Raising “Red Zone” Awareness for College Students

September 11, 2023
General News & Announcements
5 min read

SHARE THIS

The beginning of the fall semester for college students is an exciting time, but it can also be a dangerous time. Known as the ‘Red Zone,’ the time from late August until Thanksgiving break sees an increase in sexual assaults against college students. During this time, students are particularly vulnerable to sexual misconduct due to social gatherings, unfamiliar environments, and transitions.

Nikki Olson, RN at Mount Nittany Medical Center recently spoke with two local media outlets about the role Mount Nittany Health plays in caring for sexual assault victims during the Red Zone and throughout the year.

In an interview with WTAJ, Nicki explained the rigorous training the Mount Nittany Medical Center Emergency Department nurses complete so they can provide compassionate care to the victims. “We go through a 40-hour didactic class that teaches how to perform an exam, and how to collect evidence,” Olson said. “Also, how to testify in court and the importance of documentation.”

The Red Zone was also featured on StateCollege.com.  They highlighted that Mount Nittany Medical Center is a safe place for sexual assault survivors to report such incidents without judgment. “We don’t judge. We just want to make sure that you’re OK,” said Nicki, “That is our number one concern - that you’re OK.”

“Mount Nittany Health wants to do everything we can to make what is the worst day of the patient’s life a little less painful,” said Nicki.

Nikki is the Sexual Assault Program Coordinator at Mount Nittany Medical Center and has more than two decades of experience caring for sexual assault patients. She provides care for survivors in the emergency department, and teaches the program to other nurses to become certified as sexual assault forensic examiners. Every nurse in Mount Nittany Health's emergency department is trained as a sexual assault forensic examiner, ready to serve the community when needed.

Read the full stories:

WTAJ: RED ZONE: Why college students are at a higher risk of sexual assault during the fall semester: https://www.wtaj.com/news/local-news/red-zone-why-college-students-are-at-a-higher-risk-of-sexual-assault-during-the-fall-semester/

StateCollege.com: During ‘Red Zone’ and Year-Round, Mount Nittany ER Nurses Help Sexual Assault Survivors: https://www.statecollege.com/articles/local-news/during-red-zone-and-year-round-mount-nittany-er-nurses-help-sexual-assault-survivors/

If you or someone you know has experienced dating or domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking, help is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Please call Centre Safe at 814.234.5050 or toll-free at 1.877.234.5050.

Latest News

Apr 17, 2024

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month: How Mount Nittany Health Cares for Survivors of Sexual Assault

Learn More

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month – a time when the nation calls attention to the unfortunate fact that sexual violence is widespread and impacts individuals in all communities.

General News & Announcements

Apr 17, 2024

Spring allergy survival guide: Expert tips and treatment options

Learn More

It’s that time of year. Runny nose, sore throat, red, itchy, watery eyes… that’s right, spring allergy season! Allergies are the body’s response to a typically harmless substance, known as a trigger. Even among those who experience allergies to the same triggers, the symptoms and severity may differ.

General News & Announcements

Apr 11, 2024

Mount Nittany Health Orthotics Delivers Customized Care for Patients in our Community

Learn More

In 1975, arborist Bill Chyle experienced a fall that compressed his spine and fractured his T11 vertebra, resulting in lower leg paralysis in both legs.

General News & Announcements