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Wellness > Sex + Relationships

Millersville University Advocating for Sexual Violence Prevention 

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

The Its On Us PA government initiative awarded Millersville University $29,990 on December 10th, 2021 as part of a $1 million state grant. The grant proposal was written by Millersville University’s Title IX Coordinator Elizabeth Swantek


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This year will mark the 50th anniversary establishment of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 which “prohibits sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, and gender identity) discrimination in any educational program or activity receiving federal financial assistance” (hhs.gov). 

The application for the grant required specification of the university’s plan to implement change in at least one of three different areas of development. These included increasing mechanisms and capacity for reporting sexual violence, improving institutional awareness, and training for sexual violence prevention, and improving institutional responses to sexual violence. 

The University has developed plans for all three of the components. Swantek also identified that there were two other priorities of the grant plan. The first was to recreate a K-12 symposium in partnership with Penn Manor High School, which neighbors the university’s campus. “We need to start younger,” said Swantek about instilling the importance of consent in children. “When people are 18 and they’re learning about consent, it’s not that it’s too late, but it could absolutely happen earlier,” she added. 

Part of the symposium will include partnering with the YWCA of Lancaster, which the university has done in the past, and utilizing their educational programs. Universities who applied to the Its On Us PA grant and included partnerships with K-12 schools and programs in their plan were given higher financial priority over those who did not.


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Part of improving institutional awareness at Millersville is by engaging students, professors, and faculty. The Its On Us grant requires universities in their action plan to promote affirmative-consent standards. “Our code of conduct defines consent as to engage in specific sexual activity, at the time of the activity, communicated through clear action and or words, that are mutually understood” said Swantek.


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A portion of the grant money will be directed towards establishing a book club that will be accessible to all members of the Millersville University community. “We hope to partner with some other agencies on campus,” she said. The text to be discussed is Sexual Citizens: A Landmark Study on Sex, Power, and Assault on Campus by Jennifer S. Hirsch and Shamus Khan. 

Promoting social safety is another way Millersville University advocates for sexual violence prevention. “We need to increase our education around stalking,” said Swantek. The Millersville Title IX office shares resources on their Instagram, @mutitleix, from the organization SPARC, or The Stalking Prevention, Awareness, and Resource Center. 

In addition to the Title IX office at the university, the Millersville Health Service Care Team assists in establishing sexual safety on campus. In an email response, the Care Team shared that Health Services ‘was represented on the Millersville University Sexual Misconduct Advisory Task Force and assisted with the completion of the Culture of Respect Core evaluation’.


Health Services promotes sexual wellness and safety through providing affordable STI testing, treatment, and educational resources about safe sex along with multiple other services. As well, they offer ‘free STI testing to any student impacted by sexual assault.’ The confidentiality of victims of sexual assault and domestic violence who utilize the Health Services Center are protected by HIPPA, or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. 

Local resources for any Millersville University student or staff include the YWCA Assault Prevention and Counseling Center and the Domestic Violence Services of Lancaster County. Their information can be found under the ‘Resources’ section of the Millersville Title IX website page.


Image by Aimee Feuda

HCXO, Aimee

Aimee Feuda

Millersville '23

Aimee is a senior Science Writing major at Millersville University. She is passionate about music, social justice, and mental health. Her interests include art, makeup, and attending live music.