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EPOL Professor William Trent weighs in on how safe colleges are for women

by Elayne Clift / Nov 30, 2012

William Trent, professor of Education Policy, Organization and Leadership, was interviewed for an article by about the safety of women on campuses in Massachusetts. Trent specifically commented on a Voices of Diversity study.

NOVEMBER 27, 2012, SENTINELSOURCE.COM, Keene, N.H., Elayne Clift—During a two-week period earlier this year, several women students at four noted colleges and universities in Massachusetts reported being raped. Sadly, The Patriot Ledger of Quincy, Mass. noted that “not a single political leader stepped up to express concern.”

Neither the rapes nor the lack of response to them by campus administrators or government officials were unusual occurrences. In my own experience as an adjunct lecturer in Women’s Studies I often heard distraught young women’s stories as they struggled with sexist remarks and sexual harassment at various campuses where I taught. Still, I hoped that things might be improving. That doesn’t seem to be the case.

A national study by a Harvard University-affiliated research institute examined sexism and racism on American college campuses in 2009. The Voices of Diversity study found that sexism and sexual assault are “regular, ubiquitous, and pervasive,” as William Trent, a professor at the University of Illinois, put it after reading the study results.

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