October 3, 2018

Three-year grant will fund new initiative to support survivors of sexual assault and violence

Hackettstown, N.J., Oct. 3, 2018—The U.S. Department of Justice has awarded a $300,000 grant to Centenary University to institute Cyclone Strong, a new initiative to strengthen awareness, prevention, and on-campus services regarding sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking (SADVS). The three-year grant will fund a new Coordinated Community Response (CCR) Team at Centenary, as well as the hiring of a full-time program coordinator to oversee and manage the initiative.

“This funding is an important step toward preventing SADVS on our campus, and will help us to promote awareness and provide comprehensive support to survivors,” said Kerry Mullins, vice president of student life and dean of students at Centenary University. “The safety of our students is our top priority.”

The CCR will expand services offered to survivors, including those offered by Centenary University personnel and through community partners such as the Domestic Abuse and Sexual Assault Crisis Center of Warren County (DASACC), a regional SADVS service provider. Through Cyclone Strong, Centenary will provide a dedicated space staffed by DASACC on its Hackettstown campus with specific hours for survivors to receive confidential services.

The grant also aims to extend an expanded program of awareness, prevention, and bystander intervention training to all Centenary students.

“To ensure the safety of our students at school, we must do everything we can to reduce sexual assault and domestic violence,” said Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5), who was instrumental in assisting Centenary to secure this grant. “I am pleased that this federal grant will help students at Centenary get the support they need and boost the university’s awareness programming on campus.”

In September, Centenary University’s chapter of the sorority Theta Epsilon Nu asked students to sign the It’s On Us pledge, which supports a nationwide movement to end sexual assault. The University has also planned activities to build greater awareness during Domestic Violence Awareness Month (Oct. 1-31):

 Oct. 1-5           Interwoven Stories Quilt Launch           

This project serves as a living narrative of empowerment and strength, encompassing a journey of healing from violence. The quilt will first be displayed at Centenary before beginning a tour of Warren County. It can be seen outside the cafeteria in the Lackland Center for the week, along with community resources for survivors.

Oct. 10            Paint It Purple

Students Taking On Prevention will partner with Greek life to promote Domestic Violence Awareness by handing out purple ribbons, power and control wheels, and resources for students. Outside of the cafeteria in the Lackland Center,  11 a.m.-2 p.m.

Oct. 23            Self Defense Class

Teaches students tools for self-awareness, self-empowerment, and self-defense. Lackland Center, 8 p.m.

Month-long     My Costume Is Not My Consent

Awareness marketing campaign on social media and flyers distributed around campus throughout the month of October. People are often told they were “asking” to be assaulted because of what they were wearing. This campaign communicates that no matter what someone’s costume is or how much skin they show, it’s not an invitation or an excuse to invade their boundaries.


Founded in 1867 by the Newark Conference of the United Methodist Church, Centenary University’s academic program integrates a solid liberal arts foundation with a strong career orientation. This mix provides an educational experience that prepares students to succeed in the increasingly global and interdependent world. The University’s main campus is located in Hackettstown, N.J., with its equestrian facility in Washington Township. The Centenary University School of Professional Studies offers degree programs at two locations, Parsippany and Edison, as well as online and at corporate sites throughout New Jersey.

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