By Abigail Loop
Women attending Baylor will have the opportunity to learn how to defend themselves against the dangers of today’s community.
All Baylor women are invited to attend the workshop, which is being sponsored by the Department of Multicultural Affairs and the Baylor Counseling Center. Starting at 7 p.m. Wednesday in the Fentress Room at the SUB, the workshop will give women an opportunity to listen to Dr. Monique Marshall, a staff psychologist from the counseling center. Marshall will give a presentation that includes tips on dating safety and risk prevention steps to use on and off campus. Attendees will learn some moves in self-defense from a self-defense instructors well.
Kelley Kimple, associate director of the Department of Multicultural Affairs, said it’s important that female students come and receive the information that could be the difference between being safe and being susceptible to risk.
“These girls will be learning all about what can happen if one does not take precautions,” Kimple said. “As young people, they often don’t think anything bad would happen to them. “But then you look at the news and see that things do happen.”
According to experts, one in four women will be a sexual assault victim in their college career. By attending this workshop, Kimple says women can learn ways to stay safe, be knowledgeable and not become a part of this statistic.
Dr. Cheryl Wooten is a staff psychologist with the Counseling Center and a co-leader of Seeking Safety, a therapy group at Baylor for women who’ve had unwanted sexual experiences.
Wooten also stressed the importance of women knowing about the dangers that exist and knowing how to stay safe.
“I constantly hear the stories of women who have been hurt and haven’t felt safe,” Wooten said. “Every woman should have the right to a safe education and be able to reach her full potential.”
In past years, the workshop has had many students come and participate in the event. However, Kimple said it’s not always easy for women to learn about the dangers and risks they face.
“Sometimes this information is hard to hear and it can be a little scary. But it’s important that they become aware,” Kimple said. “It’s quality over quantity though. This is important. We’re expecting about 25-50 girls to attend. This event is especially good for freshmen students, who have just entered college.”
Houston Junior Elissa Revilla said when she attended the Workshop last year, she hadn’t expected to learn as much as she did about staying safe. Now, she still applies what she learned last year to her daily life.
“I believe all women at Baylor should attend the workshop,” Revilla said. “It really opens up some doors and you feel safer knowing what you should do in a dangerous situation, it’s better to be prepared for something rather than not knowing what to do. I’m glad I know now what to do to keep me safe.”
Sponsors of the workshop are hoping all students leave the event with the same outlook as Revilla and that they will receive information which will make them not only feel safe, but stay safe as well.
To find out more information regarding the Women’s Safety Workshop, students can visit the Department of Multicultural Affairs in the SUB or email Anika_Strand@baylor.edu.