Last week, the Committee on Gender and Sexuality (COGS) hosted a week’s worth of educational and entertaining events titled “It’s not all about sex week.” The purpose of the week was to teach students and faculty about healthy relationships, consent and sex education. This was the first year the committee organized a full week of activities.
“We had a few technical difficulties that we hope to solve for next year,” COGS chair Maddie Clendening said. “[We had to flip] two day’s activities due to miscommunication, but overall it was a [great] week.”
Monday’s event was a discussion based presentation where students learned how to distinguish between a healthy and unhealthy relationship, whether romantic or not. Students engaged in activities, like making lists of what qualities their potential partner or friend should have, that taught them how to achieve healthy relationships.
“I plan to improve [this event] by making the conversation more inclusive of different types of relationships and giving COGS committee members the tools to lead this conversation,” Clendening said.
Planned Parenthood representative Zack Baker led a sex education discussion on Tuesday. Students learned the myths of sex education, how to put on a condom, and the different forms of contraceptives.
“The atmosphere was open and light-hearted which I appreciated a lot,” executive committee member Loren Marshall said. “The people that came to events [were] genuinely interested in what we had to teach and [contributed] a lot to the discussions.”
The week’s most well-known event, “I Heart the Female Orgasm,” took place on Wednesday. This engaging, lecture-based discussion cleared up misconceptions on sex in a way that promoted the inclusion of all sexualities and gender identifications.
“This event helped students feel more comfortable with [their bodies] and the female anatomy,” Marshall said.
The last event of the week was a question and answer discussion where any questions that were not answered in previous events were answered.
“The wrap-up session helped clear up any concerns that students had,” Marshall said. “I think making the events cover more on contraception and STIs was useful to students.”
The average turnout for last week’s events ranged from 15-30 students, excluding Wednesday’s event, which is the most popular among students. COGS members hope to further engage students in sex education through future events.
“This is a busy time of year, so moving sex week up to more early in the school year would be [great] for a larger turnout,” Marshall said.
COGS works year round towards educating students on issues regarding gender and sexuality on campus. “It’s not all about sex” week is the committee’s most popular event this semester.
“Events like this are important for college students to attend because there is a great need for inclusive healthy relationship and sex education [in society,]” Clendening said. “COGS is happy to help educate other students on these issues.”