NSU to participate in domestic violence awareness walk

On Feb. 10, NSU will take part in The College Brides Walk at Barry University, Broad Auditorium, 11300 NE 2nd Ave., Miami Shores, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

At the walk, participants dress up in bridal wear and walk to raise awareness for domestic violence among teenagers and college students. The wedding gowns are worn in memory of Gladys Ricart, who was murdered by her former boyfriend in 1999 in Ridgefield, NJ, while preparing for her wedding.

The event is open to both men and women. Women are encouraged to wear wedding gowns or dress in white, and men are encouraged to wear tuxedos or dress in black.

Josie Ashton, Florida International University alumnus, began the walk in 2001 while attending college. She organized it to raise awareness for college students to protect themselves from dating violence.

The route is 7.5 miles long, and it goes from Barry University to Johnson & Wales University, to Florida International University’s north campus and back to Barry.

Kelly Anne Concannon Mannise, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences, said the walk is an important event because it creates a sense of solidarity between students from different schools, both men and women.

“I think it’s really great to raise awareness for dating violence. It’s really cool that this event engages college students,” she said.

Allison Brimmer, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences, is participating in this year’s walk. Brimmer said that she hopes everyone will support the cause.

“I like the collaborative nature of the event and that its focus is on young people preventing violence. The numbers are high for college/young people for violence,” she said. “It’s a free event, all day and all night. There will be resources from lots of local organizations too.”

The event is police escorted and Jamba Juice will provide free smoothies for walkers.

Brimmer said, “Volunteers are welcome and if student clubs want to get involved it’s not too late. The more people can learn and spread awareness that love never leads to violence, the better.”

Participating schools include: Barry University, Florida Atlantic University, Florida International University, Johnson & Wales University, Lynn University, St. Thomas University and the University of Miami.

For more information on The College Brides Walk, contact: Josie Ashton at (786) 301-3696 or visit www.collegebrideswalk.com.

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