March, April Events Focus on Pack Pact Awareness
JONESBORO – A walk of remembrance, a week of programs and collaboration with national Denim Day are among the upcoming events supporting the Pack Pact to raise sexual assault awareness at Arkansas State University.
“From our opening event, our goal is to keep the subject of sexual assault in the public conversation,” Chancellor Kelly Damphousse said. “This is a community effort, and we want to expand the number of voices and points of view involved as we go forward.”
On Tuesday, March 13, a 5K run and walk at noon will be held through the campus. The course will be marked with Pact Facts – national statistics related to sexual assault – and students are encouraged to chalk the sidewalks along the course with messages to support past victims.
“We’ve been asked, ‘Why have these events in the middle of the day?’ instead of later,” Damphousse said. “We want to change the conversation. Doing these events on weekends or after class does not bring the question in front of our entire campus.”
During late March, the Department of Art and Design will sponsor contests for the best submissions of student-designed artwork to promote the April 2-6 Sexual Assault Awareness week. In the two categories – printed poster and social media interaction or graphic – the winning work will be used by the university and the artist will receive a book stipend for the fall semester from the Chancellor’s Office.
Sexual Assault Awareness week will include informational events in the Reng Student Union. Details on speakers and activities will be released later.
“We are welcoming input from groups on campus and in the community who want to participate in the week,” A-State Title IX Coordinator Chocoletta Simpson said.
Art and Design is also asking for donations of denim jeans that can be used as a part of a denim pocket quilt to support the awareness week. Also a student art installation is in the planning for mid-April.
The final event for the spring is Denim Day, April 25. Art and Design is assisting with this event by imprinting the Pack Pact logo on the denim of any student.
Related to the Pack Pact campaign, the Campus Climate Council will conduct a campus-wide survey of students during late March.
“This was an initiative that began under our previous chancellor, Doug Whitlock, and I am honored to have our Chief Diversity Officer, Dr. Maurice Gipson, take the lead on making sure this assessment takes place this spring,” Damphousse said.
Additional events and speakers are in the works for both this spring and next fall.
“I want to commend our Art and Design faculty who have come forward with ideas to extend existing events and to add new ideas,” Damphousse said. “I’ve also heard from some student victims about how they want to have the opportunity to express their opinions and broaden the inclusion of their voices. We welcome the suggestions of other departments and individuals.”
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