#ElonEmpowers Social Norms Campaign

Elon Empowers is a social media campaign hosted through the GLC’s Instagram to prevent sexual violence through giving students tangible ways to make Elon a safer place for everyone. The campaign will take place on Instagram throughout the month of October, both on the GLC’s Instagram page and on the accounts of our 20+ campus partners.

During Elon senior, Angela Myers’ Lumen research on the rhetoric of sexual violence prevention, Myers discovered many students believed sexual violence wasn’t something they could prevent and students didn’t have the rhetorical tools needed to address this issue in their lives. Inspired by these research findings, she paired up with the GLC to create Elon Empowers.

The GLC partners across campus to support, advocate and educate the Elon community around gender and LGBTQIA identities. Their goal is to create an inclusive campus and in the age of COVID, that includes creating connections while social distancing.

The campaign is divided up into four themed weeks:

  • Week one promotes the idea that prevention is possible
  • Week two gives small, tangible steps students can take in their everyday lives to prevent sexual violence
  • Week three discusses effective communication strategies around the issue
  • Week four highlights the campaign’s partner organizations and ways students can get involved further with sexual violence prevention at Elon

The campaign hopes to reframe how students think about sexual violence. Elon Empowers is an important step towards how the GLC and the larger Elon community can reimagine prevention work on and off campus.

Check out @elonglc on Instagram for more about this campaign!

If you or someone you know has been impacted by sexual violence, please consider reaching out to one of the resources below:

  • Office of Inclusive Excellence Education & Development: Confidential support and advocacy through the Coordinator for Violence Response (Julia Metz) or Safeline (336.278.3333)
  • The Title IX Office: For more information about reporting, accommodations, support, and policy, please visit the their website here.

Partner Organizations

  • Active Minds
  • Alpha Chi Omega
  • Alpha Kappa Psi
  • Alpha Phi Omega
  • Asian Pacific Student Association
  • Catholic Campus Ministries
  • Colonnades Literary Journal
  • College Democrats
  • Club Frisbee
  • Danceworks
  • Delta Sigma Theta
  • Elon Engineers
  • Elon Softball
  • Elon Writing Center
  • Honors Fellows
  • I Am That Girl
  • Leadership Fellows
  • Model United Nations
  • Office of Inclusive Excellence Education & Development
  • Professional Writing and Rhetoric Department
  • Sigma Kappa
  • Sigma Sigma Sigma
  • Zeta Tau Alpha

Preventing Sexual & Relationship Violence, Harassment & Stalking

To request a presentation or workshop for your class or student organization, please use this form.

Contributing to a campus culture that does not tolerate and actively prevents violence is the responsibility of us all! The Gender & LGBTQIA Center collaborates closely with campus and community partners to create messaging and programming towards the prevention of gender-based violence, including sexual and relationship violence, gender-based bias and harassment, and stalking. These prevention efforts include:

  • Haven online education program required for all new students
  • Speak About It skits at New Student Orientation with small-group discussion facilitated by Orientation Leaders
  • Required training for RA’s, Orientation Head Staff and Leaders, Greek House Captains and other key student leadership roles on bystander intervention skills, best practices for consent, supporting survivors and campus resources for support, advocacy and reporting
  • Workshops by professional staff and peer educators for faculty, staff and student cohorts

Get Involved!

Programs & Workshops

The Gender & LGBTQIA Center provides programs and workshops year-round for faculty/staff departments, student organizations, classes, athletic teams, Greek organizations, residence hall floors and various other student cohorts on topics such as Title IX, healthy relationships, consent, bystander intervention, supporting survivors, gender roles, pop culture and challenging rape culture. To find out more or schedule a program, please reach out to the Assistant Director for the Gender & LGBTQIA Center, Becca Bishopric Patterson at bbishopric@elon.edu or fill out this form.  All requests must be submitted at least 10 days ahead of the requested time.

Events & Collaborations

To learn more about our events, please visit the Gender & LGBTQIA Center’s calendar of events or check us out on PhoenixCONNECT. If you have an idea for an event or collaborative program, reach out to us! Here are some annual events and campaigns to look out for:

  • Supporting Survivors Week events each semester
  • Domestic Violence Awareness Month events during October (These Hands Don’t Hurt, Couples Chemistry, etc.)
  • Sexual Assault Awareness Month events during April (including Take Back the Night)

Student Organizations

  • Students Promoting Awareness, Change, and Empowerment (SPACE): The purpose of S.P.A.C.E is for students of all genders to engage the members of the Elon community in conversations on the serious and pervasive issue of rape, domestic violence and sexual assault on college campuses.
  • Elon Feminists For Equality, Change, and Transformation (EFFECT): Elon Feminists is an organization that is devoted to awareness and activism around issues of feminism in an intersectional way.
  • Alpha Chi Omega: This is a national women’s organization that enriches the lives of members through lifetime opportunities for friendship, leadership, learning, and service. Their philanthropy is domestic violence and they do substantial service work with Family Abuse Services of Alamance County.
  • Students Promoting Awareness, Responsibility, Knowledge, and Success (SPARKS): This organization is a group of authentic and accepting peer educators, leaders and advocates who have a variety of passions and interests related to health, wellness and social justice. SPARKS educates the campus community on consent & healthy relationships.

