Scrolling Headlines:

Nick Mariano, Zach Oliveri transferring from UMass men’s lacrosse program -

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Four months after banning Iranian students from certain graduate programs, UMass announces new measures to ensure compliance with U.S. law -

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Justin King sentenced to eight to 12 years in prison -

Monday, June 29, 2015

Two future UMass hockey players selected in 2015 NHL Draft -

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Supreme Court ruling clears way for same-sex marriage nationwide -

Friday, June 26, 2015

Former UMass center Cady Lalanne taken 55th overall by Spurs in 2015 NBA Draft -

Friday, June 26, 2015

Second of four men found guilty on three counts of aggravated rape in 2012 UMass gang rape case -

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Boston bomber speaks out for first time: ‘I am sorry for the lives I have taken’ -

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

King claims sex with woman was consensual during alleged 2012 gang rape -

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Wrongful death suit filed in death of UMass student -

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Ryan Bamford uses online Q&A session to discuss UMass football conference search, renovation plans, cost of attendance -

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Opening statements delivered, first witnesses called in second trial for alleged 2012 gang rape at UMass -

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

UMass Board of Trustees approves rise in tuition, student fees -

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Former Minutewoman Quianna Diaz-Patterson named to Puerto Rican national softball team -

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

UMass rowing’s Jim Dietz inducted into CRCA Hall of Fame -

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Jury selection begins Monday in second gang rape trial -

Monday, June 15, 2015

Students turn attention to state legislators as decision on UMass budget looms -

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Alumna and next director of Brooklyn Museum Anne Pasternak ‘created her own path’ -

Thursday, June 11, 2015

UMass graduate crowned head of 600-year-old Indian kingdom -

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Committee recommends UMass increase tuition, student fees for in-state undergraduates -

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Letter to the Editor

An open letter to the Amherst College community:

As students of the Five College community, we are writing to express our rage, grief, sorrow and sympathy for Angie Epifano and all students who have been sexually assaulted or raped at Amherst College.

We are appalled, but not surprised, by the response of the Amherst administration to Angie Epifano’s assault and those of other students who have been subject to sexual crime and abuse.

Amherst College sets the standard for many institutions of higher learning, and in light of that fact we express deep disappointment at the ongoing displays of sexual violence on campus.

To the students, and especially to survivors of rape and assault, we understand your grief and anger, and we want to stand in solidarity with you as you recover and rebuild your community.

For some time, Smith College students have been aware of a frat culture at Amherst that accepts and encourages violence against others, especially women. We now appeal not just to principles of individual autonomy, but to human compassion.

We expect members of our community to hold themselves accountable and display exceptional respect for others. Smithies wish to cultivate such an attitude in our community, and we believe the principle of respect is absolutely essential for protecting survivors of sexual violence.

Though it is not often acknowledged, sexual violence has happened on our campus too, and we are actively working to eradicate it. We have to encourage the development of a survivor-supportive, trauma-aware culture among the Five Colleges, one that supports and protects students.

To the administration, we expect Amherst College, as a leading liberal arts institution, to immediately reform its policies and practices concerning rape and sexual assault. No community should allow sexual violence and victim blaming, yet these actions have been condoned by Amherst authorities, who seem to see gray areas around the definition of rape.

Let us be very clear: lack of resistance does not equal consent, nor does a previous relationship with the perpetrator. We as Smithies highly value sexual agency, and we will be aggressive in protecting this basic human right.

We know the problem of rape and sexual assault did not begin with Amherst, and we know it will not end there. Sexual violence is everywhere.

We believe, however, that we can change the culture around us, and we are committed to supporting the efforts of all colleges and universities towards building communities free of sexual violence.

We as students have a right to be safe in our communities, and security is possible only when students and administrators cooperate in cultivating appropriate resources for survivors as well as a healthy campus environment.

It is our hope that the publication of this letter, set at the start of a new semester, will prevent further silence about sexual assault and rape on college campuses. The semester of Angie Epifano may be over, but the struggle against sexual violence is only beginning.

With love, rage and best wishes for the future,

 

Keturah Williams 2013

With the support of Smith College Students Against Sexual Assault (SASA)

 

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