After a rally on College Green, attendees marched around Penn's campus with signs.


On April 4, hundreds of students, faculty, and peers gathered for Take Back the Night, an international movement and protest against sexual assault, domestic violence, relationship violence, and all other forms of sexual violence. 

The event began with a rally on College Green, with a performance from the Drexel African Fusion Dance Team and opening remarks from College senior Kara Hardie, chair of Abuse and Sexual Assault Prevention. 

This year’s keynote speaker was Sonalee Rashatwar, an award-winning social worker, sex therapist, adjunct lecturer, and grassroots organizer based in Philadelphia. Rashatwar spoke about her experience with sexual trauma and abuse and the importance of including marginalized groups in discussions about sexual violence.

Following the keynote, supporters began their march around Penn’s campus. The marchers made their way from College Green toward 40th Street. Afterwards, they turned around and walked down Locust Walk to Houston Hall. To conclude the evening, a survivor speakout took place in Bodek Lounge with a debrief following the event at the Penn Women’s Center.

Credit: Sophia Dai

Various posters for marchers were laid out on the Benjamin Franklin statue.

Credit: Sophia Dai

Many groups came out in support of Take Back the Night. The sorority Zeta Tau Alpha was one of the Greek organizations represented at the event.

Credit: Sophia Dai The Drexel African Fusion Dance Team performed a short piece to begin the event.

Credit: Sophia Dai College senior Kara Hardie, chair of ASAP UPenn, spoke about the importance of Take Back the Night in her opening remarks.

Credit: Sophia Dai Students, faculty, and staff all came out in support of the event.

Credit: Sophia Dai Sherisse Laud-Hammond, director of the Penn Women’s Center, said she hoped students left the event feeling encouraged to raise their voices against sexual assault.

Credit: Sophia Dai Director of Penn Violence Prevention, Jessica Mertz, told students about the various organizations they could join to combat sexual assault on campus.

Credit: Sophia Dai Sonalee Rashatwar, the keynote speaker, discussed her work as a sex therapist against relationship violence.

Credit: Sophia Dai The march took off from College Green.

Credit: Sophia Dai Many attendees of the march made their own posters.

Credit: Sophia Dai Different messages, like “#MeToo” and “You are not alone,” were written on posters in support of sexual violence survivors.

Credit: Sophia Dai The march was led by the Take Back the Night poster and the Penn Band, who provided the beat for the night.

Credit: Sophia Dai Many posters also had messages dealing with the importance of consent in relationships, such as “no means no” and “my body my choice.”

Credit: Sophia Dai

The marchers made their way to 40th Street.

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