ChoiceWords Blog

Posts Tagged: young people

3 Things You Can Do for Sexual Assault Awareness Month

April is sexual assault awareness month. If you are a college student, you might be aware of this because April is when campuses host Take Back the Night. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, “the month of April has been designated Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) in the United States. The goal of SAAM is to raise public awareness about sexual violence and to educate communities and individuals on how to prevent sexual violence.” This year’s SAAM campaign is about “healthy sexualities and young people.” Studies have shown that young people are not immune to sexual violence. The 2013 NO MORE Study, which “explored attitudes toward, and experience with, dating abuse/violence and sexual assault among teens aged 15 to 17, and among young adults aged 18 to 22”… Read more »

Making the Leap From Student Organizer to Progressive Professional

Searching for your first (or second, or third) job out of college is not easy. You want to do something challenging and rewarding, but you don’t have the years of experience many employers require. Translating the skills you’ve developed as a student leader to the “getting paid to do what you love” world isn’t easy, but it’s possible. To help you out, I’ve compiled some how-tos for applying for your dream job – it’s a combination of common mistakes, advice, and things I wish I’d known during my last job search. To give credit where it’s due, this post was inspired by this tip from Katie Parrish at the New Organizing Institute. I highly recommend signing up for their daily tip emails. Step 1: References

In Defense of Bossy Girls

Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer and the author of the famous Lean In, is calling for a ban on the word bossy. Sandberg argues that words are powerful and that the word bossy discourages girls from taking on leadership positions, ultimately holding them back long-term. I love the message this campaign sends to young women as well as those who help raise them. Words do matter, they are incredibly powerful, and the way they’re used when we’re growing up helps to shape the way we interact with the world around us. “Bossy” girls are often strong-willed and opinionated, two of my favorite attributes in any person and vital skills that we need in the workplace and in society. 

Culture of Shame: What Duke’s First-Year Porn Star Says About Us

There have been about a million posts about Belle Knox, the Duke first-year and self-proclaimed porn star, over the past couple of weeks.  From the apparently shocking news that there is a current porn star actually pursuing her education (!!) to the immediate and incessant slut-shaming and double standards, to the conversations around porn consumers and producers, to Stoya’s beautiful and eloquent piece on sex-workers and privacy in the New York Times, it would seem that there is not much left to add to this conversation.  But I feel the need to add a few of my own words to all of this. Part of the critique against Knox inevitably comes from the fact that she is relatively young.  At eighteen years old, her work in the porn industry is entirely… Read more »

Let the Budgeting Begin: Why Obama’s Version Makes Me Smile

We had some good news out of the White House recently — President Obama just released his version of the budget this week and in it he gives some major attention (and money) to comprehensive sex education! I’m especially excited about President Obama’s five-year re-authorization and maintenance of funding for the Personal Responsibility Education Program, an education initiative for young people to help prevent unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections, specifically for youth who are homeless, in foster care, or who come from areas with high levels of teen pregnancy, including youth of color.  He also proposes increases in funding for the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative, which helps to prevent unintended pregnancies in teens and support teen parents in communities around the country. 

How Sex Education Failed Me

Sex education in schools has been a contentious topic for a long time. A poster in a Kansas middle school brought up it up again after a parent became enrage that his child was being educated about “explicit” topics . Many schools in the country are failing to correctly teach children about contraceptives and safe sex, defaulting to the “Abstinence is King” philosophy. This led me to examine how the education I received about sex affected my relationships. When I was in eighth grade, my parents were given the option of letting me take an Abstinence-Based Health class or Abstinence until Marriage. Both of them focused on abstinence being the best method of preventing unintended pregnancies. The only difference was that when contraceptives were discussed in the Abstinence until Marriage… Read more »

Why Ohio Needs to Keep Golden Week

Ah, yes, as an Ohioan, I’ll never forget the first Election season and Golden Week where I could legally vote. What a magical time, literally full of giant buses and go-karts on my campus shipping us off to the polls and college students clutching their voter registration forms on clipboards. We were all fresh-faced from a candidate visit and ready to engage our fellow students about voting. You see, voting in Ohio is really funny. That’s if you find constant 24/7 political advertisements hysterical, or you somehow find it amusing that candidates from both sides of the fence practically live here from all of the visits (with both the Obama and Romney family visiting each 30 times in four months). Ohio is also famous for Golden Week. So what exactly… Read more »

18 And Clueless: How California’s Proposed Affirmative Consent Law Could Have Helped Me

I remember my very first week of college, my first real night at a college party. Newly independent and recently single, I was determined to have a night I’d never forget. I pulled myself together in an outfit I’m sure I was very proud of at the time (though, in retrospect, #fashionmistakecentral), downed some shots, and set off to dance and try to meet boys. I had a nice time but didn’t meet anyone, so around 1am I decided to head back to my dorm room by myself. When I was almost there, I heard a voice calling at me from a car driving next to me. It was a boy, a cute boy, and he asked where I was headed.  He told me that he was an RA at… Read more »

Why You Need to Know About Telemedicine Abortions

Imagine that you are a college student who has just taken their first unexpected positive pregnancy test. You decide that an abortion is your best choice, but the closest clinic is across your state, 3 hours away. You’re practically eating ramen for two out of three meals a day, and the cost of an abortion, plus possible gas money and a night at a hotel, adds up quickly. What do you do? That’s where a telemedicine abortion would come in. Telemedicine abortion: Sounds like a thing of the future, right?