UCO offers education over sexuality
UCO Peer Health Leader, Victoria Noah, describes sex toys to those in attendance at “For Your Eyes Only”, a seminar put on for Sexual Health Awareness Week. The event was located in West Hall. Photo by Cara Johnson, The Vista.
The University of Central Oklahoma not only offers a multitude of classes and programs, but also offers health and wellness resources for all students.
The Wellness and Sports Department at UCO organized a week full of educational events as a part of the annual Health Awareness Week, including “For Your Eyes Only,” an event with peer health leaders over sexual expression and sexual health.
The informative workshop took place in the West Hall Lounge on Wednesday, Sept. 28, and encouraged students to bring their questions over sexuality and sexual expression.
“Tonight we got to listen to a couple of great presenters speak about sexual health, our sexual anatomy and sexual self-expression. It’s important to know your own sexual health before you can even begin looking at, you know, being with a partner,” Brittney Criswell said, manager of Health Promotions for UCO’s Wellness Center.
LaNita Harris, an instructor of UCO’s Kinesiology and Health Studies Department, was the first speaker at the event, and educated students over the different types of sexuality, and how culture can mold and shape sexual interests.
Harris discussed that many people used the word “normal” to talk about heterosexual relations, and leave out the others that can’t associate with the term. She believes the word “normal” should not only be used to one type of sexuality, as all types of sexuality are normal and should be respected equally by society.
“So the reason why this [event] is so important is because it raises awareness, and also it raises the understanding of sexuality and sexual health. It helps us appreciate the importance of discussing sexuality, and understand it’s completely health and natural,” Harris said.
The second speaker, UCO Peer Health Leader, Victoria Noah, discussed sexual health topics including orgasm, sex toys, and safety while being sexually active.
Noah displayed a vulva toy, a condom and a dental dam. She and demonstrated different forms of contraception, and ways to avoid sexual transmitted diseases. Noah also talked about the history of sex toys, and how it was implemented in today’s society.
According to Noah, women in the 1800’s were experiencing hysteria, an exaggerated or uncontrollable emotion or excitement, and doctors found that the irritability could be cured by giving a pelvic massage. Doctors were giving pelvic massages frequently, and decided to create something that could alleviate some tensions women experienced— they invented sexual toys.
“This was happening so often. Doctors were having to give out those pelvic massages so frequently that their hands started cramping, and they couldn’t keep up with their patients. So doctors invented the vibrators,” Noah said.
After the two speakers educated students on some topics, students were encouraged to ask questions over sexual expression and sexual health. Several students had their questions answered, and left feeling more educated and intellectual.
“I liked [the event]. I learned a lot of stuff that I didn’t know, and I thought [the speakers] were very helpful explaining things. I think it helps a lot to get information about things we don’t know,” said Madison Bolton, UCO’s student.
Some students, however, felt the material was lacking.
“I like the idea of it, and I was really excited about it, but the information was very lacking. Some information I thought it was nice, but it was it was very basic,” Kelsea Lay said, a student at UCO.