Victim & Survivor Support & Advocacy
If you or someone you know has experienced sexual assault, sexual harassment, dating or relationship violence, stalking, or sexual exploitation, the University is committed to giving you the help and support you deserve.
No matter the circumstances, you are not to blame. Give yourself permission to do what you need to do to take care of yourself. You are entitled to receive the full range of resources and support services the University has to offer, including academic, employment, or housing accommodations; medical care; emotional support; and advocacy services.
We Are Open
During the remote instruction period, the Office for Sexual Misconduct Prevention & Response, Gender Equity Center, and Counseling and Psychological Services remain open and available to support students. Please contact these offices, or email email@example.com to initiate discreet support that is specific to your circumstances.
If you are concerned about the safety of yourself or someone else, we are here to help. Our offices are open and available to provide support. If you are in immediate danger, please call 911.
Understanding Domestic and Relationship Violence
Relationship abuse takes many forms. You do not need to be in a romantic or sexual relationship to experience unhealthy behaviors and abuse. Parents, siblings, relatives, and even housemates can make you feel unsafe just like a spouse or romantic partner. If you feel as though you are experiencing mistreatment from the people you are sheltering in place with, please contact our offices for support.
Finding a Safe Space
Finding a safe and confidential space to speak is important. Our offices are understanding, and offer flexible appointments to meet student’s needs. We can also help students brainstorm ways to access our services safely.
Protecting Victim Survivors
No matter when or where you are treated badly, Penn State is here to support you. Even if the abuser is not affiliated with the University, we are still able to help by providing critical resources including counseling, safety planning, academic accommodations, referrals to community resources, and more.
Supporting Victim Survivors
If you suspect a friend is in an unhealthy or abusive relationship, talk to them about it and remind them that you will be there if and when they need help to leave. Encourage them to engage in the following essential steps:
- Develop a safety plan
- Practice self-care
- Reach out to a support network of friends and family
Additionally, The National Network to End Domestic Violence has created a tip sheet to help individuals support friends and family members who may be experiencing domestic abuse during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- ReachOut Editions
- Anonymous resource guide proving Penn State specific information and a step-by-step guide to helpful resources for survivors at any point in their healing journey.
- Speak with someone immediately or link to additional resources for support, prevention, and advocacy.
- Special instructions: After downloading the app, select "U.S. Colleges and Universities and search for "Pennsylvania State University." You can then explore information specific to Penn State.
- Created by the One Love Foundation to provide individuals impacted by relationship abuse with resources and safety planning information.
- Password protected, free, and discreet assistance.
Private Messaging Apps
- End-to-end encryption means messages are unrecoverable and only you and the recipient can read those messages. Self-destruction functionality enables you to make your messages, photos, videos and files automatically disappear from both devices after a set amount of time or after they have been read or opened by the recipient.
- Messages cannot be forwarded. Deleting messages on your side of the conversation will remove them from the recipients' side as well.
- Send private individual and group chats and calls.
- End-to-end encryption means no third party can view the messages. This security is automatic without turning on any additional settings.
- Users receive a randomly generated ID, so messages and contacts are not shared with the app and a phone number, email, or other personal information is not required to used the app.
- Messages are protected against hackers and deleted after delivery.