By Nina Butts
On Wednesday, October 23rd the Office of Student Engagement and the Betsy Dole Women’s Resource Center brought the program Sex Signals to campus.
Anne Dufault and Connor Konz were the presenters of the programs and shared why this program was brought to Olivet.
“Our key goals are to talk about normalizing consent and make getting a yes in any sort of intimate activity the norm in our culture, as well as creating environments where survivors feel supported and believed. We all as a culture are having each other’s backs and stepping in if we see something that we really think might not be consensual,” said Dufault.
The two presenters urge conversations on how to prevent sexual violence from taking place.
“I don’t think people talk about them nearly enough.” Said Konz. “The more we create cultures of silence, the more people get hurt by that. It’s important that we empower people to step forward and to take action so that we can prevent harm.” Dufault went on to say, “There are so many stereotypes in our culture about sex and even stereotypes about sexual violence, so I think the more we talk about it, and even laugh about it, … the more equipped we are to have these sort of conversations.”
Daniel Waber, senior and member of Adelphic Alpha Pi, attended the presentation with his Greek brothers.
“It’s important because being a member of a fraternity, there’s a lot of stereotypes around the sexual culture in Greek life, so I think that it’s important for us to get out here and show that we care and that we want to make a difference,” Waber said.
Sex Signals has not made an appearance on Olivet Colleges campus in a couple of years. Cynthia (Cea) Noyes, Director of the Gender Resource Center and Betsy Dole Women’s Resource Center, explained that this was because Sex Signals has a three-program series and because it had been done six years in a row, people had seen everything, so they gave it a break.
In addition to Sex Signals, Noyes has brought several other programs to campus to increase awareness of sexual violence.
“I try to bring a program similar to Sex Signals. I usually have at least two of those during the academic year. We sponsor the No Zebras’ program during ALT. All freshmen, all new students go to that. Then I try to run a Title Nine program either later in the fall or in the spring semester," Noyes said.
According to Noyes, the goal is to keep people aware of the issues of consent and bystander intervention.