CampusLife

Dean of Students

Sexual Assault Working Group

News and Announcements

About the Working Group

  • Assistant VP of Campus Life and Dean of Students Rob Hradsky chairs the Sexual Assault Working Group (SAWG). The Group is charged with (1) ensuring continuity in sexual assault prevention commitments and (2) continuing to shape AU’s intervention strategies consistent with the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault and the Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization Act of 2013. The committee’s work is transparent, as are the data gathered on students’ experiences with sexual violence and on the effectiveness of the measures we implement. Recommendations formulated by Student Government are integrated into the SAWG agenda.
  • In Spring 2015, the Sexual Assault Working Group:
    • Heightened the visibility of victim advocate services by branding victim advocacy services “OASIS”- Office of Advocacy Services for Interpersonal & Sexual violence in the Wellness Center;
    • Developed a flowchart to guide students through confidential and non-confidential resources;
    • Expanded information brochures to address sexual assault, domestic violence and stalking;
    • Viewed a selection of online educational programs on sexual violence to identify the best alternatives for our campus community; recommend that the campus community adopt the Think About It program.
    • Expanded web resources to explain the role of victim advocates and better articulate the resources available to students; and
    • Proposed additions to the Student Conduct Code and Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Policy that are currently under review.
  • Town Hall Meetings on Sexual Assault Prevention are hosted twice annually by SAWG. The Fall 2015 Town Hall Meeting is scheduled Monday, Oct. 5, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m., Letts Formal Lounge.

Charge, Steering Committee, and Subcommittee Structure, 2014-2015

Charge:  The Sexual Assault Working Group (SAWG) is charged with reviewing the university's efforts on issues of sexual assault, relationship violence, domestic violence, and stalking, especially as it relates to student advocacy and support, campus awareness and education, university policies and procedures, and assessment. The Working Group will assess current efforts, identify areas for improvement, and make recommendations to the Vice President of Campus Life to ensure that our campus approach is comprehensive, effective, and compliant with Title IX and the Campus SaVE Act. 

Reports to:  Dr. Gail Hanson, Vice President of Campus Life

Chair:  Dr. Rob Hradsky, Assistant Vice President of Campus Life and Dean of Students

Contact the Sexual Assault Working Group at SAWG@american.edu.

2014-15 Steering Committee Members

Faculty and Staff Representatives

  • Tessa Telly, Wellness Center
  • Sara Yzaguirre, Wellness Center
  • Christine Gettings, Center for Community Engagement & Service
  • Sara Bendoraitis, Center for Diversity and Inclusion
  • Traci Callandrillo, Counseling Center 
  • Sherry Weaver, Washington College of Law
  • Captain Kevin Barrett, Public Safety 
  • Dong Jun Choi, International Student and Scholar Services
  • Lindsay Whipple, Housing and Dining Programs
  • Jane Palmer, SPA (Public Admin and Policy)
  • Kerry Diekmann, Center for Diversity and Inclusion
  • Jessica Waters, SPA (Dean's Office)
  • Athena Argyropoulos, Athletics

 

Student Representatives: 

  • Sophia Wirth, Student Government
  • Kirby Howell, Women's Initiative
  • Joelle Appenrodt, StandUp AU
  • Winston Pingeon, StandUp AU
  • Julie Herward, Student Bar Association
  • Jonathan Lubin, Graduate Leadership Council
  • Megan O'Toole, Residence Hall Association
  • Brandon Ranallo, graduate student
  • Manuel Valverde, graduate student
  • TBD, Panhel Representative
  • TBD, IFC Representative 
  • TBD, Media Board Representative
  • TBD, AU Club Council (AUCC) Rep   

Resource Person(s):

Justin Perillo, Office of General Counsel

Committee Structure

The full committee meets biweekly with subcommittee meetings occurring on alternate weeks. Each subcommittee is charged with 1) assessing the university's efforts in the assigned area including benchmarking best practices;2) identifying recommendations to more closely align with best practices, and 3) developing an implementation plan. The subcommittees include:

1. Student Advocacy and Support

This subcommittee will review the advocacy and support services available to AU students and recommend enhancements in this area.

2. Campus Awareness and Education

This subcommittee will review current initiatives to create awareness and educate the campus community about relationship violence, domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking, and make recommendations for on-going work in this area.

3. University Policies and Procedures

This subcommittee will review the university's Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Policy and the associated mechanisms for enforcing this policy. The subcommittee will make recommendations for enhancements to existing policies and procedures.

4. Assessment

This subcommittee will review and summarize data collected in Spring 2011, Spring 2013, and Spring 2015 through the National College Health Assessment, data collected through research conducted by Dr. Jane Palmer assessing by-stander intervention programs as part of sexual violence prevention efforts, and additional data available through the on-line education program, "Haven," to develop a picture of the AU student experience, knowledge, and resource needs. Additional resources for data may be identified as the review progresses. The data will be utilized to inform the work of the other subcommittees, and to set priorities moving forward.