Last night I attended the screening of It Happened Here on the University of South Florida (USF) campus in Tampa, Florida. I was so excited to meet Marjorie Schwartz Nielsen (the documentary’s producer) and Kylie Angell (one of the film’s featured activists) so I could thank them in person for their amazing work. I did, and it felt pretty good.
I’ve shown the documentary to over 1,500 high school students in my county, and I know first-hand how impactful it is, how beneficial it is in starting this conversation, and how effective it is at educating students about the facts of sexual assault and their Title IX rights. Far from intimidating students, It Happened Here makes students feel empowered and hopeful. I could actually feel that in the audience at my screenings and in the theatre at USF last night.
I was so happy to see a very large turn out of students – many of whom were boys. Yes! And, Crystal Coombes, Senior Deputy Title IX Coordinator for USF, was everything a college student could want in a Title IX coordinator. She made me hopeful colleges are finally starting to get it right. USF certainly seems to be on the right track.
For those of you who would also love the opportunity to meet Marjorie and Kylie, let me report that they are both powerful and kind women, and I wish you could meet them too. They truly care about this cause and want to crush it. If you do too, join the fight! Host a screening of It Happened Here at your school. You can also get involved with Stop Sexual Assault In Schools and host a screening of their free educational video “Sexual Harassment: Not In Our School” that is set to be released soon.
Here are some of my favorite photos from the night. A HUGE thank you to Renee Hangartner, President of the Clinical Psychological Association at USF, for making the screening possible. She’s another amazing woman I had the pleasure of meeting last night!
Me being silly.
Kylie Angell, Minnah Stein, and Marjorie Schwartz Nielsen ready for the screening.
Marjorie Schwartz Nielsen, Kylie Angell, and Crystal Coombes answering audience questions.