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Raising awareness

Sexual Harassment Office offers full slate of Welcome Week activities

special feature: Welcome Week 2018

Part of a special back to school featuring student voices, student success and important resources available to Memorial University students.


By Melissa Watton

The Sexual Harassment Office serves all students, faculty and staff of all campuses and institutes of the university.

Sexual Harassment Office Welcome Week 2017 photo booth
Fun times at the Welcome Week 2017 photo booth.
Photo: Submitted

To ensure people new to Memorial, as well as those returning, are aware of the services provided and to raise awareness regarding the subjects of sexual harassment, sexual assault, consent and bystander intervention, a number of activities are planned for Welcome Week 2018.

According to Rhonda Shortall, Memorial’s sexual harassment advisor , Welcome Week is an important time for the office to connect with incoming students.

“Orientation is not only a time to welcome students to Memorial, but a pivotal time to open the conversation about sexual harassment and sexual assault and to raise awareness of these issues,” she said. “As students arrive on campus, it is essential to ensure they are aware of the office and how to access the comprehensive supports available.”

Consent Clothesline created at Welcome Week 2017
The consent clothesline at Welcome Week 2017.
Photo: Submitted

The following are some of the activities the Sexual Harassment Office has planned for Welcome Week. A full listing of events is available on the office’s website.

Move-In Day Consent Clothesline

Location: Hatcher Square, Paton College
Date: Sunday, Sept. 2
Time: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Students moving into residence on the St. John’s campus will be invited to design their own consent message inspired t-shirt. Students will be provided with t-shirts and markers and encouraged to create messages that engage students in raising awareness about consent and reflect our shared responsibility of the issue of sexual harassment and sexual assault. The t-shirts will be displayed on a consent clothesline and, following the event, students will get to keep their creations.

Open the conversation pledge poster
The Open the Conversation pledge poster.
Photo: Submitted

Discover Memorial Campus Tour

Location: Starting at the Field House
Date: Monday, Sept. 3
Time: 12:30-4 p.m.

During the campus tour, the Sexual Harassment Office will facilitate a pledge event aimed at engaging students in identifying ideas and actions that members of the university community can take in creating an environment that is free of sexual harassment and sexual assault. To reiterate the university community’s commitment, these ideas will be shared on colourful Post-it notes and placed on a pledge poster for display. The session will also provide information on the role of the office, consent, bystander intervention and the importance of the shared responsibility of the issue of sexual harassment and sexual assault.

Graduate Student Orientation

Location: Bruneau Centre for Research and Innovation
Date: Tuesday, Sept. 4
Time: 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m.

The Sexual Harassment Office will have an educational booth during this orientation event with office brochures, promotional buttons, Always Ask water bottles and pocket resource cards for students to avail of.

@MemorialU Fair

Location: University Centre, third floor
Date: Tuesday, Sept. 4
Time: 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

and

Location: University Centre, third floor
Date: Wednesday, Sept. 5
Time: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

The Sexual Harassment Office will have an educational booth during the @MemorialU Fair with office brochures, promotional buttons, Always Ask water bottles and pocket resource cards for students to avail of.

MUN 101

Location: Physical Education building lobby
Date: Tuesday, Sept. 4
Time: 6-8 p.m.

MUN 101 will provide students who would not normally be able to attend daytime Welcome Week events an opportunity to learn about the resources available to them at Memorial. The Sexual Harassment Office will be present as part of a series of panelists, providing information about the office as well as the supports and services available.

Sexual Harassment Office Photo Booth

Location: University Centre food court
Date: Wednesday, Sept. 5
Time: 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

In collaboration with the Memorial University Students’ Union’s Welcome Carnival, the Sexual Harassment Office will hold its annual photo booth event. This event encourages students, faculty and staff to strike a pose and participate by using various props and accessories reflective of key messages of the office’s Always Ask campaign. Messages cover the subjects of consent, breaking the silence about sexual harassment and sexual assault, bystander intervention, increasing the reporting climate and raising awareness.

Marine Institute Welcome Back Carnival

Location: Marine Institute lobby
Date: Thursday, Sept. 6
Time: 12-2 p.m.

The Sexual Harassment Office will have a booth at the carnival with office brochures, promotional buttons, Always Ask water bottles and pocket resource cards for students to avail of.

Other activities

In addition to the St. John’s campus activities, the Sexual Harassment Office will participate in the Grenfell Campus Parent Orientation on Sunday, Sept. 2, at 1 p.m. in LC 301 and has contributed to an informative student orientation video series that is being distributed prior to students’ arrival on that campus. A coffee house information session will also be held in mid-September (date TBC).

For more information about the office and to access information on the supports and services available, please consult the Sexual Harassment Office website.


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