How to Plan National STD Awareness Month Activities

Universities/Colleges/Vocational Schools

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National STD Awareness Month is an annual national health observance sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help break the silence and to alert everyone to the growing crisis of sexually transmitted diseases/infections (STDs/STIs) in America. The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) encourages all Minnesotans to learn about STDs, one of the state’s most persistent (yet preventable) health problems, during the observance of National STD Awareness Month. Public awareness and knowledge remain critically low around the country and STDs are occurring at epidemic levels, particularly among the 15 to 29 year olds. The MDH reported receiving 23,133 new cases of STDs/STIs in Minnesota in 2013 of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis.  To help get the word about National STD Awareness Month in your community, please refer to the following planning guidelines and suggested activities:

On Campus…

  • Create a campus STD/Sexual Health committee to educate students about STDs/STIs and host seminars, campaigns and podcasts and post messages on social media and mobile networks
  • Organize a student STD/STI/sexual health day or week to include games, screenings, events, matchbook design contests, sidewalk chalking, etc.
  • Invite speakers to your college from local hospitals, clinics, or community-based organizations providing STD/STI services
  • Dedicate campus web site pages with STD/STI blogs, videos, quizzes, fact sheets, testing resources and links:
  • Organize presentations and discussions with student educators in student centers, dormitory lounges and campus meeting rooms
  • Sponsor a T-shirt/button/pencil sale or walk/run to benefit campus STD/STI program
  • Write an article or editorial for the campus paper, club newsletter, blog or email bulletin
  • Create STD/STI internal and external panels for campus busses
  • Create and customize tabletop tents, posters and banners with STD/STI campaign messages and place in campus cafeterias, dormitories and libraries
  • Host an STD/STI educational display at an athletic event
  • Co-host interviews with medical and/or health service faculty on campus radio stations
  • Distribute key chains, stickers, matchbooks, pens and buttons with STD/STI awareness messages
  • Ask campus student health center or other local testing center to provide walk-in STD/STI testing
  • Collect photographs, posters, articles and drawings showing that people of all ethnicities, ages, genders and sexual orientation can be infected with STDs/STIs; and, ask student groups to submit a piece and create a mural display
  • Hold a film-festival featuring educational DVDs about STDs/STIs and air on campus cable TV
  • Coordinate with bars and restaurants near campus to give out free condoms and pass out literature
  • Hold an open house in the student center; distribute information about STDs/STIs
  • Sponsor a benefit theater production or concert where proceeds go to a local STD/STI/sexual health organization or campus program
  • Obtain and distribute STD materials on campus: cafeterias, dorm rooms, book stores, campus organizations, libraries, student commons, etc.:
  • Use Selected Local and National Resources for National STD Awareness Month and /or STD Materials
  • Make sure your events get added to the Calendar of Statewide National STD Awareness Month Events

Updated Wednesday, March 11, 2015 at 03:30PM