Broadening our Scope
There are significant opportunities for health enhancement through the use of appropriate and science-based (i.e., best practice) approaches to health promotion. Student Health Promotion at Georgia State University has taken a population-based approach in its health promotion efforts to ensure that appropriate prevention activities occur across the continuum of wellness. This population-based approach typically focuses on the first tier of prevention, referred to as primary prevention (i.e., education); although in some instances secondary prevention (i.e., intervention) is appropriate and utilized. Our population-based approach to health promotion also includes sensitivity to issues of social justice, race, gender, culture, religion, sexual orientation, individual differences, and efforts to broaden student engagement across the campus.
A Comprehensive Approach
Student Health Promotion practices a comprehensive approach in its harm reduction, intentional injury, and illness/disease prevention strategies. For example:
- Student Health Promotion utilizes the American College Health Association’s Standards of Practice for College Health Promotion Programs.
- Student Health Promotion follows the recommendations taken from the American College Health Association, Healthy Campus 2010.
- Student Health Promotion is already actively engaged in program evaluation and outcome analysis, which provide much of the content for its annual report.
Use of Peer Educators
The Department of Student Health Promotion uses trained graduate and undergraduate peer educators called PHEs – Peer Health Educators. The PHEs provide many of the Department’s services and provide key leadership in creating a healthy campus. The PHEs have received specialized training in public health initiatives, health promotion programming, and dimensions of wellness. Peer Health Educators help to develop, plan, and implement services, events, and programs that promote and enhance the well-being of students and the campus-community. The PHEs are the University’s first response to health promotion and wellness education.
- Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drug Prevention:includes interactive health promotion programs related to substance use and misuse and abuse; it also includes the participation in National and local awareness events such as National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week, Safer Break Week, MADD Strides for Change, Great American Smoke Out, and National Alcohol Screening Day
- Health and Safety: includes interactive health promotion programs on topics such as pedestrian and driver safety, cancer prevention, illness prevention, personal hygiene, sleep, and other general wellness topics; also includes the participation in National and local awareness events such as Click-it or Ticket, Pedestrian Safety Week, Health and Wellness Week, Komen for the Cure, Love Your Body Week, and health fairs. DSHP also provides free, confidential HIV testing services.
- Healthy Nutrition: includes interactive health promotion programs on topics such as healthy eating habits, healthy snacks, eating on a college budget, and food safety; also includes the participation in National and local awareness events such as Have a Heart Day, Wellness on Wheels (WOW), and National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (NEDAW).
- Healthy Sexuality: includes interactive health promotion programs on topics such as safer sex, sexually transmittable infections, contraception, sexuality, and family planning; also includes the participation in National and local awareness events such as World AIDS Day, Safer Sex Week, National HIV Testing Day, Day of Silence, and National Coming Out Day. DSHP also provides free, confidential HIV testing services.
- Violence Prevention: includes interactive health promotion programs on topics such as anger management, violence prevention, sexual assault, and domestic violence (including Man-to-Man “safe” talk programs on domestic violence); also includes the participation in national and local awareness events such as Rape Awareness Week, National Violence Prevention Day, and Take Back the Night.