Sexual Health Week raises awareness

This week CAPS and student health services are providing activities to increase sexual health awareness. The theme this year is: sexual communication equals better sex.

Today is the last day to attend their activity from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Smith Center cafeteria on the stage. Two tables are set up; one is stocked with materials to make valentine cards and the other provides information on sexual health awareness. A student health services nurse is at the valentines table, available to answer questions or discuss issues.

Music will be playing today and “Dr. Truth,” played by CAPS psychologist Dr. Linda Fishman, will host a question and answer session from noon to 1 p.m. The theater department will help to make the event entertaining.

Karen Waller, coordinator of the event and outreach specialist in CAPS, said that the group of people stopping by the tables to make valentines is “as diverse as the PSU population.”

The valentine table was surrounded by students on Wednesday. Marni Treece, a sophomore majoring in sociology, was making a valentine card for her boyfriend. She will also attend the event today.

Kathy McKoy, student health services nurse, staffed the table and made valentines for her children. She said the turnout was so good that they needed more table space.

Senior art major Jamesha Walker, just happened to walk by and see the table. She sat down to make a card for her friend.

Karina Stepanenko, sophomore child and family major, assembled a card for her boyfriend.

Everyone at the table agreed that making the cards was very relaxing. Treece said “everything and more” was provided to make cards.

Between CAPS and student health services, information on a variety of topics is available including sexually transmitted diseases, surviving childhood abuse, abstinence, birth control options, committed relationships, sexual assault, domestic violence and more.

Waller has been developing a brochure titled, “I have an STD, now what,” with one of the capstone courses. She explained that there is an abundance of information prompting people to protect themselves from STD’s, but not very much dealing with what to do once someone has one.

CAPS and student health services have organized sexual health week around the same time every year for about 10 years. This year’s event costs less than $100.