Santa Clara University

Student Life Website Banner

"Can't Thread a Moving Needle"

Santa Clara University is committed to educating its students and attending to their welfare. The horrific reality is that college students are vulnerable to experiencing and even be perpetrators of sexual violence. Recognizing that sexual violence amongst the college population is a national issue, we are committed to educating our students on this topic to reduce the likelihood of sexual violence occurring within our community.

As a concluding piece of first year students’ introduction to the campus community, all first year students are required to attend a mandatory sexual assault prevention and education program called "Can’t Thread a Moving Needle."

  • icon2012 Program Schedule

    Click here for a full schedule >>>

  • iconProgram Description

    Written by playwright Barbara Means Fraser, "Can't Thread a Moving Needle" offers a compelling and honest examination of the issue of sexual assault through the use of real words and real stories. The experiences, thoughts, and realizations upon which this play is based allow the audience to gain an overview of the physical and emotional costs of sexual assault.

    The play is composed of numerous scenes and monologues that are sad, enlightening, jarring, and funny. Each part highlights various aspects of this complex issue: the role that alcohol plays, the importance of communication between women and men, the impact that rape myths have on college campuses, survivors' stories of trauma and healing, safety tips, and the search for a solution. This play is intended to open a dialogue by providing a forum for discussion on stage that will hopefully continue long after the curtain falls.

    Ten SCU students - female and male - worked together with the playwright to collect stories from students, faculty, and staff from the campus community as well as from other colleges and universities. Interviews included people from California, Texas, Indiana, Oregon, Colorado, Florida, Missouri, Arizona, New York, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Pennsylvania. The few things on which all agreed: education about the issue of sexual assault is essential, and both women and men need to join together to work toward a solution.

  • iconProgram Implementation

    All first year students are assigned according to their Residential Learning Community (RLC) to attend one of four performances. Attendance is tracked by electronically reading (swiping) each student’s university identity (ACCESS) card. Counselors from Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) are available to meet with anyone if they have such a need to debrief privately.

  • iconComments from Past Attendees

    • "[The program] was amazing and made me think about things that have happened in my life."
    • "I think the actors were wonderful, and I thank them for their time and effort in the production."
    • "I really thought this was a vital presentation and that all universities should present something about this issue to their students. It is knowledge that will stop rape and sexual assault from happening."
    • "Great job! Most students don't appreciate programs like this enough, but I commend [the actors] on all of [their] hard work, and programs like these do make a difference. Thank you!"
  • iconProgram Sponsors

  • iconFor More Information

    Production Rights:
    Barbara Means Fraser
    Department of Theatre & Dance
    Santa Clara University

    Program Implementation:
    Matthew Duncan
    Office of Student Life
    Santa Clara University

Printer-friendly format