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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

UFS101 prepares new students for life
2012-03-07

7 March 2012

A new core curriculum module, UFS101, was launched in the Callie Human Centre at our Bloemfontein Campus on Monday 27 February 2012.

“We want to give you an education and not just a degree,” Prof. Jonathan Jansen, UFS Vice-Chancellor and Rector, said to the students in his opening address at the launch.

UFS101 is aimed at creating the next generation of citizens and young academics to stand out amongst other graduates in South Africa.

Implicit in the design of UFS101 is the development of engaged scholarship amongst UFS graduates. The curriculum also provides support for under-prepared students, while giving stronger students access to additional stimulation.

The module consists of seven units. Each unit comprises two lectures with either a learning experience or tutorial for each unit. In select cases both are used. Two units are presented in the first semester and five units in the second semester.

UFS101 also exposes students to provocative questions aimed at disrupting existing knowledge and ways of thinking by engaging them in some of the “big issues” across different disciplines, namely:

  • How do we deal with our violent past?
  • What does it mean to be fair?
  • What did God really say?
  • How small is small?
  • Why is the financial crisis described as ‘global’?
  • How do we become South Africans?

UFS 101 is a prerequisite for the completion of a qualification and students will earn an additional 16 credits over and above the minimum number of credits required for the completion of their qualification.

 

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