January 24, 2020
As part of the Governor’s “It’s On Us PA” campaign, Lycoming College was awarded a grant in the amount of $29,808 to reinforce its efforts to educate about and prevent sexual assault. This is the second consecutive It’s On Us PA grant awarded to the College.
Launched in January 2016 by Gov. Tom Wolf, It’s On Us PA is the nation’s first statewide campaign that invites leaders in education, as well as all Pennsylvanians, to help end sexual violence. The program “aims to support postsecondary institutions’ efforts to create campus environments in which all community members work together to end sexual violence and where the rights of survivors are protected and appropriate resources and accommodations are available.” The mission of the program aligns closely with Lycoming College’s own goals.
Lycoming College’s current grant project, “Lycoming SOARs: Dedication to Sexual Violence, Outreach, Awareness, and Response,” was implemented this month and will run through April 2021. The project will focus on three goals: 1) providing readily available victim services advocates for counseling and support; 2) furthering a campus culture of healthy masculinity; and 3) improving its anonymous reporting system.
Thanks to recent grants from both the Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women and It’s On Us PA, Lycoming College had made strides in its efforts to promote awareness of, prevent, and respond to issues of sexual violence on its active, residential campus where it prides itself on the value of genuine relationships and on individualized attention to student needs of all kinds.
“I’m grateful to Gov. Wolf for awarding this grant to Lycoming College in the fight to change campus culture,” said Kate Hummel, associate dean of students at Lycoming College. “This community is committed to campus safety and we will continue to educate and work to prevent sexual assault.”
Lycoming’s grant-supported initiatives include the establishment of the Sexual Violence Coordinated Community Alliance to strengthen victim services and prevention education in partnership with YWCA Northcentral PA’s Wise Options and the Williamsport Bureau of Police; the launch of Green Dot bystander intervention training; campus-wide awareness-raising campaigns, including the Red Flag Campaign; student conversations led by nationally-recognized speakers; and, beginning in the Fall 2019 semester, regularly scheduled, on-campus, walk-in office hours for Wise Options victim services advocates.
Since the It’s On Us PA campaign’s inception, a total of nearly $4 million in grants has been awarded. In addition to Lycoming College, 35 other postsecondary institutions — both public and private — were selected throughout the state to receive grants. A total of nearly 250,000 students are enrolled in these institutions, thus impacting the lives of many through a multitude of initiatives being implemented to combat sexual assault.