Campus Rape Responses From Higher Education in South Dakota
My Monday column regarding campus rape and the film The Hunting Ground, has drawn immediate and encouraging responses.
Jack Warner, Head of the South Dakota Board of Regents, called Tuesday. He will be an hour long guest on Viewpoint University, 1140 KSOO, Monday March 30, from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM.
According to minutes of recent Regents meetings, Campus Violence/Rape, and proper responses to accusations of it, has been a topic of conversation going back over a year. Mr. Warner and I will visit on the details of their discussions and plans. One component of the Regents efforts is to have screenings of The Hunting Ground, on state campuses.
Rob Oliver, President of Augustana College, responded the afternoon of the column. He said Augie was holding a screening, for staff and students, of the film Tuesday evening, March 24.
Mark Benedetto, President of the University of Sioux Falls responded Tuesday, thanking me for the column, and forwarding it to other key members of the USF administration. Within an hour of that message, Corey R. Ross, Dean of Students, sent an email about a conference he was attending at that moment. The subject was Campus Violence and Rape.
The Hunting Ground was the basis of and a major part of the discussion. Mr. Ross said in part, "My goal for USF....is to truly protect our students and engage this gender based violence that begins before students ever come to college and could persist long after if we don't intervene."
I am heartened by the quick and affirmative responses from our higher education leaders of their concern for the safety of our students.
Words in documents are important. Actions taken as a result of those words are critical.
It is obvious from the actions of the "big name" schools, their first priority is not the students, but the reputation of the campus.
As taxpayers, alumni, supporters, and parents, we should follow the words being committed to policy by all of our colleges and universities.
More importantly, we should follow, the actions taken when those words and policies are tested.