New support for survivors of interpersonal violence

The trauma of interpersonal violence echoes throughout the lives of those who have experienced it, long after the physical assault has ended. On campus, it is not unusual for students to begin struggling in class as a result, and the best option is to withdraw and take those classes over.

For students who could neither function normally during an academic period nor be reasonably expected to complete a timely university withdrawal due to extenuating circumstances, such as an incident involving major physical or mental trauma, Colorado State allows a request for retroactive withdrawal.

A retroactive withdrawal replaces all the student’s grades in an academic period (one or more semesters of continuous enrollment) on his or her transcript with “W”. Tuition and fees are not refunded, and classes must still be completed to earn course credit.

The Women and Gender Advocacy Center has established the Academic Retention Scholarship, a one-time award designed to support a student who has reenrolled in a course/s from which she or he withdrew as a result of past/present trauma, to help ease that financial burden. The amount awarded varies as funding is available.

“The WGAC recognizes this financial hardship as another way survivors of interpersonal violence are traumatized after their assault,” said Monica Rivera, director of WGAC. “It is our hope to raise the $25,000 needed for the endowment in the 2016-2017 academic year, so that we may begin awarding the scholarship in the Fall of 2017.”

To help WGAC reach that goal, Fort Collins Brewery is hosting a benefit dinner Oct. 27, 6 p.m., at the brewery’s Modern Tavern, 1020 E. Lincoln Ave. Tickets are $50 per person, available at or by calling 970-472-1499.

WGAC Academic Retention Scholarship

To be eligible, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Applicant has withdrawn after the add/drop date from a course or courses as a result of experiencing sexual assault, dating/domestic violence, and/or stalking.
  • Applicant has not been granted a tuition appeal for the withdrawn course/s.
  • Applicant is reenrolled in previously withdrawn-from course/s.
  • The scholarship can only be awarded to currently enrolled Colorado State University students. The preference will be given to undergraduate students and graduate students can apply.
  • Applicant must demonstrate a plan for successfully completing the course/s in question.

Back on track

“Fort Collins Brewery is a family-owned business, and we have always supported the local community,” said Elisha Stewart, events manager. “We were looking for a different approach for our philanthropy, and when we heard about this scholarship, we wanted to be involved. We hope this scholarship will help students get back on track and be the very best they can be.”

Stewart added that it is important to show that the local brewing community is taking a stand against relationship violence.

“We want people to enjoy our products responsibly, and let everyone know we do not condone violent behavior,” she said.

One hundred present of the proceeds from the four-course dinner, paired with Fort Collins Brewery beers and Colorado wines, will be donated to the Academic Retention Scholarship fund.

If you can’t attend the dinner, you can still donate to the fund here.