on the job: pat morey
What is your job title and how long have you been with the UI?
I'm coordinator in the Office for Women's Programs and associate dean for student services. I've been with the UI six years and in this position for three years.
You've also become involved in a relatively new program at the UI. What is the program?
I went through training at the end of last summer to become a Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) instructor. Tony Ortiz (a UI police officer) is the primary instructor for the program. If you would have told me 10 years ago that I would embrace this, I would have said you were crazy. Now I feel it is a vital part of crime deterrence.
What is RAD?
Participants learn techniques to get out of holds by an attacker and physical skills such as strikes and kicks, vulnerable areas to use as strike zones, verbal resistance, and knowledge of what parts of the body to use in self defense.
Is this a challenging program?
I was the oldest and most out-of-shape of the trainees. Eighty to 90 percent of the instructors-in-training were police officers, half of them were women and half of them were men. I thought I would never make it, but I did. The training consists of teaching you how to handle three simulated attacks and knowledge of the skills and information a person needs to defend herself.
So you can teach the program, but are you also prepared to defend yourself?
The training course I went through was to become an instructor, but I do feel I am also prepared for confrontation. I have far more options available to me to confront a situation and resolve it. I know for instance when to most effectively use a kick versus a heel stomp or head butt and ways to assess the situation more effectively. That's what I want to pass on to other women.
Is this a time-consuming program?
Being a RAD instructor is a very small part of my job. There are two courses scheduled for the spring. I might help teach one of them.
After going through the training, do you see this as an effective program?
In a whole lot of different ways, I think it is effective. Whether or not you ever feel confident in using the techniques, the program helps build self-confidence and expand your sense of options. It heightens your sense of what is possible.
Editor's note: Both RAD courses for spring are now filled. The free classes are held once a week for four weeks and each class is approximately three hours long. Organizers are hoping to hold a summer class, but are certain there will be a class in the fall.
-- Nancy Koeneman