The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Hole left in Student Life office after Bednarsky exit

Bednarsky+is+now+working+at+a+crisis+center+in+Washington%2C+New+Jersey.+%28Photo+courtesy+of+Lafayette+Communications%29
Bednarsky is now working at a crisis center in Washington, New Jersey. (Photo courtesy of Lafayette Communications)

Late July saw the departure of Katy Bednarsky, the college’s now-former student advocacy and prevention coordinator, after less than two years on the job. In the intervening month, the college launched a search committee to find a permanent replacement, while the Crime Victims Council (CVC) of the Lehigh Valley has largely supplemented Bednarsky’s job duties in the interim.

“Katy added significant value to the Lafayette community,” Brian Samble, the dean of students, wrote in an email, noting Bednarsky’s contributions to prevention initiatives, student organization training and acquisition of grants to support her efforts. “Timeline to fill the role is as soon as possible and with the right person.”

Bednarsky, who left the college to take a position at the Domestic Abuse and Sexual Assault Crisis Center in Washington, New Jersey, declined to comment.

As student advocacy and prevention coordinator, Bednarsky served as a confidential resource for students who were victims of peer or domestic violence or sexual assault. Prior to her departure, Bednarsky sent personalized emails to students she had met with over her tenure.

The CVC, which has long had a partnership with the college, assumed Bednarsky’s role as a confidential resource, albeit off campus – the CVC operates a hotline that is staffed around the clock, in addition to physical locations in Allentown and Bethlehem. The Counseling Center and the college chaplain remain confidential resources available to students on campus.

“When students come to us to ask questions or discuss an event that may have happened in the past or is currently going on, we do not trigger a report within the college, so it’s a safe space,” Bethany Ebner, an outreach educator with the CVC, said. “We service the entire [Lehigh] Valley, so we’re always prepared for anything that comes our way.”

In addition to her role as a confidential resource, Bednarsky also served as the staff advisor for Peer Anti-Violence Educators, better known as PAVE. Samble, who has a background in Title IX work, will serve as PAVE’s advisor until a replacement is found. Quinn Gregorich ’24, who serves as one of two PAVE peer education coordinators, wrote in an email that Bednarsky made PAVE “the wonderful program that it is today.”

“I hope whoever fills the role can embody the same warm and welcoming energy that Katy has,” Gregorich wrote. “It is vital for the student body to have a friendly face on campus who they can feel comfortable and safe enough to talk to.”

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Trebor Maitin, Managing Editor
Pennsylvania enthusiast.

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