On April 7, 2022, students and community members gathered on the main quad to march through the streets in protest of sexual violence on campus. Participants walked from the quad to Angel Park in downtown Sewanee, all the while chanting “Stop the violence! We stand with survivors! We have the power! We have the right! Take back the night!” The organized event, titled Take Back the Night, is an international event and non-profit organization that works to end sexual violence. Hosted by Sewanee’s Title IX office, the event was brought to Sewanee in order to provide people a productive way to discuss the issue and consider actionable steps for the future to combat sexual discrimination and violence on campus.
Deputy Director of the Title IX office, Kaylei Goodine, says that one reason the office really wanted to bring Take Back the Night to Sewanee is to “give people an avenue to talk about these issues and allow students to hear what is going on on campus from their peers.” The office hopes to make this event an annual tradition and Goodine mentions that the office has already booked the quad for April of 2023. April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and this event is an impactful kick-off weekly events hosted by the Title IX office.
Take Back the Night differs from other events that the office hosts because Goodine says, “Programming through our office is becoming a newer and more expansive opportunity. This one is more of a community gathering event to reflect on the current standards that we hold and how we can move forward from there.” Speakers included, Rosario-Caliz Josue (aka Dean Sway) the Dean of Community Standards, Director of Multicultural Affairs/ Inclusive Excellence Rachel Fredericks, Interfraternity Council Vice President of Diversity Equity and Inclusion Silas McClung (C’24), Chair of STIX Mary Emily Morris (C’22), and School of Theology graduate student Audra Ryes.