By Khrystyna Halatymagfb

Executive Features Editor

It’s that time of year again — the Girls Fight Back (GFB) program is once again available to Prospect students for the third year and will be held at Forest View Educational Center on Thursday, May 1 from 7-8:30p.m. and is open to juniors and seniors. The self defense program started in 2001 as a response by college student Erin Weed to the rape and murder of her friend Shannon McNamara,student of Eastern Illinois University and an alumni of Rolling Meadows High School, in 1979.

According to physical education teacher Aaron Marnstein, statistically one in four women will be the victim of a type of assault — physical or sexual. It’s important to be mindful of surroundings and to understand what women can do to prevent these situations.

“Girls Fight Back is the tip of the iceberg,” Marnstein said. “It should be the first step and then continuing on with an actual hands on self defense course or continuing self defense training [is strongly recommended.]”

Marnstein has gotten a lot of positive feedback about the GFB program, especially from parents.

“A lot of parents, especially of seniors, are very fearful and worried when their child goes away to college that they are going to find themselves in situations where they might be a victim of an attack,” Marnstein. “A lot of parents feel relieved that this program is around and their daughters get to hear this message and at the basic minimum, think more about it than just not thinking [assault] is there.”

The core values focused on at the GFB 60-90 minute seminar are confidence, a belief that every individual is her own protector and educating and empowering others. If interested, all students have to do is show up on Thursday, May 1st at the field house at Forest View Educational Center at 7p.m. for the seminar.

“It’s a great idea for mothers to come with their daughters, bring aunts, grandmothers and we can’t forget the female relatives of our male students as well,” Marnstein said.