by: Kathleen Woods
Valentine’s Day celebrates the day of love and is the perfect time of year to make sure that students are being safe if they are sexual active.
Heart Your Union took place on Valentine’s Day, Feb.14, upstairs in Blum Union from 12:30-2:30. This event was for students to not only celebrate Valentine’s Day but to provide students the opportunity to be tested for Sexually Transmitted Diseases. Also commonly known as STI’s. The event mainly marketed towards HIV testing with a free T-shirt included but gave the option to students walking by the HIV table.
Provided on the HIV table were bowls of condoms and suckers in fun shapes. If you were uneducated on HIV testing, pamphlets were provided to educate students. To ensure that you can still have a good time and practice safe sex.
Co-Chair of the Community Prevention Group, Hamilton Henderson, was in charge of running the HIV table. To Henderson HIV testing and STI testing in general are important for everyone who is sexual active, especially students.
“They’re sexually active, and throw caution to the wind.” Henderson said. “So it is a good idea to be protected, knowledge is powerful.”
Aside from HIV testing students had the chance to win prizes and free gifts. Missouri Western Sophomore, Dahja Ward, attended the event and saw many gifts handed out to attendees.
“Some people gave out roses and teddy bears.” Ward said. “Some of the booths had Missouri Western gear like sweatshirts and T-shirts.”
Other students worked some of the tables at Heart Your Union to touch base with students on subjects such as Title Nine.
Missouri Western Senior, Grace Carney, worked a prize table and educated students.
“It was about student affairs and Title Nine and we’re giving away a sweater blanket, candy, stickers and buttons.”
If winning prizes or gaining free gifts wasn’t what you wanted for Valentine’s Day the event also included decorating cookies, taking picture’s in a photo booth or having a caricature made of yourselves or with a friend.
Many students gathered in the upstairs Blum Union in one of the meeting rooms where caricatures were being drawn by two professionals who had both worked at Worlds of Fun. One of the artists had even worked at Universal Studios. Each caricature took the artists three minutes to draw their subjects and make them smile.
This event was put on to ensure student’s safety with STI testing for Valentine’s Day and bring awareness to students.