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  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

UIS selected as lead university for statewide campaign

January 30, 2004

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan meets with reporters on the UIS campus
Attorney General Madigan meets with reporters following the press conference on the UIS campus

SPRINGFIELD - UIS has the distinction of being the first university in Illinois to begin the statewide campaign to raise awareness of partner abuse among students on Illinois college and university campuses.

UIS was selected for this honor by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and Verizon Wireless because of the excellent work that is being done at UIS to safeguard the wellbeing of students.

During the media event held Tuesday, January 27, in the UIS Public Affairs Center, Attorney General Madigan praised the efforts of both the UIS Counseling Center and UIS Women's Center in being sensitive and responsive to the needs of students and in getting UIS students involved in helping fellow students. Six UIS students were recognized at the event.

Dr. Judy Shipp, director of the UIS Counseling Center, said there is not a high incidence of partner abuse at UIS, but the center believes that education and prevention are essential in order to ensure that students will know they can get help if they need it.

"It is sometimes difficult for people to become aware that they are being abused by a partner. This campaign is designed to help them identify the signs," Shipp said.

Posters are being placed around campus telling students that if they are being yelled at, put down, threatened, intimidated or forced to have sex, that is abuse. The posters warn about such statements as "What the hell's wrong with you? Don't you love me anymore?' "Can't you ever do anything right?" "What do you mean, no?" and "Don't you ever shut up?"

UIS Chancellor Richard Ringeisen, who joined Attorney General Madigan and Verizon Wireless' Tracy Nolan in launching the campaign, said that even one case of partner abuse is too many. "We are proud to lead the way in this campaign to build awareness of the insidious effects of partner abuse," Dr. Ringeisen said. "We want our students and those in colleges and universities throughout the state to know that they do not have to tolerate emotional, sexual or physical abuse at any time under any circumstances."

The chancellor noted the work of both Dr. Shipp and Lynn Otterson, director of the UIS Women's Center, in helping to create a positive campus atmosphere for students.

Otterson invited several UIS students to attend Tuesday's event, each of whom is an educator in the Women Center's CARE peer program. CARE stands for Campus Acquaintance Rape Education. The program provides a variety of educational workshops for male and female students on campus. CARE workshops are presented by Women's Center staff and student peer educators, students talking to other students about these important issues.

Students who were recognized at the event are:

Usha Chadalawada, a graduate student in the Public Health Program, who has been a practicing physician in India for five years.

Candi Clouse, a graduate student in the Individual Option Program and the graduate assistant in Women's Studies Program.

Andrew Hollingsead, a junior majoring in political studies. He is a residence advisor in campus housing and represents UIS as the student trustee on the U of I Board of Trustees.

Lateasa Polito, a graduate student in Computer Science who works as the graduate assistant in the Women's Center.

Tyson Roan, a junior majoring in legal studies and political studies.

Although she could not attend the event, Kymeicko Williams, a sophomore in the Capital Scholars Program, was also recognized.

The number to call at UIS for counseling or other help is 206-7122.

 

    The University of Illinois at Springfield, one of three U of I campuses, is a small, public liberal arts university that offers 40 degree programs – 20 bachelor’s, 19 master’s, and the Doctorate of Public Administration. UIS has a special mission in public affairs and service and is known for extraordinary internships, a wireless campus, extensive online offerings, and a commitment to teaching.
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