Starting in Spring 2014, new fraternity and sorority members from all four greek councils will receive PACT training through the Women’s Center.
Last Spring, the leaders of the four greek councils agreed to mandate PACT training for new greek members starting next semester in order to improve Duke’s culture, said senior Ian Zhang, president of the Inter-Greek Council.
The five-hour training will be broken in two sessions and led by peer facilitators. Topics include consent, alcohol use, campus resources, responding compassionately to victims of gender violence and strategies for identifying and minimizing risk, said Amy Cleckler, gender violence prevention and services coordinator for the Women’s Center.
“There [were] a number of different studies that came out last year [about] confidence and sexual misconduct at Duke,” said senior Jack Riker, the President of the Interfraternity Council. “The four greek council presidents saw PACT training as an effective way to battle a lot of those problems.”
Due to staffing constraints at the Women’s Center, not all of the new members will receive training within the Spring semester, Riker said. Those who do not get trained in the Spring will undergo the process in the Fall.
“All the new members will get trained their first semester being greek or their second semester,” he said. “By Spring 2015, all of the new members will be trained.”
Senior Katie Howard, president of the Panhellenic Council, said it is important to train all greek members because gender violence is a pervasive issue.
“PACT training is important because gender violence is a very real issue that could affect any of the women in our community,” senior Katie Howard, president of the Panhellenic Council, wrote in an email Saturday.
All of the greek council executive members were PACT trained last year.
“The goals of PACT training are to educate students about gender violence on campus and to give them the skills to prevent and respond to incidents involving other people in the community,” Cleckler wrote in an email Wednesday.
If all goes according to plan, the entire greek community will be PACT trained within four years, Zhang said.
“We think the message is very valuable and will hopefully open doors to organic conversations about the issues discussed,” Howard said. “I hope that our community uses this opportunity to understand... what gender violence is and empower them to have dialogues about sexual consent.”