Ohio University Clearly Has A Problem With Sexual Assault And We Need To Keep Talking About It

Ohio University Clearly Has A Problem With Sexual Assault And We Need To Keep Talking About It

Facts, figures, and what you can do to help.

The emails with subjects like “Crime Alert: Wanted for Rape/Sexual Assault/Gross Sexual Imposition” have become almost routine to Ohio University students this semester. In 2016, Ohio University was reported to have the highest rate of sexual assault reports across the five major colleges and universities across the state at 46 incidents. In a survey of 1,350 students, the Presidential Advisory Committee on Sexual Misconduct found that 82 percent of students had experienced some sort of unwanted sexual misconduct while at the university.

With staggering numbers such as those, it can begin to feel like the university isn’t doing enough to combat the rape culture that is so prevalent in Athens. When combined with the recent reports of Ohio University alumni Matt Lauer being accused of sexual misconduct, it begins to feel like it may be a longer standing issue then what we might think.

According to the PACSM, there are 10 goals the university wants to take on in the future. These include ideas such as:

- Developing and evaluating a systematic sexual misconduct prevention plan.

- Reviewing of current policy, training, education and prevention efforts directed toward faculty and staff.

- Increasing effort and resources to be provided to address the disparities in victimization rates for sexual and gender minorities.

- Greater work needs to be done to ensure that students are receiving and retaining information about resources on our campus to address sexual misconduct and relationship violence.

Clearly, the university has the right idea about what needs to be done. But to keep it from sliding under the radar, Ohio students cannot become numb and complacent. If we do not continue to speak up and ask for a change as a whole, the problems will either take longer to be fixed or never get solved at all. Here’s what you can do as a student:

  1. Go to a POWER/GAMMA event or a Better Bystanders workshop. Both are great workshopping activities for student orgs, and there are many ways to get involved in the programs themselves. Power begins with programming.
  2. Talk to Women’s Affairs at OU about their initiative to improve lighting around campus.
  3. Contact the university to be directed to who at that level handles the goals for PACSM, and talk to them about the importance of increasing the safety of this campus and changing the culture as a whole.
Cover Image Credit: Cherry Laithang

Popular Right Now

To All Incoming Freshmen, When You Get To College, Please Don't Be THAT Freshman

I am pretty sure we all know who I'm talking about.


As we are all counting down the days to return to campus, students are looking forward to meeting new people and reuniting with old friends. And then, there is the freshman.

We have all been there. The eagerness and excitement have been slowly building up through months of summer vacation, all waiting for this moment. I understand the anxiousness, enthusiasm, and insecurities. The opportunity to meet new people and explore a new area is very intriguing. But let's be real, you are here to make memories and get an education. So here are a few pieces of advice from a former college freshman.

1. Don't be that freshman who follows their significant other to college

This is the boy or girl who simply can not think for themselves. The 17-year-old puts their own personal goals and interests aside to sacrifice for a six-month high school relationship. This will more than likely end at an end of semester transfer after the relationship has been tested for a month or two in college life. So if you want to really enjoy your freshman year, make your own decisions and do what is best for you.

2. Don't be that freshman who lets their parents pick their major

"You are not going to school just to waste my money."

This is a statement you might have heard from your parents. As true as it might seem, this is definitely not a good way to start your college years. If you are not majoring in something you can see yourself doing, you are wasting your time. You can major in biology, go to medical school, and make the best grades. But if deep down you don't want to be a doctor, you will NOT end up being a good doctor. When it comes to picking your major, you really have to follow your heart.

3. Don't be that freshman who gets overwhelmed with the first taste of freedom

Yes. It is all very exciting. You don't have a curfew, you don't have rules, you don't have anyone constantly nagging you, but let's not get carried away. Don't be the freshman who gets a tattoo on the first night of living on your own. Don't be the freshman who tries to drink every liquor behind the bar. Don't be the freshman who gets caught up being someone that they aren't. My best advice would be to take things slow.

4. Don't be that freshman who starts school isolated in a relationship

I'm not telling you not to date anyone during your freshman year. I am saying to not cut yourself off from the rest of the world while you date someone. Your first year on campus is such an amazing opportunity to meet people, but people are constantly eager to start dating someone and then only spend time with that person.

Be the freshman who can manage time between friends and relationships.

5. Don't be that freshman who can't handle things on their own

It is your first year on your own. Yes, you still need help from your parents. But at this point, they should not be ordering your textbooks or buying your parking pass. If you need something for a club or for class, YOU should handle it. If you're having roommate problems, YOU should handle it, not your parents. This is the real world and college is a great time for you to start building up to be the person you want to be in the future, but you can't successfully do that if your parents still deal with every minor inconvenience for you.

6. Don't be that freshman who only talks to their high school friends

I know your high school was probably amazing, and you probably had the coolest people go there. However, I believe that college is a great time to be on your own and experience new things. Meeting new people and going to new places will allow you to grow into a more mature person. There is a way to balance meeting new friends and maintaining friendships with childhood friends, and I am sure you will find that balance.

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Why Generation Z Is Going To Take The World By Storm

Generation Z will change the world


We've heard it all our lives: "These kids these days" from our grandparents, parents, and other adults. We've become accustomed to being grouped with Millennials even though their age range is 1981-1996, which makes the youngest Millennial twenty-two. So what's the big difference between Millennials and Generation Z?

For starters, we're the first majority non-white U.S generation (yay for diversity). In fact, we were dubbed "Millennials on steroids" by Business Inside when it came to our opinions on sexuality, race, inclusion, women's rights, and God. But a big difference between us and the Millennial generation is that we are more realistic than them. Millennials grew up during a prosperous time in U.S history, but Generation Z grew up during a recession and know that financial security is not promised. In fact, a survey by Business Insider states sixty-eight percent of Generation Z believe the U.S is headed in a bad direction, more than any other generations' opinion on American prosperity.

And the last attribute that makes us different from our predecessors: digital comfortability. We didn't pioneer the digital age; we were born into it. We knew how to use computers by the age of five and could work smartphones better than our parents by age ten. We know the internet and how powerful it can be. With the knowledge we've gained from it, we realized we can start movements just by using our thumbs and learn new things with a click of a button. With the oldest Generation Z'ers being twenty-one, its hard to predict how we'll change the world, but I believe that we'll make a lasting and positive impact on the world.


Related Content

Facebook Comments