Date Rape Presentation: Speaker Shares Personal Story
PRINCESS ANNE, MD - It’s often easy to talk about dream dates and an idyllic romance. Talking about being the victim of a violent crime can be frightening, painful and even humiliating.
A woman who is willing to brave those pains in hopes of helping others will bring her story to campus on April 5. Katie Koestner, who was sexually assaulted by a fellow college student when she was 18, will share her experiences with students she hopes can learn from them.
“I started sharing my story nationally and publicly in order to bring a face and a name to a crime that few ever speak about,” said Koestner. “It is my hope that others will realize that they are not alone, and decide to come forward and get help, too.”
Her presentation, sponsored by Student Counseling Services, is designed for women aged 16 to 24 and their male counterparts. Women on this age group are four times as likely to be raped as other women. Even though the issue is discussed more openly now than it used to be, still only 16 percent of rapes are reported to the police. And 80 percent of rapes are committed by an acquaintance of the victim. Over half of these incidents result in physical injury to the victim.
Koestner presents the facts about rape with her audience in mind. By helping them to see sexual assault through her eyes, she enables students to challenge stereotypes and confront conventional beliefs and behaviors.
“I also hope to inspire men to take a stand against sexual violence and anything that is degrading toward women,” she added. “Men have the power to make real change with their peers.”
Koestner has presented the facts about date rape to more than one million students on U.S. high school and college campuses since she founded Campus Outreach Services in 1995. The firm provides keynote speakers and consulting services in the areas of sexual violence, diversity, sexual harassment, bullying, hate crimes, healthy relationships, assertiveness, eating disorders, suicide and related risk issues.
The event is sponsored by UMES Counseling Services and the Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs (ATOD) Prevention Center. For more information about the program or about counseling services at UMES, call 410-651-6463 or 410-651-6385.
Maureen McNeill, UMES Office of Public Relations, 410-651-6669, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contact:Suzanne Waters Street, director, UMES Office of Public Relations,410-621-2355, email@example.com