Girls dressed in teal in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Week lined the seats of the University Auditorium on Wednesday to hear a survivor tell her story.
Angela Rose was a high school senior when she was grabbed in 1996 outside the mall where she worked.
The audience listened as Rose described the night she was taken by a repeat sex offender on parole for murder.
Rose founded Promoting Awareness, Victim Empowerment (PAVE), an organization that teaches people to break their silence on their past experiences with sexual violence.
“Repeat offenders are not all that uncommon on college campuses,” she said. “Research shows that. It’s also important to know that healing is absolutely possible and it is a choice.”
The attacks plaguing campus have caused fear to ripple through the student body. Female students like Kate Andersen, a 20-year-old UF tourism and hospitality management junior, are not willing to put their safety at risk.
“This event only brings more focus to learning ways to protect yourself and to be aware of your surroundings,” she said.
At the event, Susan Webster, the SG Senate majority leader, said stories like Rose’s can happen to anyone.
“It’s unfortunate that the attacks on campus have come at the same time as our event, but this gives students even more reason to be educated,” she said.
[A version of this story ran on page 3 on 9/11/2014 under the headline "Rape survivor shares story in Accent event"]
Angela Rose, sexual assault survivor and activist, addresses students Wednesday in University Auditorium for Sexual Assault Awareness Week. She was brought by Accent Speaker’s Bureau. See the story on page 3.