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Prevention and Wellness Services

Prevention and Wellness Services is a student service, education, and research department that offers students the opportunity to participate in health education outreach and evaluation activities. Dedicated to advancing students' health in all areas of personal and academic growth, Prevention and Wellness Services prepares undergraduates to conduct effective health promotion activities--including needs assessments, implementation, and evaluation--in stress management, healthy eating and positive body image, alcohol abuse and drug use prevention, sexual assault and violence prevention and sexual health. Additionally Prevention and Wellness Services develops student leadership in building an inclusive campus community, increasing tolerance and appreciation for difference. Students who volunteer with Prevention and Wellness Services--Lifestyle Advisors--first take a four credit course in Health Education, where they conduct in-depth research on a specific health promotion issue commonly faced by college students. Students return to the WWU campus two-weeks prior to the start up of fall quarter in order to take advantage of intensive training with health promotion professionals from campus and the community. At the end of this intensive training experience, the students make topic-orientated presentations on the results of their course of training.

The Lifestyle Advisor Program is the largest all-volunteer service learning group at WWU. In addition to giving hundreds of hours of service in health promotion outreach to students at WWU and to youth in the Bellingham Public Schools, Lifestyle Advisors often become proficient in the implementation of health research using basic quantitative survey and qualitative interviewing techniques. Lifestyle Advisors have been asked to be presenters at Washington State prevention and health promotion conferences and symposium and at the American College Health Association annual professional meeting. Every year, a group of Lifestyle Advisors is chosen to become part of the teaching team that works with the new class of peer educators. It is common for second and third year students to develop creative new pedagogical approaches to one of the units in the course. In its thirteenth year on campus, the Lifestyle Advisors of Prevention and Wellness Services provide innovative health outreach programs to WWU students and a valuable hands-on service and research experience to the students who both teach and learn in the program.

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March 29, 2006 Western Washington University