Two weeks into the school year and Grand Valley State University students are dealing with a report of a sexual assault.

Police say a woman was walking by the freshman doors late Saturday night when she was approached by a group of guys. One of them allegedly groped her.

"It's sad for me because when I read those emails I'm just like, wow I wish I could have been there to do something," said GVSU senior Lauren Kavner.

The news of this weekend's alleged sexual assault on GVSU's campus is not sitting well with her.

"Sometimes when this happens on college campuses people don't feel welcome anymore."

GVSU police say the incident happened between Hoobler and Frey Living Centers around 11:30 p.m. Saturday night.

The suspect's description:

  • White man
  • 6'1"
  • Thin build
  • Wavy brown hair
  • Wearing brown shorts, red jacket, and hat

"They don't realize the mental impacts that can happen with sexual assault," Kavner added. "It's something serious that can damage them for a lifetime."

According to the National Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network sexual assaults are three times more likely to happen to a woman in college.

These statistics have students like Kavner and others out on Tuesday asking for students to pledge against the violence.

"A lot of people don't know that this is something college campuses that struggle with or deal with so this gives a them the opportunity to immerse themselves in situations or possibilities that may occur," Kandace Williams, a graduate assistant for Violence, Prevention, Education, said.

"The more we are out doing things like this in the public, the more we'll give students the perspective that these things are happening and we can't ignore them or sweep them under the rug. It is on us to prevent and educate our community."

GVSU does have a SafeWalk program that gives students the option to have someone accompany them as they walk on campus at night. You can request a SafeWalk at (616) 331-3255.

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