Bloomsburg University Receives Grant for “It’s on Us PA” Program

For Immediate Release

Date: January 21, 2020

Contact: Tom McGuire, Director of Media Relations/Content Strategy

Bloomsburg University Receives Grant for “It’s on Us PA” Program

BLOOMSBURG—Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania was one of 36 colleges and universities to receive a portion of a $1 million grant from Governor Tom Wolf for the “It’s on Us PA” program to combat sexual assault.

Gov. Wolf established "It's On Us PA" four years ago, which was the nation's first statewide campaign. "Every student, teacher, administrator, and visitor to our campuses deserve a safe environment free from harassment," said Wolf. "This is the fourth year that my administration will be working with students, schools, and communities to build programs to raise awareness about and stop sexual assaults. We must never tolerate this behavior on our campuses or a culture that allows it."

Albra Wheeler, Coordinator of the Women’s Resource Center at BU, administers the “It’s on Us PA” program for the University and was solely responsible for writing the grant proposal.

According to Wheeler, “BU has committed financial resources to better attend to instances of sexual misconduct directly, offering a wider range of programs annually, including employing three students to serve as Title IX Peer Educators.” She continued, “Our program has three prongs to it. First is establishing training for long term community-based prevention/sustainability; then, expanding our current slate of educational programming, and finally, enhancing the quality of our survivor response services.

The community-based prevention program will be a three-day intensive training workshop for 10 campus community members, including but not limited to the BU Police Department, the Campus Advocate, and others. The training is designed for those wishing to be certified in the Rape, Aggression, Defense (R.A.D.) systems, basic physical defense program and private Self-Defense Instructor Certification from R.A.D. headquarters. The training will enable those who complete the certified training to provide others with self-defense training and courses throughout the academic year.

BU’s educational awareness campaign will be aimed at educating the campus population on where and to whom to report sexual misconduct and effective bystander strategies. BU will also feature a campus-wide lecture by internationally renowned speaker Jackson Katz, Ph.D., an expert scholar and activist around gender, race, and violence. Katz has been a significant figure and thought leader in the growing global movement of men working to promote gender equality and the prevention of gender-based violence.

Finally, trauma-informed self-care boxes will be created. The self-care boxes will reduce the harm and stress imposed on a survivor of sexual misconduct and are specifically designed to ensure the survivor can address their trauma both with the trained advocate and in the privacy of their residence.

The schools that receiving grant money are: Albright College, Bloomsburg University, Bryn Mawr College, Butler County Community College, Chatham University, Cheyney University, Clarion University, Community College of Allegheny County, Curtis Institute of Music, East Stroudsburg University, Gannon University, Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine, Holy Family University, Immaculata University, Indiana University of PA, Keystone College, Lehigh University, Lock Haven University, Lycoming College, Manor College, Marywood University, Mercyhurst University, Millersville University, Peirce College, Penn State University, Point Park University, Rosemont College, Saint Francis University, Saint Joseph's University, Shippensburg University, South Hills School of Business & Technology, St. Vincent College – Research, Thiel College, University of Pittsburgh, Waynesburg University, and Wilkes University.

Bloomsburg University is one of 14 universities in Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education. The university serves approximately 8,700 students, offering comprehensive programs of study in five distinct colleges: College of Education, Zeigler College of Business, College of Liberal Arts, College of Science and Technology, and new Honors College.