By: Madison Ruffo
NIAGARA UNIVERSITY, N.Y. – Since it’s 2016 launch, Niagara University’s Take Back the Night has been a night that students all across campus look forward to. From survivors of sexual and domestic violence speaking to students, to those students marching around campus this event truly highlights a community coming together in solidarity.
With Take Back the Night being such a new experience on NU’s campus, many individuals have gotten the chance to see the event improve over the years.
“Every year more and more student groups become more involved in the actual event,” said junior Alize Rosado. “Rather than just showing up to support the event, student clubs have started to take a more active role by having resource tables and advocating for the cause.” Rosado is the president of NU’s chapter of Phi Sigma Sigma, which she was representing at Take Back the Night.
In fact, so many students are now involved in the event that representatives of each club attend a planning committee where student groups can collaborate on ideas to make Take Back the Night more impactful with each coming year. One member of the committee was Britini D’Angelo who was representing NU Players and Soar Throats Acapella. This year D’Angelo performed the song “Praying” with NU Players by signing it in American Sign Language.
“After this year’s event, I was just so touched,” said D’Angelo. “… This event was so beautiful. The Niagara University community came together to support a larger cause. What an amazing thing!”
“I love seeing all the students showing up and advocating for the cause,” said Rosado. “Sexual violence is such a stigmatized topic in today’s society and seeing the campus join together and say “we don’t tolerate this” is such a moving experience.”
As Take Back the Night continues to become a tradition here on campus, students are becoming less afraid to speak up for themselves and to show support for others.
“It is imperative that everyone is educated in sexual, domestic and relationship violence,” said D’Angelo. “Sadly, in our world today, these are prevalent issues that we cannot ignore. There is no more time to make excuses. It is time that we stand up for what we believe in and make a difference in this world.”
Across NU’s campus, students and faculty alike can agree that the topic of sexual and domestic violence is one that cannot be ignored, and cannot be addressed alone. As Take Back the Night continues to leave it’s mark on NU, the biggest hope of the community is to see more and more in attendance with each coming year.