Personal Empowerment Through Self-Awareness (PETSA)

Welcome from Leon Rodrigues, Minnesota State Chief Diversity Officer

Welcome to Minnesota State. As a system, we are committed to ensuring that all of our colleges and universities provide a safe environment for learning, working, and collaborating. Each academic year brings with it many new opportunities. But it also has the potential to bring new risks. This course addresses one of those risks - personal violence. It will provide you with information regarding crimes such as sexual assault, rape, dating and relationship violence, stalking, and sexual harassment. These crimes can happen on any campus. By completing this course, you will increase your ability to work and learn in a safe and healthy environment.

Introduction Video


The course is made up of three sections, each of which contains a 10-15 minute. Scripts are also available in each section. Before you begin, take one minute to view this public service announcement. Sexual violence is a critical issue in campuses across the country, and we hope you will join your fellow Minnesota State students, faculty, and staff in being part of the solution.

Personal Empowerment through Self-Awareness: Creating a Climate Free of Sexual Violence

As a student at a Minnesota State college, it is important that you know how to keep yourself and others safe from sexual violence. This course consists of three sections to help you understand the law, the culture of higher education, and actions you can take to help create a safe climate for everyone. The sections are:

  • What You Should Know
  • The Culture of Sexual Violence
  • Risk Reduction for Everyone

Section 1: What You Should Know

This section will help increase your awareness about sexual violence. The video will take about 10 minutes and includes three subsections:

  1. Minnesota Law and Minnesota State Policy: Learn the definition of criminal sexual assault in Minnesota law and Minnesota State policy, and how it affects our campuses.
  2. Consent: Identify what “consent” means and describe the role of alcohol and other drugs in giving consent.
  3. Predatory Behavior: Learn to recognize and respond to rapists who intentionally single out someone they know.

Section 1 Video Script [PDF]

Section 2: The Culture of Sexual Violence

This section explores issues that can lead to a culture of sexual violence on our college and university campuses. It will take about 15 minutes to complete the three 5-minute subsections:

  1. What are the Facts? Explore stereotypes that help to promote a culture of sexual violence.
  2. Relationship and Dating Violence: Identify the key aspects of dating/relationship violence and learn to recognize possible red flags that may indicate violent relationships.
  3. Stalking: Learn to recognize and address stalking behavior.

Section 2 Video Script [PDF]

Section 3: Risk Reduction for Everyone

We all play a role in creating an environment that is free from sexual violence. This section helps you explore actions you can take to keep yourself and others safe. It will take about 10 minutes to complete.

  1. Personal Empowerment: Learn about steps you can take to keep yourself and others safe from sexual violence.
  2. Stand Up, Don't Stand By: Respond appropriately if you are a bystander and see someone else at risk for sexual violence.
  3. Take Action: Learn what to do if you or someone you know is a victim of sexual assault.

Section 3 Video Script [PDF]

Summary and Resources

Once you have completed all three sections, you should have a better awareness of how sexual violence can impact all of us at Minnesota State. Working together, we can create an environment that is safe for all of our students, faculty, and staff. There are many resources to help you keep yourself and others safe from sexual violence, or to help respond if violence does occur. The state and national organizations below are a good place to start. Check with your campus for local resources, and visit the Minnesota State resources page for more information.

National Resources

Minnesota Resources

Regional Resources