The official start to my 2007-2008 school year kicked off tonight in Banner Elk, NC at Lees-McRae College. The day started by conducting a "Train the Trainers" session for the student Peer Educators, SART (Sexual Assault Response Team), and the Counseling Center. Everyone in attendance showed great passion for wanting to create a positive cultural change toward healthier and more respectful relationships. As we went around the room hearing everyone’s goals, you felt a great sense of unity among the people in attendance.
The enthusiasm for learning new approaches to connecting with their students was wonderful. Susan took notes for the group and wrote ferociously. I am very excited to hear about the plans being created on their campus for the remainder of this school year (including several different programs spread throughout the year).
Next, all of the incoming students attended the "Can I Kiss You?" program. You could hear the energy in the room beforehand (and you could see it as a volleyball was getting hit around the room — and into a few things). The crowd was having fun.
This group of students brought energy and questions. They didn’t hold back and so we took on each inquiry through to the point of completion. A few times students within the room spoke out against one another’s statements (in a healthy manner of debate). I love seeing people who are willing to stand up for what they believe in!
In this picture, you see the male volunteer working with me on stage. He did a nice job role-playing. "Thanks" goes out to Megan and Susan for putting together a well organized and successful day! If you have a really successful Peer Education program who does multiple peer-facilitated programs addressing healthy dating and sexual assault, contact Susan in their Counseling Center. She is open to hearing from other campuses.