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Dealing with the trauma of sexual assault

University life is supposed to be one of the most enjoyable times of a person’s life. Unfortunately, for some this is the time they may fall victims to sexual assault.
 
The term sexual assault has shockingly become normalised in society and has become a common threat to university students. The University of the Free State (UFS) through its sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, and sexual violence policy strongly condemns any form of sexual abuse. Dr Melissa Barnaschone, Director at Student Counselling and Development (UFS) says the university cares for the health and wellbeing of students and provides necessary support for victims of sexual assault and trauma.
 
It is unfortunate that sexual assault comes with many misconceptions that often shift responsibility and blame from the perpetrator to the victim. “It is important to always remember that it is not your fault; do not blame yourself,” says Dr Barnaschone. Helpguide.Org: Trusted guide to mental & emotional health says sexual assault leaves psychological wounds and sometimes long-lasting health challenges. Such trauma can severely affect a person’s ability to cope with daily academic, social, professional, and personal responsibilities.
 
Any sexual violence is a crime and as a victim, you are not to blame. Healing is achieved when you start to believe that you are not responsible for what happened to you. Visit Helpguide.Org for more information on post-traumatic stress disorder, trauma recovery tips and other related topics.

On this video clip, Dr Barnaschone shares some guidelines to deal with sexual assault and trauma: 

News Archive

New head for Student Academic Services
2009-03-05

The University of the Free State (UFS) has appointed Mr Frank Madimetja Nkoana, pictured, as the new Director of Student Academic Services (SAS).

Mr Nkoana has a wealth of experience having worked for 24 years in the field of academic administration, 14 of which have been in leadership and senior management positions, at various institutions of higher learning.

In this post he will supervise applications, admissions, financial aid and registrations through to graduations.

The Director: Student Academic Services has a pivotal role to play in developing and supporting the University’s educational agenda.

“I consider my appointment to the Division as the correct one at the right time and a blessing to the UFS in view of my experience and training in the field of academic administration,” he said.

He believes it is only through effective and efficient academic support services that the institution can achieve excellence in its academic endeavour in tandem with its vision of being “an excellent, equitable and innovative University”.

“I must see to it that SAS, as both a sector and a process, is sufficiently and appropriately supported and maintained through an effective administrative structure that is manned by skilled and well-trained personnel, adding thereto continuous development and job enhancement – thus creating a conducive environment for efficiency and effective service delivery to students, staff and the wider community,” he said.

However, he is also mindful of the challenges facing him and the Division. He considers as his main challenge, among others, the creation of a Division that is functionally able and has as its goal the achievement and provision of effective academic administrative support to the core university business.

“Our operations should be in line with new developments in academic administrative systems to enable the UFS to achieve academic excellence and global competitiveness,” said Mr Nkoana.

“We must be able to establish and strengthen a high level of ethos of service delivery and develop good human relations between the staff and the students.”

Media Release
Issued by: Mangaliso Radebe
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2828
Cell: 078 460 3320
E-mail: radebemt.stg@ufs.ac.za  
05 March 2009
 

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