SHAPE holds first Blitz event of the year

Amber+Coleman+%2F+Cluster+Staff

Amber Coleman / Cluster Staff

IMG_7800 IMG_7780 IMG_7801

Amber Coleman / Cluster Staff
Amber Coleman / Cluster Staff

On Jan. 14, SHAPE held its second SHAPE Blitz event in the lobby of Connell Student Center. SHAPE stands for Sexual Assault, Hazing and Alcohol Prevention Education. It was started in 2007 to centralize the efforts of different programs and organizations on campus.That effort led to the creation of one group, SHAPE, to focus on those three issues and how they affect healthy decision making in college. Its goal was, and still is, to educate the students of Mercer on sexual assault, hazing, alcohol and drugs throughout the school year. The organization is composed of both students and staff members who are actively involved with and dedicated to keeping the student body informed on these matters.

SHAPE Blitz is held each semester to promote the organization and its upcoming events. Students can talk to current members and see what SHAPE is about.

SHAPE members hosted a table in the Student Center and offered information to students passing by. They also offered a small flyer with the dates of their events for the semester and applications for joining the 2014-2015 committee. The SHAPE members stayed busy talking with prospective members and answering any questions that they had.

SHAPE Graduate Assistant, Sara Black said, “We aim to host programs each semester that cover relevant topics like sexual assault, alcohol and drugs in fun and engaging ways. We want to educate Mercer students, but also make events interactive, enjoyable and fun to go to.” The Blitz event is primarily a promotional event. SHAPE members give out candy, post-it notes and whistles as well.

SHAPE will be hosting four events this semester.

From Feb. 10-13, SHAPE will have an event called “Ask Me About It?” in Connell Student Center from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. This program will be about sexual assault. Designated students will wear buttons with sexual assault facts printed on them around campus. Participants will try to find these facts in a scavenger hunt game. It will be a fun, informative event that will allow students to meet new people on campus that they might not know. There will also be a table in the Student Center each day of the event so students can start playing the game at any time. There will also be prizes.

Another SHAPE event that will be held this semester is “Alcohol Awareness” on March 3 and 5 to inform students about making good decisions when it comes to alcohol.

SHAPE will hold its third event, “The Clothesline Project,” April 1 and 2 in Connell Student Center from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Black said that this event has been a success in the past. This is a modified project from a national sexual assault awareness campaign. Students will decorate t-shirts to support sexual assault and rape survivors.

Finally, “Take Back the Night” will follow “The Clothesline Project” April 2 on Cruz Plaza from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. This is a common sexual assault awareness event that is held on many campuses in the United States. There will be a candlelight vigil for survivors of sexual assault and the t-shirts from “The Clothesline Project” will be displayed. Survivors and their supporters will also have the opportunity to speak at the event.

Black said, “[The Blitz] was a great success and we look forward to seeing more students at our events throughout the semester.” If you are interested in joining the SHAPE committee, you can find more information at the Counseling and Psychological Services Office located behind Mary Erin Porter residence hall, or you can e-mail SHAPE at [email protected] edu.