Why Are College Students at High Risk of Sexual Assault?

African American college student sitting on pavement with a book and knapsack.

The Prevalence of Sexual Assault on College Campuses

According to RAINN, women ages 18-24 are at a higher risk of sexual violence. They also report that male college students aged 18 to 24 are 78% more likely than non-college students of the same age to be victims of rape or sexual assault. Additionally, 23.1% of transgender, genderqueer, and non-conforming (TGQN) college students have been sexually assaulted. There are few risk factors and instances in which college students are at a higher risk of sexual assault. Here's what you need to know.

The Risk Factors of Sexual Assault on College Students

To understand how to prevent sexual assault on campus, it's critical to know the risk factors involved. According to PACT5, the following are the most common risk factors associated with sexual assault on students:

  • Prior victimization
  • Alcohol use
  • Sorority membership
  • Lower age and academic year

According to a 2007 Campus Sexual Assault Study published by the U.S. Department of Justice, more sexual assaults occur on weekends, and more than half occur between midnight and 6 a.m.

What to Do If You Have Been Sexually Assaulted

Knowing what to do after a sexual assault can be difficult and confusing. Here are some steps survivors can take:

  • Find a place of safety - If you are feeling uncomfortable and unsafe, reach out to someone you trust that can get you to a safe place.
  • Find support - Getting professional help and finding a support system can help you get through a difficult time. Talking to an advocate, counselor, or therapist about your experience may help you find the courage to speak up. A trusted friend or family member can also be a good source of support.
  • Call 911 - If you are in danger or have been severely injured, call 911 to get medical assistance as soon as possible.

Sexual assault is a traumatic experience, and many aren’t ready to speak about what happened to them. However, know that it’s okay to only speak out when you are ready and take the time you need to heal on your own should you need to before seeking out resources — especially since you may already have heightened sensitivity.

Sexual assault is never the victim’s fault, and survivors never do anything to “deserve” being assaulted. The perpetrator is to blame.

Contact Grewal Law PLLC For A Confidential Consultation

Surviving sexual abuse or sexual violence can take emotional and physical tolls on a victim. Sadly, many victims are blamed for the assault and abuse, so many do not come forward. We believe you, understand how painful it can be to share your story, and know the courage it takes to speak out against your perpetrator. Contact our sexual abuse and assault injury lawyers to help you navigate the legal process of filing a civil claim against the liable party.

Call Grewal Law PLLC at (888) 211-5798 to schedule a consultation.

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