EAST LANSING, MI (WILX) -- Samuel Stanley has been president of MSU for about two weeks now and part of his job going forward will be making sure MSU's campus is a safer place for students and survivors of sexual assault.
President Stanley says making the entire campus as safe as possible is a high priority for him and he will do what it takes to accomplish it. He said one of his big goals as president is to help the university learn from the Larry Nassar scandal and move forward by developing a safe and inclusive campus.
"That's about culture change so it's about understanding. So the first thing I need to do is listen and learn. I need to really make sure I understand the issues and needs and at that point in time we can think about what the needs are," Stanley said.
The president says he is arranging a series of meetings with Nassar survivors as well as other survivors of sexual violence or misconduct on campus. The meeting will most likely take place in September.
"I'll really be listening to begin with. I want to really understand their issues and concerns, their experiences and help make sure Michigan State remains responsive and continues to be responsive to their needs going forward so that'll be my main purpose," Stanley said.
Awareness and education is important as well. He said last year the university reached 72,000 people with training around sexual violence and reporting it.
"In-person education is important as well. Making it part of the curriculum, finding ways to introduce it to the curriculum. All those kinds of ways we have to change culture. One important thing that people have to know in an institution that it's important at the top and it's certainly important to me and I'll make sure the senior vice president, vice presidents understand that this is a critical priority for me and for the university," Stanley said.
He says his hope is that a few years from now the school will be recognized for something greater than the Larry Nassar scandal.
"We're never going to forget it, but recognize for what we did in response to it and how we really changed what happened with the university. It's a big goal," Stanley said.
We'll let you know when those meeting with survivors take place.
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