Berks announces Stand for State kickoff

Berks Stand for State trainers

Penn State Berks Stand for State trainers include (left to right) James McCarty, Autumn Fritz, Angela Cuva, Sharon Pitterson-Ogaldez and Kristin Hawley.

Credit: Penn State

Penn State Berks will hold the fall kickoff for its Stand for State program -- a University-wide initiative aimed at empowering Penn Staters by providing bystander intervention training for students, faculty and staff -- from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1, in the Multipurpose Room, Perkins Student Center.

The college will be working with SafeBerks, formerly know as Berks Women in Crisis, to host a viewing and subsequent discussion of "The Hunting Ground." This event is free and open to the public.

"The Hunting Ground" is a startling exposé of rape crimes on U.S. college campuses, their institutional cover-ups, and the devastating toll they take on students and their families. Weaving together verité footage and first-person testimonies, the film follows the lives of several undergraduate assault survivors as they attempt to pursue — despite incredible push back, harassment, and traumatic aftermath — both their educations and justice.

In addition to the film, the event will include a brief discussion of the various ways Penn State Berks supports students and the upcoming Stand for State training dates. Finally, students will be asked to share photos for reasons that they plan to Stand for State, utilizing a white board. 

At Penn State Berks, five staff members have been trained in the Green Dot bystander intervention curriculum: Angela Cuva, assistant director of campus life; Autumn Fritz, assistant director of community development; Kristin Hawley, coordinator of athletic programs; James McCarty, admissions counselor; and Sharon Pitterson-Ogaldez, coordinator of diversity and international programs. Those trained will implement bystander intervention workshops for students, faculty and staff.

The Stand for State bystander intervention program was created by Green Dot, a national leader in violence prevention education. In the curriculum, as people engage in new behaviors to reduce violence and harm (which are labeled as red dots), the new prevention behaviors are represented by green dots. The key tactics for intervening and removing someone from harm’s way are Green Dot’s three D’s: direct, delegate and distract.

In February 2015, Penn State President Eric Barron endorsed the bystander intervention program as part of all 18 recommendations to fight sexual assault and sexual harassment on campus that were presented by a university task force.

For more information, contact Autumn Fritz 610-396-6098 or via email at [email protected], follow #StandforState on social media, or email [email protected].