When asked by Rape Aggression Defense instructors how many female students carried pepper spray with them on campus, almost every student in Phillips Hall 367 raised their hand.
The students were attending an introductory course for Rape Aggression Defense hosted by the Society of Women Engineers at UNC and UNC Police on Sept. 18.
The collaboration generated over 170 student RSVPs on HeelLife.
While the UNC RAD program typically teaches free practical defense techniques in a 12-hour course, the “express” program, taught at the event, allowed students to learn key aspects of the longer program condensed into under an hour.
At the event, first-year attendee Addisen Heavner said she believes self-defense is important because women are “united” by issues of assault and violence.
“That is a reality for all women,” Heavner said. “I fully believe that women should know self-defense.”
Jenèvieve Surkin, president of SWE at UNC, said that after completing the full RAD course in the spring, she wanted other women on campus to benefit from the tactics and resources she learned.
“I felt like that would be really relevant to SWE, especially since we are often late at night walking back home from campus,” she said.
The event included instructions and demonstrations of realistic defense methods, including different strikes, blocking techniques and contact points to use when attacked.