D’Youville University has been awarded $399,728 by the U.S. Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women as a part of their PLEXUS initiative. The intent of this three-year grant is to support university and college campuses with resources to address and prevent sexual assault. Planned usage of this funding will include D’Youville University collaboration with the Pride Center of WNY, NYS Troopers, Crisis Services, and Family Justice Center.
According to the US Department of Justice (DOJ), one in five women have been victimized by sexual assault while in college. The DOJ awards nearly $22 million nationally to address and prevent sexual assault, domestic violence, stalking on college campuses, and provide services to youth victims exposed to such violence. This award will further promote the sexual misconduct staff, programming, and supports already offered through D’Youville University.
“D’Youville University offers a robust support model around the topics of sexual misconduct and assault,” says President Lorrie Clemo, PhD. “We are thrilled that the DOJ has acknowledged this and awarded this grant to further support collaboration and increase our abilities educate our campus community and external partners.”
Goals of the grant include:
- Create a coordinated community response including internal and external partners;
- Establish a mandatory prevention/education program about domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking for all students;
- Create and implement an educational component for clinical sites and students who participate within clinical placements;
- Train all campus safety officers to respond effectively to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking;
- Train all participants in the resolution process to effectively respond to situations involving sexual misconduct.
“This is a priority for the University,” states Danielle Nesselbush, Dean of Students & Title IX Coordinator. “This grant enables us to focus on prevention and, with our partners, meet the needs of our students, thus engaging them to be student leaders and allies in preventing instances of sexual assault, domestic violence and stalking.”
The grant begins October 1, 2023, will be a three-year initiative, ending September 20, 2026, and will strengthen the efforts of D’Youville University that are already underway for the academic year including Title IX training, active and passive advocacy programming, student counseling and wellness, and developmental modules delivered to students through the Metaverse.
“D’Youville University is committed to supporting the whole student” continued Clemo. “This support includes best-in-class holistic development and wrap around services for which this award is certainly going to compliment.”