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Theatre student Amita Rao and biomedical engineer graduate Michelle Nguyen win Project Viral Video!

graphic of the sexual misconduct song

Project Viral Video has a winner!

The department offers congratulations to our own AMITA RAO and recently graduated MICHELLE NGUYEN! The pair won the contest with their satirical piece The Sexual Misconduct Song.

Project Viral Video is an initiative started to help make VCU a safer, more inclusive space, to promote community building and socially engaged activism. You can view all the submissions at  https://rampages.us/viralvideo/submissions-2/.

Amita and Michelle wanted to make sure you know that this is a piece of satire and not meant to make light of sexual violence (see their eloquent full statement below). They wrote the song and animated the video themselves, but intended it as a rough draft and admit they are not professionals. (They are humble—it’s great!)

Watch the video: (Trigger warning: references to sexual violence)

Amita is a rising senior in the theatre department. She performs with the VCU improv team Running AMok and does sketch comedy with TheatreLAB’s Blue Collard Greens. Michelle just graduated with a BS in Biomedical Engineering.

“This is a brief, catchy ditty exploring how sexual misconduct can manifest in seemingly benign ways but also in more grave scenarios. In this animation, we hope to convince others not to perpetuate harmful behavior that leads to sexual misconduct.

Audiences are much more likely to remember, consume, and share satirical/comedic material (think Bo Burnham, Garfunkel & Oates, and the viral PSA “Dumb Ways to Die”, etc).

We do not aim to make light of serious and important topics regarding sexual violence. We rather aim to subvert the standard narrative of rape ⁠— which often focuses on what the victim should be doing ⁠— by mocking the public’s focus on the perpetrator’s lost potential. Here we address the potential perpetrator, who contrary to popular belief, “often does not fit the model of serial predator” (Swartout, Koss, & White, 2015) and is usually someone the victim knows.

Hopefully, with this video, we can tackle the root of the problem.

Amita Rao and Michelle Nguyen

Need help?

Students who have experienced sexual assault, intimate partner violence, stalking, harassment, or who have questions about relationships or supporting survivors can contact University Counseling Services Sexual and Intimate Partner Violence Advocacy Program.

Confidential advocates are available by phone, email, or Zoom to support students. Advocates can provide accompaniments and support for the criminal or Title IX reporting process, medical or mental health care appointments; academic or housing accommodation requests, referrals to community providers, and more.

Advocates can be reached through the main counseling line at 804-828-6200 or at Myoptions@vcu.edu.


Project Viral Video thanks all the other students who sent in submissions!

Read more here at their Website