Student believes sexual assault on campus remains an unaddressed issue

Eylie Buehler, Opinion Editor

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When I transferred to Allegheny, I had no idea of the number of sexual assaults that occurred on campus, or at any college for that matter.

Parents and family members feel safe sending their kids to Allegheny and schools like it.

What could go wrong at a small private school in a tiny town in the middle of nowhere?

The answer shocked me.

I recently found out that in this year alone there have been more than 10 reports of sexual assault that have resulted in only two suspensions and one expulsion.

That information alone is enough to enrage me but what really angers me is the fact that these reports are not shared with the student body at Allegheny.

From the first day of freshmen orientation to the day we graduate, we are lectured and forced to go to workshops and special speakers about how to prevent rape culture on campus and taught what to do when put in a questionable situation.  But, we are never once told about any of the incidents that actually occur on campus.

When the power goes out campus-wide, we receive an emergency text message notifying us that the problem will be fixed as soon as possible.  When there’s a threat to the campus community by a former student, we receive an email notifying us that it has been taken care of and that there is no longer a threat.

But when there are approximately 13 informal reports of sexual assault in one semester, we receive nothing.

Allegheny College may be trying to educate us on how to prevent any future incidents of sexual assault on campus, but administration does not and will not address the issue that is right in front of them.

Sexual assault is happening on campus more often than we realizes but we have no idea how prominent this issue actually is to us.

Rape has become an issue on college campus’s across the United States.  And while universities are taking measures in order to educate students on how to prevent it, which is great, they are failing to educate their students about a serious threat to their safety that we have the right to know about.

The college will not address the issue unless they are forced to, and that will only happen if the local police get involved, which they almost never are.

Any investigation that goes on within Allegheny’s facility is considered educational records and is therefore confidential.

I understand that relaying this information to the students could hurt the reputation of Allegheny and affect the decision of potential students looking at the school for furthering their education.  I understand that the college is trying to protect the identities of the victims and the perpetrators, but names do not need to be released.

Receiving the information that a sexual assault has been reported recently and when and where it happened will not only notify students of information that is crucial to their safety but also help in the investigation of the sexual assault reported.

As students we know that sexual assault and rape culture are a huge issue on this campus.  We would like the administration and faculty to recognize this fact and stop pretending that Allegheny is not part of the national statistics.

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