The Pennsylvania Department of Education announced that $1.5 million in It’s On Us PA grants are available to colleges, universities, and other postsecondary schools in Pennsylvania to help combat sexual assault on campus.
“All Pennsylvanians deserve a safe learning environment, and the It’s On Us PA grant program will help ensure our students are able to live, grow, and thrive without fear for their physical and emotional well-being,” said Secretary of Education Dr. Khalid N. Mumin. “By participating in the It’s On Us PA program, higher education institutions will strengthen their commitment to making their campus communities safer and more welcoming for the students who call it home.”
The It’s On Us PA campaign is based on a core belief that sexual violence shouldn’t be part of any student’s education. It’s On Us PA is a statewide campaign that invites education leaders and all Pennsylvanians to be part of the solution to protect students from sexual violence.
Grant applications are available on the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s website. Applications will be accepted through 11:59 PM on November 13, 2023.
Eligible institutions and schools with 10,000 or fewer students may request up to $40,000; those with more than 10,000 students may apply for up to $60,000. Private licensed career schools that do not offer specialized associate degrees may request up to $10,000.
Institutions use grant funds to implement strategies on their campuses to address goals of the It’s On Us PA campaign, which include:
- Improving awareness, prevention, reporting, and response systems regarding sexual violence in schools, colleges, and universities to better serve all students.
- Removing or reducing barriers that prevent survivors of sexual violence from reporting and/or accessing vital resources by creating a more consistent, empowering reporting process for student survivors of gender-based violence.
- Demonstrating significant, proactive, and sustainable leadership to change campus culture by challenging Pennsylvania’s education leaders – including college and university presidents – as well as students, teachers, faculty, staff, families, and communities to pledge to improve their institutions’ climate.
Since 2016, 264 It’s On Us PA Grants totaling nearly $7 million have been awarded to 95 post-secondary institutions across the state – including public and private two-year and four-year colleges and universities.
Pennsylvanians are invited to visit the It’s On Us PA webpage and take the pledge to “recognize that non-consensual sex is sexual assault, identify situations in which sexual assault may occur, intervene in situations where consent has not or cannot be given, and create an environment in which sexual assault is unacceptable and survivors are supported.”