By Senior Correspondent Desirée Taylor
Today’s event announcing the creation of the Tyler Clementi Center at Rutgers was a bittersweet day for Joe and Jane Clementi and their family. It was back in 2010 when their son Tyler, a Rutgers freshman, took his own life after his former roommate used a webcam to spy on him having a sexual encounter with another man. The tragedy made national headlines and raised awareness about gender discrimination and cyber bullying.
The Tyler Clementi Center will draw upon existing faculty, staff and resources across Rutgers to help create new programs and approaches to address issues that confront young people as they make transition from home to college. Among them, the use and misuse of social media, bullying, cyber bullying and youth suicide, particularly among the LGBT community. Rutgers already has services that help students address these and other issues. The Tyler Clementi Center is looking to fill any gaps in services.