Following last month’s “Debunking the Myths: A Guide to Sexual Assault” seminar organized by Springfield College senior Erin Knight, and hosted by the Law Offices of Dunn and Phillips, a meeting was held with Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Associate Dean of Students Terry Vecchio, Director of the Counseling Center Brian Krylowicz and a group of seven students led by Knight.
“We sat down and went over the reactions from the seminar and why they were that way,” said Knight. “We talked a little about implementing different sexual harassment and sexual assault programs on campus and making it more prominent because it is one of those things where we feel like it isn’t really discussed on campus and it is not really promoted as being something that we need to be aware of.”
The focus of the meeting, according to Knight, was student-centered. Trying to make information about sexual assault and rape available to students about who they can contact is an important start to trying to get this issue more under control.
“We did agree that Resident Directors should have all the information posted on their doors, like a printout that they tape to their door with the sexual assault advocate number, all of those numbers and maybe the steps of what you should do. It is one thing to have your RA have Jami’s [Chrzanowski] number [the advocate for sexual assualt victims], but it is another thing to call yourself,” explained Knight.
Another issue that was brought up is that more programming should be provided on campus other than just in the month of April, which is National Sexual Assault Awareness Month.
It was discussed that the “one in six skit” that is performed at New Student Orientation will probably be revamped for a more realistic take.
“The next step is really getting them to act on their word, with the programming and stuff like that,” explained Knight. “It is hard to change policy and that is not what we’re trying to do. We’re just looking to make it more student-centered and make it more comfortable for students here on campus, and for students to be more educated. It is not an immediate process.”