For most students, the college experience offers a unique opportunity for personal growth, intellectual stimulation, excitement, and fun. It is time to think critically about oneself and to prepare for the future.
As with most worthwhile endeavors, however, the college experience may also present hidden risks. Studies have shown that college students are most at risk of becoming involved in a sexually abusive situation. One in four women will experience rape or attempted rape during her college years (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. of Justice. 2000). Many more will experience some form of unwanted sexual contact or verbal harassment. College men also experience sexual assault, albeit in smaller numbers. Strangers perpetrate only 20 percent of all reported rapes. The rest, 80 percent, are committed by someone the victim knows, perhaps a date, friend, or classmate.
Loyola University is committed to creating a safe environment for all and is not tolerant of sexual violence. Various faculty, staff, and students are engaged in preventative measures: questioning why sexual violence is glamorized in our culture, challenging all too prevalent victim blaming, and discussing non-violent constructs of masculinity. In conjunction, we offer a variety of programs and services for individuals in the wake of sexual violence. The Advocacy Initiative trains volunteers on how to be a first responder (Click here for more information about the program or to locate an advocate). Take Back the Night gathers over 600 campus and community members for a powerful evening of social action. RADS (Rape Aggression Defense System) offers self-defense techniques to women. Counselors provide crisis support including information regarding options for a victim. For more information, contact the University Counseling Center or the Women's Resource Center.
Programs addressing the problems of rape, acquaintance rape, sexual harassment, and other sex offenses are offered throughout the year at Loyola. Related programs are frequently held in residence halls and self-defense classes are regularly offered through the recreational sports and athletics department. All new students use "Think About It," a software program addressing the intersection of sexual aggression and substance abuse along with healthy relationship building during the fall orientation.
This annual march against sexual violence has been co-sponsored by Loyola University New Orleans and Tulane University since 1990. Dillard University joined as a sponsor in 2011. The purpose of the march is to heighten awareness of sexual violence in our community and to empower survivors. The emotionally powerful evening begins with speakers who share their personal stories of rape, assault or domestic violence, and their journeys to healing and hope. The candlelit march proceeds from Loyola to Tulane, where others have the opportunity to speak out against sexual violence. The march is usually scheduled in October to coincide with National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week. This university-wide event is coordinated through the University Counseling Center.
This therapy group is offered annually in the University Counseling Center. It is for women who have survived sexual trauma and recognize that this experience is continuing to affect their lives. Issues addressed in the group include anger, shame, dating, sexuality, interpersonal relationships, self-esteem, and self-destructive behaviors. For more information, contact the UCC.
The Clothesline Project is a visual display of shirts designed by or for survivors of violence against women. The compelling display increases awareness of the impact of violence against women and also celebrates a woman’s strength and courage to overcome the past. Shirt-making sessions and/or a clothesline display are offered during Sexual Non-Violence Week in April.
A variety of workshops on topics about sexual violence are available by request through the University Counseling Center. These interactive programs can be tailored to include discussion of myths/facts about sexual assault, information about the incident of date rape on college campuses, the role of alcohol/drugs in campus acquaintance rape, acquaintance rape drugs, and risk-reduction strategies. the overall goal of these workshops is to encourage attitude and behavior change regarding sexual violence.
Available workshops include:
At various times, campus offices and organizations co-sponsor programs that raise awareness about sexual violence issues. The Alpha Chi Omega sorority often brings in speakers and promotes awareness of domestic violence through the Purple Ribbon campaign. The Psychology Club has done a toiletries drive for a battered women’s shelter. The Office of New Student Orientation produced a theatrical presentation of "How I Learned to Drive" about sexual abuse.
All incoming first year students participate in a program, "Think About It" which addresses the intersection of sexual violence and alcohol use.
The following policies appear annually in the Loyola University Student Handbook:
Sexual Assault is sexual intercourse or attempted intercourse that is perpetrated against the will of another; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity (or because of his/her youth). The definition applies regardless of whether the assailant is a stranger or an acquaintance. Examples would include, but are not limited to, forced insertion, oral copulation, and rape by foreign object, or sodomy. Violations of sexual assault will subject a student to suspension, dismissal and criminal charges.
Sexual Battery as defined in the Loyola University Student Handbook is the unwanted touching of an intimate part of another person, such as a sexual organ, buttocks, or breast. Violations of sexual battery may subject a student to penalties up to and including suspension, dismissal and criminal charges.
Sexual Harassment as defined in the Loyola University Student Handbook is defined as sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature when:
Sexual harassment may occur within a variety of relationships. These relationships may or may not involve unequal authority, as between supervisors to employees supervised, faculty members to students, residence hall staff to student residents, and student leaders to other students. However, allegations of sexual harassment will be scrutinized, regardless of the relationship of a complainant, to an alleged offender.
All members of the Loyola University community are encouraged to utilize the procedures set forth in the Statement of Policy and Procedures on Sexual Harassment. A complete policy and procedural statement is available in the Office of Student Affairs. Alleged violations of this policy should be addressed to the following individual/office:
Sexual Verbal Abuse as defined in the Loyola University Student Handbook is using language, which is sexual in nature and unwanted on the part of another person. Examples would include, but not be limited to, obscene telephone calls, use of written and/or oral communication, which in the common estimation of persons would be considered obscene messages. Violations of this policy may subject a student to disciplinary action up to and including dismissal from the university.
If you are sexually assaulted:
If you decide to pursue campus disciplinary action:
The federal Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act, enacted on October 28, 2000, goes into effect October 28, 2002. The law requires institutions of higher education to issue a statement advising the campus community where law enforcement agency information provided by a State concerning registered sex offenders may be obtained. It also requires sex offenders already required to register in a State to provide notice of each institution of higher education in that State at which the person is employed, carries on a vocation, or is a student. In the State of Louisiana convicted sex offenders must register with the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections. Information concerning offenders registered may be disclosed to any person requesting information on a specific individual in accordance with the law. The following Louisiana State Police web site has further information and requests for information can be submitted electronically. www.lasocpr.lsp.org/