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Virtual Technology Allows SHARP Academy Students Opportunity to Interview Survivor

October 28, 2017

United States Army Spc. Jarett Wright was hazed and sexually assaulted while deployed to Iraq in 2010. Students from the Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention Academy had the opportunity to interview Wright Oct. 12, even though he wasn’t speaking to them at the time.

The Digital Survivor of Sexual Assault (DS2A) project uses the latest technology to educate and bring awareness to U.S. Army personnel to the horrific realities of sexual assault. The project replicates the experience of an in-person interaction with a survivor of sexual assault. Using Google voice recognition software, DS2A allows Soldiers and Department of the Army Civilians to have an immersive and interactive conversation with a survivor of sexual abuse using a virtual avatar in place of the victim.

“This initiative represents a great collaborative effort between the SHARP Academy, the Army Research Laboratory, and the University of Southern California, Institute for Creative Technologies (USC-ICT), and leverages innovative technology to enhance SHARP education and training,” said Col. Christopher Engen director of the U.S. Army SHARP Academy.

Though the program has been tested many times, this session was the first time an entire SHARP Academy class was allowed to interact with the DS2A.

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