Since its beginning in January 2000, R.E.S.P.E.C.T. (Rape Education Services by Peers Encouraging Conscious Thought) has gained a strong foundation and presence throughout the University community and its surrounding areas. R.E.S.P.E.C.T. is a group of trained peer educators who provide rape awareness and risk reduction education with a message of advocacy for victims through multi-faceted and innovative efforts to include interactive classroom presentations, awareness activities and events, and campus-wide participatory programs. Presentations are provided for university classes, organizations, residence halls, Greek organizations, and other campus or community groups. R.E.S.P.E.C.T. also collaborates with community service providers to address the issue of sexual assault through community awareness initiatives.
The “While the Professor is Away Program" enables R.E.S.P.E.C.T. to present to professors’ classes when they must be away on business rather than canceling their classes. This has provided an excellent opportunity to reach out to students across campus.
In addition, a number of campus-wide initiatives are undertaken throughout the year to bring about awareness of sexual assault issues, educate about risk reduction strategies, and provide support for those who have been victimized by sexual assault through the provision of campus and community resources. Annual events include the Take Back the Night March, The Banner Project, The Campus Clothesline Project, Mock Rape Trial, The Holiday Tree of Hope and Support, and more. Additional information can be obtained by contacting Dr. Mary A. Wyandt-Hiebert, PhD, CHES, STAR Central Director and RESPECT Advisor, 479-575-7252 or by visiting the R.E.S.P.E.C.T. website.