Samantha Skaller, a junior string performance major in the Rose, Jules R. and Stanford S. Setnor School of Music, received a 2016 Chancellor’s Award for Public Engagement and Scholarship (CAPES) from Syracuse University at a ceremony on April 19. Skaller received the CAPES Award in the "Individual Undergraduate" category.
Skaller is one of only 17 students nationwide to be selected to serve on the national “It’s On Us” Student Advisory Committee, which has been tasked with playing a key role in delivering the “It’s On Us” message to campuses across the country.
Last semester, Skaller worked closely with the Chancellor's Task Force in planning the national "It's On Us" week's events for the Syracuse University campus. This included a screening of “The Hunting Ground,” an acclaimed documentary about sexual assault on campuses, for which Skaller participated in a panel alongside another student, the Title IX Coordinator and former SU football great Don McPherson (who appears in the film). She also facilitated tabling throughout the entire event, distributing information and spreading the message about the "It's On Us" campaign and the importance of consent. Lastly, at the end of the week's activities, she had the honor of introducing Vice President Joe Biden before he addressed the Syracuse University community.
Skaller's public engagement concerning sexual assault has extended far beyond her direct involvement with the "It's On Us" campaign. She has worked as a peer educator for the Office of Health Promotions, which has given her the opportunity to facilitate a variety of presentations and workshops about domestic and sexual violence. Through this connection she has also served as one of the committee members for the Take Back the Night rally and March Against Sexual and Relationship Violence. She has also addressed these issues in her role as social and promotions chair for her sorority, Sigma Alpha Iota.