The new manager of the BYU Women’s Services and Resources Center hopes to use her experience with abuse to relate to BYU women and their challenges.
Tiffany Turley was a victim of sexual assault five years ago. She recognized, after she was assaulted, that she needed help, and she turned to the Salt Lake City Rape Recovery Center. Turley went through group therapy and support groups and said her life was able to return to some sort of normality.
“After a while I felt like I could be myself again and I could handle this,” Turley said. “The way I could continue to get over it was to help others.”
Turley volunteered at the Rape Recovery Center and at a statewide crisis center while working with the Utah government, where she worked for 10 years.
“I was content with my job,” she said. “I knew my job like the back of my hand because I had been there for so long. I did feel like I could maybe be doing something more, but I wasn’t looking for a job opportunity.”
An old friend contacted Turley out of the blue and told her to contact BYU Associate Dean of Students Casey Peterson.
“Some dream to work for Google; I always wanted to work for BYU,” Turley said. “BYU was my Google.”
Turley received her undergraduate degree from BYU in marriage, family and human development and her MBA from Westminster College. Turley is not a trained psychologist but feels that her personal experiences qualify her for the job.
“I do feel I bring to this position and to this office a level of understanding in a personal way that will help me, maybe compensate for that,” she said. “I don’t know if we ever feel totally grateful for our trials, but I do feel like I am grateful for mine because it has led me here and it is going to help me help the women of BYU.”
Some students don’t immediately recognize the Women’s Services and Resources Center on campus. Some think of it generically as a place that helps women and that handed out pink rape whistles when they were freshmen.
Chelsea Ghering, a junior from Houston, said the Women’s Services and Resources Center supports students by “(helping) find careers for women, taking the skills that are specific to women and applying that in the real world.”
The Women’s Services and Resources Center hopes to achieve that. The center has traditionally focused on sexual assault and eating disorders and is now looking to highlight other issues as important to women.
Emily Snow has worked at the Women’s Services and Resource Center as a designer for 18 months and is excited for upcoming changes.
“I’m looking forward to highlighting the positive things about being a woman, like being a mother and having a career,” Snow said.
Upcoming events will focus on issues that are important to women, and men are invited, too.
“We have something for all women, even men,” Snow said. “Our goal is to answer any questions people have. If you are stressed with school, have questions about assault or you want to network with women, whatever it is, we want to help.”
The Women’s Services and Resources Center will hold an eating disorder campaign titled “Everybody Knows Somebody” Jan. 26–Feb. 6. More information about events can be found at the Wilkinson Student Center in Room 3326 and wsr.byu.edu.