over her success" and that she had to give in to his sexual advances to receive his assistance in furthering her career, receiving special instruction and getting into graduate school.

The investigative report says the student alleged that Komiyama, 47, insisted on a sex act in his MSU office. She further alleged that, after she tried to end the affair, he once forced her to have sexual intercourse.

Komiyama denied ever having sexual contact of any kind with the student, the report said. MSU identified the student throughout the report as Student A.

The report also says that other female students accused Komiyama of making sexual advances toward them, and investigators concluded, "there is a preponderance of evidence supporting these allegations, further supporting the allegations of Student A."

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