Mississippi College Raising Awareness of Sexual Assault
With sexual assault a growing concern on college campuses nationwide, Mississippi College leaders are setting up information tables on the Quad to make students more aware of the serious situation, and taking steps to stop it.
A recent study of over 150,000 students at 27 universities shows 23 percent of the women reported they were victims of sexual assault. The numbers rose as high as 34 percent for female seniors at the University of Michigan and 32 percent at Yale, according to the Association of American Universities report released last fall. Schools like the University of Florida, Iowa State and Cal Tech were part of the study.
“Our focus this year is the prevention of sexual assault on college campuses,” says MC Graduate School Dean Debbie Norris.
“By providing information on what sexual assault is and how it affects everyone, we hope to empower our campus community to help prevent this from happening,” Norris said.
Staffers from the MC Counseling Center are helping spread the word. So are students. Donuts, white ribbons for men, teal ribbons for women and coasters will be distributed from 10 a.m. to noon Thursday to get the message out.
In April 2014, the White House Task to Protect Students from Sexual Assault released its first report. Findings showed that one in every five female college students experienced sexual assault during her college years. The report also noted 62 percent of the campus incidents involved drugs or alcohol.
While some may dispute the numbers, “everyone will agree that sexual assault is a bad thing,” Norris said. “We are focusing on how to prevent this bad thing.”