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|Hayley Matthews • 5/13/16|
The 411: One sexual assault is too many, and One Student believes even one person can make a difference in reducing sexual violence, which is why the non-profit provides cutting-edge programs, resources and opportunities to create social change.
When Kelly Addington was sexually assaulted in college, she and her best friend, Becca Tieder, looked for support on campus, only to find a lack of helpful materials and programs.
Once they began exploring services at other campuses, Addington and Tieder found that most students felt the same way they did — they wanted something more in terms of sexual violence resources at their school, and they wanted a way to take action themselves.
What started as a personal journey has now turned into a public mission in the form of One Student, a non-profit organization that gives students and leaders the tools and platforms they need to have their voices heard and make a real difference in reducing and eventually eliminating sexual violence.
As its founders, Addington and Tieder have created a resource like no other, one that’s free, inclusive, speaks to a larger audience and is easy to access.
“We wanted to have conversations, but we didn’t want to be barriers to anybody’s social justice,” Tieder said. “We realized if we were going to do this work with the level of integrity that was important to us, we needed to create something sustainable and give something to anybody who wanted to take action and be a part of the social justice movement to create real, lasting change as it’s related to violence prevention and healthy relationships.”
One Student has so many amazing and unique programs, that it’s difficult not to talk about all of them, but Production Fellowship is definitely a great place to start.
This particular resource allows students to produce videos of their own in the hopes of challenging people’s opinions about sexual assault, encouraging healthy relationships and more. One Student is there every step of the way, providing the freedom and support each student needs.
“Our Production Fellowship and the response it’s garnered all over the world is something I’m exceptionally proud of,” Tieder said.
Another project that is making a big impact is the Collegiate Consorstium, which unites student leaders across one state to create social change in their respective communities.
Thanks to One Student and its services, the U.S. is making its way toward the forefront of sexual violence prevention, and college students and mentors are paving the way together.
“I love that all of our programs, resources and campaigns are so inclusive and speak to so many different audiences all over the world and that they’re all free,” she said. “They’re timely and relevant, and there’s no barrier to access.”
Constantly receiving and responding to feedback is why One Student resonates with and empowers so many people, regardless of their age, race or gender.
“We are really driven by the conversations we’re able to have with students and thought leaders, and we try to meet those needs in a way that lets people have a meaningful exchange in the process,” Tieder said.
And with new programs launching every year, One Student will continue helping colleges develop influential policies, stay ahead of the curve and truly get to know how students feel about these important topics.
“To be able to do something mission-based that you genuinely love is a privilege,” she said. “If you have an idea or a vision, tell us. We’ll use our institutional knowledge and our access, and we’ll make your vision come true if it aligns with our mission.”
To learn more about One Student and join the movement to end sexual violence, visit onestudent.org.