‘Students Fight Back’ speaker Nicole Snell, a self-defense expert, spoke before a large audience of Lander University students last week, sharing tips about how to harness their inner strength and feel safe in any situation.
‘Students Fight Back’ is the gender neutral version of the ‘Girls Fight Back’ program, founded by women’s safety speaker Erin Weed in response to the 2001 murder of her friend, Eastern Illinois student Shannon McNamara. Snell’s visit was sponsored by Lander’s Office of Student Affairs.
As a result of her training in self-defense, Snell said that she no longer feels she has to rely on someone else to come to her rescue. “I can totally save myself, and so can every one of you,” she said.
With the assistance of student volunteers, she gave a demonstration of self-defense basics. She also discussed how intuition, body language, boundary-setting and de-escalation skills can help keep people safe.
“Every single person in this room has a story about violence in their lives,” she said. “Until we live in some sort of utopian future where violence has been completely eradicated, people everywhere need to learn the basics of how to protect themselves.”