KINGS POINT, N.Y. (April 4, 2016) – Over the last month, several members of the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), along with a number of coaches and first-year Athletic Director Mo White came together to produce an important public service announcement regarding Sexual Assault Awareness and the It's On Us Campaign.
This April marks the 15th Annual Sexual Assault Awareness Month and USMMA is participating with an emphasis on prevention through bystander intervention. The Academy, under the leadership of Sexual Assault Response Coordinator, Tamara Jell, has a full month of activities scheduled in support of this year's national campaign entitled, "Prevention is Possible." The schedule includes student and faculty presentations, displays, informational programs and guest speakers.
A kickoff event on Monday afternoon includes an introduction from Superintendent Rear Adm. James A. Helis, USMS, the presentation of the video produced by USMMA Athletics and a guest speaker – Dr. Chris Kilmartin, Professor of Psychology at the University of Mary Washington and a violence prevention expert – speaking before the entire Regiment of Midshipmen.
The National "It's On Us" Campaign addresses the very important issue of sexual assault on college campuses. The campaign was launched two years ago by the federal government and student leaders from numerous colleges and universities across the country have been working more diligently on the campaign's goal of preventing sexual assault on campus. The program encourages bystander intervention and asks students to sign pledges acknowledging that sexual activity requires consent.
USMMA Athletics, along with the rest of the Academy, working in collaboration with Ms. Jell, is doing its part for the campaign as well – a banner will hang over the entrance of O'Hara Hall all month with the reminder that "Together We Can Prevent Sexual Assault," special announcements will be added to game day programs and read as part of game day announcements and important displays and will be added around O'Hara Hall, Brooks Stadium and our other athletic facilities throughout the month.
To view the important PSA on the USMMA Athletics YouTube Page, click here.
This initiative and Monday's kickoff event begins NCAA Division III Week on the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy campus.
(Note: The PSA video was written and directed by SAAC Coordinator and USMMA Football Defensive Coordinator Jonathan Churchill and was captured and edited by Billy Miecuna of nearby Great Neck South High School.)