Olympian Kayla Harrison discusses overcoming sexual abuse

Kayla Harrison was the first American to win gold in a Judo event. But behind her competitive success was an unimaginable personal struggle. At the age of 16, Harrison revealed that she had been sexually abused by her coach. Harrison discusses how she overcame her painful past and transformed her life on Wednesday, September 10, 2014, at 7:30 p.m., in the Perkins Student Center Auditorium. This event is free and open to the public.

After Harrison?s story came to light, she moved from Ohio to Massachusetts to train with Jimmy Pedro, a two-time Olympic Bronze medalist, and his father. When she arrived in Massachusetts, she hated Judo, wanted to run away, and even contemplated suicide. Through discipline, tenacity, and the support of the Pedros, she fought through the pain both on and off the mat, transforming herself into a strong, confident, articulate young woman who also happens to be a world-class athlete.

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This presentation is part of the Arts and Lecture series. For more information, contact the Office of Campus Life at 610-396-6076.