Students get gender perspective of sexual assault (women)

By Caity Hansen

The Violence Prevention and Women’s Resource Center presented
separate training sessions on Friday to educate men and women about
sexual assault and related topics in the Bronco Student Center.

The two workshops began at 11 a.m. and eventually joined both
men and women in Ursa Major for keynote speaker Ted Bunch’s

Before the address, the women who attended “Standing Up Against
Sexual Assault” participated in a training session that would
encourage them to take a closer look at their gender identity and
the roles they may have been pushed into as children.

The session, which was coordinated by peer educators Jackie Lara
and Evelyn Garcia of the VPWRC, began with an activity called, “Act
Like a Lady.”

Lara and Garcia asked the group to close their eyes and then
began to repeatedly shout, “Act like a lady.”

Afterward, they asked everyone how they felt and wrote their
responses on a sheet of paper.

The women’s session, which included about 25 female students and
ended at noon, discussed ways that women’s rights are still
attacked today and different definitions of feminism. It ended with
every woman in the room sharing a person they considered a
“she-ro,” or a female hero.

At 11:30 a.m., the two sessions combined until about 100 people
were seated in Ursa Major eating a complimentary lunch and learning
about socialization and sexual assault.

Lara said the purpose of the two events being separate was to
promote male attendance at VPWRC events.

“We were publicizing it as our first-ever men’s conference,”
said Lara after Bunch’s keynote address. “We really wanted to get
men to come to it. We just didn’t want to leave anybody out.”

Lara said it was Bunch’s idea for the women to join the men’s
session in order to provide their own insight on sexual

Mayra Lewis, assistant coordinator at the VPWRC, said the VPWRC
regularly holds training sessions on Fridays in the BSC from 11
a.m. to 12:30 p.m. that generally receive more female attendance
than male.

“I was really impressed by the turnout,” said Lewis. “When we do
presentations and workshops, we usually have five or six men and 30
women. It’s a lot more difficult to get men to come to these
trainings than women. For men, we had to go the extra mile.”

Lewis said Friday training is something the VPWRC does

“It’s publicized differently because they’re actually trainings
for people who want to do this type of work for a living,” said

Lewis said that the VPWRC is focusing on sexual assault issues
during its April events because April is Sexual Assault Awareness

The VPWRC’s vision and goal through the workshops and
presentations given is, according to its website, “to promote
gender equality and healthy relationships through education,
advocacy and leadership opportunities.”

Women who attended “Standing up Against Sexual Assault” received
free whistles on key chains and pins that read, “I love consensual

Some of the center’s upcoming events include a film screening
Thursday during U-hour at the Bronco Student Center, a training
workshop that will discuss Rape Trauma Syndrome and the experiences
of sexual assault survivors Friday from 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.,
and an empowerment workshop for women on May 10 during U-hour in
the BSC.

Students get gender perspective of sexual assault (men)

Aaron Bagamaspad / The Poly Post

Students get gender perspective of sexual assault (men)

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