White House report: One in five women on college campuses are victims of sexual assault

(AP Photo)

(WJLA) - American universities are bastions of higher learning - and, according to a recent study, are also the centers of an abundance of sexual assaults.

The White House launched an aggressive effort to curb sexual assaults on college campuses earlier this year. This included a report on assaults.

The findings, released Tuesday, indicate a shocking statistic: one in five female students on campuses are victims of sexually assault.

The report said the incidents largely tend to take place in the freshman and sophomore years.

"I am honestly not surprised," said Claire McGonele, a George Washington University student. "I think that that is pretty accurate."

The Obama administration said Tuesday that it will push colleges to be more aggressive in curbing sexual assaults on campuses, as well as provide help to victims.

"I think that is a good idea, definitely," GWU student{ }Chidima Osuchukwu told ABC7. "If it is something so prevalent on college campuses, they should definitely take more steps to make sure it doesn't happen."

The study also found that most victims know their assailant, and that few such assaults are ever reported.

"No one reports these incidents in college because these are your classmates - these are the people you live with," Osuchukwu added.

Another component of the White House effort is providing colleges with a mechanism to survey students. The aim is to give universities a better grasp of the problem, and hopefully, a better idea of how to contain it.

Still, some students think that, despite the federal governments' efforts, it will be hard to stop something so prevalent.

"I think it's something that needs to be addressed, but I think it's going to be so hard to stop," said GWU freshman Gabrielle Greenfield.