In light of the sexual assaults on campus, a free self defense class will be offered


In collaboration with The Vine and the Iowa State Police Department, a self-defense class will be held Dec. 14 at 7 p.m.

Claire Hoppe

Anxiety from the continuous string of sexual assaults on campus this year gave Maggie Johnston, a junior in elementary education at Iowa State, the idea to create a self-defense class for students.

“For me, it creates a sense of anxiety to hear about these incidents and not have any follow-ups or additional information for each case,” said Johnston. “Acknowledging these feelings, I felt worried for my community. In response, I felt empowered to create an opportunity for students to be able to join a self-defense class.”

In order to create a class to help her community at Iowa State, Johnston partnered with the Iowa State Police Department and The Vine, a progressive on-campus ministry through the Collegiate Presbyterian Church.

“With the notable help from The Vine…. we organized an inclusive, trauma-informed, empowering self-defense class in collaboration with ISUPD,” Johnston said.

Johnston said that participants can expect a hands-on, active course that will allow them to move their bodies while also interacting with others and learning about responses. 

“Afterward, you will have the chance to interact with two therapy dogs, grab some tea and snacks, and have the option to ask questions to a person from ACCESS,” Johnston said.

The 90-minute class will take place Dec. 14 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Individuals can sign up for the course here, but be aware that the event’s space is limited to 30 participants. If someone is interested but cannot attend due to conflicts or limited space, they can contact Maggie Johnston by emailing [email protected] for other resources. 

More information on The Vine can be found on their website.