By Min Jiao
Staff reporter

Local healthcare professionals will discuss general healthcare, men’s and women’s sexuality and mental health at a conference Monday evening.

The biology education outreach team is hosting the Health and Wellness Conference 6.30 p.m. to 9 p.m. on March 11 in Mossman 101.

Tamara McEwen, assistant professor of biology, said, “This conference will focus on health issues that are specific to college students.”

“There’s going to be some different sessions. One of them will just be general health issues. We are also going to is focus on mental health and some sexual health issues,”said McEwen.

The biology education outreach team working on this conference includes Rutendo Jokomo, biology senior. Sydnee Nelson, biochemistry senior. Sara Peck, biology sophomore. Jessica Arnoldy, biology freshman. Mariam Mamah, biology senior.

Jokomo said, “We are going to talk about general health care and in that session we are going to be talking about the health care facilities or options that are available to students in Winfield.”

Jokomo said, “We will also talk about mental health and coping with the stress a lot of students face here at school. Basically a lot health issues face college students directly.”

McEwen said, “We feel like maybe they are services available that students don’t know about and there are health issues that students have that they are too shy or too embarrassed to ask for help with. So we are going to let them know what is.”

Nelson said, “When we started talking about it, we felt that the school has a lot of opportunities for us to get help, to make sure that we are healthy and safe but we don’t advertise it very well so we really wanted  to an opportunity to extend that to students.”

The purpose of the conference is to provide information regarding health issues to students. “We no longer have a campus nurse. Students may not know where they need to go if they are sick or if they maybe feeling depressed or if they just have concerns,” said McEwen.

Nelson said, “This conference is to get information to students about health issues that could be general health issues, like getting the flu, or even sexual or mental issues, like depression or suicide.”

The conference is new.  McEwen said, “It is Rutendo Jokomo’s idea. She kind of dreamed it up and she’s done most of the organizing and has gotten the other students involved in the planning and organization, and has taken care of the details for that.”

Jokomo said, “This is the first time we are doing something like this. Hopefully it won’t be the last. It depends on the response we get out of it.”

There are four biology professors are working with the team. Charlie Hunter, professor of biology. Rick Cowlishaw, associate professor of biology. Patrick Ross, professor of biology and McEwen.

Jokomo said, “This is first big event with college students. Our job is to teach people to love life and science and we thought this would maybe be a cool way of doing that.”

McEwen said, “The team is hoping for 50 to 75 students. We hope to have a pretty big crowd a general session. Then we will break them out to a session for males and a session for females.”

Jokomo said, “This is the first time done like this. we are going to use that as a gauge for events we have in the future.”

Min Jiao is a junior majoring in communication. You may e-mail her