It’s On Us: NKU joins national campaign, encourages students to take pledge to prevent sexual assault

photos by Timothy Sofranko/NKU

“It will hopefully be a call to action. We’re bringing home a national initiative.”

By Gavin Colton and Ryan Clark
NKU Marketing + Communications

Gabby Maloney remembers the moment like it was yesterday, like it could have happened any time, to anyone.

She was a freshman undergraduate student at another university. She and a group of friends were at a party.

“I wish this was where the story ended, but unfortunately that night a woman from the party was sexually assaulted,” says Maloney, now coordinator of the Norse Violence Prevention Center. “At the end of the night, there was a moment where I walked past a room and saw something that just didn’t look right. I briefly checked in and was assured that things were fine.” 

But after waking up the next morning, the woman from the room presented signs that indicated she had been sexually assaulted that night, Maloney said.

“I can’t help but feel an extreme amount of guilt for what happened to her and my lack of action,” she said. “It was then I realized the power of the moment.”

It proved what everyone seems to be saying. It’s on us—all of us—to make sure sexual assaults do not occur.

Since the unveiling of the national “It’s On Us” initiative last year, more than 300 college campuses have started campaigns of their own.

NKU’s “It’s On Us” campaign will be showcased Sept. 30 during Fall Fest from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Student Union Plaza.

Last year, President Obama and Vice President Biden unveiled “It’s On Us,” in partnership with Generation Progress at the Center for American Progress.

According to the White House’s fact sheet, almost 220,000 people have taken the pledge to end sexual assault on college campuses.

“The campaign is something no one can disagree with,” Maloney said. “We’re not asking too much of anyone on a human level. It’s an easy and simple campaign that has a very powerful message that anyone can get behind.”

The campaign will feature different on-campus and off-campus resources, and will inform students of ways they can get involved in the campaign and other initiatives, such as the Norse Violence Prevention Center.

Some of the campus groups and organizations supporting the campaign include: The Norse Violence Prevention Center, Student Government, the Office of Sorority and Fraternity life, University Housing, and the Men’s Soccer team.

“It’s On Us” recognizes that the solution to sexual assault begins with everyone.

It seeks to reframe the conversation surrounding sexual assault in a way that inspires everyone to see it as his or her responsibility to do something, big or small, to prevent it.

"It's On Us"

WHAT: NKU’s “It’s On Us” campaign

WHEN: 11 a.m. - 2 p.m., Sept. 30 during Fall Fest

WHERE: Student Union Plaza

WHY: “It’s On Us” recognizes that the solution to sexual assault begins with everyone. It seeks to reframe the conversation surrounding sexual assault in a way that inspires everyone to see it as his or her responsibility to do something, big or small, to prevent it.

Students can:

  • Sign the “It's On Us” pledge. The first 25 students to sign the pledge will receive a FREE NKU “It's On Us” T-shirt
  • Learn ways to get involved and get dates for upcoming events
  • Learn about campus and community resources
  • Receive FREE giveaways 
  • Sign the “It's On Us” banner, which will be displayed in the Student Union

All students that receive an NKU “It’s On Us” T-shirt are asked to wear them on Sept. 30 in support of the campaign.

Following the Fall Fest event, the national “It’s On Us” campaign will be traveling around the country in November to provide services and trainings on college campuses.

“I think there are small ways people can be a part of it,” Maloney said. “It will hopefully be a call to action. We’re bringing home a national initiative.”

Adam Dralle, NKU’s coordinator for Fraternity and Sorority Life, said it was important for the Greek community to be involved.

“Fraternity and sorority members are leaders on campus and very visible,” he said. “And we felt it was important because a lot of attention is paid to these groups, so we want to be a part of leading this effort and change rather than jumping on the bandwagon afterwards.”

Students can join the NKU Men’s Soccer team in support of the campaign at 7 p.m. Sept. 30. The team will be sporting their “It’s On Us” shirts in the warm-up against Belmont at the NKU Soccer Stadium.

“I am connected to the reality that I cannot go back in time to do something more to change what happened,” Maloney said. “But I share this to help others realize how speaking and standing up can make an impact on preventing sexual assault.”

For more information about the “It’s On Us” campaign, contact molonyg1@nku.edu or call 859-572-5865.