By Colin Bock
During Octoberim, sophomores split into groups on their retreat and made PSA’s to inform fellow students on certain issues.
While the PSAs certainly received mixed reviews from the the students, they certainly provided us with greater background information regarding each respective topic. There were a plethora of different prompts for us to choose from, including drugs and alcohol, sexual battery while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, incorrect pronoun usage, racial slurs, and more.
We were each placed in a group within our pre-assigned small groups, however, before smaller groups were assigned, we were asked to list our preferred two prompts. I was ultimately placed in a small group crafting a PSA regarding two people who appeared to be drunk, and eventually left together to have non consensual sexual activity. Our message— “Why didn’t you stop me”?
While our group didn’t win, we certainly learned a monumental amount about our field through making a PSA about it. However, I was able to speak with a member of the ‘winning’ PSA team, Hannah W., in which she said, “the PSA activity was amazing. We had serious, meaningful discussions on important topics like drug abuse, peer pressure, bullying, and sexual assault. Every single person in my group (even our faculty advisor) became so invested in this project that by the end of the day, we were so eager to see this become a rite of way for the sophomores each year”.
These such learning experiences endured by my peers and myself truly emphasize the importance of this activity, and I further hope that all sophomores, much like Hannah said, are able to partake in this activity. Something I truly found compelling was that people I never really had pictured as vocal leaders truly stepped up and made a resounding impact in the creation of our PSA.
To be honest, I never wanted to write a reflection about the PSA, because I had mixed reviews regarding the entire experience, however, after subtle persuasion from Deb Walsh and a pleasant exchange with other students regarding the experience, I ultimately decided to just say what the heck, I’ll do it, and I hope my story resonates with some people.