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ISSUE 116 VOL 4 PUBLISHED 10/4/2002

Healthy lives taught

By Emily Moen
Contributing Writer

Friday, October 4, 2002

The St. Olaf Wellness Center's Peer Education Programs allow students to educate their peers in a wide variety of topics.

Ten students are employed as Peer Educators in the Wellness Center. Each Peer Educator teaches a few classes each month on a topic in their specialty area.

The classes range from light to more serious subject matter, with titles such as "High Times on the Hill", "The Art of Facial Hair Grooming", and "Mocktails and Jeopardy."

The Peer Education Program works in conjunction with the Physical Education Department. Certain half credit PE courses require that students attend a certain number of Peer Education classes each semester.

Renee Sauter, the Wellness Program coordinator, said that the mission of the Peer Education Program is to "use students to educate their peers on wellness issues outside of the physical component."

Sauter indicated that student response has been getting better each year, with word of mouth helping to raise awareness of the program's existence. "It's fun. It's real-life stuff outside of the realm of books and tests," Sauter said. "This is a program that helps students step outside of their normal everyday activities and look inside. It ties in with the spirit part of St. Olaf's 'mind, body, and spirit' mission."

Jenna Kubat '04 recently led a class entitled "Lasting Impressions - Are You Making a Good First Impression?" Kubat's specialty area is healthy relationships. Twenty-one students attended her program on how first impressions affect relationships. During her program, she used examples from the television show "Dating Story" on TLC.

Jenny Ester '06 attended Kubat's first impressions class. "I thought that it was cool to have a student teaching the class. It made it more of an issue that other students are thinking about, not just an issue that the school is thinking about. The class was very informative - it made me want to go out and make a good impression."

Students can log on to the Wellness Center webpage at for a list of October Peer Education classes.

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