SEXUAL ASSAULT: UI President Shares Experience

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University of Iowa President Sally Mason is sharing her own story of abuse after facing criticism for her comments about sexual assault on campus.

Last week, Mason told the university paper, "I’m not pleased that we have sexual assaults, obviously. The goal would be to end that, to never have another sexual assault. That's probably not a realistic goal just given human nature, and that's unfortunate."

Mason apologized to those who were offended by her comments. On Thursday, she faced them directly holding a "listening session" with more than 200 people in attendance.

Mason listened to the concerns of students and their complaints about how sexual assaults are handled by university officials on campus.

Mason also shared her own personal story saying she was sexually assaulted while in college in Kentucky.

“When I was an undergraduate student in Lexington, Kentucky I was walking down the street one afternoon going to class minding my own business and an individual in a trench coat came up to me, grabbed hold of me, grabbed my breast and I was fortunate that I was able to pull away from him and get away from him but it certainly left me shaken,” Mason said. “The truly sad thing was in 1970 I had no clue what to do.”

Mason is meeting with the Board of Regents on Friday via phone to discuss the comments she made to the newspaper. The board will then have a closed discussion.


  • Terry Larson

    Wouldn’t you think that if she actually had been attacked back in her college days, that experience along with her education and position, that she would be much more inclined NOT TO HAVE MADE SUCH A HORRENDOUSLY STUPID STATEMENT AS SHE DID? Isn’t just a little too convienent to include her supposed sexual assault in the now stupid discussion? As in her past stupidity statements, I find her totally lacking in brains and credibility. Her last huge mistake was saying that a adult housing employee, Ron Mulder, who used a vibrator on the genitals of an 8 yr old little girl, the perp didn’t violate school policy. Arrested and prosecuted by the county sherriff but no violation of Iowa University policy. Yea for logic and morality at IOWA.

    • bob

      wish i’d read your comment before i wrote mine – if that housing employee incident is as you say, that’s not good

  • William Denison

    Isn’t Uof I tthe same school that tried to cover up a gang rape by some of the schools football players a few years back?

  • bob

    I think her original comments were akin to a state trooper saying that a goal of zero traffic fatalities for a year was unrealistic – perhaps unwise to say, but I dont think anyone would really accuse a trooper of viewing traffic fatalities as ‘acceptable’ for saying it.

    I really don’t know anything about her otherwise, but I think this looks like a bunch of opportunists piling on somone with an innocent misstep of words – the result of such a process is a Darwinian honing of leaders who are good with words – and little else

    Under fire, she’s had to bring up something she’d probably have rather left private to appease her accusers

    Enough, already

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