Team V members: Can I kiss you?
By 2nd Lt. Danielle Drazin, 533rd Training Squadron student
/ Published March 05, 2014
VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- "We have a lot of conversations about creating an environment of dignity and respect on and off duty," said Col. Michele Edmondson, 381st Training Group commander. "One of the things we've struggled with is trying to communicate with younger Airmen... because that's not a PowerPoint."
With that in mind, the 381st TRG hosted Mike Domitrz, founder of The Date Safe Project, presenting his one-man show "Can I Kiss You?" Feb. 28. As the title suggests, Domitrz uses humor and audience participation to talk about consent, bystander intervention and supporting survivors of sexual assault.
"We're trying to take a different approach to the subject matter, especially with our eighteen- to thirty-year-old audiences," said Lt. Col. Jamie Wakefield 381st Training Group Deputy Commander. "Instead of senior leaders standing in front of our Airmen telling them what not to do using PowerPoint and statistics, we gave them tools they can use when confronted with the situations they will face. Providing tools and strategies, particularly in an entertaining manner, leaves a lasting impression."
The presentation was to more than 600 students and staff members of the 381st TRG and 170 personnel from the 576th Flight Test Squadron.
"The briefing is much more conversational," said Capt. Nicholas Delisio, 381st Training Support Squadron Flight commander. "Mike encourages the crowd to actively interact with him. His approach is to provide examples of what to do, as opposed to what not to do."
While Domitriz visits high schools and college campuses as well, he finds particular pride in speaking to the military.
"Speaking to the U.S. military is one of the greatest honors in my life," said Domitriz. "I've toured places where if I said the same thing off-installation, it could have cost me my life."
The event was the first time Domitriz presented "Can I Kiss You?" to Vandenberg.
"We have had a very positive response to the presentation," said Wakefield. "Our Airmen were still talking about it on Sunday when our leaders were making rounds visiting the dorms. Our feedback is indicating this presentation was applicable to both our single and married Airmen."