Empowering the community

Take Back the Campus is back and ready to educate.


Payton Mansfield

The Women’s Resource Center staff, Senior Maddie Clark, Professor Jen England, Graduate Assistant Jackie Liu, Senior Chloe McElmury and Senior Robert Northrup. Not pictured: Sophomore Sydney Holets, Sophomore Halima Ahmed and Sophomore Ruweida Sheikh-Mohamed.

Audra Grigus, Reporter

With a revamped schedule and new events taking place, the Women’s Resource Center (WRC) is hosting their annual Take Back the Campus event. The event is set up to teach advocacy, instill awareness and support those who have experienced any form of sexual assault or domestic violence.

“We want students coming away from this feeling that they are more empowered and feeling that they are a part of a community,” Assistant English Professor and Director of the WRC, Jen England said.

England has noted that it is important to recognize that Take Back the Campus varies from Take Back the Night (TBTN) events. The event that is held on campus is modeled off of TBTN and is localized for specifically for the Hamline community.

The schedule and events taking place this year have been redesigned to accommodate an educational and discussion based atmosphere.

“In the past, it has been a lot of listening, which is important,” England said. “But I think there’s also a lot of value in bringing people together to open that conversation.”

The event will start off at 5 p.m. with a community panel and Q&A, followed by a community roundtable discussion. During this time, students will be hearing from SOS Sexual Violence Services of Ramsey County, Breaking Free, U of M’s Aurora Center for Advocacy and Education and local survivor and advocate, Sarah Super, and Hamline’s Students Preventing Sexual Violence. Two Hamline students, Teddy Keller and Joe Davidson, will be at the event hosting a table to talk about masculinity on campus as well.

The WRC is aware that this event could be an uncomfortable or triggering environment for some students or community members to be in.

“Students have the choice to engage in this event or not,” England said. “While we hope they engage in it, we also know that some of what will be talked about is really triggering, but the whole event is framed in a way of support.”

Take Back the Campus aims to provide a platform for people to share their voices without any fear.

“This event is heavy, especially in the current climate with a lot of things going on, but I think that it is really crucial that it happens for people to see that they have an opportunity to use their voice and to not be afraid of the consequences of reporting,” WRC Student Worker, senior Maddie Clark said. “The event is an educational experience, not just an emotional experience.”

After the discussion panel and roundtable time, there will be sign-making and snacks. Students will have a chance to show off their new signs by rallying around campus, which will be followed by a memorial reading to remember survivors of sexual assault and domestic abuse and those who have lost their lives to it.

“This kind of thing will not change the whole society within one day, but if we keep doing this and keep educating women it will be changed,” WRC Graduate Assistant Jackie Liu said.

Take Back the Campus will happen on Oct. 18 from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in Anderson forum. For more information on what the WRC promotes and teaches, you can find them in their new space in Anderson Center room 320.