Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson has announced the creation of a new center for prevention of sexual assault and violence at Dartmouth. The Center, which will be known as the Center for Community Action and Prevention (CCAP), will serve as the hub for the new Dartmouth Bystander Initiative (DBI) and related violence prevention programs.
From its new dedicated office centrally located in Robinson Hall, the Center will build on the current campus momentum for change, mobilize students and community members to take action to prevent sexual violence, and empower students to make a difference.
Johnson has appointed Amanda Childress to serve as CCAP Director. Childress, who has been the College’s Sexual Assault Awareness Program Coordinator for the past two years, worked closely with national assault prevention expert Jennifer Messina ’93 to develop the College’s signature DBI program. DBI aims to foster a culture of support in which people feel they can take positive steps to defuse threatening situations and to prevent harm to their peers.
“I am delighted that Amanda has agreed to take on this new role. She is highly-regarded in our community, and will continue to strengthen existing collaborative partnerships with faculty, students, staff, and alumni to ensure that all of us serve as active bystanders and find ways to prevent violence on our campus,” Johnson says.
Changing Culture: Bystander Initiative, White House Action
Amanda Childress, Sexual Assault Awareness Program coordinator at the College and the newly named head of the Center for Community Action and Prevention, sees important movement both at Dartmouth and nationally in confronting the shocking frequency of sexual violence on college campuses.
Read more from Childress and find out what Dartmouth is doing to prevent sexual assault.
Childress says the new center reflects Dartmouth’s commitment to confront the national scourge of sexual violence on college campuses and highlights the College’s role as a leader in developing culture-changing strategies.
Childress cites the recent report by the White House Council on Women and Girls that finds nearly 1 in 5 women, and 1 in 71 men have experienced rape in their lifetimes. National data indicate that college students are at the highest risk of sexual assault.
“It is unacceptable that a woman is more likely to be sexually assaulted because she decided to attend college,” Childress says. Data also shows that a majority of campus sexual assaults are committed by repeat offenders, she says.
“Dartmouth has understood this and has been taking new steps to address these issues—including the development of DBI—over the past few years,” she says. “This new center will enable us to bring heightened focus to developing a coherent and effective response to this national problem.”
Childress and other members of Johnson’s staff will be working closely with Messina to prepare for the official center opening on July 1. In the meantime, Johnson notes that the initial DBI rollout begun earlier this academic year will continue, and current students will have the opportunity to contribute to the planning for Center programs.
“All who share our commitment to making this campus safe will have ways to be involved,” says Johnson. “We are thrilled that CCAP will provide a forum for moving us forward.”