Penn State Outreach- Girls Bullying Girls


>>Reporter: According to a survey by the National
Youth Violence Prevention Resource Center, almost 30 percent of youth in the United States
today—over 5.7 million—are involved in bullying.
To address the female side of the issue, which is growing far more complex in our hyper-connected
world, Penn State held a conference in April 2008 titled “Girls Bullying Girls: What We
Know and What We Can Do.”>>Dellasega: Girls experience this at school,
and they go home and their mom or their dad might say, ‘well, that’s just the way
girls are.’ Or they go to school and they might really reach out and try to get help,
and a teacher or a guidance counselor or an administrator might say, ‘well, just live
through it, you know? It’ll pass.’ And in reality, this is hurtful behavior.>>Nelson: It affects their academics. They
come in to school and they’re not really in the mind frame to learn, because they have
all of these other issues on their minds.>>Conference Speaker: Cell phones, PDAs, pagers,
obviously text messaging, voicemail, and of course, the camera phones are adding a lovely
dimension to how we can do V-blogs and pictures now.>>Nelson: I would like to learn more ways
to help them on that front. Because it’s really an anonymous type of bullying–it’s
not face-to-face. Also, with YouTube, I’ve seen some very mean, ah, violent…fights
between girls that are just immediate as soon as they happen they’re on YouTube and it’s
spread around like as if it’s, um, not even real. Um, it almost has, ah, entertainment
value to it and I’m really concerned about that. And even how it’s spilling over into
some sexual crimes.>>Dellasega: I think parents, and teachers
and school officials should be very concerned, because unlike boys where aggression sometimes
gets manifested as ‘I bop you’ and then, kind of, it’s over, with girls we know these
things go to the heart,and they can last a lifetime. I know, because I hear from adult
women who say, ‘I remember that moment.’>>Reporter: One successful strategy highlighted
at the conference was mentoring. Middle school aged girls working with elementary school
girls reported learning as much, or more form the process as their younger peers did from
being mentored.>>Nelson: It’s almost like a ripple effect
go out into the community and be spread amongst different age groups. And, um, I heard Cheryl
say today, now this club is going to be in California and other states in the country
and I just think that’s a wonderful, positive cycle we have started—or Cheryl has started—with
this program, and I just feel very proud to be a part of it.”>>Reporter: For Penn State Outreach, I’m
Cole Hons.