President Frederick W. Clark Jr. was honored Monday morning by Health Imperatives, an organization dedicated to improving the health and well-being of low-income or vulnerable families and individuals in Southeastern Massachusetts.
The organization has partnered with BSU on several fronts, including the providing of counseling on campus, training staff and administrators on how to handle and prevent relational violence, and taking on BSU students as interns.
“Working together across the board makes it happen,” said the organization’s President and CEO Julia E. Kehoe.
Health Imperatives’ Purple Purse & Purple Tie Awards Breakfast included an address by a young woman who relied on the services of Penelope’s Place Shelter when she was dealing with domestic abuse. She mentioned she’d ultimately came to BSU, from which she recently graduated.
In his short remarks, President Clark singled out the young alumna and her inspirational story, saying, “Although you’re soft spoken, I think your words and your message are the most powerful we’ll hear today. I couldn’t be more proud to have you as a Bridgewater graduate. Welcome home.”
The president gave thanks to Health Imperatives for the Purple Tie Award, accepting it on behalf of “all my colleagues that are here and across campus at Bridgewater State for the work that’s been done for many years.”
“We’ve always had a commitment, but I’d have to say in the past few years it’s deepened and broadened here at Bridgewater State,” President Clark continued. “And at this university we have absolute zero tolerance, and I mean zero tolerance, for abuse or violence against any member of our community. That kind of behavior has no home here at Bridgewater, and should have no home anywhere in Southeastern Massachusetts or in our country.”
The president cited the creation of the Office of Equal Opportunity and the Title IX Coordinator, staffed with a full-time outreach professional and two faculty members, as an important step in addressing and preventing violence on campus. (Story and photo by John Winters, G ’11, University News & Media)