UNM’s Women’s Resource Center (WRC) wants to make sure everyone knows what to do when witnessing a dangerous situation.

As part of its $300,000 Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) grant, the WRC helped bring an interactive, online bystander training to campus.

The ‘U Got This! Your Guide to Speak Up, Step In, and Create a Better Campus for All’ program was developed by Catharsis Productions. It was based on research into psychology, education, behavior, and Title IX implications.

It is a great tool for Lobos to use to take care of the pack,” WRC Program Specialist Miquela Ortiz Upston said. “It’s an engaging training that goes by quickly and addresses these tough topics in ways that are relevant to college students. “

WRC Interim Director Aine McCarthy says the program addresses interpersonal violence like sexual assault, intimate partner violence, and stalking–focal points of why the DOJ entrusted UNM with these funds.

“They got UNM involved too,” she said. “It highlights UNM's policy that consent means affirmative consent. One of the important lessons is that consent always means FRIES–Freely Given, Reversible, Informed, Enthusiastic and Specific."   

 It also redefines what happens when you are a bystander, and provides tools to help someone challenge disrespectful and abusive behavior when they see it.

“It’s encouraging students how to act in different scenarios when witnessing sexual assault and intervening” McCarthy said.

With part of the VAWA funding, the WRC purchased 800 licenses so students, staff and faculty could take advantage of the course.

The training was indeed interactive and very informative on UNM policies,” Prevention Education Program Assistant Michelle Perez said. “I learned, it’s not enough to be a bystander—we all have a role today in being upstanders or proactively standing for consent culture and holding each other accountable.”  

There are three modules, and each is expected to take 15 to 20 minutes to complete. Anyone dealing with trauma or concerned with the content can contact the WRC or 505-277-3716.

The course is only available through the end of the year. Click here or email Coordinated Community to complete it by Dec. 31.

Screenshots of completion can be sent as well to the WRC for a chance of winning a ‘U Got This’ giveaway, which will include a day of self care. You can also learn more about the WRC at the Women’s Resource Center