AASCU Innovations Exchange
Your Source for Innovations in Public Higher Education

TCNJ logo
Project Title:The Office of Anti-Violence Initiatives (AVI)Institution Name:The College of New Jersey Innovation Category:Campus Safety/Student Health & Wellness Project Director:Robbin Loonan, Coordinator, Anti-Violence InitiativesContact Information:(609) 771-2272 , loonanr@tcnj.eduWebsite:http://oavi.pages.tcnj.edu
Project Description:Anti-Violence Initiatives (AVI) leads the campus effort to address issues of sexual assault, domestic/dating violence, and stalking by working with community partners to create a campus environment that values education and prevention, is intolerant of abuse, and responsive to needs of victims/survivors; our objective is to establish a campus culture of wellness, free from power-based personal violence, resulting in a safer living and learning environment. AVI’s key prevention strategy is Green Dot, a nationally-recognized, research-informed Bystander intervention program. Further, AVI harnesses the power of peer influence through Peer Educators whose programs promote healthy relationship skills and prosocial bystander behavior. 
  • Education and awareness on power-based personal violence and available resources and grievance procedures, measured by the number of programs and attendees at programs.
  • Engage and empower campus members to become prosocial bystanders, to support victims/ survivors, and to hold perpetrators accountable, measured by the number of students, faculty and staff that participate in bystander training and report incidents to AVI.
  • Respond to needs of victims/survivors by providing specialized confidential counseling, support, information, and resources so they can heal; services must be accessible, and will be measured by the number of students served. 
  • Since Fall 2009, Anti- Violence Initiatives has provided prevention/education/awareness programs for 6,359 members of the TCNJ community (5,987 Students and 372 Staff Members).
  • 87% of students surveyed report that they would intervene if they saw someone experiencing personal power-based violence. (Internal Survey, 2009)
  • Since Fall 2012, AVI has provided services to 49 students identifying as a victim/survivor of power-based personal violence.
  • In a 5 year period, students reporting experiencing sexual penetration without their consent decreased by .4%, stalking decreased by 2.2%, and being in a physically abusive relationship decreased by .5%. (ACHA-NCHA II) 
Challenges/Problems Encountered:
  • Measuring the impact of programs on campus and an overall change in the culture due to little qualitative data available. Our affirmative action office has deployed a climate survey that now includes questions regarding power-based personal violence.
  • Deployment of human and capital resources in an economically constrained environment has posed an ongoing challenge. An increase in the number of students seeking confidential counseling has outweighed the focus/resource deployment on education and prevention programs and will be rebalanced.
  • Engaging the overall faculty/staff as community partners and in overall training is a priority and opportunity for partnership with human resources/academic affairs. 
Evaluation Approach:

Operational data—number of clients and program/training attendees—is primarily the responsibility of the Coordinator of AVI to collect and maintain. Qualitative data is gathered through the 2009 and 2014 ACHA NCHA II surveys as well as an internal survey; and further data will be gleaned from the overall campus climate survey. These methods of collection are shared responsibilities with the Health & Wellness unit of Student Affairs and Human Resources.

Resources:  2009 and 2014 ACHA NCHA II surveys; internal surveys  

Potential for Replication:A strong partnership with the Title IX Coordinator, Student Conduct and Campus Police from the launch of the program to ensure a consistent message regarding grievance procedures, reporting requirements and expectations for information sharing and confidentiality is critical to success in any setting. The College has realigned its processes/expectations to ensure consistent messaging and execution of policies and procedures. This consistent approach should also include local law enforcement and prosecutor’s offices.
Additional Resources:

The College of New Jersey—Anti-Violence Initiatives—Green Dot Program: http://oavi.pages.tcnj.edu/green-dot

The College of New Jersey—Anti-Violence Initiatives—Tools for Victims and Survivors: http://oavi.pages.tcnj.edu/tools-for-everyone/tools-for-victims-and-survivors

CEO-to-CEO Contact:R. Barbara Gitenstein , Presidentrbgit@tcnj.edu
(609) 771-2101
Date Published: Friday, June 20, 2014