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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at CNU chapter.

Can I kiss you?

It’s no secret that as young adults just beginning to make our long-awaited entry into “the real world,” there is an expectation that dating in college should also hold some form of lasting guarantee. Introducing a new guy friend suddenly transforms into a fruitful romance that our families can’t seem to lose hope for. However, beyond these dinner table conversations, the unspoken pressure to pair off into promising realtionships can most likely be traced back to the paleolithic era (I believe that was right about when Tinder was just coming onto the social scene). Adding to the strain of actually taking interest in a cute guy, the misfortune lies in that dating can be defined several ways. So when you or myself finally find that man that would be more than content with holding our hands, the inevitable “What are we?” conversation is just around the corner.

Wednesday’s “Can I Kiss You?” event shed some light on intimacy and dating communication for a wide range of CNU students. Mike Domitrz, founder of The Date Safe Project, Inc., spoke in front of members of the Greek community, athletes, RAs, and student leaders on the significance of speaking up throughout varying levels of relationships. The “Can I Kiss You?” program is nationally recognized and run through The Date Safe Project, which looks to educate secondary school students, college students, and the military on safe dating and the overwhelming benefits of being proactive.

A huge portion of the night was dedicated to identifying possible sexual assault situations, being able to call it what it is, and take charge. As cases of rape on college campuses continue to surface, so do the efforts to correct the issue. Mike’s discussion challenged the close knit community of CNU to be Captains, to hold a standard of respect, and to embody servitude in preemptive actions.

Ending the night on a strong note, Mike’s discussion was much more than a midweek breather from papers and midterms, but a crucial call to the men and women of our great university. His words guided us to understand that we must demand more from our partners and of our peers. That when walking into a party, our responsibilities are no longer limited to ourselves, but extend to each individual in the room. The next time we want to get cozy with someone, “May I kiss you?” should be a part of the dialogue.

Tylar McGill, 19, is a freshman at Christopher Newport University, pursuing a degree in Communication Studies and English with a concentration in writing. She has come to appreciate two things in life, coke slurpees, and her home in Virginia Beach. Back at CNU when Tylar is not writing for Her Campus, you can find her on the court with the Lady Captains Volleyball team, or in the library not whispering. She plans to find her place in Public Relations upon graduating, but is currently focused on making it to all of her 8ams.