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Sarah Vogel on stage at her TEDx talk

Hawaiʻi Community College Title IX Coordinator Sara Vogel gave a TEDx talk at the University of the Pacific in April titled, “Pleasure and Power: Why Pleasure Must Be Part of Consent Education.”

woman sitting on a table
Sara Vogel

The goal of the TED Foundation is to foster the spread of great ideas, and it is known for its free online TED Talks. TEDx is a grassroots initiative created in the spirit of TED’s overall mission.

Vogel said:

  • “It is such an honor and privilege to have a global platform to share stories and ask people to think differently about the way they speak with their partners, students, children, and communities about sexual violence prevention.

    We all can make a change in the world, and sometimes, that change begins with changing how we approach our conversations with young people in the classroom or around the dinner table.

    Evidence shows that approaching talks about consent and sexuality from a pleasure-based perspective works better than approaching conversations on consent from a fear-based perspective. Still, the stigma of talking about pleasure prevents us from leaning into this approach.

    I want to challenge everyone to rethink their relationship with the way they approach conversations on sex and sexuality with themselves, their partners, and their young people to develop a more empowered approach that focuses on agency rather than fear.”

Her TEDx talk contains a discussion on sexual assault and a description of a nonconsensual sexual act. Certain individuals may find this content triggering and/or offensive. If you anticipate that this material could cause trauma or re-traumatization, you may opt not to watch the video. For those seeking support, there are numerous resources and reporting avenues accessible to University of Hawaiʻi students and employees, both within the university and in the community.

Vogel is currently serving as a Fulbright Research Chair in Indigenous Studies at Vancouver Island University in Canada, and is researching decolonizing and Indigenizing sexual wellness and empowerment education—focusing specifically on Hawaiian and Pasifika narratives.

In February, Hawaiʻi CC was named a Top Fulbright Producing Institution for its Fulbright scholars and students. It is one of only 17 associate’s degree-granting institutions out of more than 1,200 to receive the recognition for the 2023–24 academic year.

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