The logo for Keep it Consensual, an annual workshop on sexual assault held at University of the Pacific

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Campus Life

Keep it Consensual 2011

Pacific’s Sexual Assault Training to Focus on Bystander Intervention
by Lily PenfoldNov 4, 2011

University of the Pacific's 3rd annual Keep it Consensual, a day-long series of workshops on sexual assault, will focus on the many ways that a bystander, whether he or she is a friend, stranger, or acquaintance, can take positive action to prevent an assault. Sessions will be held throughout the day Monday, Nov.14 from 9 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.

The sessions will explore the idea that most sexual assaults could be prevented by bystanders who often witness inappropriate conduct before the attack begins, including how to identify signs that an assault could happen, what to do if you think it is happening, and educating students of what the term consent means.

"The message we want to convey is that sexual violence is preventable with men and women working together to change attitudes and behaviors," said Elizabeth Griego, vice president for Student Life at Pacific. "Our hope is that with the proper education and tools, we can make our campus a safer place for all."

Brett Sokolow, a nationally-recognized attorney and expert on sexual assault laws, will return for the third year to moderate sessions and hold an open forum for students to learn about sexual violence.  Sokolow also will be present to answer questions, giving students an opportunity to talk about how to communicate with potential sexual partners to ensure they are 'keeping it consensual'.

"This is a great event, and highly educational for students, faculty, and staff," said Corrie Martin, director of Women's Resource Center at Pacific. "These educational forums will equip participants to be change-agents on our campus. Our goal is to engage every man and woman on our campus who wants to prevent sexual victimization."

Sokolow will moderate a panel discussion featuring community leaders and experts from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the Don and Karen DeRosa University Center's Ballroom. These sessions will feature Anna Marjavi from the San Francisco-based organization Futures Without Violence; Nilda Valmores from My Sister's House, a Sacramento-based non-profit group; Chad Sniffen, from CALCASA's PreventConnect campus prevention program; and more.

Earlier in the morning, there will be several closed forums offering specialized training to University officials.

Sessions from 2:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. are free and open to the public, and are located in the DeRosa University Center's Ballroom.

For more information regarding this event, visit Pacific's Women's Resource Center at


2:30 pm - 3:30 pm - Forum for Student Life graduate students, Residence Life staff, student advisors, peer educators, campus student leaders

Location: DUC Ballroom - Open to the public

Brett Sokolow, founder and director of the National Center for Higher Education Risk Management, will present an interactive program to empower bystander intervention in situations at risk of developing into a sexual assault.  Students will learn how to identify potentially dangerous situations and practice strategies for taking actions that could make the difference between crime and safety, life and death.


3:30 pm - 5:00 pm - News from the Frontlines of Violence Prevention: A panel featuring campus and community leaders and experts including Anna Marjavi, program manager of Futures Without Violence, a national leader in sexual violence prevention education and advocacy based in San Francisco; Nilda Valmores, executive director of My Sister's House, the first and only organization to provide services to survivors of domestic violence from the Asian and Pacific Islander community of Sacramento; and Chad Sniffen from CALCASA, the statewide coalition against sexual assault.

Location: DUC Ballroom - Open to the public

Brett Sokolow, founder and director of the National Center for Higher Education Risk Management, will moderate this panel of experts in a discussion about the exciting, innovative work being accomplished today in the field of sexual violence prevention.  From new programs that inspire men to engage in violence prevention, to creative uses of social media, these leaders are redefining the anti-violence movement.


7:00 pm - 8:30 pm - Open forum for student athletes, Greek Life, Residence Life community with Brett Sokolow, founder and director of the National Center for Higher Education Risk Management and national expert in campus sexual violence prevention.

Location: DUC Ballroom - Open to the public

Brett Sokolow, founder and director of the National Center for Higher Education Risk Management, will present a program to student athletes and fraternity and sorority members to inspire and empower them to take an active, positive bystander role in high-risk situations that could develop into sexual assault or sexual harassment.  Topics will include how to recognize problematic conduct, how to intervene and how to help a victim.

about the author

Lily Penfold   Lily Penfold is the Media Relations Assistant at Pacific and also a graduate student in the Communication Department of the College of the Pacific.