In an email sent out on Apr. 8, Title IX Coordinator Melissa Nichols sent out an email reminding students that April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. The email included statistics, resources, and protocol the university will take, should a student become a victim.

A study conducted by the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN) showed that women ages 18-24 are three times more likely to be a victim of sexual violence than all women. The same survey also denoted that 26.4% of undergraduate females and 6.8% of undergraduate males experience sexual violence through force or incapacitation. Although these numbers are high, only a small percentage of victims go on to report the crime. Nichols’ email gives her information as well as Furman University Police’s phone number.  

Nichols goes on to remind students that RAs, faculty members, and other mandated reporters are obligated to share the occurrence to the Title IX office, where the information will be kept confidential to non-necessary parties. If one does decide to report the incident, then the Title IX office will offer the victim disciplinary services through the office if the offender is a current Furman student or staff member, or services through the local police department.  

Should the victim choose to utilize the on-campus services, he or she can also choose to terminate an investigation at any point. If the victim chose to halt an investigation, he or she can also resume the investigation later, as long as the other party still remains at Furman. Resources for victims are always available regardless of investigation status.

Safe Harbor, a non-profit providing multiple services for survivors of sexual or domestic abuse, and Furman partnered to provide students counseling and/or group training sessions for on-campus organizations.  

If you feel as if you have experienced sexual violence, please reach out to one of the following organizations: