04/18/2023 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM PST




VALOR, End Rape on Campus, SafeBAE, New York State Coalition Against Sexual Assault


Aarna Dixit (she/her), Aela Mansmann (she/her), Emily Ratkowiak (she/her), Jessica J. Mencia (she/her)


Last year, we watched as the Supreme Court overturned the monumental Roe v. Wade. In the movement to end sexual violence, we know that this decision was made to exert further power and control over individuals. And for some of us, this decision was made before we were even eligible to vote, so now it is time to continue our righteous fight.

This Sexual Assault Awareness Month, we want to hear from students and young leaders about the work they are doing in their communities to advance reproductive justice and end sexual violence. Join VALOR, along with End Rape on Campus, Girls for Gender Equity, and New York State Coalition Against Sexual Assault, on April 18th from 11:00am - 12:00 pm PDT for a panel discussion with young leaders across the country who are advancing the movement to restore reproductive rights and prevent sexual violence.


Aarna Dixit (she/her) is a sophomore double major in Global Liberal Studies and Social and Cultural Analysis at NYU. Aarna is an activist, writer, speaker and podcast co-host of Dirty Talk.  She gave a TedX Youth Talk on the importance of sexual violence allyships and was featured in Teen Vogue 21 Under 21 List. Aarna is an intern at NYU’s Student Health Center where she worked on the podcast Good Sex @NYU. She has interned interned with social justice organizations such as. POWERRepro, NAMI and Planned Parenthood. She writes for the Washington Square News and is part of the NYU Student Government Assembly. This year, Aarna is a NYU Gallatin Global Human Rights Fellow, and will be working with women's refugee rights in Belgium over the summer.

Aela Mansmann (she/her) is a freshman at Manhattanville College in New York. She is a lifelong activist, always working to create and utilize are to awaken activism among young people. She served as SafeBAE’s Youth Organizing Director for two years, overseeing all of their youth ambassadors and contributing to many of their prevention video content creations and has now transitioned onto their Board of Directors. Prior to that, she developed and produced SafeBAE’s first Consent Summit for over 750 students throughout greater New England in attendance. She has served as the state director for March for our Lives (2019-2020) and an eTag Advisory member at Break the Cycle (2020). In 2019, she moderated a local town hall for presidential candidate Pete Buttegeig in Portland, ME. She has presented on behalf of SafeBAE at the Every Voice Coalition Summit at Harvard, the American Federation of Teachers Conference, the New England Youth Identity Summit, among others. She has received scholarship awards from March for Our Lives, The Community Strings Project, US Cellular’s 16 Under 16 Contest, and more. Aela is most known for her sexual assault survivor advocacy in her high school school resulting in her suspension, which she challenged in court with help from the ACLU in 2019 where she won the case and all subsequent appeals in 2020. The verdict of the case resulted in a precedent which affirms students first amendment rights within school walls.

Emily Ratkowiak (she/her) is a senior at Auburn University and is the south regional co-chair of the End Rape on Campus Student Survivor Caucus. Emily has extensive experience in reproductive rights and justice advocacy and anti-sexual violence advocacy. Also serving as a sexuality and reproductive health educator, Emily gives presentations and dedicates her time to organizations on her campus discussing these topics along with their intersections. Her personal experiences with endometriosis, reproductive care, and sexual assault inspire her to raise awareness and enact change as well as to support others in their experiences.

Jessica J. Mencia (she/her/ella) is a PhD student at the University at Buffalo School of Social Work. She graduated with her BA in Public Policy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her MSW from the University at Buffalo School of Social Work. Jessica's serves as a student assistant and educator at the University at Buffalo Sexual Violence Prevention Unit. In addition to her research, she serves as an advocate for the New York Birth Control Access Project and a case manager volunteer for the New York Abortion Access Fund.

Moderator: Leah Aldridge, PhD, Director of Special Projects at VALOR

Learning Objectives

  • Engage in conversation about the work to restore reproductive rights, advance reproductive justice, and end sexual violence.
  • Learn about the power of collective voice.
  • Identify action steps YOU can take after this web conference to advance reproductive justice and work towards a world free from sexual violence.


Other Resources