Institutions across the United States are answering the urgent call to action to address campus sexual violence by changing their policies, building effective prevention programs, and providing trauma-informed services. They are also investing in innovative ways to push this movement forward. Today, NASPA is proud to share that 53 institutions have demonstrated their commitment to this issue by joining the 2017 cohort of the Culture of Respect Collective. These institutions represent the inaugural class of the Collective, an initiative that provides a platform for schools to work together to build and sustain a Culture of Respect and end sexual violence on campus.
Together with support from Culture of Respect, a NASPA initiative, these institutions will: engage in a rigorous self-assessment process; create a strategic plan for addressing violence; participate in professional development; and receive coaching and technical assistance from public health professionals. This 2-year process prompts participating institutions to work collaboratively with campus stakeholders, carefully examine research evidence in the field, and think holistically about the causes and consequences of sexual violence.
As the program progresses, institutions learn from each other through online discussion boards, in-person networking events, and relationship-building both on their own campus and with other campuses in the cohort. The program offers several opportunities to share emerging trends with the field with schools not part of the cohort as well: Culture of Respect will share aggregate data from the CORE Evaluation assessment that institutions are completing this spring, and the results will offer a clearer picture of how schools across the country are responding to campus sexual violence.
While the Collective asks institutions to set individualized goals, they are all guided by the vision laid out in the CORE Blueprint, a detailed guidebook written by Culture of Respect. The CORE Blueprint encourages campuses to address violence by making key changes across six pillars: survivor support, clear policies, multitiered education, public disclosure, schoolwide mobilization, and ongoing self-assessment. The Collective is based off the success of a 1-year pilot program that demonstrated the model’s effectiveness in helping institutions achieve targeted programmatic and policy changes.
The participating institutions are geographically diverse, representing all seven NASPA regions, and vary in size, sector, academic mission, and religious affiliation. This diversity reflects what we know about sexual violence: no campus is immune, but each has the opportunity to support survivors and engage in meaningful efforts to prevent violence.
In January 2018, Culture of Respect will welcome a new class of schools into the Collective. If your institution is ready to take its efforts to respond to campus sexual violence to the next level by joining the 2018 cohort, let us know.