Alpha Chi Rho brothers with the presenters of Sex Ed Boot Camp. Left to right: Stephen Armstrong, Dr. Joni Frater, President C.J. Bradley, Esther Lastique, Pat Fetherman, Wendy Walsh and President Kane Rowles.
LOCK HAVEN, Pa. - Over 200 Lock Haven University students attended the première presentations of Sex Ed Boot Camp on October 17 and 18. The audience enjoyed and were enlightened by the best-selling authors, sex researchers and trained sexologists, Dr. Joni Frater and Esther Lastique.Lock Haven University is a member of the Pennsylvania State
System of Higher Education (PASSHE), the largest provider of higher education in
the commonwealth. Its 14 universities offer more than 250 degree and certificate
programs in more than 120 areas of study. Nearly 405,000 system alumni live and
work in Pennsylvania.
Frater and Lastique covered everything students needed to know about exploring their sexuality safely in a college environment, including basic anatomy, sexual responsibility, deciding if and when to share their body with a partner, and safer sex techniques for the 21st century. They empowered the attendees to make better decisions about their sexuality from a place of knowledge and confidence. One of the students who attended said that the presenters “had more information than we even knew we wanted!”
One of the goals of the presenters is to prevent students from becoming a statistic. The key is education. Frater and Lastique quoted some chilling statistics. There are 6 million new cases of genital HPV in the US each year, 74% of them among 15-24 year olds. In addition, 25% of the US population has genital herpes. Half of the 40,000 new HIV cases per year in the U.S. are among 15-24 year olds. There are 19 million new STD infections in the U.S. per year. According to the Centers for Disease Control in September 2010, one third of 15-19 year olds are not getting information about how to use condoms to prevent the spread of disease. One in ten births in the U.S. is the result of a teen pregnancy.
Frater and Lastique “have an ease of talking to students, not at them, and I was very pleased with the number of students that attended, their questions and respect for the importance of the program,” stated Wendy Walsh, Student Life Coordinator, IFC Adviser and the program coordinator. There were two separate presentations.
Sunday’s presentation was for the LHU Greek organizations. The presenters were able to point out how important the Greek organizations are as leaders to the University and surrounding community; as brothers and sisters they need to watch each other, take care of themselves and be role models. Sam Church, Zeta Tau Alpha new member, stated “This was a fun and interesting way to learn the facts without it being drilled.” He noted the “non-threatening environment to talk freely about everything we were never told.” Kane Rowles, president of Alpha Chi Rho, was glad that so many of the Greeks turned out to be better informed. Meghan Grenier said, “It was very informal and fun. They were able to keep the attention of the students. We all benefit from it and learned a lot.”
The Monday presentation drew a full house, either because the word had gotten out that the presentation was great or because Frater and Lastique visited Bentley Dining Hall that evening giving out condoms and explaining the program to many students that were willing listeners.
Many students come to college with misinformation and misconceptions about sex. Part of the problem, according to Frater and Lastique, is that parents are not talking and schools are not getting funding to teach sex. “We want to give them reasons to have great self esteem, to make educated and healthy decisions for a natural occurrence in life,” Lastique repeated after the Monday presentation.
Dr. Frater added, “We loved it here in Lock Haven. Students were so kind and open to the information and had some of the best questions. We are going to use their questions to tweak the presentation nationwide.”
Sex Ed Boot Camp will be presented all over the United States at hundreds of universities.