UHS introduces new primary prevention program for incoming students
Beginning August 1, first-year and incoming transfer students will participate in a new online interpersonal violence prevention training program called U Got This! U Got This!—developed by Catharsis Productions—replaces the Tonight program which UW-Madison has used since 2013.
“The Tonight program was originally intended to be used for five years,” says Alex Nelson, a violence prevention specialist at University Health Services. “We planned to sunset it in spring 2017 and deploy an updated, more interactive program for students at the beginning of the fall semester.”
All incoming first-year and transfer students are required to participate in online and in-person prevention programming within their first semester on campus. This effort is in response to the AAU Climate Survey on Sexual Assault and Sexual Misconduct recommendations and student demand to further empower incoming students with information, skills, and empathy to help prevent sexual assault and dating violence.
University Health Services Violence Prevention unit held three student listening sessions to demo different online primary prevention programs. Nelson says U Got This! received favorable reviews from students who indicated it was the most engaging program of those presented.
“U Got This! is dialogue-focused and takes a cultural approach to violence prevention, focusing on how culture informs behavior and how students can do their part to change that culture,” says Nelson.
The new program is comprised of four modules totaling 60 minutes. The first three modules contain content created by Catharsis and the fourth module is customized UW-Madison content to inform students about policy disclosures, reporting options, and resources for survivors.
In addition to completing U Got This!, first-year and new transfer students must attend an in-person workshop to further explore concepts covered in the online program. Students can attend different sessions with topics such as healthy sexuality, healthy relationships, how to support a survivor, and bystander intervention. Closed sessions intended for students of color, LGBTQ+ students, and student survivors of sexual or relationship violence will be offered. All in-person workshops are closed to the press.
Questions from students or the campus community can be directed to Alex Nelson at mailto:email@example.com. Student survivors of sexual assault and dating violence can access confidential, no cost resources by contacting UHS Victim Advocacy & Survivor Services at 608-265-5600 (option 3) or firstname.lastname@example.org.