For more information on other student inititaives with a gender or sexuality focus, please visit the Student-Led Efforts Around Gender webpage.

Evidenced-Based Approach to Prevention Work

Ending Violence through Culture Change

At Elon, we recognize that it takes the stakeholders working in many aspects of the campus and community to end violence on campus. We use evidence-based and informed approaches to ending violence on campus that promote protective and reduce risk factors of victimization and perpetration and employ strategies including awareness, education and skill building at all levels of the socio-ecological model (individual, interpersonal, community, policy).

There are some of many positions, offices and community organizations that engage in violence prevention and response:

  • Safeline Office: The Coordinator for Violence Response, Julia Metz, manages and provides confidential resources through the advocacy phone line, Safeline (336.278.3333), available 24-hours a day, seven days a week, year-round.
  • Title IX Office: The Title IX Coordinator and Title IX Investigator oversee reports of sexual harassment, interpersonal violence, sexual misconduct, and sex and/or gender based discrimination. You can report by going to the Title IX website.
  • Gender & LGBTQIA Center: Staff in the GLC coordinates campus prevention efforts with a myraid of staff, faculty, students and community members. For more information, please contact Becca Bishopric Patterson.
  • Sexual Assault and Gender Issues Council (SAGIC): SAGIC has provided guidance and support to the various university offices dedicated to preventing and responding to sexual assault and relationship violence, as well as promoting gender equality. The advisory council is comprised of faculty, staff, and students, and meets twice a semester. For more information about this committee you can contact the committee chair Ann Cahill.
  • CrossRoads Sexual Assault Response & Resource Center: CrossRoads serves child and adult victims of sexual assault and trauma through confidential counseling, advocacy, child medical treatment, education, and community awareness. To learn more, visit their website.
  • Family Abuse Services of Alamance County: Family Abuse Services provides services and support to survivors of intimate partner violence and their children. To learn more, visit their website.

Levels of Prevention

  • Primary Prevention: Focusing on protective factors to prevent a first time instance of violence
  • Secondary Prevention: Reducing the risk of perpetration
  • Tertiary Prevention: Deploying intervention strategies such as support and resources for supporting survivors of violence and holding perpetrators accountable

Core Content Areas

When individuals choose to commit violence against women, sexual violence, relationship violence, harassment or stalking, they are doing so to exert power and control over another person. These acts of bias, harassment and violence are committed within the context of a culture that promotes and tolerates violence, specifically towards girls, women and individuals with historically maraginalized identities. In order to prevent violence on our campuses, we must not only hold perpetrators accountable, but work to change the culture to one that is intolerant of violence. Below are some of the core content areas that we focus on in our programming.

Supporting Survivors

Paramount to ending gender violence is creating spaces and communities in which survivors feel supported in disclosing, seeking help and advocacy, pursuing processes and defining their own experiences. This type of education can include everything from promoting consistent and visible messaging of campus and community resources for survivors to teaching student leaders (orientation leaders, resident assistants) how to properly respond to disclosures.

Active Bystander Programming

Learning how to step in or speak out during a potentially difficult or dangerous situations can be uncomfortable and doing it tactfully and safely takes training and practice. Bystander intervention programs increases student understanding of the realities of violence on campus and the intersections of oppression, addresses factors contributing to bystander inaction, increases motivation and ownership over preventing campus violence and communicates strategies for challenging aspects of rape culture and intervening in situations of potential or actual sexual violence, relationship violence and stalking.

Social Change & Challenging Rape Culture

To end gender-based violence, campus and community members must learn to interrupt and challenging cultural norms and expectations that promote bias or violence. Some examples of this include dispelling myths about gender-based violence, encouraging media literacy and critical dialogue on the representation of gender in the media (including pornography), reducing victim blaming, promoting gender equity and equality, challenging the gender/sexuality binaries and encouraging inclusion and celebration of all identities, and addressing other forms of oppression.

Engaging Men to Prevent Violence – Healthy Masculinity Work

All genders and identities are essential to ending interpersonal violence and the epidemic of violence against women. Here are national organizations and resources on engaging men to end gender-based violence:

Consent & Healthy Relationships Education

General sex, consent and relationship education is a component of primary prevention housed within health education efforts. By improving the ability for students to talk about positive sexual and relationship experiences, students begin to understand consent beyond a transaction, but as an ongoing mutually empowering process.

Feminist Self Defense

In our culture and many others, individuals who identify as female or women are told that fighting or exerting physical strength is not acceptable. While we know that self-defense is not a primary prevention technique or the only solution to ending violence against women, we believe that engaging your inner and phsyical strength and practicing the act of protecting yourself can be a powerful way for women to combact violence and gain confidence. It is important to keep in mind that the majority of women who experience violence know the offender, which makes it even more difficult for them to fight back. Visit some of these organizations to learn more!