716 Fed.Appx. 164 (4th Cir. 2017), 17-1345, Stennis v. Bowie State University

Docket Nº:17-1345
Citation:716 Fed.Appx. 164
Opinion Judge:PER CURIAM:
Party Name:Kesslyn Brade STENNIS, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. BOWIE STATE UNIVERSITY, Defendant-Appellee.
Attorney:Nathaniel D. Johnson, White Plains, Maryland, for Appellant. Brian E. Frosh, Attorney General of Maryland, Matthew P. Reinhart, Assistant Attorney General, Baltimore, Maryland, for Appellee.
Judge Panel:Before GREGORY, Chief Judge, and KEENAN and DIAZ, Circuit Judges.
Case Date:December 27, 2017
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
 
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Page 164

716 Fed.Appx. 164 (4th Cir. 2017)

Kesslyn Brade STENNIS, Plaintiff-Appellant,

v.

BOWIE STATE UNIVERSITY, Defendant-Appellee.

No. 17-1345

United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit

December 27, 2017

Submitted: November 28, 2017

UNPUBLISHED

Editorial Note:

Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit. (See Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure Rule 32.1)

Page 165

Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Maryland, at Greenbelt. Roger W. Titus, Senior District Judge. (8:16-cv-01362-RWT)

Nathaniel D. Johnson, White Plains, Maryland, for Appellant.

Brian E. Frosh, Attorney General of Maryland, Matthew P. Reinhart, Assistant Attorney General, Baltimore, Maryland, for Appellee.

Before GREGORY, Chief Judge, and KEENAN and DIAZ, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Affirmed in part, vacated in part, and remanded by unpublished per curiam opinion.

Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit.

PER CURIAM:

Page 166

Kesslyn Brade Stennis appeals the district court’s order dismissing her complaint raising retaliation claims against Bowie State University ("BSU") pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § § 2000e to 2000e-17 (2012), Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C. § § 1681 to 1688 (2012), and the Maryland Fair Employment Practices Act ("FEPA"), Md. Code Ann., State Gov’t § 20-606(a)(1)(i) (LexisNexis 2014). We vacate the district court’s order only as to Stennis’ claim under Title IX that her department chair took several actions with the intent to deny her tenure application and affirm the district court’s order in all other respects.

We review de novo a district court’s dismissal of a complaint under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), accepting factual allegations in the complaint as true and "draw[ing] all reasonable inferences in favor of the [nonmoving party]." Kensington Volunteer Fire Dep’t v. Montgomery Cty., 684 F.3d 462, 467 (4th Cir. 2012) (internal quotation marks omitted). To survive a motion to dismiss, the complaint’s "[f]actual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level" and sufficient "to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face." Bell A. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555, 570, 127 S.Ct. 1955, 167 L.Ed.2d 929 (2007).

The district court analyzed Stennis’ complaint under the familiar McDonnell Douglas 1 framework. To establish a prima facie case of retaliation,2 a plaintiff is required to "show (1) that she engaged in protected activity; (2) that her employer took an adverse action against her; and (3) that a causal connection existed between the adverse activity and the protected action." Jacobs v. N.C. Admin. Office of the Courts, 780 F.3d 562, 578 (4th Cir. 2015) (alterations and internal quotation marks omitted). We apply the same standards in ruling on a Title IX retaliation claim that we do in ruling on a Title VII claim. Preston v. Va. ex rel. New River Cmty. Coll., 31 F.3d 203, 207 (4th Cir. 1994); see also Jackson...

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