Welcome to the Clark Anti-Violence Education Program (CAVE)
What is the CAVE Program?
The Clark Anti-Violence Education (CAVE) program was initially founded through years of work and research by Psychology professors Dr. Kathleen Palm-Reed, Ph.D., and Dr. Denise Hines, Ph.D., with generous grants from the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Justice. Currently housed within the Office of Wellness and Prevention Education, the goal of the program is to reduce dating violence and sexual assault at Clark University through education programs and campaigns throughout the year. It is a coordinated effort by several offices at Clark, including law enforcement, the Dean of Students office, athletics, health services, the counseling center, residence life, the judicial board, and representatives from student government and other concerned student groups.
What Kinds of Programs are Scheduled or Planned?
The CAVE program provides comprehensive education to the Clark community on issues related to dating violence, sexual assault, consent, stalking, harassment and being an active bystander. This is done through a variety of mandatory educational programs, outlined below.
Agent of Change
In this online program, completed prior to arrival at Clark, incoming students engage in a first-person virtual role play that presents them with the opportunity to "challenge the attitudes and behaviors that support and facilitate violence".
In each scene, approximately 3-5 minutes in length, the player participates in conversations with digital characters about sexual assault, relationship violence, sexual harassment, and stalking. During conversations, the player makes choices about what to say and how to respond to other characters. As the players make their choices, the digital characters respond by supporting, modeling, and challenging the player. In addition, as the player makes choices, they are placed into educational tiers to ensure the content is appropriate for each player’s skill-sets around violence prevention. This system allows players to learn, develop, and practice the skills needed to prevent violence before it happens. (Adapted from the "Agent of Change" program guide)
Bringing In The Bystander
This in-person program is required of all incoming students. Taking place a few weeks after students arrive at school, "Bringing In The Bystander" is a primary prevention program that operates from the persepctive that everyone has a role to play in ending violence on campus. Students learn about the skills necessary to be an active bystander, explore scenarios in which active bystanding may make a difference, and engage in role plays and dialogue to assist them in practicing various ways of intervening in difficult situations.
Beginning during Week One, incoming students explore the topic of consent from all angles: defining it, exploring what it looks like, and developing a sense of comfort and clarity in asking for and expressing it in a variety of different situations. Consenting Communities was developed by a group of Clark students, and was first implemented in 2014.
Think About It
The most recent addition to our comprehensive violence prevention programming, "Think About It" launched in 2015 and is a mandatory program for all incoming graduate students. This online program explores violence prevention from the unique position of graduate students as both learners and leaders within our community. It provides participants with knowledge and awareness of sexual assault, dating and domestic violence, stalking, harrassment, consent and active bystanding, and allows them to explore ways in which these domains may be contronted as graduate students. It also provides students with a glimpse into Clark's own policies, procedures and resources related to such issues.
In addition, CAVE collaborates with several community partners to bring other types of programming to campus at key times, such as during Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October and Sexual Assault Awareness Month in April. Ongoing awareness events are conducted all year, in collaboration with a variety of on campus groups. You can also "like" our Facebook page for regular updates about events and for additional informationl!
How Can Students Become Involved?
Currently, CAVE supports a task force of student representatives known as the CAVE Community Task Force. This student-led task force was developed as a way of Continuing the Conversation about consent that is started during Week One. Under the direction of the Wellness and Prevention Education office, this task force conducts outreach programs and education for campus groups, clubs, classes and community members to raise awareness of the issues of consent, violence prevention and healthy relationships.
For more information on this course and/or how to become a peer educator, please contact Assistant Director of Wellness and Prevention Education, Erin (Dolan) McClintock.